A recent study at the University of Pennsylvania suggests that mindfulness meditation can increase the mental toughness of soldiers preparing for war. Participants were Marines readying for deployment to Iraq who performed mindfulness meditation daily during the 8 week period leading up to their departure. Those who remained consistent with their meditation practice throughout the 8 weeks demonstrated an improvement in their memory capacity, as well as an enhanced ability to stay alert and in the moment without letting emotion overwhelm them. Researchers explain that these skills can function as a kind of “mental armor” for soldiers on the front line. Participants also reported more positive moods as a result of the program.