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Sample records for mindfulness meditation training

  1. Mindfulness meditation and relaxation training increases time sensitivity.

    PubMed

    Droit-Volet, S; Fanget, M; Dambrun, M

    2015-01-01

    Two experiments examined the effect of mindfulness meditation and relaxation on time perception using a temporal bisection task. In Experiment 1, the participants performed a temporal task before and after exercises of mindfulness meditation or relaxation. In Experiment 2, the procedure was similar than that used in Experiment 1, except that the participants were trained to mediate or relax every day over a period of several weeks. The results showed that mindfulness meditation exercises increased sensitivity to time and lengthened perceived time. However, this temporal improvement with meditation exercises was primarily observed in the experienced meditators. Our results also showed the experienced meditators were less anxious than the novice participants, and that the sensitivity to time increased when the level of anxiety decreased. Our results were explained by the practice of mindfulness technique that had developed individuals' abilities in devoting more attention resources to temporal information processing. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Brief Mindfulness Meditation Training Reduces Mind-Wandering: The Critical Role of Acceptance

    PubMed Central

    Rahl, Hayley A.; Lindsay, Emily K.; Pacilio, Laura E.; Brown, Kirk W.; Creswell, J. David

    2016-01-01

    Mindfulness meditation programs, which train individuals to monitor their present moment experience in an open or accepting way, have been shown to reduce mind-wandering on standardized tasks in several studies. Here we test two competing accounts for how mindfulness training reduces mind-wandering, evaluating whether the attention monitoring component of mindfulness training alone reduces mind-wandering or whether the acceptance training component is necessary for reducing mind-wandering. Healthy young adults (N=147) were randomized to either a 3-day brief mindfulness training condition incorporating instruction in both attention monitoring and acceptance, a mindfulness training condition incorporating attention monitoring instruction only, a relaxation training condition, or a reading control condition. Participants completed measures of dispositional mindfulness and treatment expectancies before the training session on Day 1 and then completed a 6-minute Sustained Attention Response Task (SART) measuring mind-wandering after the training session on Day 3. Acceptance training was important for reducing mind-wandering, such that the monitoring + acceptance mindfulness training condition had the lowest mind-wandering relative to the other conditions, including significantly lower mind-wandering relative to the monitor-only mindfulness training condition. In one of the first experimental mindfulness training dismantling studies to-date, we show that training in acceptance is a critical driver of mindfulness training reductions in mind-wandering. This effect suggests that acceptance skills may facilitate emotion regulation on boring and frustrating sustained attention tasks that foster mind-wandering, such as the SART. PMID:27819445

  3. The protective effects of brief mindfulness meditation training.

    PubMed

    Banks, Jonathan B; Welhaf, Matthew S; Srour, Alexandra

    2015-05-01

    Mindfulness meditation has gained a great deal of attention in recent years due to the variety of physical and psychological benefits, including improved working memory, decreased mind wandering and reduced impact of stress on working memory. The current study examined a 1-week at home mindfulness meditation intervention compared to an active control intervention. Results suggest that mindfulness meditation does not increase working memory or decrease mind wandering but does prevent stress related working memory impairments. Mindfulness meditation appears to alter the factors that impair working memory such that the negative impact of mind wandering on working memory was only evident at higher levels of negative affect. The use of cognitive mechanism words in narratives of stressful events did not differ by condition but predicted poorer working memory in the control condition. The results support the use of an at home mindfulness meditation intervention for reducing stress-related impairments. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Brief mindfulness meditation training reduces mind wandering: The critical role of acceptance.

    PubMed

    Rahl, Hayley A; Lindsay, Emily K; Pacilio, Laura E; Brown, Kirk W; Creswell, J David

    2017-03-01

    Mindfulness meditation programs, which train individuals to monitor their present-moment experience in an open or accepting way, have been shown to reduce mind wandering on standardized tasks in several studies. Here we test 2 competing accounts for how mindfulness training reduces mind wandering, evaluating whether the attention-monitoring component of mindfulness training alone reduces mind wandering or whether the acceptance training component is necessary for reducing mind wandering. Healthy young adults (N = 147) were randomized to either a 3-day brief mindfulness training condition incorporating instruction in both attention monitoring and acceptance, a mindfulness training condition incorporating attention monitoring instruction only, a relaxation training condition, or an active reading-control condition. Participants completed measures of dispositional mindfulness and treatment expectancies before the training session on Day 1 and then completed a 6-min Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART) measuring mind wandering after the training session on Day 3. Acceptance training was important for reducing mind wandering, such that the attention-monitoring plus acceptance mindfulness training condition had the lowest mind wandering relative to the other conditions, including significantly lower mind wandering than the attention-monitoring only mindfulness training condition. In one of the first experimental mindfulness training dismantling studies to-date, we show that training in acceptance is a critical driver of mindfulness-training reductions in mind wandering. This effect suggests that acceptance skills may facilitate emotion regulation on boring and frustrating sustained attention tasks that foster mind wandering, such as the SART. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  5. Brief mindfulness meditation training alters psychological and neuroendocrine responses to social evaluative stress.

    PubMed

    Creswell, J David; Pacilio, Laura E; Lindsay, Emily K; Brown, Kirk Warren

    2014-06-01

    To test whether a brief mindfulness meditation training intervention buffers self-reported psychological and neuroendocrine responses to the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST) in young adult volunteers. A second objective evaluates whether pre-existing levels of dispositional mindfulness moderate the effects of brief mindfulness meditation training on stress reactivity. Sixty-six (N=66) participants were randomly assigned to either a brief 3-day (25-min per day) mindfulness meditation training or an analytic cognitive training control program. All participants completed a standardized laboratory social-evaluative stress challenge task (the TSST) following the third mindfulness meditation or cognitive training session. Measures of psychological (stress perceptions) and biological (salivary cortisol, blood pressure) stress reactivity were collected during the social evaluative stress-challenge session. Brief mindfulness meditation training reduced self-reported psychological stress reactivity but increased salivary cortisol reactivity to the TSST, relative to the cognitive training comparison program. Participants who were low in pre-existing levels of dispositional mindfulness and then received mindfulness meditation training had the greatest cortisol reactivity to the TSST. No significant main or interactive effects were observed for systolic or diastolic blood pressure reactivity to the TSST. The present study provides an initial indication that brief mindfulness meditation training buffers self-reported psychological stress reactivity, but also increases cortisol reactivity to social evaluative stress. This pattern may indicate that initially brief mindfulness meditation training fosters greater active coping efforts, resulting in reduced psychological stress appraisals and greater cortisol reactivity during social evaluative stressors. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. A randomized controlled trial of mindfulness meditation versus relaxation training: effects on distress, positive states of mind, rumination, and distraction.

    PubMed

    Jain, Shamini; Shapiro, Shauna L; Swanick, Summer; Roesch, Scott C; Mills, Paul J; Bell, Iris; Schwartz, Gary E R

    2007-02-01

    Although mindfulness meditation interventions have recently shown benefits for reducing stress in various populations, little is known about their relative efficacy compared with relaxation interventions. This randomized controlled trial examines the effects of a 1-month mindfulness meditation versus somatic relaxation training as compared to a control group in 83 students (M age = 25; 16 men and 67 women) reporting distress. Psychological distress, positive states of mind, distractive and ruminative thoughts and behaviors, and spiritual experience were measured, while controlling for social desirability. Hierarchical linear modeling reveals that both meditation and relaxation groups experienced significant decreases in distress as well as increases in positive mood states over time, compared with the control group (p < .05 in all cases). There were no significant differences between meditation and relaxation on distress and positive mood states over time. Effect sizes for distress were large for both meditation and relaxation (Cohen's d = 1.36 and .91, respectively), whereas the meditation group showed a larger effect size for positive states of mind than relaxation (Cohen's d =.71 and .25, respectively). The meditation group also demonstrated significant pre-post decreases in both distractive and ruminative thoughts/behaviors compared with the control group (p < .04 in all cases; Cohen's d = .57 for rumination and .25 for distraction for the meditation group), with mediation models suggesting that mindfulness meditation's effects on reducing distress were partially mediated by reducing rumination. No significant effects were found for spiritual experience. The data suggest that compared with a no-treatment control, brief training in mindfulness meditation or somatic relaxation reduces distress and improves positive mood states. However, mindfulness meditation may be specific in its ability to reduce distractive and ruminative thoughts and behaviors, and this

  7. Mindfulness meditation training alters stress-related amygdala resting state functional connectivity: a randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Taren, Adrienne A.; Gianaros, Peter J.; Greco, Carol M.; Lindsay, Emily K.; Fairgrieve, April; Brown, Kirk Warren; Rosen, Rhonda K.; Ferris, Jennifer L.; Julson, Erica; Marsland, Anna L.; Bursley, James K.; Ramsburg, Jared

    2015-01-01

    Recent studies indicate that mindfulness meditation training interventions reduce stress and improve stress-related health outcomes, but the neural pathways for these effects are unknown. The present research evaluates whether mindfulness meditation training alters resting state functional connectivity (rsFC) of the amygdala, a region known to coordinate stress processing and physiological stress responses. We show in an initial discovery study that higher perceived stress over the past month is associated with greater bilateral amygdala-subgenual anterior cingulate cortex (sgACC) rsFC in a sample of community adults (n = 130). A follow-up, single-blind randomized controlled trial shows that a 3-day intensive mindfulness meditation training intervention (relative to a well-matched 3-day relaxation training intervention without a mindfulness component) reduced right amygdala-sgACC rsFC in a sample of stressed unemployed community adults (n = 35). Although stress may increase amygdala-sgACC rsFC, brief training in mindfulness meditation could reverse these effects. This work provides an initial indication that mindfulness meditation training promotes functional neuroplastic changes, suggesting an amygdala-sgACC pathway for stress reduction effects. PMID:26048176

  8. Mindfulness meditation training alters stress-related amygdala resting state functional connectivity: a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Taren, Adrienne A; Gianaros, Peter J; Greco, Carol M; Lindsay, Emily K; Fairgrieve, April; Brown, Kirk Warren; Rosen, Rhonda K; Ferris, Jennifer L; Julson, Erica; Marsland, Anna L; Bursley, James K; Ramsburg, Jared; Creswell, J David

    2015-12-01

    Recent studies indicate that mindfulness meditation training interventions reduce stress and improve stress-related health outcomes, but the neural pathways for these effects are unknown. The present research evaluates whether mindfulness meditation training alters resting state functional connectivity (rsFC) of the amygdala, a region known to coordinate stress processing and physiological stress responses. We show in an initial discovery study that higher perceived stress over the past month is associated with greater bilateral amygdala-subgenual anterior cingulate cortex (sgACC) rsFC in a sample of community adults (n = 130). A follow-up, single-blind randomized controlled trial shows that a 3-day intensive mindfulness meditation training intervention (relative to a well-matched 3-day relaxation training intervention without a mindfulness component) reduced right amygdala-sgACC rsFC in a sample of stressed unemployed community adults (n = 35). Although stress may increase amygdala-sgACC rsFC, brief training in mindfulness meditation could reverse these effects. This work provides an initial indication that mindfulness meditation training promotes functional neuroplastic changes, suggesting an amygdala-sgACC pathway for stress reduction effects. © The Author (2015). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Meditation and mindfulness in clinical practice.

    PubMed

    Simkin, Deborah R; Black, Nancy B

    2014-07-01

    This article describes the various forms of meditation and provides an overview of research using these techniques for children, adolescents, and their families. The most researched techniques in children and adolescents are mindfulness-based stress reduction, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, yoga meditation, transcendental meditation, mind-body techniques (meditation, relaxation), and body-mind techniques (yoga poses, tai chi movements). Current data are suggestive of a possible value of meditation and mindfulness techniques for treating symptomatic anxiety, depression, and pain in youth. Clinicians must be properly trained before using these techniques. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  10. Effects of mindful-attention and compassion meditation training on amygdala response to emotional stimuli in an ordinary, non-meditative state

    PubMed Central

    Desbordes, Gaëlle; Negi, Lobsang T.; Pace, Thaddeus W. W.; Wallace, B. Alan; Raison, Charles L.; Schwartz, Eric L.

    2012-01-01

    The amygdala has been repeatedly implicated in emotional processing of both positive and negative-valence stimuli. Previous studies suggest that the amygdala response to emotional stimuli is lower when the subject is in a meditative state of mindful-attention, both in beginner meditators after an 8-week meditation intervention and in expert meditators. However, the longitudinal effects of meditation training on amygdala responses have not been reported when participants are in an ordinary, non-meditative state. In this study, we investigated how 8 weeks of training in meditation affects amygdala responses to emotional stimuli in subjects when in a non-meditative state. Healthy adults with no prior meditation experience took part in 8 weeks of either Mindful Attention Training (MAT), Cognitively-Based Compassion Training (CBCT; a program based on Tibetan Buddhist compassion meditation practices), or an active control intervention. Before and after the intervention, participants underwent an fMRI experiment during which they were presented images with positive, negative, and neutral emotional valences from the IAPS database while remaining in an ordinary, non-meditative state. Using a region-of-interest analysis, we found a longitudinal decrease in right amygdala activation in the Mindful Attention group in response to positive images, and in response to images of all valences overall. In the CBCT group, we found a trend increase in right amygdala response to negative images, which was significantly correlated with a decrease in depression score. No effects or trends were observed in the control group. This finding suggests that the effects of meditation training on emotional processing might transfer to non-meditative states. This is consistent with the hypothesis that meditation training may induce learning that is not stimulus- or task-specific, but process-specific, and thereby may result in enduring changes in mental function. PMID:23125828

  11. Virtual Training and Coaching of Health Behavior: Example from Mindfulness Meditation Training

    PubMed Central

    Hudlicka, Eva

    2014-01-01

    Objective Computer-based virtual coaches are increasingly being explored for patient education, counseling, and health behavior training and coaching. The objective of this research was to develop and evaluate a Virtual Mindfulness Coach for training and coaching in mindfulness meditation. Method The coach was implemented as an embodied conversational character, providing mindfulness training and coaching via mixed initiative, text-based, natural language dialogue with the student, and emphasizing affect-adaptive interaction. (The term ‘mixed initiative dialog’ refers to a human-machine dialogue where either can initiate a conversation or a change in the conversation topic.) Results Findings from a pilot evaluation study indicate that the coach-based training is more effective in helping students establish a regular practice than self-administered training using written and audio materials. The coached group also appeared to be in more advanced stages of change in terms of the transtheoretical model, and have a higher sense of self-efficacy regarding establishment of a regular mindfulness practice. Conclusion These results suggest that virtual coach-based training of mindfulness is both feasible, and potentially more effective, than a self-administered program. Of particular interest is the identification of the specific coach features that contribute to its effectiveness. Practice Implications Virtual coaches could provide easily-accessible and cost-effective customized training for a range of health behaviors. The affect-adaptive aspect of these coaches is particularly relevant for helping patients establish long-term behavior changes. PMID:23809167

  12. Virtual training and coaching of health behavior: example from mindfulness meditation training.

    PubMed

    Hudlicka, Eva

    2013-08-01

    Computer-based virtual coaches are increasingly being explored for patient education, counseling, and health behavior training and coaching. The objective of this research was to develop and evaluate a Virtual Mindfulness Coach for training and coaching in mindfulness meditation. The coach was implemented as an embodied conversational character, providing mindfulness training and coaching via mixed initiative, text-based, natural language dialog with the student, and emphasizing affect-adaptive interaction. (The term 'mixed initiative dialog' refers to a human-machine dialog where either can initiate a conversation or a change in the conversation topic.) Findings from a pilot evaluation study indicate that the coach-based training is more effective in helping students establish a regular practice than self-administered training using written and audio materials. The coached group also appeared to be in more advanced stages of change in terms of the transtheoretical model, and have a higher sense of self-efficacy regarding establishment of a regular mindfulness practice. These results suggest that virtual coach-based training of mindfulness is both feasible, and potentially more effective, than a self-administered program. Of particular interest is the identification of the specific coach features that contribute to its effectiveness. Virtual coaches could provide easily accessible and cost-effective customized training for a range of health behaviors. The affect-adaptive aspect of these coaches is particularly relevant for helping patients establish long-term behavior changes. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Mindfulness Meditation Training and Executive Control Network Resting State Functional Connectivity: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

    PubMed

    Taren, Adrienne A; Gianaros, Peter J; Greco, Carol M; Lindsay, Emily K; Fairgrieve, April; Brown, Kirk Warren; Rosen, Rhonda K; Ferris, Jennifer L; Julson, Erica; Marsland, Anna L; Creswell, J David

    Mindfulness meditation training has been previously shown to enhance behavioral measures of executive control (e.g., attention, working memory, cognitive control), but the neural mechanisms underlying these improvements are largely unknown. Here, we test whether mindfulness training interventions foster executive control by strengthening functional connections between dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC)-a hub of the executive control network-and frontoparietal regions that coordinate executive function. Thirty-five adults with elevated levels of psychological distress participated in a 3-day randomized controlled trial of intensive mindfulness meditation or relaxation training. Participants completed a resting state functional magnetic resonance imaging scan before and after the intervention. We tested whether mindfulness meditation training increased resting state functional connectivity (rsFC) between dlPFC and frontoparietal control network regions. Left dlPFC showed increased connectivity to the right inferior frontal gyrus (T = 3.74), right middle frontal gyrus (MFG) (T = 3.98), right supplementary eye field (T = 4.29), right parietal cortex (T = 4.44), and left middle temporal gyrus (T = 3.97, all p < .05) after mindfulness training relative to the relaxation control. Right dlPFC showed increased connectivity to right MFG (T = 4.97, p < .05). We report that mindfulness training increases rsFC between dlPFC and dorsal network (superior parietal lobule, supplementary eye field, MFG) and ventral network (right IFG, middle temporal/angular gyrus) regions. These findings extend previous work showing increased functional connectivity among brain regions associated with executive function during active meditation by identifying specific neural circuits in which rsFC is enhanced by a mindfulness intervention in individuals with high levels of psychological distress. Clinicaltrials.gov,NCT01628809.

  14. State and Training Effects of Mindfulness Meditation on Brain Networks Reflect Neuronal Mechanisms of Its Antidepressant Effect.

    PubMed

    Yang, Chuan-Chih; Barrós-Loscertales, Alfonso; Pinazo, Daniel; Ventura-Campos, Noelia; Borchardt, Viola; Bustamante, Juan-Carlos; Rodríguez-Pujadas, Aina; Fuentes-Claramonte, Paola; Balaguer, Raúl; Ávila, César; Walter, Martin

    2016-01-01

    The topic of investigating how mindfulness meditation training can have antidepressant effects via plastic changes in both resting state and meditation state brain activity is important in the rapidly emerging field of neuroplasticity. In the present study, we used a longitudinal design investigating resting state fMRI both before and after 40 days of meditation training in 13 novices. After training, we compared differences in network connectivity between rest and meditation using common resting state functional connectivity methods. Interregional methods were paired with local measures such as Regional Homogeneity. As expected, significant differences in functional connectivity both between states (rest versus meditation) and between time points (before versus after training) were observed. During meditation, the internal consistency in the precuneus and the temporoparietal junction increased, while the internal consistency of frontal brain regions decreased. A follow-up analysis of regional connectivity of the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex further revealed reduced connectivity with anterior insula during meditation. After meditation training, reduced resting state functional connectivity between the pregenual anterior cingulate and dorsal medical prefrontal cortex was observed. Most importantly, significantly reduced depression/anxiety scores were observed after training. Hence, these findings suggest that mindfulness meditation might be of therapeutic use by inducing plasticity related network changes altering the neuronal basis of affective disorders such as depression.

  15. State and Training Effects of Mindfulness Meditation on Brain Networks Reflect Neuronal Mechanisms of Its Antidepressant Effect

    PubMed Central

    Yang, Chuan-Chih; Barrós-Loscertales, Alfonso; Pinazo, Daniel; Ventura-Campos, Noelia; Borchardt, Viola; Bustamante, Juan-Carlos; Rodríguez-Pujadas, Aina; Fuentes-Claramonte, Paola; Balaguer, Raúl; Ávila, César; Walter, Martin

    2016-01-01

    The topic of investigating how mindfulness meditation training can have antidepressant effects via plastic changes in both resting state and meditation state brain activity is important in the rapidly emerging field of neuroplasticity. In the present study, we used a longitudinal design investigating resting state fMRI both before and after 40 days of meditation training in 13 novices. After training, we compared differences in network connectivity between rest and meditation using common resting state functional connectivity methods. Interregional methods were paired with local measures such as Regional Homogeneity. As expected, significant differences in functional connectivity both between states (rest versus meditation) and between time points (before versus after training) were observed. During meditation, the internal consistency in the precuneus and the temporoparietal junction increased, while the internal consistency of frontal brain regions decreased. A follow-up analysis of regional connectivity of the dorsal anterior cingulate cortex further revealed reduced connectivity with anterior insula during meditation. After meditation training, reduced resting state functional connectivity between the pregenual anterior cingulate and dorsal medical prefrontal cortex was observed. Most importantly, significantly reduced depression/anxiety scores were observed after training. Hence, these findings suggest that mindfulness meditation might be of therapeutic use by inducing plasticity related network changes altering the neuronal basis of affective disorders such as depression. PMID:26998365

  16. Neoliberal Meditations: How Mindfulness Training Medicalizes Education and Responsibilizes Young People

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reveley, James

    2016-01-01

    Teaching mindfulness meditation at school has been advocated by educational researchers and practitioners in order to proactively target the well-being of young people. By conceptualizing mindfulness meditation as a technology of the self, in Foucauldian terms, this article considers the ideological implications of implementing mindfulness…

  17. Mindfulness meditation training effects on CD4+ T lymphocytes in HIV-1 infected adults: A small randomized controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Creswell, J. David; Myers, Hector F.; Cole, Steven W.; Irwin, Michael R.

    2009-01-01

    Mindfulness meditation training has stress reduction benefits in various patient populations, but its effects on biological markers of HIV-1 progression are unknown. The present study tested the efficacy of an 8-week Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) meditation program compared to a 1-day control seminar on CD4+ T lymphocyte counts in stressed HIV infected adults. A single-blind randomized controlled trial was conducted with enrollment and follow-up occurring between November 2005 and December 2007. A diverse community sample of 48 HIV-1 infected adults was randomized and entered treatment in either an 8-week MBSR or a 1-day control stress reduction education seminar. The primary outcome was circulating counts of CD4+ T lymphocytes. Participants in the 1-day control seminar showed declines in CD4+ T lymphocyte counts whereas counts among participants in the 8-week MBSR program were unchanged from baseline to post-intervention (time × treatment condition interaction, p = .02). This effect was independent of antiretroviral (ARV) medication use. Additional analyses indicated that treatment adherence to the mindfulness meditation program, as measured by class attendance, mediated the effects of mindfulness meditation training on buffering CD4+ T lymphocyte declines. These findings provide an initial indication that mindfulness meditation training can buffer CD4+ T lymphocyte declines in HIV-1 infected adults. PMID:18678242

  18. Brief Mindfulness Meditation Group Training in Aphasia: Exploring Attention, Language and Psychophysiological Outcomes

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Marshall, Rebecca Shisler; Laures-Gore, Jacqueline; Love, Kim

    2018-01-01

    Background: Stroke is currently the leading cause of long-term disability in adults in the United States. There is a need for accessible, low-cost treatments of stroke-related disabilities such as aphasia. Aims: To explore an intervention for aphasia utilizing mindfulness meditation (MM). This preliminary study examines the feasibility of teaching…

  19. Investigation of mindfulness meditation practitioners with voxel-based morphometry

    PubMed Central

    Hölzel, Britta K.; Ott, Ulrich; Gard, Tim; Hempel, Hannes; Weygandt, Martin; Morgen, Katrin; Vaitl, Dieter

    2008-01-01

    Mindfulness meditators practice the non-judgmental observation of the ongoing stream of internal experiences as they arise. Using voxel-based morphometry, this study investigated MRI brain images of 20 mindfulness (Vipassana) meditators (mean practice 8.6 years; 2 h daily) and compared the regional gray matter concentration to that of non-meditators matched for sex, age, education and handedness. Meditators were predicted to show greater gray matter concentration in regions that are typically activated during meditation. Results confirmed greater gray matter concentration for meditators in the right anterior insula, which is involved in interoceptive awareness. This group difference presumably reflects the training of bodily awareness during mindfulness meditation. Furthermore, meditators had greater gray matter concentration in the left inferior temporal gyrus and right hippocampus. Both regions have previously been found to be involved in meditation. The mean value of gray matter concentration in the left inferior temporal gyrus was predictable by the amount of meditation training, corroborating the assumption of a causal impact of meditation training on gray matter concentration in this region. Results suggest that meditation practice is associated with structural differences in regions that are typically activated during meditation and in regions that are relevant for the task of meditation. PMID:19015095

  20. Mindfulness Meditation Training for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in Adulthood: Current Empirical Support, Treatment Overview, and Future Directions

    PubMed Central

    Mitchell, John T.; Zylowska, Lidia; Kollins, Scott H.

    2015-01-01

    Research examining nonpharmacological interventions for adults diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has expanded in recent years and provides patients with more treatment options. Mindfulness-based training is an example of an intervention that is gaining promising preliminary empirical support and is increasingly administered in clinical settings. The aim of this review is to provide a rationale for the application of mindfulness to individuals diagnosed with ADHD, describe the current state of the empirical basis for mindfulness training in ADHD, and summarize a treatment approach specific to adults diagnosed with ADHD: the Mindful Awareness Practices (MAPs) for ADHD Program. Two case study examples are provided to demonstrate relevant clinical issues for practitioners interested in this approach. Directions for future research, including mindfulness meditation as a standalone treatment and as a complementary approach to cognitive-behavioral therapy, are provided. PMID:25908900

  1. Integrating Mindfulness Meditation within a University Counseling Center Setting

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kurash, Cheryl; Schaul, Jonathan

    2006-01-01

    This paper documents the development of a mindfulness meditation component within a University Counseling Center setting. The specific focus is upon the inclusion of meditation as it pertains to both organizational structure and psychotherapy training. The integration of a meditation practice into any organization is a slow process that poses…

  2. Effect of mindfulness meditation on brain-computer interface performance.

    PubMed

    Tan, Lee-Fan; Dienes, Zoltan; Jansari, Ashok; Goh, Sing-Yau

    2014-01-01

    Electroencephalogram based brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) enable stroke and motor neuron disease patients to communicate and control devices. Mindfulness meditation has been claimed to enhance metacognitive regulation. The current study explores whether mindfulness meditation training can thus improve the performance of BCI users. To eliminate the possibility of expectation of improvement influencing the results, we introduced a music training condition. A norming study found that both meditation and music interventions elicited clear expectations for improvement on the BCI task, with the strength of expectation being closely matched. In the main 12 week intervention study, seventy-six healthy volunteers were randomly assigned to three groups: a meditation training group; a music training group; and a no treatment control group. The mindfulness meditation training group obtained a significantly higher BCI accuracy compared to both the music training and no-treatment control groups after the intervention, indicating effects of meditation above and beyond expectancy effects. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  3. Mindfulness Meditation in Clinical Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Salmon, Paul; Sephton, Sandra; Weissbecker, Inka; Hoover, Katherine; Ulmer, Christi; Studts, Jamie L.

    2004-01-01

    The practice of mindfulness is increasingly being integrated into contemporary clinical psychology. Based in Buddhist philosophy and subsequently integrated into Western health care in the contexts of psychotherapy and stress management, mindfulness meditation is evolving as a systematic clinical intervention. This article describes…

  4. Neural correlates of mindfulness meditation-related anxiety relief.

    PubMed

    Zeidan, Fadel; Martucci, Katherine T; Kraft, Robert A; McHaffie, John G; Coghill, Robert C

    2014-06-01

    Anxiety is the cognitive state related to the inability to control emotional responses to perceived threats. Anxiety is inversely related to brain activity associated with the cognitive regulation of emotions. Mindfulness meditation has been found to regulate anxiety. However, the brain mechanisms involved in meditation-related anxiety relief are largely unknown. We employed pulsed arterial spin labeling MRI to compare the effects of distraction in the form of attending to the breath (ATB; before meditation training) to mindfulness meditation (after meditation training) on state anxiety across the same subjects. Fifteen healthy subjects, with no prior meditation experience, participated in 4 d of mindfulness meditation training. ATB did not reduce state anxiety, but state anxiety was significantly reduced in every session that subjects meditated. Meditation-related anxiety relief was associated with activation of the anterior cingulate cortex, ventromedial prefrontal cortex and anterior insula. Meditation-related activation in these regions exhibited a strong relationship to anxiety relief when compared to ATB. During meditation, those who exhibited greater default-related activity (i.e. posterior cingulate cortex) reported greater anxiety, possibly reflecting an inability to control self-referential thoughts. These findings provide evidence that mindfulness meditation attenuates anxiety through mechanisms involved in the regulation of self-referential thought processes. © The Author (2013). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  5. Neural correlates of mindfulness meditation-related anxiety relief

    PubMed Central

    Martucci, Katherine T.; Kraft, Robert A.; McHaffie, John G.; Coghill, Robert C.

    2014-01-01

    Anxiety is the cognitive state related to the inability to control emotional responses to perceived threats. Anxiety is inversely related to brain activity associated with the cognitive regulation of emotions. Mindfulness meditation has been found to regulate anxiety. However, the brain mechanisms involved in meditation-related anxiety relief are largely unknown. We employed pulsed arterial spin labeling MRI to compare the effects of distraction in the form of attending to the breath (ATB; before meditation training) to mindfulness meditation (after meditation training) on state anxiety across the same subjects. Fifteen healthy subjects, with no prior meditation experience, participated in 4 d of mindfulness meditation training. ATB did not reduce state anxiety, but state anxiety was significantly reduced in every session that subjects meditated. Meditation-related anxiety relief was associated with activation of the anterior cingulate cortex, ventromedial prefrontal cortex and anterior insula. Meditation-related activation in these regions exhibited a strong relationship to anxiety relief when compared to ATB. During meditation, those who exhibited greater default-related activity (i.e. posterior cingulate cortex) reported greater anxiety, possibly reflecting an inability to control self-referential thoughts. These findings provide evidence that mindfulness meditation attenuates anxiety through mechanisms involved in the regulation of self-referential thought processes. PMID:23615765

  6. The neuroscience of mindfulness meditation.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yi-Yuan; Hölzel, Britta K; Posner, Michael I

    2015-04-01

    Research over the past two decades broadly supports the claim that mindfulness meditation - practiced widely for the reduction of stress and promotion of health - exerts beneficial effects on physical and mental health, and cognitive performance. Recent neuroimaging studies have begun to uncover the brain areas and networks that mediate these positive effects. However, the underlying neural mechanisms remain unclear, and it is apparent that more methodologically rigorous studies are required if we are to gain a full understanding of the neuronal and molecular bases of the changes in the brain that accompany mindfulness meditation.

  7. [Reducing stress levels and anxiety in primary-care physicians through training and practice of a mindfulness meditation technique].

    PubMed

    Franco Justo, Clemente

    2010-11-01

    To check the effectiveness of a mindfulness development meditation technique on stress and anxiety in a group of primary-care physicians. Quasi-experimental with pretest/posttest/follow-up measurements in a control group and an experimental group. SITE: University of Almeria. 38 primary-care physicians enrolled in a Teaching Aptitude Course (CAP). An experimental group and a control group were formed with 19 participants in each. The experimental group took a psycho-educational meditation program for training and practice in mindfulness. The Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), the Strain Questionnaire and the State-Trait Anxiety Questionnaire were used to measure stress and anxiety levels. A comparative statistical analysis was performed using the Mann-Whitney non-parametric U test, finding a significant reduction in all the primary-care physician stress and anxiety variables in the experimental group compared to the control group in pretest-posttest and follow-up tests. The results of this study support the effectiveness of mindfulness development meditation techniques in decreasing stress and anxiety in primary-care physicians. Nevertheless, the study shows various limitations that would have to be corrected in successive studies to bring more validity to the results. Copyright © 2009 Elsevier España, S.L. All rights reserved.

  8. The effects of adaptive working memory training and mindfulness meditation training on processing efficiency and worry in high worriers.

    PubMed

    Course-Choi, Jenna; Saville, Harry; Derakshan, Nazanin

    2017-02-01

    Worry is the principle characteristic of generalised anxiety disorder, and has been linked to deficient attentional control, a main function of working memory (WM). Adaptive WM training and mindfulness meditation practice (MMP) have both shown potential to increase attentional control. The present study hence investigates the individual and combined effects of MMP and a dual adaptive n-back task on a non-clinical, randomised sample of high worriers. 60 participants were tested before and after seven days of training. Assessment included self-report questionnaires, as well as performance tasks measuring attentional control and working memory capacity. Combined training resulted in continued reduction in worry in the week after training, highlighting the potential of utilising n-back training as an adjunct to established clinical treatment. Engagement with WM training correlated with immediate improvements in attentional control and resilience, with worry decreasing over time. Implications of these findings and suggestions for future research are discussed. Crown Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. A Pilot Trial of Mindfulness Meditation Training for ADHD in Adulthood: Impact on Core Symptoms, Executive Functioning, and Emotion Dysregulation.

    PubMed

    Mitchell, John T; McIntyre, Elizabeth M; English, Joseph S; Dennis, Michelle F; Beckham, Jean C; Kollins, Scott H

    2017-11-01

    Mindfulness meditation training is garnering increasing empirical interest as an intervention for ADHD in adulthood, although no studies of mindfulness as a standalone treatment have included a sample composed entirely of adults with ADHD or a comparison group. The aim of this study was to assess the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary efficacy of mindfulness meditation for ADHD, executive functioning (EF), and emotion dysregulation symptoms in an adult ADHD sample. Adults with ADHD were stratified by ADHD medication status and otherwise randomized into an 8-week group-based mindfulness treatment ( n = 11) or waitlist group ( n = 9). Treatment feasibility and acceptability were positive. In addition, self-reported ADHD and EF symptoms (assessed in the laboratory and ecological momentary assessment), clinician ratings of ADHD and EF symptoms, and self-reported emotion dysregulation improved for the treatment group relative to the waitlist group over time with large effect sizes. Improvement was not observed for EF tasks. Findings support preliminary treatment efficacy, though require larger trials.

  10. Exploring the impact of mindfulness meditation training in pre-licensure and post graduate nurses.

    PubMed

    Sanko, Jill; Mckay, Mary; Rogers, Scott

    2016-10-01

    The complex, high stress, technologically laden healthcare environment compromises providers' ability to be fully present in the moment; especially during patient interactions. This "pulling away" of attention (mindlessness) from the present moment creates an environment where decision making can take place in the absence of thoughtful, deliberate engagement in the task at hand. Mindfulness, can be cultivated through a variety of mindfulness practices. Few schools of nursing or hospitals offer mindfulness training, despite study findings supporting its effectiveness in improving levels of mindfulness, and perceived connections with patients and families. A mindfulness program developed for this study and tailored to nursing was used to provide the mindfulness training. Pre and post training assessments were completed and included administration of the Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory (FMI) and the Defining Issues Test (DIT) of moral judgment version 2. A statistically significant improvement in the FMI scores p=0.003 was found. The pre-licensure group did not show a statistically significant improvement in their FMI scores pre to post training (p=0.281), however the post graduate group did (p=0.004). Statistically significant pre - post scores were found in two schemas of the DIT-2 (P [Post conventional] score, p=0.039 and N2 [Maintaining norms] score, p=0.032). Mindfulness training improves mindfulness and some aspects of ethical decision making in the groups studied as part of this project. The findings of this study are promising and further demonstrate the merits of a mindfulness practice, however aspects of mindfulness training would need to be addressed prior to launching a full scale attempt to incorporate this into a work life or some other quality improvement program. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. State Mindfulness During Meditation Predicts Enhanced Cognitive Reappraisal

    PubMed Central

    Hanley, Adam; Farb, Norman A.; Froeliger, Brett E.

    2013-01-01

    Putatively, mindfulness meditation involves generation of a state of “nonappraisal”, yet, little is known about how mindfulness may influence appraisal processes. We investigated whether the state and practice of mindfulness could enhance cognitive reappraisal. Participants (N = 44; M age = 24.44, SD = 4.00, range 19 – 38, 82.2% female) were randomized to either 1) mindfulness, 2) suppression, or 3) mind-wandering induction training conditions. Cognitive reappraisal was assessed with the Emotion Regulation Questionnaire (ERQ) prior to experimental induction, and state mindfulness was assessed immediately following induction using the Toronto Mindfulness Scale (TMS). Participants practiced their assigned strategy for one week and then were reassessed with the ERQ reappraisal subscale. Participants receiving mindfulness training reported significantly higher levels of state mindfulness than participants in the thought suppression and mind wandering conditions. Although brief mindfulness training did not lead to significantly greater increases in reappraisal than the other two conditions, state mindfulness during mindfulness meditation was prospectively associated with increases in reappraisal. Path analysis revealed that the indirect effect between mindfulness training and reappraisal was significant through state mindfulness. Degree of state mindfulness achieved during the act of mindfulness meditation significantly predicted increases in reappraisal over time, suggesting that mindfulness may promote emotion regulation by enhancing cognitive reappraisal. PMID:26085851

  12. Reduced mind wandering in experienced meditators and associated EEG correlates.

    PubMed

    Brandmeyer, Tracy; Delorme, Arnaud

    2016-11-04

    One outstanding question in the contemplative science literature relates to the direct impact of meditation experience on the monitoring of internal states and its respective correspondence with neural activity. In particular, to what extent does meditation influence the awareness, duration and frequency of the tendency of the mind to wander. To assess the relation between mind wandering and meditation, we tested 2 groups of meditators, one with a moderate level of experience (non-expert) and those who are well advanced in their practice (expert). We designed a novel paradigm using self-reports of internal mental states based on an experiential sampling probe paradigm presented during ~1 h of seated concentration meditation to gain insight into the dynamic measures of electroencephalography (EEG) during absorption in meditation as compared to reported mind wandering episodes. Our results show that expert meditation practitioners report a greater depth and frequency of sustained meditation, whereas non-expert practitioners report a greater depth and frequency of mind wandering episodes. This is one of the first direct behavioral indices of meditation expertise and its associated impact on the reduced frequency of mind wandering, with corresponding EEG activations showing increased frontal midline theta and somatosensory alpha rhythms during meditation as compared to mind wandering in expert practitioners. Frontal midline theta and somatosensory alpha rhythms are often observed during executive functioning, cognitive control and the active monitoring of sensory information. Our study thus provides additional new evidence to support the hypothesis that the maintenance of both internal and external orientations of attention may be maintained by similar neural mechanisms and that these mechanisms may be modulated by meditation training.

  13. Change in physiological signals during mindfulness meditation

    PubMed Central

    Ahani, Asieh; Wahbeh, Helane; Miller, Meghan; Nezamfar, Hooman; Erdogmus, Deniz; Oken, Barry

    2014-01-01

    Mindfulness meditation (MM) is an inward mental practice, in which a resting but alert state of mind is maintained. MM intervention was performed for a population of older people with high stress levels. This study assessed signal processing methodologies of electroencephalographic (EEG) and respiration signals during meditation and control condition to aid in quantification of the meditative state. EEG and respiration data were collected and analyzed on 34 novice meditators after a 6-week meditation intervention. Collected data were analyzed with spectral analysis and support vector machine classification to evaluate an objective marker for meditation. We observed meditation and control condition differences in the alpha, beta and theta frequency bands. Furthermore, we established a classifier using EEG and respiration signals with a higher accuracy at discriminating between meditation and control conditions than one using the EEG signal only. EEG and respiration based classifier is a viable objective marker for meditation ability. Future studies should quantify different levels of meditation depth and meditation experience using this classifier. Development of an objective physiological meditation marker will allow the mind-body medicine field to advance by strengthening rigor of methods. PMID:24748422

  14. Positive Emotion Correlates of Meditation Practice: A Comparison of Mindfulness Meditation and Loving-kindness Meditation.

    PubMed

    Fredrickson, Barbara L; Boulton, Aaron J; Firestine, Ann M; Van Cappellen, Patty; Algoe, Sara B; Brantley, Mary M; Kim, Sumi Loundon; Brantley, Jeffrey; Salzberg, Sharon

    2017-12-01

    The purpose of this study was to uncover the day-to-day emotional profiles and dose-response relations, both within-persons and between-persons, associated with initiating one of two meditation practices, either mindfulness meditation or loving-kindness meditation. Data were pooled across two studies of midlife adults ( N = 339) who were randomized to learn either mindfulness meditation or loving-kindness meditation in a six-week workshop. The duration and frequency of meditation practice was measured daily for nine weeks, commencing with the first workshop session. Likewise, positive and negative emotions were also measured daily, using the modified Differential Emotions Scale (Fredrickson, 2013). Analysis of daily emotion reports over the targeted nine-week period showed significant gains in positive emotions and no change in negative emotions, regardless of meditation type. Multilevel models also revealed significant dose-response relations between duration of meditation practice and positive emotions, both within-persons and between-persons. Moreover, the within-person dose-response relation was stronger for loving-kindness meditation than for mindfulness meditation. Similar dose-response relations were observed for the frequency of meditation practice. In the context of prior research on the mental and physical health benefits produced by subtle increases in day-to-day experiences of positive emotions, the present research points to evidence-based practices - both mindfulness meditation and loving-kindness meditation - that can improve emotional wellbeing.

  15. Mindfulness Meditation Modulates Pain Through Endogenous Opioids.

    PubMed

    Sharon, Haggai; Maron-Katz, Adi; Ben Simon, Eti; Flusser, Yuval; Hendler, Talma; Tarrasch, Ricardo; Brill, Silviu

    2016-07-01

    Recent evidence supports the beneficial effects of mindfulness meditation on pain. However, the neural mechanisms underlying this effect remain poorly understood. We used an opioid blocker to examine whether mindfulness meditation-induced analgesia involves endogenous opioids. Fifteen healthy experienced mindfulness meditation practitioners participated in a double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover study. Participants rated the pain and unpleasantness of a cold stimulus prior to and after a mindfulness meditation session. Participants were then randomized to receive either intravenous naloxone or saline, after which they meditated again, and rated the same stimulus. A (3) × (2) repeated-measurements analysis of variance revealed a significant time effect for pain and unpleasantness scores (both P <.001) as well as a significant condition effect for pain and unpleasantness (both P <.2). Post hoc comparisons revealed that pain and unpleasantness scores were significantly reduced after natural mindfulness meditation and after placebo, but not after naloxone. Furthermore, there was a positive correlation between the pain scores following naloxone vs placebo and participants' mindfulness meditation experience. These findings show, for the first time, that meditation involves endogenous opioid pathways, mediating its analgesic effect and growing resilient with increasing practice to external suggestion. This finding could hold promising therapeutic implications and further elucidate the fine mechanisms involved in human pain modulation. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. A Brief Mindfulness Meditation Training Increases Pain Threshold and Accelerates Modulation of Response to Tonic Pain in an Experimental Study.

    PubMed

    Reiner, Keren; Granot, Michal; Soffer, Eliran; Lipsitz, Joshua Dan

    2016-04-01

    Research shows that mindfulness meditation (MM) affects pain perception; however, studies have yet to measure patterns of change over time. We examined effects of MM on perception of experimental heat pain using multiple psychophysical indices, including pattern of change in response to tonic painful stimuli. We also tested the potential moderating role of baseline mindfulness. Forty participants were randomly assigned to a brief MM training or control group. We assessed: a) heat pain threshold (HPT), b) temperature which induces pain at a fixed, target intensity level, and c) response pattern over time to tonic heat pain. Compared to control group, the MM group showed increased HPT and more rapid attenuation of pain intensity for tonic pain stimuli. Moderation analyses indicated that baseline mindfulness moderated effects of MM on HPT. A brief MM intervention appears to affect perception of experimental pain both by increasing pain threshold and accelerating modulation of response. Findings may help elucidate mechanisms of MM for chronic pain. © 2015 American Academy of Pain Medicine. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  17. Meditation

    MedlinePlus

    ... a tranquil mind. During meditation, you focus your attention and eliminate the stream of jumbled thoughts that ... word, thought or phrase to prevent distracting thoughts. Mindfulness meditation. This type of meditation is based on ...

  18. Mindfulness Meditation Training and Self-Referential Processing in Social Anxiety Disorder: Behavioral and Neural Effects

    PubMed Central

    Goldin, Philippe; Ramel, Wiveka; Gross, James

    2014-01-01

    This study examined the effects of mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) on the brain-behavior mechanisms of self-referential processing in patients with social anxiety disorder (SAD). Sixteen patients underwent functional magnetic resonance imaging while encoding self-referential, valence, and orthographic features of social trait adjectives. Post-MBSR, 14 patients completed neuroimaging. Compared to baseline, MBSR completers showed (a) increased self-esteem and decreased anxiety, (b) increased positive and decreased negative self-endorsement, (c) increased activity in a brain network related to attention regulation, and (d) reduced activity in brain systems implicated in conceptual-linguistic self-view. MBSR-related changes in maladaptive or distorted social self-view in adults diagnosed with SAD may be related to modulation of conceptual self-processing and attention regulation. Self-referential processing may serve as a functional biobehavioral target to measure the effects of mindfulness training. PMID:25568592

  19. Effects of mindfulness meditation on three individuals with aphasia.

    PubMed

    Orenstein, Ellen; Basilakos, Alexandra; Marshall, Rebecca Shisler

    2012-01-01

    There is evidence to suggest that people with aphasia (PWA) may have deficits in attention stemming from the inefficient allocation of resources. The inaccurate perception of task demand, or sense of effort, may underlie the misallocation of the available attention resources. Given the lack of treatment options for improving attention in aphasia, Mindfulness Meditation, shown to improve attention in neurologically intact individuals, may prove effective in increasing attention in PWA. The purpose of the present study was to determine if Mindfulness Meditation improves divided attention or language in PWA and if it affects the overall sense of effort. A multiple baseline single-subject design was used to determine the effects of Mindfulness Meditation on divided attention for three PWA. Divided attention was measured using a non-linguistic divided attention task. Visual inspection of the data was used to determine changes in performance (sense of effort, reaction time and accuracy, language) over time. High performance observed on the attention measures suggests that PWA have varying degrees of attentional impairment that may surface when certain demands are presented. There were no observable changes in the performance on the sense of effort or language measures; however, measures of reaction time may indicate Mindfulness Meditation improved efficiency of task completion. All three participants reported that Mindfulness Meditation was easy to learn and carry out on a daily basis, and reported feeling more 'relaxed' and 'peaceful' after Mindfulness Meditation training than before. With the knowledge that PWA can learn meditative practices, and with such successful findings in neurologically intact individuals, it is important to continue evaluating the benefits of Mindfulness Meditation in PWA. © 2012 Royal College of Speech and Language Therapists.

  20. Neural correlates of mindful self-awareness in mindfulness meditators and meditation-naïve subjects revisited.

    PubMed

    Lutz, J; Brühl, A B; Scheerer, H; Jäncke, L; Herwig, U

    2016-09-01

    Mindful self-awareness is central to mindfulness meditation and plays a key role in its salutary effects. It has been related to decreased activation in cortical midline structures (CMS) and amygdala, and increased activation in somatosensory regions. However, findings in untrained individuals are contradictory, and scarce in experienced meditators. Using fMRI, we investigated experienced mindfulness meditators (LTM, n=21, average 4652 practice-hours) and matched meditation-naïve participants (MNP, n=19) during short periods of mindful self-awareness (FEEL) and self-referential thinking (THINK). We report somatosensory activations and decreases in CMS during FEEL for both groups, but significantly stronger decreases in prefrontal CMS in LTM. LTM further showed decreases in language-related and amygdala regions, but the latter was not significantly different between groups. Overall, higher activations in amygdala and mid-line regions during FEEL were related to levels of depressiveness. Neural patterns of mindful self-awareness emerge already in MNP but more pronounced in LTM. Specifically, meditation training might reduce self-reference and verbalization during mindful awareness. We further corroborate the suggested link between mindfulness and healthy self-related functions on the neural level. Longitudinal studies need to corroborate these findings. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  1. Combined Goal Management Training and Mindfulness meditation improve executive functions and decision-making performance in abstinent polysubstance abusers.

    PubMed

    Alfonso, José P; Caracuel, Alfonso; Delgado-Pastor, Luis C; Verdejo-García, Antonio

    2011-08-01

    The clinical relevance of neuropsychological deficits in addicted individuals has fostered interest in treatment strategies aimed to effectively target executive and decision-making dysfunction. One of the best-validated interventions for executive dysfunction is Goal Management Training (GMT) (Robertson et al., 2005), an interactive program aimed at improving participants' organization and ability to achieve goals. Mindfulness-based meditation can complement GMT training in order to improve attentional scanning and "reading" of emotional signals involved in adaptive decision-making. In this pilot study we investigated the efficacy of a 7-week program including GMT+Mindfulness (GMT+MF), as compared to standard treatment alone (STx), for reducing executive and decision-making deficits in an outpatient sample of alcohol and polysubstance abusers. Eighteen participants were enrolled in the GMT+MF group, whereas 16 participants formed the STx group; both groups were matched for relevant demographic and clinical variables, and pre-treatment degree of executive dysfunction. Results showed that the individuals enrolled in GMT+MF significantly improved their performance on neuropsychological measures of working memory (Letter Number Sequencing), response inhibition (Stroop) and decision-making (Iowa Gambling Task) after the treatment; whereas individuals enrolled in STx alone failed to show significant changes. These preliminary results indicate that the GMT+MF intervention may be effective in reducing executive and decision-making deficits in polysubstance abusers, and they support future randomized controlled studies aimed at examining the extent to which these improvements may generalize to every day functioning and may affect the capacity of addicted individuals to achieve and maintain abstinence. Copyright © 2011 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  2. [Mindfulness meditation, a source of professional wellbeing].

    PubMed

    Blot, Nathalie

    2016-10-01

    Mindfulness meditation, by focusing attention on what we are experiencing, improves personal wellbeing which is then expressed in caregivers' professional practices. Nurses who practise mindfulness will be better positioned to help their patients. Copyright © 2016. Publié par Elsevier Masson SAS.

  3. Brain Mechanisms Supporting Modulation of Pain by Mindfulness Meditation

    PubMed Central

    Zeidan, F.; Martucci, K.T.; Kraft, R.A.; Gordon, N.S.; McHaffie, J.G.; Coghill, R.C.

    2011-01-01

    The subjective experience of one’s environment is constructed by interactions among sensory, cognitive, and affective processes. For centuries, meditation has been thought to influence such processes by enabling a non-evaluative representation of sensory events. To better understand how meditation influences the sensory experience, we employed arterial spin labeling (ASL) functional magnetic resonance imaging to assess the neural mechanisms by which mindfulness meditation influences pain in healthy human participants. After four-days of mindfulness meditation training, meditating in the presence of noxious stimulation significantly reduced pain-unpleasantness by 57% and pain-intensity ratings by 40% when compared to rest. A two factor repeated measures analysis of variance was used to identify interactions between meditation and pain-related brain activation. Meditation reduced pain-related activation of the contra lateral primary somatosensory cortex. Multiple regression analysis was used to identify brain regions associated with individual differences in the magnitude of meditation-related pain reductions. Meditation-induced reductions in pain intensity ratings were associated with increased activity in the anterior cingulate cortex and anterior insula, areas involved in the cognitive regulation of nociceptive processing. Reductions in pain unpleasantness ratings were associated with orbitofrontal cortex activation, an area implicated in reframing the contextual evaluation of sensory events. Moreover, reductions in pain unpleasantness also were associated with thalamic deactivation, which may reflect a limbic gating mechanism involved in modifying interactions between afferent in put and executive-order brain areas. Taken together, these data indicate that meditation engages multiple brain mechanisms that alter the construction of the subjectively available pain experience from afferent information. PMID:21471390

  4. Investigating the impact of mindfulness meditation training on working memory: a mathematical modeling approach.

    PubMed

    van Vugt, Marieke K; Jha, Amishi P

    2011-09-01

    We investigated whether mindfulness training (MT) influences information processing in a working memory task with complex visual stimuli. Participants were tested before (T1) and after (T2) participation in an intensive one-month MT retreat, and their performance was compared with that of an age- and education-matched control group. Accuracy did not differ across groups at either time point. Response times were faster and significantly less variable in the MT versus the control group at T2. Since these results could be due to changes in mnemonic processes, speed-accuracy trade-off, or nondecisional factors (e.g., motor execution), we used a mathematical modeling approach to disentangle these factors. The EZ-diffusion model (Wagenmakers, van der Maas, & Grasman, Psychonomic Bulletin & Review 14:(1), 3-22, 2007) suggested that MT leads to improved information quality and reduced response conservativeness, with no changes in nondecisional factors. The noisy exemplar model further suggested that the increase in information quality reflected a decrease in encoding noise and not an increase in forgetting. Thus, mathematical modeling may help clarify the mechanisms by which MT produces salutary effects on performance.

  5. Mindfulness meditation in aphasia: A case report.

    PubMed

    Laures-Gore, Jacqueline; Marshall, Rebecca Shisler

    2016-04-06

    Despite the potential behavioral and neurological benefits of Mindfulness Meditation (MM), its use in treating stroke related communication disabilities appears to be underexplored. Specifically, aphasia, a language disorder resulting from stroke, may be amenable to the benefits of MM because of the observed attention problems often underlying the language symptoms. The current paper presents a case report of an adult with aphasia who was trained in MM. An adult with aphasia completed a five-day mindfulness training, and was assessed on measures of language, attention, and physiological measures of cortisol and heart rate variability. She completed four assessments: two baseline measures, immediately post training, and one week post training (maintenance). Overall, changes were observed in both psychophysiological measures (heart rate and heart rate variability) and behavioral measures (word productivity, phrase length, word generation, decreased impulsivity, and increased attention). Given the psychophysiological and behavioral changes observed in this individual, further exploration of the influence of MM in the treatment of post-stroke aphasia is warranted.

  6. Schizotypy and mindfulness: Magical thinking without suspiciousness characterizes mindfulness meditators.

    PubMed

    Antonova, Elena; Amaratunga, Kavitha; Wright, Bernice; Ettinger, Ulrich; Kumari, Veena

    2016-09-01

    Despite growing evidence for demonstrated efficacy of mindfulness in various disorders, there is a continuous concern about the relationship between mindfulness practice and psychosis. As schizotypy is part of the psychosis spectrum, we examined the relationship between long-term mindfulness practice and schizotypy in two independent studies. Study 1 included 24 experienced mindfulness practitioners (19 males) from the Buddhist tradition (meditators) and 24 meditation-naïve individuals (all males). Study 2 consisted of 28 meditators and 28 meditation-naïve individuals (all males). All participants completed the Schizotypal Personality Questionnaire (Raine, 1991), a self-report scale containing 9 subscales (ideas of reference, excessive social anxiety, magical thinking, unusual perceptual experiences, odd/eccentric behavior, no close friends, odd speech, constricted affect, suspiciousness). Participants of study 2 also completed the Five-Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire which assesses observing (Observe), describing (Describe), acting with awareness (Awareness), non-judging of (Non-judgment) and non-reactivity to inner experience (Non-reactivity) facets of trait mindfulness. In both studies, meditators scored significantly lower on suspiciousness and higher on magical thinking compared to meditation-naïve individuals and showed a trend towards lower scores on excessive social anxiety. Excessive social anxiety correlated negatively with Awareness and Non-judgment; and suspiciousness with Awareness, Non-judgment and Non-reactivity facets across both groups. The two groups did not differ in their total schizotypy score. We conclude that mindfulness practice is not associated with an overall increase in schizotypal traits. Instead, the pattern suggests that mindfulness meditation, particularly with an emphasis on the Awareness, Non-judgment and Non-reactivity aspects, may help to reduce suspiciousness and excessive social anxiety.

  7. Mindfulness and Loving-Kindness Meditation.

    PubMed

    Aspy, Denholm J; Proeve, Michael

    2017-02-01

    An experiment involving 115 undergraduate students (74.8% females; mean age = 20.5 years, SD = 4.3) was conducted to explore effects of meditation on social connectedness, nature connectedness, and affect. Participants listened to one of three brief guided meditation Mp3 recordings via the internet, which involved mindfulness meditation (MM), loving-kindness meditation (LKM), or progressive muscle relaxation (active control group). Participants in the MM and LKM groups reported greater social and nature connectedness at post-test than those in the control group. There were no significant differences in connectedness between the MM and LKM groups, suggesting they are both effective for enhancing connectedness. There were no significant changes in negative or positive affect at post-test due to the interventions. Recommendations for future research are provided.

  8. Mindfulness meditation-related pain relief: Evidence for unique brain mechanisms in the regulation of pain

    PubMed Central

    Zeidan, F.; Grant, J.A.; Brown, C.A.; McHaffie, J.G.; Coghill, R.C.

    2013-01-01

    The cognitive modulation of pain is influenced by a number of factors ranging from attention, beliefs, conditioning, expectations, mood, and the regulation of emotional responses to noxious sensory events. Recently, mindfulness meditation has been found attenuate pain through some of these mechanisms including enhanced cognitive and emotional control, as well as altering the contextual evaluation of sensory events. This review discusses the brain mechanisms involved in mindfulness meditation-related pain relief across different meditative techniques, expertise and training levels, experimental procedures, and neuroimaging methodologies. Converging lines of neuroimaging evidence reveal that mindfulness meditation-related pain relief is associated with unique appraisal cognitive processes depending on expertise level and meditation tradition. Moreover, it is postulated that mindfulness meditation-related pain relief may share a common final pathway with other cognitive techniques in the modulation of pain. PMID:22487846

  9. Mindfulness Meditation-Based Pain Relief Employs Different Neural Mechanisms Than Placebo and Sham Mindfulness Meditation-Induced Analgesia

    PubMed Central

    Emerson, Nichole M.; Farris, Suzan R.; Ray, Jenna N.; Jung, Youngkyoo; McHaffie, John G.; Coghill, Robert C.

    2015-01-01

    Mindfulness meditation reduces pain in experimental and clinical settings. However, it remains unknown whether mindfulness meditation engages pain-relieving mechanisms other than those associated with the placebo effect (e.g., conditioning, psychosocial context, beliefs). To determine whether the analgesic mechanisms of mindfulness meditation are different from placebo, we randomly assigned 75 healthy, human volunteers to 4 d of the following: (1) mindfulness meditation, (2) placebo conditioning, (3) sham mindfulness meditation, or (4) book-listening control intervention. We assessed intervention efficacy using psychophysical evaluation of experimental pain and functional neuroimaging. Importantly, all cognitive manipulations (i.e., mindfulness meditation, placebo conditioning, sham mindfulness meditation) significantly attenuated pain intensity and unpleasantness ratings when compared to rest and the control condition (p < 0.05). Mindfulness meditation reduced pain intensity (p = 0.032) and pain unpleasantness (p < 0.001) ratings more than placebo analgesia. Mindfulness meditation also reduced pain intensity (p = 0.030) and pain unpleasantness (p = 0.043) ratings more than sham mindfulness meditation. Mindfulness-meditation-related pain relief was associated with greater activation in brain regions associated with the cognitive modulation of pain, including the orbitofrontal, subgenual anterior cingulate, and anterior insular cortex. In contrast, placebo analgesia was associated with activation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and deactivation of sensory processing regions (secondary somatosensory cortex). Sham mindfulness meditation-induced analgesia was not correlated with significant neural activity, but rather by greater reductions in respiration rate. This study is the first to demonstrate that mindfulness-related pain relief is mechanistically distinct from placebo analgesia. The elucidation of this distinction confirms the existence of multiple

  10. Mindfulness Meditation-Based Pain Relief Employs Different Neural Mechanisms Than Placebo and Sham Mindfulness Meditation-Induced Analgesia.

    PubMed

    Zeidan, Fadel; Emerson, Nichole M; Farris, Suzan R; Ray, Jenna N; Jung, Youngkyoo; McHaffie, John G; Coghill, Robert C

    2015-11-18

    Mindfulness meditation reduces pain in experimental and clinical settings. However, it remains unknown whether mindfulness meditation engages pain-relieving mechanisms other than those associated with the placebo effect (e.g., conditioning, psychosocial context, beliefs). To determine whether the analgesic mechanisms of mindfulness meditation are different from placebo, we randomly assigned 75 healthy, human volunteers to 4 d of the following: (1) mindfulness meditation, (2) placebo conditioning, (3) sham mindfulness meditation, or (4) book-listening control intervention. We assessed intervention efficacy using psychophysical evaluation of experimental pain and functional neuroimaging. Importantly, all cognitive manipulations (i.e., mindfulness meditation, placebo conditioning, sham mindfulness meditation) significantly attenuated pain intensity and unpleasantness ratings when compared to rest and the control condition (p < 0.05). Mindfulness meditation reduced pain intensity (p = 0.032) and pain unpleasantness (p < 0.001) ratings more than placebo analgesia. Mindfulness meditation also reduced pain intensity (p = 0.030) and pain unpleasantness (p = 0.043) ratings more than sham mindfulness meditation. Mindfulness-meditation-related pain relief was associated with greater activation in brain regions associated with the cognitive modulation of pain, including the orbitofrontal, subgenual anterior cingulate, and anterior insular cortex. In contrast, placebo analgesia was associated with activation of the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and deactivation of sensory processing regions (secondary somatosensory cortex). Sham mindfulness meditation-induced analgesia was not correlated with significant neural activity, but rather by greater reductions in respiration rate. This study is the first to demonstrate that mindfulness-related pain relief is mechanistically distinct from placebo analgesia. The elucidation of this distinction confirms the existence of multiple

  11. Phenomenological Fingerprints of Four Meditations: Differential State Changes in Affect, Mind-Wandering, Meta-Cognition, and Interoception Before and After Daily Practice Across 9 Months of Training.

    PubMed

    Kok, Bethany E; Singer, Tania

    2017-01-01

    Despite increasing interest in the effects of mental training practices such as meditation, there is much ambiguity regarding whether and to what extent the various types of mental practice have differential effects on psychological change. To address this gap, we compare the effects of four common meditation practices on measures of state change in affect, mind-wandering, meta-cognition, and interoception. In the context of a 9-month mental training program called the ReSource Project, 229 mid-life adults (mean age 41) provided daily reports before and after meditation practice. Participants received training in the following three successive modules: the first module (presence) included breathing meditation and body scan, the second (affect) included loving-kindness meditation, and the third (perspective) included observing-thought meditation. Using multilevel modeling, we found that body scan led to the greatest state increase in interoceptive awareness and the greatest decrease in thought content, loving-kindness meditation led to the greatest increase in feelings of warmth and positive thoughts about others, and observing-thought meditation led to the greatest increase in meta-cognitive awareness. All practices, including breathing meditation, increased positivity of affect, energy, and present focus and decreased thought distraction. Complementary network analysis of intervariate relationships revealed distinct phenomenological clusters of psychological change congruent with the content of each practice. These findings together suggest that although different meditation practices may have common beneficial effects, each practice can also be characterized by a distinct short-term psychological fingerprint, the latter having important implications for the use of meditative practices in different intervention contexts and with different populations.

  12. Conceptual and methodological issues in research on mindfulness and meditation.

    PubMed

    Davidson, Richard J; Kaszniak, Alfred W

    2015-10-01

    Both basic science and clinical research on mindfulness, meditation, and related constructs have dramatically increased in recent years. However, interpretation of these research results has been challenging. The present article addresses unique conceptual and methodological problems posed by research in this area. Included among the key topics is the role of first-person experience and how it can be best studied, the challenges posed by intervention research designs in which true double-blinding is not possible, the nature of control and comparison conditions for research that includes mindfulness or other meditation-based interventions, issues in the adequate description of mindfulness and related trainings and interventions, the question of how mindfulness can be measured, questions regarding what can and cannot be inferred from self-report measures, and considerations regarding the structure of study design and data analyses. Most of these topics are germane to both basic and clinical research studies and have important bearing on the future scientific understanding of mindfulness and meditation. (c) 2015 APA, all rights reserved).

  13. Conceptual and Methodological Issues in Research on Mindfulness and Meditation

    PubMed Central

    Davidson, Richard J.; Kaszniak, Alfred W.

    2015-01-01

    Both basic science and clinical research on mindfulness, meditation, and related constructs has dramatically increased in recent years. However, interpretation of these research results has been challenging. The present article addresses unique conceptual and methodological problems posed by research in this area. Included among the key topics is the role of first person experience and how it can be best studied; the challenges posed by intervention research designs in which true double-blinding is not possible; the nature of control and comparison conditions for research that includes mindfulness or other meditation-based interventions; issues in the adequate description of mindfulness and related trainings and interventions; the question of how mindfulness can be measured; questions regarding what can and cannot be inferred from self-report measures; and considerations regarding the structure of study design and data analyses. Most of these topics are germane to both basic and clinical research studies and have important bearing on the future scientific understanding of mindfulness and meditation. PMID:26436310

  14. Mindfulness meditation as an intervention for binge eating, emotional eating, and weight loss: a systematic review.

    PubMed

    Katterman, Shawn N; Kleinman, Brighid M; Hood, Megan M; Nackers, Lisa M; Corsica, Joyce A

    2014-04-01

    Mindfulness-based approaches are growing in popularity as interventions for disordered eating and weight loss. Initial research suggests that mindfulness meditation may be an effective intervention for binge eating; however, no systematic review has examined interventions where mindfulness meditation was the primary intervention and no review has examined its effect on subclinical disordered eating or weight. Using the PRISMA method for systematic reviews, we reviewed 14 studies that investigated mindfulness meditation as the primary intervention and assessed binge eating, emotional eating, and/or weight change. Results suggest that mindfulness meditation effectively decreases binge eating and emotional eating in populations engaging in this behavior; evidence for its effect on weight is mixed. Additional research is warranted to determine comparative effectiveness and long-term effects of mindfulness training. Copyright © 2014. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  15. Mindfulness and mind wandering: The protective effects of brief meditation in anxious individuals.

    PubMed

    Xu, Mengran; Purdon, Christine; Seli, Paul; Smilek, Daniel

    2017-05-01

    Mind wandering can be costly, especially when we are engaged in attentionally demanding tasks. Preliminary studies suggest that mindfulness can be a promising antidote for mind wandering, albeit the evidence is mixed. To better understand the exact impact of mindfulness on mind wandering, we had a sample of highly anxious undergraduate students complete a sustained-attention task during which off-task thoughts including mind wandering were assessed. Participants were randomly assigned to a meditation or control condition, after which the sustained-attention task was repeated. In general, our results indicate that mindfulness training may only have protective effects on mind wandering for anxious individuals. Meditation prevented the increase of mind wandering over time and ameliorated performance disruption during off-task episodes. In addition, we found that the meditation intervention appeared to promote a switch of attentional focus from the internal to present-moment external world, suggesting important implications for treating worrying in anxious populations. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Characteristics of Adults Who Used Mindfulness Meditation: United States, 2012.

    PubMed

    Morone, Natalia E; Moore, Charity G; Greco, Carol M

    2017-07-01

    To describe estimates of the number and characteristics of persons who had used mindfulness meditation in the U.S. Data from 108,131 adults from the 2012 National Health Interview Survey were weighted to produce national estimates representative of the U.S. Persons who used mindfulness meditation were identified by their response to the question "During the past 12 months, did you use mindfulness meditation?" An estimated 2,029,720 adults had used mindfulness meditation. Compared with those who did not meditate, more meditators endorsed moderate exercise (79.6% vs. 54.8%; p < 0.0001). More meditators had low-back and neck pain and headache (36.7% vs. 28.9 [p = 0.0002]; 26.4% vs. 14.7% [p<0.0001]; 19.1% vs. 12.1% [p<0.0001], respectively). More meditators reported being nervous or feeling sad at least a little of the time (60.4% vs. 37.8% and 34% vs. 23.5%, respectively; p<0.0001) and being frequently stressed (56.4% vs. 29.0%; p<0.0001). Mindfulness meditation was used by an estimated 2,029,720 adults in the United States in 2012. More meditators than nonmeditators reported more pain and reported feeling nervous or sad and being stressed, suggesting a reason for using mindfulness meditation.

  17. Mindfulness meditation and the immune system: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Black, David S; Slavich, George M

    2016-06-01

    Mindfulness meditation represents a mental training framework for cultivating the state of mindful awareness in daily life. Recently, there has been a surge of interest in how mindfulness meditation improves human health and well-being. Although studies have shown that mindfulness meditation can improve self-reported measures of disease symptomatology, the effect that mindfulness meditation has on biological mechanisms underlying human aging and disease is less clear. To address this issue, we conducted the first comprehensive review of randomized controlled trials examining the effects of mindfulness meditation on immune system parameters, with a specific focus on five outcomes: (1) circulating and stimulated inflammatory proteins, (2) cellular transcription factors and gene expression, (3) immune cell count, (4) immune cell aging, and (5) antibody response. This analysis revealed substantial heterogeneity across studies with respect to patient population, study design, and assay procedures. The findings suggest possible effects of mindfulness meditation on specific markers of inflammation, cell-mediated immunity, and biological aging, but these results are tentative and require further replication. On the basis of this analysis, we describe the limitations of existing work and suggest possible avenues for future research. Mindfulness meditation may be salutogenic for immune system dynamics, but additional work is needed to examine these effects. © 2016 New York Academy of Sciences.

  18. Meditation or Medication? Mindfulness training versus medication in the treatment of childhood ADHD: a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Meppelink, Renée; de Bruin, Esther I; Bögels, Susan M

    2016-07-26

    Attention-Deficit-Hyperactivity-Disorder (ADHD) is, with a prevalence of 5 %, a highly common childhood disorder, and has severe impact on the lives of youngsters and their families. Medication is often the treatment of choice, as it currently is most effective. However, medication has only short-term effects, treatment adherence is often low and most importantly; medication has serious side effects. Therefore, there is a need for other interventions for youngsters with ADHD. Mindfulness training is emerging as a potentially effective training for children and adolescents with ADHD. The aim of this study is to compare the (cost) effectiveness of mindfulness training to the (cost) effectiveness of methylphenidate in children with ADHD on measures of attention and hyperactivity/impulsivity. A multicenter randomized controlled trial with 2 follow-up measurements will be used to measure the effects of mindfulness training versus the effects of methylphenidate. Participants will be youngsters (aged 9 to 18) of both sexes diagnosed with ADHD, referred to urban and rural mental healthcare centers. We aim to include 120 families. The mindfulness training, using the MYmind protocol, will be conducted in small groups, and consists of 8 weekly 1.5-h sessions. Youngsters learn to focus and enhance their attention, awareness, and self-control by doing mindfulness exercises. Parents will follow a parallel mindful parenting training in which they learn to be fully present in the here and now with their child in a non-judgmental way, to take care of themselves, and to respond rather than react to difficult behavior of their child. Short-acting methylphenidate will be administered individually and monitored by a child psychiatrist. Assessments will take place at pre-test, post-test, and at follow-up 1 and 2 (respectively 4 and 10 months after the start of treatment). Informants are parents, children, teachers, and researchers. This study will inform mental health care

  19. Regular, brief mindfulness meditation practice improves electrophysiological markers of attentional control

    PubMed Central

    Moore, Adam; Gruber, Thomas; Derose, Jennifer; Malinowski, Peter

    2012-01-01

    Mindfulness-based meditation practices involve various attentional skills, including the ability to sustain and focus ones attention. During a simple mindful breathing practice, sustained attention is required to maintain focus on the breath while cognitive control is required to detect mind wandering. We thus hypothesized that regular, brief mindfulness training would result in improvements in the self-regulation of attention and foster changes in neuronal activity related to attentional control. A longitudinal randomized control group EEG study was conducted. At baseline (T1), 40 meditation naïve participants were randomized into a wait list group and a meditation group, who received three hours mindfulness meditation training. Twenty-eight participants remained in the final analysis. At T1, after eight weeks (T2) and after 16 weeks (T3), all participants performed a computerized Stroop task (a measure of attentional control) while the 64-channel EEG was recorded. Between T1 and T3 the meditators were requested to meditate daily for 10 min. Event-related potential (ERP) analysis highlighted two between group effects that developed over the course of the 16-week mindfulness training. An early effect at left and right posterior sites 160–240 ms post-stimulus indicated that meditation practice improved the focusing of attentional resources. A second effect at central posterior sites 310–380 ms post-stimulus reflects that meditation practice reduced the recruitment of resources during object recognition processes, especially for incongruent stimuli. Scalp topographies and source analyses (Variable Resolution Electromagnetic Tomography, VARETA) indicate relevant changes in neural sources, pertaining to left medial and lateral occipitotemporal areas for the early effect and right lateral occipitotemporal and inferior temporal areas for the later effect. The results suggest that mindfulness meditation may alter the efficiency of allocating cognitive resources

  20. Relationship between Meditative Practice and Self-Reported Mindfulness: The MINDSENS Composite Index

    PubMed Central

    Soler, Joaquim; Cebolla, Ausiàs; Feliu-Soler, Albert; Demarzo, Marcelo M. P.; Pascual, Juan C.; Baños, Rosa; García-Campayo, Javier

    2014-01-01

    Mindfulness has been described as an inherent human capability that can be learned and trained, and its improvement has been associated with better health outcomes in both medicine and psychology. Although the role of practice is central to most mindfulness programs, practice-related improvements in mindfulness skills is not consistently reported and little is known about how the characteristics of meditative practice affect different components of mindfulness. The present study explores the role of practice parameters on self-reported mindfulness skills. A total of 670 voluntary participants with and without previous meditation experience (n = 384 and n = 286, respectively) responded to an internet-based survey on various aspects of their meditative practice (type of meditation, length of session, frequency, and lifetime practice). Participants also completed the Five Facets Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ), and the Experiences Questionnaire (EQ). The group with meditation experience obtained significantly higher scores on all facets of FFMQ and EQ questionnaires compared to the group without experience. However different effect sizes were observed, with stronger effects for the Observing and Non-Reactivity facets of the FFMQ, moderate effects for Decentering in EQ, and a weak effect for Non-judging, Describing, and Acting with awareness on the FFMQ. Our results indicate that not all practice variables are equally relevant in terms of developing mindfulness skills. Frequency and lifetime practice – but not session length or meditation type – were associated with higher mindfulness skills. Given that these 6 mindfulness aspects show variable sensitivity to practice, we created a composite index (MINDSENS) consisting of those items from FFMQ and EQ that showed the strongest response to practice. The MINDSENS index was able to correctly discriminate daily meditators from non-meditators in 82.3% of cases. These findings may contribute to the understanding

  1. Relationship between meditative practice and self-reported mindfulness: the MINDSENS composite index.

    PubMed

    Soler, Joaquim; Cebolla, Ausiàs; Feliu-Soler, Albert; Demarzo, Marcelo M P; Pascual, Juan C; Baños, Rosa; García-Campayo, Javier

    2014-01-01

    Mindfulness has been described as an inherent human capability that can be learned and trained, and its improvement has been associated with better health outcomes in both medicine and psychology. Although the role of practice is central to most mindfulness programs, practice-related improvements in mindfulness skills is not consistently reported and little is known about how the characteristics of meditative practice affect different components of mindfulness. The present study explores the role of practice parameters on self-reported mindfulness skills. A total of 670 voluntary participants with and without previous meditation experience (n = 384 and n = 286, respectively) responded to an internet-based survey on various aspects of their meditative practice (type of meditation, length of session, frequency, and lifetime practice). Participants also completed the Five Facets Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ), and the Experiences Questionnaire (EQ). The group with meditation experience obtained significantly higher scores on all facets of FFMQ and EQ questionnaires compared to the group without experience. However different effect sizes were observed, with stronger effects for the Observing and Non-Reactivity facets of the FFMQ, moderate effects for Decentering in EQ, and a weak effect for Non-judging, Describing, and Acting with awareness on the FFMQ. Our results indicate that not all practice variables are equally relevant in terms of developing mindfulness skills. Frequency and lifetime practice--but not session length or meditation type--were associated with higher mindfulness skills. Given that these 6 mindfulness aspects show variable sensitivity to practice, we created a composite index (MINDSENS) consisting of those items from FFMQ and EQ that showed the strongest response to practice. The MINDSENS index was able to correctly discriminate daily meditators from non-meditators in 82.3% of cases. These findings may contribute to the understanding of the

  2. Mindfulness meditation and the immune system: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials

    PubMed Central

    Black, David S.; Slavich, George M.

    2015-01-01

    Mindfulness meditation represents a mental training framework for cultivating the state of mindful awareness in daily life. Recently, there has been a surge of interest in how mindfulness meditation improves human health and well-being. Although studies have shown that mindfulness meditation can improve self-reported measures of disease symptomatology, the effect that mindfulness meditation has on biological mechanisms underlying human aging and disease is less clear. To address this issue, we conducted the first comprehensive review of randomized controlled trials examining the effects of mindfulness meditation on immune system parameters, with a specific focus on five outcomes: (1) circulating and stimulated inflammatory proteins, (2) cellular transcription factors and gene expression, (3) immune cell count, (4) immune cell aging, and (5) antibody response. This analysis revealed substantial heterogeneity across studies with respect to patient population, study design, and assay procedures. The findings suggest possible effects of mindfulness meditation on specific markers of inflammation, cell-mediated immunity, and biological aging, but these results are tentative and require further replication. On the basis of this analysis, we describe the limitations of existing work and suggest possible avenues for future research. Mindfulness mediation may be salutogenic for immune system dynamics, but additional work is needed to examine these effects. PMID:26799456

  3. Comparing individual preferences for four meditation techniques: Zen, Vipassana (Mindfulness), Qigong, and Mantra.

    PubMed

    Burke, Adam

    2012-01-01

    A significant number of studies have been published examining the mind-body effects of meditation and its clinical efficacy. There are very few studies, however, which directly compare different meditation methods with each other to explore potentially distinct mechanisms and effects, and no studies comparing individual preferences for different methods. As preference is seen as an important factor in consumer healthcare decision making, greater understanding of this aspect is needed as meditation becomes a more widely used therapeutic modality. For this reason a pilot study was conducted to compare four meditation techniques for personal preference. A within-subjects comparison design was employed. A convenience sample of 247 undergraduate university students participated in the study. Participants learned two open observing meditation techniques-Vipassana (Mindfulness) and Zen, and two focused attention techniques-Mantra and Qigong Visualization, practicing one method per week. At the end of a six-week training period participants ranked the four meditation methods in order of personal preference. Ranking of subjective preference of meditations practiced. A within subjects comparison revealed that significantly more participants chose Vipassana or Mantra meditation as their preferred techniques compared with Qigong Visualization and Zen. This study provides information on differences in preference for type of meditation. As the benefits of meditation accrue over time, selecting a method that motivates sustained practice is a critical objective if therapeutic effects are to be achieved. Copyright © 2012 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Building mindfulness bottom-up: Meditation in natural settings supports open monitoring and attention restoration.

    PubMed

    Lymeus, Freddie; Lindberg, Per; Hartig, Terry

    2018-03-01

    Mindfulness courses conventionally use effortful, focused meditation to train attention. In contrast, natural settings can effortlessly support state mindfulness and restore depleted attention resources, which could facilitate meditation. We performed two studies that compared conventional training with restoration skills training (ReST) that taught low-effort open monitoring meditation in a garden over five weeks. Assessments before and after meditation on multiple occasions showed that ReST meditation increasingly enhanced attention performance. Conventional meditation enhanced attention initially but increasingly incurred effort, reflected in performance decrements toward the course end. With both courses, attentional improvements generalized in the first weeks of training. Against established accounts, the generalized improvements thus occurred before any effort was incurred by the conventional exercises. We propose that restoration rather than attention training can account for early attentional improvements with meditation. ReST holds promise as an undemanding introduction to mindfulness and as a method to enhance restoration in nature contacts. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  5. Mind the Hype: A Critical Evaluation and Prescriptive Agenda for Research on Mindfulness and Meditation.

    PubMed

    Van Dam, Nicholas T; van Vugt, Marieke K; Vago, David R; Schmalzl, Laura; Saron, Clifford D; Olendzki, Andrew; Meissner, Ted; Lazar, Sara W; Kerr, Catherine E; Gorchov, Jolie; Fox, Kieran C R; Field, Brent A; Britton, Willoughby B; Brefczynski-Lewis, Julie A; Meyer, David E

    2018-01-01

    During the past two decades, mindfulness meditation has gone from being a fringe topic of scientific investigation to being an occasional replacement for psychotherapy, tool of corporate well-being, widely implemented educational practice, and "key to building more resilient soldiers." Yet the mindfulness movement and empirical evidence supporting it have not gone without criticism. Misinformation and poor methodology associated with past studies of mindfulness may lead public consumers to be harmed, misled, and disappointed. Addressing such concerns, the present article discusses the difficulties of defining mindfulness, delineates the proper scope of research into mindfulness practices, and explicates crucial methodological issues for interpreting results from investigations of mindfulness. For doing so, the authors draw on their diverse areas of expertise to review the present state of mindfulness research, comprehensively summarizing what we do and do not know, while providing a prescriptive agenda for contemplative science, with a particular focus on assessment, mindfulness training, possible adverse effects, and intersection with brain imaging. Our goals are to inform interested scientists, the news media, and the public, to minimize harm, curb poor research practices, and staunch the flow of misinformation about the benefits, costs, and future prospects of mindfulness meditation.

  6. The effect of mindfulness meditation on time perception.

    PubMed

    Kramer, Robin S S; Weger, Ulrich W; Sharma, Dinkar

    2013-09-01

    Research has increasingly focussed on the benefits of meditation in everyday life and performance. Mindfulness in particular improves attention, working memory capacity, and reading comprehension. Given its emphasis on moment-to-moment awareness, we hypothesised that mindfulness meditation would alter time perception. Using a within-subjects design, participants carried out a temporal bisection task, where several probe durations are compared to "short" and "long" standards. Following this, participants either listened to an audiobook or a meditation that focussed on the movement of breath in the body. Finally, participants completed the temporal bisection task for a second time. The control group showed no change after the listening task. However, meditation led to a relative overestimation of durations. Within an internal clock framework, a change in attentional resources can produce longer perceived durations. This meditative effect has wider implications for the use of mindfulness as an everyday practice and a basis for clinical treatment. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Quantitative change of EEG and respiration signals during mindfulness meditation.

    PubMed

    Ahani, Asieh; Wahbeh, Helane; Nezamfar, Hooman; Miller, Meghan; Erdogmus, Deniz; Oken, Barry

    2014-05-14

    This study investigates measures of mindfulness meditation (MM) as a mental practice, in which a resting but alert state of mind is maintained. A population of older people with high stress level participated in this study, while electroencephalographic (EEG) and respiration signals were recorded during a MM intervention. The physiological signals during meditation and control conditions were analyzed with signal processing. EEG and respiration data were collected and analyzed on 34 novice meditators after a 6-week meditation intervention. Collected data were analyzed with spectral analysis, phase analysis and classification to evaluate an objective marker for meditation. Different frequency bands showed differences in meditation and control conditions. Furthermore, we established a classifier using EEG and respiration signals with a higher accuracy (85%) at discriminating between meditation and control conditions than a classifier using the EEG signal only (78%). Support vector machine (SVM) classifier with EEG and respiration feature vector is a viable objective marker for meditation ability. This classifier should be able to quantify different levels of meditation depth and meditation experience in future studies.

  8. Quantitative change of EEG and respiration signals during mindfulness meditation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background This study investigates measures of mindfulness meditation (MM) as a mental practice, in which a resting but alert state of mind is maintained. A population of older people with high stress level participated in this study, while electroencephalographic (EEG) and respiration signals were recorded during a MM intervention. The physiological signals during meditation and control conditions were analyzed with signal processing. Methods EEG and respiration data were collected and analyzed on 34 novice meditators after a 6-week meditation intervention. Collected data were analyzed with spectral analysis, phase analysis and classification to evaluate an objective marker for meditation. Results Different frequency bands showed differences in meditation and control conditions. Furthermore, we established a classifier using EEG and respiration signals with a higher accuracy (85%) at discriminating between meditation and control conditions than a classifier using the EEG signal only (78%). Conclusion Support vector machine (SVM) classifier with EEG and respiration feature vector is a viable objective marker for meditation ability. This classifier should be able to quantify different levels of meditation depth and meditation experience in future studies. PMID:24939519

  9. A Pilot Study of Mindfulness Meditation for Pediatric Chronic Pain

    PubMed Central

    Waelde, Lynn C.; Feinstein, Amanda B.; Bhandari, Rashmi; Griffin, Anya; Yoon, Isabel A.; Golianu, Brenda

    2017-01-01

    Despite advances in psychological interventions for pediatric chronic pain, there has been little research examining mindfulness meditation for these conditions. This study presents data from a pilot clinical trial of a six-week manualized mindfulness meditation intervention offered to 20 adolescents aged 13–17 years. Measures of pain intensity, functional disability, depression and parent worry about their child’s pain were obtained at baseline and post-treatment. Results indicated no significant changes in pain or depression, however functional disability and frequency of pain functioning complaints improved with small effect sizes. Parents’ worry about child’s pain significantly decreased with a large effect size. Participants rated intervention components positively and most teens suggested that the number of sessions be increased. Three case examples illustrate mindfulness meditation effects and precautions. Mindfulness meditation shows promise as a feasible and acceptable intervention for youth with chronic pain. Future research should optimize intervention components and determine treatment efficacy. PMID:28445406

  10. Mindfulness Meditation for Fibromyalgia: Mechanistic and Clinical Considerations.

    PubMed

    Adler-Neal, Adrienne L; Zeidan, Fadel

    2017-09-01

    Fibromyalgia is a disorder characterized by widespread pain and a spectrum of psychological comorbidities, rendering treatment difficult and often a financial burden. Fibromyalgia is a complicated chronic pain condition that requires a multimodal therapeutic approach to optimize treatment efficacy. Thus, it has been postulated that mind-body techniques may prove fruitful in treating fibromyalgia. Mindfulness meditation, a behavioral technique premised on non-reactive sensory awareness, attenuates pain and improves mental health outcomes. However, the impact of mindfulness meditation on fibromyalgia-related outcomes has not been comprehensively characterized. The present review delineates the existing evidence supporting the effectiveness and hypothesized mechanisms of mindfulness meditation in treating fibromyalgia-related outcomes. Mindfulness-based interventions premised on cultivating acceptance, non-attachment, and social engagement may be most effective in decreasing fibromyalgia-related pain and psychological symptoms. Mindfulness-based therapies may alleviate fibromyalgia-related outcomes through multiple neural, psychological, and physiological processes. Mindfulness meditation may provide an effective complementary treatment approach for fibromyalgia patients, especially when combined with other reliable techniques (exercise; cognitive behavioral therapy). However, characterizing the specific analgesic mechanisms supporting mindfulness meditation is a critical step to fostering the clinical validity of this technique. Identification of the specific analgesic mechanisms supporting mindfulness-based pain relief could be utilized to better design behavioral interventions to specifically target fibromyalgia-related outcomes.

  11. Event-related potential correlates of mindfulness meditation competence

    PubMed Central

    Atchley, Rachel; Klee, Dan; Memmott, Tabatha; Goodrich, Elena; Wahbeh, Helané; Oken, Barry

    2016-01-01

    Objective This cross-sectional study evaluated event-related potentials (ERPs) across three groups: naïve, novice, and experienced meditators as potential physiological markers of mindfulness meditation competence. Methods Electroencephalographic (EEG) data was collected during a target tone detection task and a Breath Counting task. The Breath Counting task served as the mindfulness meditation condition for the novice and experienced meditator groups. Participants were instructed to respond to target tones with a button press in the first task (Tones), and then ignore the primed tones while breath counting. The primary outcomes were ERP responses to target tones, namely the N2 and P3, as markers of stimulus discrimination and attention, respectively. Results As expected, P3 amplitudes elicited by target tones were attenuated within groups during the Breath Counting task in comparison to the Tones task (p < .001). There was a task by group interaction for P3 (p = .039). Both meditator groups displayed greater change in peak-to-trough P3 amplitudes, with higher amplitudes during the Tones condition and more pronounced reductions in P3 amplitudes during the Breath Counting meditation task in comparison to the naïve group. Conclusions Meditators had stronger P3 amplitude responses to target tones when instructed to attend to the tones, and a greater attenuation of P3 amplitudes when instructed to ignore the same tones during the Breath Counting task. This study introduces the idea of identifying ERP markers as a means of measuring mindfulness meditation competence, and results suggest this may be a valid approach. This information has the potential to improve mindfulness meditation interventions by allowing objective assessment of mindfulness meditation quality. PMID:26850995

  12. Event-related potential correlates of mindfulness meditation competence.

    PubMed

    Atchley, R; Klee, D; Memmott, T; Goodrich, E; Wahbeh, H; Oken, B

    2016-04-21

    This cross-sectional study evaluated event-related potentials (ERPs) across three groups: naïve, novice, and experienced meditators as potential physiological markers of mindfulness meditation competence. Electroencephalographic (EEG) data were collected during a target tone detection task and a Breath Counting task. The Breath Counting task served as the mindfulness meditation condition for the novice and experienced meditator groups. Participants were instructed to respond to target tones with a button press in the first task (Tones), and then ignore the primed tones while Breath Counting. The primary outcomes were ERP responses to target tones, namely the N2 and P3, as markers of stimulus discrimination and attention, respectively. As expected, P3 amplitudes elicited by target tones were attenuated within groups during the Breath Counting task in comparison to the Tones task (p<.001). There was a task by group interaction for P3 (p=.039). Both meditator groups displayed greater change in peak-to-trough P3 amplitudes, with higher amplitudes during the Tones condition and more pronounced reductions in P3 amplitudes during the Breath Counting meditation task in comparison to the naïve group. Meditators had stronger P3 amplitude responses to target tones when instructed to attend to the tones, and a greater attenuation of P3 amplitudes when instructed to ignore the same tones during the Breath Counting task. This study introduces the idea of identifying ERP markers as a means of measuring mindfulness meditation competence, and results suggest this may be a valid approach. This information has the potential to improve mindfulness meditation interventions by allowing objective assessment of mindfulness meditation quality. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

  13. Brief mindfulness meditation improves mental state attribution and empathizing.

    PubMed

    Tan, Lucy B G; Lo, Barbara C Y; Macrae, C Neil

    2014-01-01

    The ability to infer and understand the mental states of others (i.e., Theory of Mind) is a cornerstone of human interaction. While considerable efforts have focused on explicating when, why and for whom this fundamental psychological ability can go awry, considerably less is known about factors that may enhance theory of mind. Accordingly, the current study explored the possibility that mindfulness-based meditation may improve people's mindreading skills. Following a 5-minute mindfulness induction, participants with no prior meditation experience completed tests that assessed mindreading and empathic understanding. The results revealed that brief mindfulness meditation enhanced both mental state attribution and empathic concern, compared to participants in the control group. These findings suggest that mindfulness may be a powerful technique for facilitating core aspects of social-cognitive functioning.

  14. Brief Mindfulness Meditation Improves Mental State Attribution and Empathizing

    PubMed Central

    Tan, Lucy B. G.; Lo, Barbara C. Y.; Macrae, C. Neil

    2014-01-01

    The ability to infer and understand the mental states of others (i.e., Theory of Mind) is a cornerstone of human interaction. While considerable efforts have focused on explicating when, why and for whom this fundamental psychological ability can go awry, considerably less is known about factors that may enhance theory of mind. Accordingly, the current study explored the possibility that mindfulness-based meditation may improve people’s mindreading skills. Following a 5-minute mindfulness induction, participants with no prior meditation experience completed tests that assessed mindreading and empathic understanding. The results revealed that brief mindfulness meditation enhanced both mental state attribution and empathic concern, compared to participants in the control group. These findings suggest that mindfulness may be a powerful technique for facilitating core aspects of social-cognitive functioning. PMID:25329321

  15. Open Mind, Open Heart: An Anthropological Study of the Therapeutics of Meditation Practice in the US

    PubMed Central

    Myers, Neely; Lewis, Sara; Dutton, MaryAnn

    2015-01-01

    Based on ethnographic fieldwork and interviews collected with meditation teachers and students in the United States, this article will argue that active training in meditation-based practices occasions the opportunity for people with traumatic stress to develop a stronger mind-body connection through heightened somatic awareness and a focus on the present moment that they find to be therapeutic. Three important themes related to healing through meditation for trauma emerged from the data and centered around the ways our interlocutors attempted to realign their sense of self, mind and body, after a traumatic experience. The themes helped explain why US women perceive meditation as therapeutic for trauma, namely that the practice of meditation enables one to focus on the lived present rather than traumatic memories, to accept pain and “open” one's heart, and to make use of silence instead of speech as a healing modality. As meditation practices increasingly enter global popular culture, promoted for postulated health benefits, the driving question of this research—how meditation may perpetuate human resilience for women who have experienced trauma based on their own perspectives of meditation practices—is a critical addition to the literature. PMID:25613595

  16. Open Mind, Open Heart: An Anthropological Study of the Therapeutics of Meditation Practice in the US.

    PubMed

    Myers, Neely; Lewis, Sara; Dutton, Mary Ann

    2015-09-01

    Based on ethnographic fieldwork and interviews collected with meditation teachers and students in the United States, this article will argue that active training in meditation-based practices occasions the opportunity for people with traumatic stress to develop a stronger mind-body connection through heightened somatic awareness and a focus on the present moment that they find to be therapeutic. Three important themes related to healing through meditation for trauma emerged from the data and centered around the ways our interlocutors attempted to realign their sense of self, mind and body, after a traumatic experience. The themes helped explain why US women perceive meditation as therapeutic for trauma, namely that the practice of meditation enables one to focus on the lived present rather than traumatic memories, to accept pain and "open" one's heart, and to make use of silence instead of speech as a healing modality. As meditation practices increasingly enter global popular culture, promoted for postulated health benefits, the driving question of this research--how meditation may perpetuate human resilience for women who have experienced trauma based on their own perspectives of meditation practices--is a critical addition to the literature.

  17. Mindfulness Meditation and Interprofessional Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation: A Mixed-Methods Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    Kelm, Diana J; Ridgeway, Jennifer L; Gas, Becca L; Mohan, Monali; Cook, David A; Nelson, Darlene R; Benzo, Roberto P

    2018-05-18

    Mindfulness training includes mindfulness meditation, which has been shown to improve both attention and self-awareness. Medical providers in the intensive care unit often deal with difficult situations with strong emotions, life-and-death decisions, and both interpersonal and interprofessional conflicts. The effect of mindfulness meditation training on healthcare providers during acute care tasks such as cardiopulmonary resuscitation remains unknown. Mindfulness meditation has the potential to improve provider well-being and reduce stress in individuals involved in resuscitation teams, which could then translate into better team communication and delivery of care under stress. A better understanding of this process could lead to more effective training approaches, improved team performance, and better patient outcomes. All participants were instructed to use a mindfulness meditation device (Muse™ headband) at home for 7 min twice a day or 14 min daily over the 4-week training period. This device uses brainwave sensors to monitor active versus relaxing brain activity and provides real-time feedback. We conducted a single-group pretest-posttest convergent mixed-methods study. We enrolled 24 healthcare providers, comprising 4 interprofessional code teams, including physicians, nurses, respiratory therapists, and pharmacists. Each team participated in a simulation session immediately before and after the mindfulness training period. Each session consisted of two simulated cardiopulmonary arrest scenarios. Both quantitative and qualitative outcomes were assessed. The median proportion of participants who used the device as prescribed was 85%. Emotional balance, as measured by the critical positivity ratio, improved significantly from pretraining to posttraining (p = .02). Qualitative findings showed that mindfulness meditation changed how participants responded to work-related stress, including stress in real-code situations. Participants described the value of

  18. The Cultural Relevance of Mindfulness Meditation as a Health Intervention for African Americans

    PubMed Central

    Woods-Giscombé, Cheryl L.; Gaylord, Susan A.

    2014-01-01

    African Americans experience a disproportionate rate of stress-related health conditions compared to European Americans. Mindfulness meditation has been shown to be effective for managing stress and various stress-related health conditions. This study explored the cultural relevance of mindfulness meditation training for African Americans adults. Fifteen African American adults with past or current experience with mindfulness meditation training were interviewed. Participants felt that mindfulness meditation helped them with enhanced stress management, direct health improvement, and enhanced self-awareness and purposefulness. They felt that they would recommend it and that other African Americans would be open to the practice but suggested that its presentation may need to be adapted. They suggested emphasizing the health benefits, connecting it to familiar spiritual ideology and cultural practices, supplementing the reading material with African American writers, increasing communication (education, instructor availability, “buddy system,” etc.), and including African Americans as instructors and participants. By implementing minor adaptations that enhance cultural relevance, mindfulness meditation can be a beneficial therapeutic intervention for this population. PMID:24442592

  19. Mindfulness meditation and consciousness: An integrative neuroscientific perspective.

    PubMed

    Manuello, Jordi; Vercelli, Ugo; Nani, Andrea; Costa, Tommaso; Cauda, Franco

    2016-02-01

    Although mindfulness meditation has been practiced in the East for more than two millennia, Western scientific research and healthcare programs have only recently drawn their attention to it. Basically, the concept of mindfulness hinges on focusing on one's own awareness at the present moment. In this review we analyze different hypotheses about the functioning and the cerebral correlates of mindfulness meditation. Since mindfulness is strictly associated with a particular state of consciousness, we also examine some of the most relevant theories that have been proposed as accounts of consciousness. Finally, we suggest that consciousness and mindfulness meditation can be integrated within a neuroscientific perspective, by identifying the brain areas which seem to play an essential role in both, namely the anterior cingulate cortex, posterior cingulate cortex, insula and thalamus. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Alterations in Resting-State Functional Connectivity Link Mindfulness Meditation With Reduced Interleukin-6: A Randomized Controlled Trial.

    PubMed

    Creswell, J David; Taren, Adrienne A; Lindsay, Emily K; Greco, Carol M; Gianaros, Peter J; Fairgrieve, April; Marsland, Anna L; Brown, Kirk Warren; Way, Baldwin M; Rosen, Rhonda K; Ferris, Jennifer L

    2016-07-01

    Mindfulness meditation training interventions have been shown to improve markers of health, but the underlying neurobiological mechanisms are not known. Building on initial cross-sectional research showing that mindfulness meditation may increase default mode network (DMN) resting-state functional connectivity (rsFC) with regions important in top-down executive control (dorsolateral prefrontal cortex [dlPFC]), here we test whether mindfulness meditation training increases DMN-dlPFC rsFC and whether these rsFC alterations prospectively explain improvements in interleukin (IL)-6 in a randomized controlled trial. Stressed job-seeking unemployed community adults (n = 35) were randomized to either a 3-day intensive residential mindfulness meditation or relaxation training program. Participants completed a 5-minute resting-state scan before and after the intervention program. Participants also provided blood samples at preintervention and at 4-month follow-up, which were assayed for circulating IL-6, a biomarker of systemic inflammation. We tested for alterations in DMN rsFC using a posterior cingulate cortex seed-based analysis and found that mindfulness meditation training, and not relaxation training, increased posterior cingulate cortex rsFC with left dlPFC (p < .05, corrected). These pretraining to posttraining alterations in posterior cingulate cortex-dlPFC rsFC statistically mediated mindfulness meditation training improvements in IL-6 at 4-month follow-up. Specifically, these alterations in rsFC statistically explained 30% of the overall mindfulness meditation training effects on IL-6 at follow-up. These findings provide the first evidence that mindfulness meditation training functionally couples the DMN with a region known to be important in top-down executive control at rest (left dlPFC), which, in turn, is associated with improvements in a marker of inflammatory disease risk. Copyright © 2016 Society of Biological Psychiatry. Published by Elsevier Inc. All

  1. Group vs. single mindfulness meditation: exploring avoidance, impulsivity, and weight management in two separate mindfulness meditation settings.

    PubMed

    Mantzios, Michail; Giannou, Kyriaki

    2014-07-01

    Recent research has identified that mindfulness meditation in group settings supports people who are trying to lose weight. The present research investigated mindfulness meditation in group and individual settings, and explored the potential impact on weight loss and other factors (i.e. mindfulness, impulsivity, and avoidance) that may assist or hinder weight loss. Specifically, the hypotheses tested were that the group setting assisted dieters more than the individual setting by reducing weight, cognitive-behavioral avoidance, and impulsivity and by increasing mindfulness. Participants (n = 170) who were trying to lose weight were randomly assigned to practice meditation for 6 weeks within a group or independently. Measurements in mindfulness, cognitive-behavioral avoidance, impulsivity, and weight occurred twice (pre- and post-intervention). Results indicated that participants in the group setting lost weight and lowered their levels of cognitive-behavioral avoidance, while impulsivity and mindfulness remained stable. On the other hand, participants in the individual condition lost less weight, while there was an increase in cognitive-behavioral avoidance and mindfulness scores, but a decrease in impulsivity. Seeing that benefits and limitations observed in group settings are not replicated when people meditate alone, this study concluded that mindfulness meditation in individual settings needs to be used with caution, although there are some potential benefits that could aid future weight loss research. © 2014 The International Association of Applied Psychology.

  2. Observing the Effects of Mindfulness-Based Meditation on Anxiety and Depression in Chronic Pain Patients.

    PubMed

    Rod, Kim

    2015-09-01

    People whose chronic pain limits their independence are especially likely to become anxious and depressed. Mindfulness training has shown promise for stress-related disorders. Chronic pain patients who complained of anxiety and depression and who scored higher than moderate in Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS) and Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS) as well as moderate in Quality of Life Scale (QOLS) were observed for eight weeks, three days a week for an hour of Mindfulness Meditation training with an hour daily home Mindfulness Meditation practice. Pain was evaluated on study entry and completion, and patients were given the Patients' Global Impression of Change (PGIC) to score at the end of the training program. Forty-seven patients (47) completed the Mindfulness Meditation Training program. Over the year-long observation, patients demonstrated noticeable improvement in depression, anxiety, pain, and global impression of change. Chronic pain patients who suffer with anxiety and depression may benefit from incorporating Mindfulness Meditation into their treatment plans.

  3. Mindfulness-oriented meditation improves self-related character scales in healthy individuals.

    PubMed

    Campanella, Fabio; Crescentini, Cristiano; Urgesi, Cosimo; Fabbro, Franco

    2014-07-01

    Previous studies have shown that mindfulness meditation may improve well-being in healthy individuals and be effective in the treatment of mental and neurological disorders. Here, we investigated the effects of an 8-week mindfulness-mediation program on the personality profiles of three groups of healthy individuals with no previous experience with meditation as compared to a control group not enrolled in any training. Personality profiles were obtained through the Temperament and Character Inventory (Cloninger et al., 1993). In the experimental groups, significant increments after the training were obtained in all the three character scales describing the levels of self maturity at the intrapersonal (Self-Directedness), interpersonal (Cooperativeness), and transpersonal (Self-Transcendence) levels. No changes were found in the control group. Strikingly, these effects were significant only in those groups who were engaged in consistent daily meditation practice but not in the group who attended the meditation training but were less consistent in home practice. Since higher scores in the character scales are associated to a lower risk of personality disorder, we propose that the increase of self maturity after the training may be an important mechanism for the effectiveness of mindfulness-oriented meditation in psychotherapeutic contexts. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Mindfulness meditation improves emotion regulation and reduces drug abuse.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yi-Yuan; Tang, Rongxiang; Posner, Michael I

    2016-06-01

    The core clinical symptoms of addiction include an enhanced incentive for drug taking (craving), impaired self-control (impulsivity and compulsivity), emotional dysregulation (negative mood) and increased stress reactivity. Symptoms related to impaired self-control involve reduced activity in anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), adjacent prefrontal cortex (mPFC) and other brain areas. Behavioral training such as mindfulness meditation can increase the function of control networks including those leading to improved emotion regulation and thus may be a promising approach for the treatment of addiction. In a series of randomized controlled trials (RCTs), we tested whether increased ACC/mPFC activity is related to better self-control abilities in executive functions, emotion regulation and stress response in healthy and addicted populations. After a brief mindfulness training (Integrative Body-Mind Training, IBMT), we used the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) and Profile of Mood States (POMS) to measure emotion regulation, salivary cortisol for the stress response and fMRI for brain functional and DTI structural changes. Relaxation training was used to serve as an active control. In both smokers and nonsmokers, improved self-control abilities in emotion regulation and stress reduction were found after training and these changes were related to increased ACC/mPFC activity following training. Compared with nonsmokers, smokers showed reduced ACC/mPFC activity in the self-control network before training, and these deficits were ameliorated after training. These results indicate that promoting emotion regulation and improving ACC/mPFC brain activity can help for addiction prevention and treatment. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ireland Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  5. A pilot study: mindfulness meditation intervention in COPD.

    PubMed

    Chan, Roxane Raffin; Giardino, Nicholas; Larson, Janet L

    2015-01-01

    Living well with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) requires people to manage disease-related symptoms in order to participate in activities of daily living. Mindfulness practice is an intervention that has been shown to reduce symptoms of chronic disease and improve accurate symptom assessment, both of which could result in improved disease management and increased wellness for people with COPD. A randomized controlled trial was conducted to investigate an 8-week mindful meditation intervention program tailored for the COPD population and explore the use of breathing timing parameters as a possible physiological measure of meditation uptake. Results demonstrated that those randomized to the mindful meditation intervention group (N=19) had a significant increase in respiratory rate over time as compared to those randomized to the wait-list group (N=22) (P=0.045). It was also found that the mindful meditation intervention group demonstrated a significant decrease in level of mindfulness over time as compared to the wait-list group (P=0.023). When examining participants from the mindful meditation intervention who had completed six or more classes, it was found that respiratory rate did not significantly increase in comparison to the wait-list group. Furthermore, those who completed six or more classes (N=12) demonstrated significant improvement in emotional function in comparison to the wait-list group (P=0.032) even though their level of mindfulness did not improve. This study identifies that there may be a complex relationship between breathing parameters, emotion, and mindfulness in the COPD population. The results describe good feasibility and acceptability for meditation interventions in the COPD population.

  6. A pilot study: mindfulness meditation intervention in COPD

    PubMed Central

    Chan, Roxane Raffin; Giardino, Nicholas; Larson, Janet L

    2015-01-01

    Living well with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) requires people to manage disease-related symptoms in order to participate in activities of daily living. Mindfulness practice is an intervention that has been shown to reduce symptoms of chronic disease and improve accurate symptom assessment, both of which could result in improved disease management and increased wellness for people with COPD. A randomized controlled trial was conducted to investigate an 8-week mindful meditation intervention program tailored for the COPD population and explore the use of breathing timing parameters as a possible physiological measure of meditation uptake. Results demonstrated that those randomized to the mindful meditation intervention group (N=19) had a significant increase in respiratory rate over time as compared to those randomized to the wait-list group (N=22) (P=0.045). It was also found that the mindful meditation intervention group demonstrated a significant decrease in level of mindfulness over time as compared to the wait-list group (P=0.023). When examining participants from the mindful meditation intervention who had completed six or more classes, it was found that respiratory rate did not significantly increase in comparison to the wait-list group. Furthermore, those who completed six or more classes (N=12) demonstrated significant improvement in emotional function in comparison to the wait-list group (P=0.032) even though their level of mindfulness did not improve. This study identifies that there may be a complex relationship between breathing parameters, emotion, and mindfulness in the COPD population. The results describe good feasibility and acceptability for meditation interventions in the COPD population. PMID:25767382

  7. Internet Mindfulness Meditation Intervention for the General Public: Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    2016-01-01

    Background Mindfulness meditation interventions improve a variety of health conditions and quality of life, are inexpensive, easy to implement, have minimal if any side effects, and engage patients to take an active role in their treatment. However, the group format can be an obstacle for many to take structured meditation programs. Internet Mindfulness Meditation Intervention (IMMI) is a program that could make mindfulness meditation accessible to all people who want and need to receive it. However, the feasibility, acceptability, and ability of IMMI to increase meditation practice have yet to be evaluated. Objectives The primary objectives of this pilot randomized controlled study were to (1) evaluate the feasibility and acceptability of IMMIs in the general population and (2) to evaluate IMMI’s ability to change meditation practice behavior. The secondary objective was to collect preliminary data on health outcomes. Methods Potential participants were recruited from online and offline sources. In a randomized controlled trial, participants were allocated to IMMI or Access to Guided Meditation arm. IMMI included a 1-hour Web-based training session weekly for 6 weeks along with daily home practice guided meditations between sessions. The Access to Guided Meditation arm included a handout on mindfulness meditation and access to the same guided meditation practices that the IMMI participants received, but not the 1-hour Web-based training sessions. The study activities occurred through the participants’ own computer and Internet connection and with research-assistant telephone and email contact. Feasibility and acceptability were measured with enrollment and completion rates and participant satisfaction. The ability of IMMI to modify behavior and increase meditation practice was measured by objective adherence of daily meditation practice via Web-based forms. Self-report questionnaires of quality of life, self-efficacy, depression symptoms, sleep disturbance

  8. Mindfulness meditation, well-being, and heart rate variability: a preliminary investigation into the impact of intensive Vipassana meditation.

    PubMed

    Krygier, Jonathan R; Heathers, James A J; Shahrestani, Sara; Abbott, Maree; Gross, James J; Kemp, Andrew H

    2013-09-01

    Mindfulness meditation has beneficial effects on brain and body, yet the impact of Vipassana, a type of mindfulness meditation, on heart rate variability (HRV) - a psychophysiological marker of mental and physical health - is unknown. We hypothesised increases in measures of well-being and HRV, and decreases in ill-being after training in Vipassana compared to before (time effects), during the meditation task compared to resting baseline (task effects), and a time by task interaction with more pronounced differences between tasks after Vipassana training. HRV (5-minute resting baseline vs. 5-minute meditation) was collected from 36 participants before and after they completed a 10-day intensive Vipassana retreat. Changes in three frequency-domain measures of HRV were analysed using 2 (Time; pre- vs. post-Vipassana)× 2 (Task; resting baseline vs. meditation) within subjects ANOVA. These measures were: normalised high-frequency power (HF n.u.), a widely used biomarker of parasympathetic activity; log-transformed high frequency power (ln HF), a measure of RSA and required to interpret normalised HF; and Traube-Hering-Mayer waves (THM), a component of the low frequency spectrum linked to baroreflex outflow. As expected, participants showed significantly increased well-being, and decreased ill-being. ln HF increased overall during meditation compared to resting baseline, while there was a time∗task interaction for THM. Further testing revealed that pre-Vipassana only ln HF increased during meditation (vs. resting baseline), consistent with a change in respiration. Post-Vipassana, the meditation task increased HF n.u. and decreased THM compared to resting baseline, suggesting post-Vipassana task-related changes are characterised by a decrease in absolute LF power, not parasympathetic-mediated increases in HF power. Such baroreflex changes are classically associated with attentional load, and our results are interpreted in light of the concept of 'flow' - a state of

  9. Goal Management Training and Mindfulness Meditation improve executive functions and transfer to ecological tasks of daily life in polysubstance users enrolled in therapeutic community treatment.

    PubMed

    Valls-Serrano, Carlos; Caracuel, Alfonso; Verdejo-Garcia, Antonio

    2016-08-01

    We have previously shown that Goal Management Training+Mindfulness Meditation (GMT+MM) improves executive functions in polysubstance users enrolled in outpatient treatment. The aim of this study was to establish if GMT+MM has similar positive effects on executive functions in polysubstance users in residential treatment, and if executive functions' gains transfer to more ecologically valid goal-oriented tasks. Thirty-two polysbustance users were randomly allocated to eight weeks of GMT+MM (n=16) or control, i.e., no-intervention (n=16); both groups received treatment as usual. Outcome measures included performance in laboratory tasks of basic and complex executive functions (i.e., basic: working memory and inhibition; complex: planning and self-regulation) and in an ecological task of goal-directed behavior (the Multiple Errands Test - contextualized version, MET-CV) measured post-interventions. Results showed that GMT+MM was superior to control in improving basic measures of working memory (Letter-number sequencing; F=4.516, p=0.049) and reflection impulsivity (Information Sampling Test; F=6.217, p=0.018), along with initial thinking times during planning (Zoo Map Test; F=8.143, p=0.008). In addition, GMT+MM was superior to control in improving performance in the MET-CV (task failures; F=8.485, p=0.007). Our findings demonstrate that GMT+MM increases reflective processes and the achievement of goals in daily activities, furthermore ecological test can detects changes easily than laboratory tasks. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Does mindfulness meditation improve attention in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder?

    PubMed

    Modesto-Lowe, Vania; Farahmand, Pantea; Chaplin, Margaret; Sarro, Lauren

    2015-12-22

    Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) manifests by high levels of inattention, impulsiveness and hyperactivity. ADHD starts in childhood and results in impairments that continue into adulthood. While hyperactivity declines over time, inattention and executive function difficulties persist, leading to functional deficits. Adolescents and adults with ADHD have pervasive impairment in interpersonal and family relationships. They may develop addiction, delinquent behavior and comorbid psychiatric disorders. Despite advances in diagnosis and treatment, persistent residual symptoms are common, highlighting the need for novel treatment strategies. Mindfulness training, derived from Eastern meditation practices, may improve self-regulation of attention. It may also be a useful strategy to augment standard ADHD treatments and may be used as a potential tool to reduce impairments in patients with residual symptoms of ADHD. Clinically, this would manifest by an increased ability to suppress task-unrelated thoughts and distractions resulting in improved attention, completion of tasks and potential improvement in occupational and social function.

  11. Increased False-Memory Susceptibility After Mindfulness Meditation.

    PubMed

    Wilson, Brent M; Mickes, Laura; Stolarz-Fantino, Stephanie; Evrard, Matthew; Fantino, Edmund

    2015-10-01

    The effect of mindfulness meditation on false-memory susceptibility was examined in three experiments. Because mindfulness meditation encourages judgment-free thoughts and feelings, we predicted that participants in the mindfulness condition would be especially likely to form false memories. In two experiments, participants were randomly assigned to either a mindfulness induction, in which they were instructed to focus attention on their breathing, or a mind-wandering induction, in which they were instructed to think about whatever came to mind. The overall number of words from the Deese-Roediger-McDermott paradigm that were correctly recalled did not differ between conditions. However, participants in the mindfulness condition were significantly more likely to report critical nonstudied items than participants in the control condition. In a third experiment, which tested recognition and used a reality-monitoring paradigm, participants had reduced reality-monitoring accuracy after completing the mindfulness induction. These results demonstrate a potential unintended consequence of mindfulness meditation in which memories become less reliable. © The Author(s) 2015.

  12. Adaptive neural reward processing during anticipation and receipt of monetary rewards in mindfulness meditators.

    PubMed

    Kirk, Ulrich; Brown, Kirk Warren; Downar, Jonathan

    2015-05-01

    Reward seeking is ubiquitous and adaptive in humans. But excessive reward seeking behavior, such as chasing monetary rewards, may lead to diminished subjective well-being. This study examined whether individuals trained in mindfulness meditation show neural evidence of lower susceptibility to monetary rewards. Seventy-eight participants (34 meditators, 44 matched controls) completed the monetary incentive delay task while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging. The groups performed equally on the task, but meditators showed lower neural activations in the caudate nucleus during reward anticipation, and elevated bilateral posterior insula activation during reward anticipation. Meditators also evidenced reduced activations in the ventromedial prefrontal cortex during reward receipt compared with controls. Connectivity parameters between the right caudate and bilateral anterior insula were attenuated in meditators during incentive anticipation. In summary, brain regions involved in reward processing-both during reward anticipation and receipt of reward-responded differently in mindfulness meditators than in nonmeditators, indicating that the former are less susceptible to monetary incentives. © The Author (2014). Published by Oxford University Press. For Permissions, please email: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  13. The Effects of Muslim Praying Meditation and Transcendental Meditation Programs on Mindfulness among the University of Nizwa Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Aldahadha, Basim

    2013-01-01

    The aim of this study was to investigate the Effects of Muslim Praying Meditation (MPM) and Transcendental Meditation (TM) Program on Mindfulness among the University of Nizwa students. The sample of the study consisted of (354) students. The questionnaires of MPM (Al-Kushooa) and Kentucky Inventory of Mindfulness Skills (KIMS) were applied before…

  14. Combining Mindfulness Meditation with Cognitive-Behavior Therapy for Insomnia

    PubMed Central

    Ong, Jason C.; Shapiro, Shauna L.; Manber, Rachel

    2009-01-01

    This treatment-development study is a Stage I evaluation of an intervention that combines mindfulness meditation with cognitive-behavior therapy for insomnia (CBT-I). Thirty adults who met research diagnostic criteria for Psychophysiological Insomnia (Edinger et al., 2004) participated in a 6-week, multi-component group intervention using mindfulness meditation, sleep restriction, stimulus control, sleep education, and sleep hygiene. Sleep diaries and self-reported pre-sleep arousal were assessed weekly while secondary measures of insomnia severity, arousal, mindfulness skills, and daytime functioning were assessed at pre-treatment and post-treatment. Data collected on recruitment, retention, compliance, and satisfaction indicate that the treatment protocol is feasible to deliver and is acceptable for individuals seeking treatment for insomnia. The overall patterns of change with treatment demonstrated statistically and clinically significant improvements in several nighttime symptoms of insomnia as well as statistically significant reductions in pre-sleep arousal, sleep effort, and dysfunctional sleep-related cognitions. In addition, a significant correlation was found between the number of meditation sessions and changes on a trait measure of arousal. Together, the findings indicate that mindfulness meditation can be combined with CBT-I and this integrated intervention is associated with reductions in both sleep and sleep-related arousal. Further testing of this intervention using randomized controlled trials is warranted to evaluate the efficacy of the intervention for this population and the specific effects of each component on sleep and both psychological and physiological arousal. PMID:18502250

  15. Neural mechanisms of attentional control in mindfulness meditation

    PubMed Central

    Malinowski, Peter

    2013-01-01

    The scientific interest in meditation and mindfulness practice has recently seen an unprecedented surge. After an initial phase of presenting beneficial effects of mindfulness practice in various domains, research is now seeking to unravel the underlying psychological and neurophysiological mechanisms. Advances in understanding these processes are required for improving and fine-tuning mindfulness-based interventions that target specific conditions such as eating disorders or attention deficit hyperactivity disorders. This review presents a theoretical framework that emphasizes the central role of attentional control mechanisms in the development of mindfulness skills. It discusses the phenomenological level of experience during meditation, the different attentional functions that are involved, and relates these to the brain networks that subserve these functions. On the basis of currently available empirical evidence specific processes as to how attention exerts its positive influence are considered and it is concluded that meditation practice appears to positively impact attentional functions by improving resource allocation processes. As a result, attentional resources are allocated more fully during early processing phases which subsequently enhance further processing. Neural changes resulting from a pure form of mindfulness practice that is central to most mindfulness programs are considered from the perspective that they constitute a useful reference point for future research. Furthermore, possible interrelations between the improvement of attentional control and emotion regulation skills are discussed. PMID:23382709

  16. Neural mechanisms of attentional control in mindfulness meditation.

    PubMed

    Malinowski, Peter

    2013-01-01

    The scientific interest in meditation and mindfulness practice has recently seen an unprecedented surge. After an initial phase of presenting beneficial effects of mindfulness practice in various domains, research is now seeking to unravel the underlying psychological and neurophysiological mechanisms. Advances in understanding these processes are required for improving and fine-tuning mindfulness-based interventions that target specific conditions such as eating disorders or attention deficit hyperactivity disorders. This review presents a theoretical framework that emphasizes the central role of attentional control mechanisms in the development of mindfulness skills. It discusses the phenomenological level of experience during meditation, the different attentional functions that are involved, and relates these to the brain networks that subserve these functions. On the basis of currently available empirical evidence specific processes as to how attention exerts its positive influence are considered and it is concluded that meditation practice appears to positively impact attentional functions by improving resource allocation processes. As a result, attentional resources are allocated more fully during early processing phases which subsequently enhance further processing. Neural changes resulting from a pure form of mindfulness practice that is central to most mindfulness programs are considered from the perspective that they constitute a useful reference point for future research. Furthermore, possible interrelations between the improvement of attentional control and emotion regulation skills are discussed.

  17. Short Meditation Trainings Enhance Non-REM Sleep Low-Frequency Oscillations.

    PubMed

    Dentico, Daniela; Ferrarelli, Fabio; Riedner, Brady A; Smith, Richard; Zennig, Corinna; Lutz, Antoine; Tononi, Giulio; Davidson, Richard J

    2016-01-01

    We have recently shown higher parietal-occipital EEG gamma activity during sleep in long-term meditators compared to meditation-naive individuals. This gamma increase was specific for NREM sleep, was present throughout the entire night and correlated with meditation expertise, thus suggesting underlying long-lasting neuroplastic changes induced through prolonged training. The aim of this study was to explore the neuroplastic changes acutely induced by 2 intensive days of different meditation practices in the same group of practitioners. We also repeated baseline recordings in a meditation-naive cohort to account for time effects on sleep EEG activity. High-density EEG recordings of human brain activity were acquired over the course of whole sleep nights following intervention. Sound-attenuated sleep research room. Twenty-four long-term meditators and twenty-four meditation-naïve controls. Two 8-h sessions of either a mindfulness-based meditation or a form of meditation designed to cultivate compassion and loving kindness, hereafter referred to as compassion meditation. We found an increase in EEG low-frequency oscillatory activities (1-12 Hz, centered around 7-8 Hz) over prefrontal and left parietal electrodes across whole night NREM cycles. This power increase peaked early in the night and extended during the third cycle to high-frequencies up to the gamma range (25-40 Hz). There was no difference in sleep EEG activity between meditation styles in long-term meditators nor in the meditation naïve group across different time points. Furthermore, the prefrontal-parietal changes were dependent on meditation life experience. This low-frequency prefrontal-parietal activation likely reflects acute, meditation-related plastic changes occurring during wakefulness, and may underlie a top-down regulation from frontal and anterior parietal areas to the posterior parietal and occipital regions showing chronic, long-lasting plastic changes in long-term meditators.

  18. Stress and Anxiety Management in Nursing Students: Biofeedback and Mindfulness Meditation.

    PubMed

    Ratanasiripong, Paul; Park, Janet F; Ratanasiripong, Nop; Kathalae, Duangrat

    2015-09-01

    The current study investigated the efficacy of two brief intervention programs-biofeedback and mindfulness meditation-on levels of state anxiety and perceived stress in second-year Thai nursing students as they began clinical training. Eighty-nine participants from a public nursing college in Thailand were randomly assigned to one of three groups: biofeedback group, mindfulness meditation group, or a control group. All participants were given pre- and postintervention surveys, which included demographic information; the State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (State Anxiety Scale); and the Perceived Stress Scale. Findings indicated that biofeedback significantly reduced anxiety and maintained stress levels in nursing students. Mindfulness meditation similarly decreased anxiety levels, while also significantly lowering stress levels. The biofeedback group exhibited significant reduction in anxiety levels among the three groups at postintervention. Despite stressors and demands nursing students experience as they begin clinical practice, study findings support the use of biofeedback and mindfulness meditation interventions to assist nursing students in managing stress and anxiety. Copyright 2015, SLACK Incorporated.

  19. Debiasing the mind through meditation: mindfulness and the sunk-cost bias.

    PubMed

    Hafenbrack, Andrew C; Kinias, Zoe; Barsade, Sigal G

    2014-02-01

    In the research reported here, we investigated the debiasing effect of mindfulness meditation on the sunk-cost bias. We conducted four studies (one correlational and three experimental); the results suggest that increased mindfulness reduces the tendency to allow unrecoverable prior costs to influence current decisions. Study 1 served as an initial correlational demonstration of the positive relationship between trait mindfulness and resistance to the sunk-cost bias. Studies 2a and 2b were laboratory experiments examining the effect of a mindfulness-meditation induction on increased resistance to the sunk-cost bias. In Study 3, we examined the mediating mechanisms of temporal focus and negative affect, and we found that the sunk-cost bias was attenuated by drawing one's temporal focus away from the future and past and by reducing state negative affect, both of which were accomplished through mindfulness meditation.

  20. Concentration and mindfulness meditations: unique forms of consciousness?

    PubMed

    Dunn, B R; Hartigan, J A; Mikulas, W L

    1999-09-01

    Electroencephalographic (EEG) recordings from 19 scalp recording sites were used to differentiate among two posited unique forms of mediation, concentration and mindfulness, and a normal relaxation control condition. Analyzes of all traditional frequency bandwidth data (i.e., delta 1-3 Hz; theta, 4-7 Hz; alpha, 8-12 Hz; beta 1, 13-25 Hz; beta 2, 26-32 Hz) showed strong mean amplitude frequency differences between the two meditation conditions and relaxation over numerous cortical sites. Furthermore, significant differences were obtained between concentration and mindfulness states at all bandwidths. Taken together, our results suggest that concentration and mindfulness "meditations" may be unique forms of consciousness and are not merely degrees of a state of relaxation.

  1. Mindfulness-Meditation-Based Pain Relief Is Not Mediated by Endogenous Opioids.

    PubMed

    Zeidan, Fadel; Adler-Neal, Adrienne L; Wells, Rebecca E; Stagnaro, Emily; May, Lisa M; Eisenach, James C; McHaffie, John G; Coghill, Robert C

    2016-03-16

    Mindfulness meditation, a cognitive practice premised on sustaining nonjudgmental awareness of arising sensory events, reliably attenuates pain. Mindfulness meditation activates multiple brain regions that contain a high expression of opioid receptors. However, it is unknown whether mindfulness-meditation-based analgesia is mediated by endogenous opioids. The present double-blind, randomized study examined behavioral pain responses in healthy human volunteers during mindfulness meditation and a nonmanipulation control condition in response to noxious heat and intravenous administration of the opioid antagonist naloxone (0.15 mg/kg bolus + 0.1 mg/kg/h infusion) or saline placebo. Meditation during saline infusion significantly reduced pain intensity and unpleasantness ratings when compared to the control + saline group. However, naloxone infusion failed to reverse meditation-induced analgesia. There were no significant differences in pain intensity or pain unpleasantness reductions between the meditation + naloxone and the meditation + saline groups. Furthermore, mindfulness meditation during naloxone produced significantly greater reductions in pain intensity and unpleasantness than the control groups. These findings demonstrate that mindfulness meditation does not rely on endogenous opioidergic mechanisms to reduce pain. Endogenous opioids have been repeatedly shown to be involved in the cognitive inhibition of pain. Mindfulness meditation, a practice premised on directing nonjudgmental attention to arising sensory events, reduces pain by engaging mechanisms supporting the cognitive control of pain. However, it remains unknown if mindfulness-meditation-based analgesia is mediated by opioids, an important consideration for using meditation to treat chronic pain. To address this question, the present study examined pain reports during meditation in response to noxious heat and administration of the opioid antagonist naloxone and placebo saline. The results

  2. Mindfulness-Meditation-Based Pain Relief Is Not Mediated by Endogenous Opioids

    PubMed Central

    Adler-Neal, Adrienne L.; Wells, Rebecca E.; Stagnaro, Emily; May, Lisa M.; Eisenach, James C.; McHaffie, John G.; Coghill, Robert C.

    2016-01-01

    Mindfulness meditation, a cognitive practice premised on sustaining nonjudgmental awareness of arising sensory events, reliably attenuates pain. Mindfulness meditation activates multiple brain regions that contain a high expression of opioid receptors. However, it is unknown whether mindfulness-meditation-based analgesia is mediated by endogenous opioids. The present double-blind, randomized study examined behavioral pain responses in healthy human volunteers during mindfulness meditation and a nonmanipulation control condition in response to noxious heat and intravenous administration of the opioid antagonist naloxone (0.15 mg/kg bolus + 0.1 mg/kg/h infusion) or saline placebo. Meditation during saline infusion significantly reduced pain intensity and unpleasantness ratings when compared to the control + saline group. However, naloxone infusion failed to reverse meditation-induced analgesia. There were no significant differences in pain intensity or pain unpleasantness reductions between the meditation + naloxone and the meditation + saline groups. Furthermore, mindfulness meditation during naloxone produced significantly greater reductions in pain intensity and unpleasantness than the control groups. These findings demonstrate that mindfulness meditation does not rely on endogenous opioidergic mechanisms to reduce pain. SIGNIFICANCE STATEMENT Endogenous opioids have been repeatedly shown to be involved in the cognitive inhibition of pain. Mindfulness meditation, a practice premised on directing nonjudgmental attention to arising sensory events, reduces pain by engaging mechanisms supporting the cognitive control of pain. However, it remains unknown if mindfulness-meditation-based analgesia is mediated by opioids, an important consideration for using meditation to treat chronic pain. To address this question, the present study examined pain reports during meditation in response to noxious heat and administration of the opioid antagonist naloxone and placebo saline

  3. Brief training in mindfulness meditation reduces symptoms in patients with a chronic or recurrent lifetime history of depression: A randomized controlled study.

    PubMed

    Winnebeck, Emilia; Fissler, Maria; Gärtner, Matti; Chadwick, Paul; Barnhofer, Thorsten

    2017-12-01

    Training in mindfulness has been introduced to the treatment of depression as a means of relapse prevention. However, given its buffering effects on maladaptive responses to negative mood, mindfulness training would be expected to be particularly helpful in those who are currently suffering from symptoms. This study investigated whether a brief and targeted mindfulness-based intervention can reduce symptoms in acutely depressed patients. Seventy-four patients with a chronic or recurrent lifetime history were randomly allocated to receive either a brief mindfulness-based intervention (MBI) encompassing three individual sessions and regular home practice or a control condition that combined psycho-educational components and regular rest periods using the same format as the MBI. Self-reported severity of symptoms, mindfulness in every day life, ruminative tendencies and cognitive reactivity were assessed before and after intervention. Treatment completers in the MBI condition showed pronounced and significantly stronger reductions in symptoms than those in the control condition. In the MBI group only, patients showed significant increases in mindfulness, and significant reductions in ruminative tendencies and cognitive reactivity. Brief targeted mindfulness interventions can help to reduce symptoms and buffer maladaptive responses to negative mood in acutely depressed patients with chronic or recurrent lifetime history. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  4. Taming the Anxious Mind: An 8-Week Mindfulness Meditation Group at a University Counseling Center

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Murphy, Michael C.

    2006-01-01

    This article describes an eight-week mindfulness meditation-based group that took place at a university counseling center. The group is patterned after the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program developed by Dr. Jon Kabat-Zinn at the Stress Reduction Clinic at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center. Group members are taught…

  5. The value of mindfulness meditation in the treatment of insomnia.

    PubMed

    Martires, Joanne; Zeidler, Michelle

    2015-11-01

    Insomnia is the most common reported sleep disorder with limited treatment options including pharmacotherapy and cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia. Pharmacotherapy can be complicated by tolerance and significant side-effects and cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia providers are limited in number. This article reviews mindfulness meditation as an additional therapy for insomnia. Both mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) and mindfulness-based therapy for insomnia (MBTI) have been studied in the treatment of insomnia. Randomized controlled studies of MBSR and MBTI have shown overall reduction in sleep latency and total wake time and increase in total sleep time after mindfulness therapy using both patient reported outcome and quantitative measures of sleep. Mindfulness techniques have been shown to be well accepted by patients with long-lasting effects. A three-arm randomized study with MBSR, MBTI, and self-monitoring showed similar improvement in insomnia between the MBSR and MBTI groups, with possibly longer duration of efficacy in the MBTI group. Recent data show that MBTI is also an effective and accepted treatment for insomnia in older patients. Increasing evidence shows that mindfulness meditation, delivered either via MBSR or MBTI, can be successfully used for the treatment of insomnia with good patient acceptance and durable results.

  6. Mindful meditation: healing burnout in critical care nursing.

    PubMed

    Davies, William Richard

    2008-01-01

    The nursing profession is experiencing a crisis in both manpower and the ability to fend off the deleterious effects of burnout. Nursing professionals face extraordinary stress in our present medical environment, and studies have frequently found moderate-to-high levels of burnout among nurses. Nurses experience burnout for a variety of reasons, some inherent to the profession and others related to our 21st-century values that have necessitated multiple breadwinners within the household. Mindful meditation represents a complementary therapy that has shown promise in the reduction of negative stress and those extraneous factors that lead to burnout. A mindful, meditative practice can be another tool with which critical care nurses can regain the control of their careers and personal lives. The purpose of this article is to describe nurse burnout, identify those factors that contribute to burnout, and offer a solution to a continuing problem for nurses.

  7. Mindfulness meditation-based pain relief: a mechanistic account.

    PubMed

    Zeidan, Fadel; Vago, David R

    2016-06-01

    Pain is a multidimensional experience that involves interacting sensory, cognitive, and affective factors, rendering the treatment of chronic pain challenging and financially burdensome. Further, the widespread use of opioids to treat chronic pain has led to an opioid epidemic characterized by exponential growth in opioid misuse and addiction. The staggering statistics related to opioid use highlight the importance of developing, testing, and validating fast-acting nonpharmacological approaches to treat pain. Mindfulness meditation is a technique that has been found to significantly reduce pain in experimental and clinical settings. The present review delineates findings from recent studies demonstrating that mindfulness meditation significantly attenuates pain through multiple, unique mechanisms-an important consideration for the millions of chronic pain patients seeking narcotic-free, self-facilitated pain therapy. © 2016 New York Academy of Sciences.

  8. A randomised controlled study of mindfulness meditation versus relaxation therapy in the management of tinnitus.

    PubMed

    Arif, M; Sadlier, M; Rajenderkumar, D; James, J; Tahir, T

    2017-06-01

    Psychotherapeutic interventions have been adopted effectively in the management of tinnitus for a long time. This study compared mindfulness meditation and relaxation therapy for management of tinnitus. In this randomised controlled trial, patients were recruited for five sessions of mindfulness meditation or five sessions of relaxation therapy. Patients' responses were evaluated using the Tinnitus Reaction Questionnaire as a primary outcome measure, and the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, visual analogue scale and a health status indicator as secondary outcome measures. A total of 86 patients were recruited. Thirty-four patients completed mindfulness meditation and 27 patients completed relaxation therapy. Statistically significant improvement was seen in all outcome measures except the health status indicator in both treatment groups. The change in treatment scores was greater in the mindfulness meditation group than in the relaxation therapy group. This study suggests that although both mindfulness meditation and relaxation therapy are effective in the management of tinnitus, mindfulness meditation is superior to relaxation therapy.

  9. Mindfulness Meditation for Alcohol Relapse Prevention: A Feasibility Pilot Study

    PubMed Central

    Zgierska, Aleksandra; Rabago, David; Zuelsdorff, Megan; Coe, Christopher; Miller, Michael; Fleming, Michael

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Meditation is a promising treatment for alcohol dependence. This 16-week prospective case series was designed to gather preliminary data about the efficacy of meditation for relapse prevention and to evaluate study methods feasibility. Methods Nineteen adult alcohol-dependent graduates of an intensive outpatient program were enrolled. Fifteen subjects completed the 8-week meditation course supplemented by at-home meditation and “standard of care” therapy. Outcome measures included surveys and 2 stress-responsive biomarkers. Results Subjects (N = 19, 38.4 standard deviation [SD] = 8.6-year-old) were abstinent for 30.9 (SD = 22.2) days at enrollment. Completers (N = 15) attended 82% of meditation course sessions and meditated on average 4.6 (SD = 1.1) days per week; they were abstinent on 94.5% (SD = 7.4) of study days, with 47% reporting complete abstinence and 47% reporting 1 or more heavy drinking days. Their severity of depression, anxiety, stress (P < 0.05), and craving (P < 0.08), documented relapse triggers, decreased, and the degree of mindfulness increased (P < 0.05). The meditation course was rated as a “very important” (8.7/10, SD = 1.8) and “useful relapse prevention tool” (8.5/10, SD = 2.1); participants reported being “very likely” to continue meditating (9.0/10, SD = 1.5). “Gaining skills to reduce stress,” “coping with craving,” and “good group support” were the most common qualitative comments about the course value. Compared with baseline, at 16 weeks, interleukin-6 levels decreased (N = 12, P = 0.05); cortisol levels (N = 10) were reduced but not significantly. There were no adverse events or side effects. Conclusions Meditation may be an effective adjunctive therapy for relapse prevention in alcohol dependence, worthy of investigation in a larger trial. The study methods are appropriate for such a trial. PMID:21768988

  10. Self-reported measures of mindfulness in meditators and non-meditators: A cross-sectional study

    PubMed Central

    Vinchurkar, Suhas Ashok; Singh, Deepeshwar; Visweswaraiah, Naveen Kalkuni

    2014-01-01

    Context: Mindfulness forms an important component of meditation practice and has been increasingly popular around the world. There has been growing interest in studying the mindful component of various meditation techniques. One of the various forms of mindfulness is the practice of a unique technique called cyclic mediation (CM). We aimed at ascertaining the level of mindfulness in experienced practitioners of CM using a Mindfulness Attention Awareness Scale (MAAS). Materials and Methods: MAAS was administered anonymously in a classroom setup and two of the project coordinators were present to supervise the administration and to assist the participants where necessary. We executed a cross sectional design. One hundred and thirty-three (n = 133) healthy male volunteers (66 meditators and 67 non-meditators) with ages ranging from 25 to 35 years participated in the study. Meditators had a minimum 3 years experience of meditation. Results: Data were analyzed using IBM SPSS 20. The data were checked for normality and an independent samples t-test was employed to compare the means of both the groups. MAAS scores were significantly higher in meditators as compared with the non-meditators (P < 0.001). We found a positive correlation (r = 0.620) between the years of meditation practice and the levels of trait mindfulness. Conclusions: CM can lead to development of higher levels of mindfulness and may have the ability to positively impact mental states and attention, thereby offering the potential for prevention of clinical levels of psychopathology and improving overall psychological well-being in healthy individuals. PMID:25035625

  11. Mindful Reading: Mindfulness Meditation Helps Keep Readers with Dyslexia and ADHD on the Lexical Track.

    PubMed

    Tarrasch, Ricardo; Berman, Zohar; Friedmann, Naama

    2016-01-01

    impulsivity. Following the meditation workshop, the rate of commission errors decreased, indicating decreased impulsivity, and the variation in RTs in the CPT task decreased, indicating improved sustained attention. Significant improvements were obtained in participants' mindfulness, perceived-stress, rumination, depression, state-anxiety, and sleep-disturbances. Correlations were also obtained between reading improvement and increased mindfulness following the workshop. Thus, whereas mindfulness training did not affect specific types of errors and did not improve dyslexia, it did affect the reading of adults with developmental dyslexia and ADHD, by helping them to stay on the straight path of the lexical route while reading. Thus, the reading improvement induced by mindfulness sheds light on the intricate relation between attention and reading. Mindfulness reduced impulsivity and improved sustained attention, and this, in turn, improved reading of adults with developmental dyslexia and ADHD, by helping them to read via the straight path of the lexical route.

  12. Effects of mindfulness meditation on occupational functioning and health care utilization in individuals with anxiety.

    PubMed

    Hoge, Elizabeth A; Guidos, Brittany M; Mete, Mihriye; Bui, Eric; Pollack, Mark H; Simon, Naomi M; Dutton, Mary Ann

    2017-04-01

    To examine the effect of mindfulness meditation on occupational functioning in individuals with Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Fifty-seven individuals with GAD (mean (SD) age=39 (13); 56% women) participated in an 8-week clinical trial in which they were randomized to mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) or an attention control class. In this secondary analysis, absenteeism, entire workdays missed, partial workdays missed, and healthcare utilization patterns were assessed before and after treatment. Compared to the attention control class, participation in MBSR was associated with a significantly greater decrease in partial work days missed for adults with GAD (t=2.734, df=51, p=0.009). Interestingly, a dose effect was observed during the 24-week post-treatment follow-up period: among MBSR participants, greater home mindfulness meditation practice was associated with less work loss and with fewer mental health professional visits. Mindfulness meditation training may improve occupational functioning and decrease healthcare utilization in adults with GAD. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  13. A randomized controlled trial of mindfulness meditation for chronic insomnia.

    PubMed

    Ong, Jason C; Manber, Rachel; Segal, Zindel; Xia, Yinglin; Shapiro, Shauna; Wyatt, James K

    2014-09-01

    To evaluate the efficacy of mindfulness meditation for the treatment of chronic insomnia. Three-arm, single-site, randomized controlled trial. Academic medical center. Fifty-four adults with chronic insomnia. Participants were randomized to either mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), mindfulness-based therapy for insomnia (MBTI), or an eight-week self-monitoring (SM) condition. Patient-reported outcome measures were total wake time (TWT) from sleep diaries, the pre-sleep arousal scale (PSAS), measuring a prominent waking correlate of insomnia, and the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) to determine remission and response as clinical endpoints. Objective sleep measures were derived from laboratory polysomnography and wrist actigraphy. Linear mixed models showed that those receiving a meditation-based intervention (MBSR or MBTI) had significantly greater reductions on TWT minutes (43.75 vs 1.09), PSAS (7.13 vs 0.16), and ISI (4.56 vs 0.06) from baseline-to-post compared to SM. Post hoc analyses revealed that each intervention was superior to SM on each of the patient-reported measures, but no significant differences were found when comparing MBSR to MBTI from baseline-to-post. From baseline to 6-month follow-up, MBTI had greater reductions in ISI scores than MBSR (P < 0.05), with the largest difference occurring at the 3-month follow-up. Remission and response rates in MBTI and MBSR were sustained from post-treatment through follow-up, with MBTI showing the highest rates of treatment remission (50%) and response (78.6%) at the 6-month follow-up. Mindfulness meditation appears to be a viable treatment option for adults with chronic insomnia and could provide an alternative to traditional treatments for insomnia. Mindfulness-Based Approaches to Insomnia: clinicaltrials.gov, identifier: NCT00768781. © 2014 Associated Professional Sleep Societies, LLC.

  14. Teaching mindfulness meditation to adults with severe speech and physical impairments: An exploratory study.

    PubMed

    Goodrich, Elena; Wahbeh, Helané; Mooney, Aimee; Miller, Meghan; Oken, Barry S

    2015-01-01

    People with severe speech and physical impairments may benefit from mindfulness meditation training because it has the potential to enhance their ability to cope with anxiety, depression and pain and improve their attentional capacity to use brain-computer interface systems. Seven adults with severe speech and physical impairments (SSPI) - defined as speech that is understood less than 25% of the time and/or severely reduced hand function for writing/typing - participated in this exploratory, uncontrolled intervention study. The objectives were to describe the development and implementation of a six-week mindfulness meditation intervention and to identify feasible outcome measures in this population. The weekly intervention was delivered by an instructor in the participant's home, and participants were encouraged to practise daily using audio recordings. The objective adherence to home practice was 10.2 minutes per day. Exploratory outcome measures were an n-back working memory task, the Attention Process Training-II Attention Questionnaire, the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index, the Perceived Stress Scale, the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule, and a qualitative feedback survey. There were no statistically significant pre-post results in this small sample, yet administration of the measures proved feasible, and qualitative reports were overall positive. Obstacles to teaching mindfulness meditation to persons with SSPI are reported, and solutions are proposed.

  15. A Randomized Controlled Trial of Mindfulness Meditation for Chronic Insomnia

    PubMed Central

    Ong, Jason C.; Manber, Rachel; Segal, Zindel; Xia, Yinglin; Shapiro, Shauna; Wyatt, James K.

    2014-01-01

    Study Objectives: To evaluate the efficacy of mindfulness meditation for the treatment of chronic insomnia. Design: Three-arm, single-site, randomized controlled trial. Setting: Academic medical center. Participants: Fifty-four adults with chronic insomnia. Interventions: Participants were randomized to either mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), mindfulness-based therapy for insomnia (MBTI), or an eight-week self-monitoring (SM) condition. Measurements and Results: Patient-reported outcome measures were total wake time (TWT) from sleep diaries, the pre-sleep arousal scale (PSAS), measuring a prominent waking correlate of insomnia, and the Insomnia Severity Index (ISI) to determine remission and response as clinical endpoints. Objective sleep measures were derived from laboratory polysomnography and wrist actigraphy. Linear mixed models showed that those receiving a meditation-based intervention (MBSR or MBTI) had significantly greater reductions on TWT minutes (43.75 vs 1.09), PSAS (7.13 vs 0.16), and ISI (4.56 vs 0.06) from baseline-to-post compared to SM. Post hoc analyses revealed that each intervention was superior to SM on each of the patient-reported measures, but no significant differences were found when comparing MBSR to MBTI from baseline-to-post. From baseline to 6-month follow-up, MBTI had greater reductions in ISI scores than MBSR (P < 0.05), with the largest difference occurring at the 3-month follow-up. Remission and response rates in MBTI and MBSR were sustained from post-treatment through follow-up, with MBTI showing the highest rates of treatment remission (50%) and response (78.6%) at the 6-month follow-up. Conclusions: Mindfulness meditation appears to be a viable treatment option for adults with chronic insomnia and could provide an alternative to traditional treatments for insomnia. Trial Registration: Mindfulness-Based Approaches to Insomnia: clinicaltrials.gov, identifier: NCT00768781 Citation: Ong JC, Manber R, Segal Z, Xia Y

  16. A translational neuroscience perspective on mindfulness meditation as a prevention strategy.

    PubMed

    Tang, Yi-Yuan; Leve, Leslie D

    2016-03-01

    Mindfulness meditation research mainly focuses on psychological outcomes such as behavioral, cognitive, and emotional functioning. However, the neuroscience literature on mindfulness meditation has grown in recent years. This paper provides an overview of relevant neuroscience and psychological research on the effects of mindfulness meditation. We propose a translational prevention framework of mindfulness and its effects. Drawing upon the principles of prevention science, this framework integrates neuroscience and prevention research and postulates underlying brain regulatory mechanisms that explain the impact of mindfulness on psychological outcomes via self-regulation mechanisms linked to underlying brain systems. We conclude by discussing potential clinical and practice implications of this model and directions for future research.

  17. Effectiveness of mindfulness meditation (Vipassana) in the management of chronic low back pain

    PubMed Central

    Patil, Sangram G

    2009-01-01

    Summary Chronic low back pain (CLBP) is challenging to treat with its significant psychological and cognitive behavioural element involved. Mindfulness meditation helps alter the behavioural response in chronic pain situations. Significant body of research in the filed of mindfulness meditation comes from the work of Dr Kabat-Zinn. The current evidence in the field, though not grade one, shows that there is a place for mindfulness meditation in managing chronic pain conditions including CLBP. Further research to test the usefulness of mindfulness in CLBP should involve good quality randomized controlled trials of pure mindfulness based technique in matched subjects. PMID:20640116

  18. Exploring Mindfulness and Meditation for the Elementary Classroom: Intersections across Current Multidisciplinary Research

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Routhier-Martin, Kayli; Roberts, Sherron Killingsworth; Blanch, Norine

    2017-01-01

    Mindfulness and meditation programs, and their associated benefits for education, can be examined within three related disciplines: psychology, elementary education, and exceptional education. A review of psychology research provides evidence that meditation and mindfulness work to balance the often negative effects of students' social-emotional…

  19. Mindfulness meditation practice and executive functioning: Breaking down the benefit.

    PubMed

    Gallant, Sara N

    2016-02-01

    This paper focuses on evidence for mindfulness meditation-related benefits to executive functioning, processes important for much of human volitional behaviour. Miyake et al. (2000) have shown that executive functions can be fractionated into three distinct domains including inhibition, working memory updating, and mental set shifting. Considering these separable domains, it is important to determine whether the effects of mindfulness can generalize to all three sub-functions or are specific to certain domains. To address this, the current review applied Miyake et al.'s (2000) fractionated model of executive functioning to the mindfulness literature. Empirical studies assessing the benefits of mindfulness to measures tapping the inhibition, updating, and shifting components of executive functioning were examined. Results suggest a relatively specific as opposed to general benefit resulting from mindfulness, with consistent inhibitory improvement, but more variable advantages to the updating and shifting domains. Recommendations surrounding application of mindfulness practice and future research are discussed. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  20. Self-reported mindfulness and cortisol during a Shamatha meditation retreat.

    PubMed

    Jacobs, Tonya L; Shaver, Phillip R; Epel, Elissa S; Zanesco, Anthony P; Aichele, Stephen R; Bridwell, David A; Rosenberg, Erika L; King, Brandon G; Maclean, Katherine A; Sahdra, Baljinder K; Kemeny, Margaret E; Ferrer, Emilio; Wallace, B Alan; Saron, Clifford D

    2013-10-01

    Cognitive perseverations that include worry and rumination over past or future events may prolong cortisol release, which in turn may contribute to predisease pathways and adversely affect physical health. Meditation training may increase self-reported mindfulness, which has been linked to reductions in cognitive perseverations. However, there are no reports that directly link self-reported mindfulness and resting cortisol output. Here, the authors investigate this link. In an observational study, we measured self-reported mindfulness and p.m. cortisol near the beginning and end of a 3-month meditation retreat (N = 57). Mindfulness increased from pre- to post-retreat, F(1, 56) = 36.20, p < .001. Cortisol did not significantly change. However, mindfulness was inversely related to p.m. cortisol at pre-retreat, r(53) = -.31, p < .05, and post-retreat, r(53) = -.30, p < .05, controlling for age and body mass index. Pre to postchange in mindfulness was associated with pre to postchange in p.m. cortisol, β = -.37, t(49) = 2.30, p < .05: Larger increases in mindfulness were associated with decreases in p.m. cortisol, whereas smaller increases (or slight decreases) in mindfulness were associated with an increase in p.m. cortisol. These data suggest a relation between self-reported mindfulness and resting output of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal system. Future work should aim to replicate this finding in a larger cohort and determine stronger inference about causality by using experimental designs that include control-group conditions. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2013 APA, all rights reserved).

  1. Mindfulness training modifies subsystems of attention.

    PubMed

    Jha, Amism P; Krompinger, Jason; Baime, Michael J

    2007-06-01

    Mindfulness is defined as paying attention in the present moment. We investigate the hypothesis that mindfulness training may alter or enhance specific aspects of attention. We examined three functionally and neuroanatomically distinct but overlapping attentional subsystems: alerting, orienting, and conflict monitoring. Functioning of each subsystem was indexed by performance on the Attention Network Test. Two types of mindfulness training (MT) programs were examined, and behavioral testing was conducted on participants before (Time 1) and after (Time 2) training. One training group consisted of individuals naive to mindfulness techniques who participated in an 8-week mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) course that emphasized the development of concentrative meditation skills. The other training group consisted of individuals experienced in concentrative meditation techniques who participated in a 1-month intensive mindfulness retreat. Performance of these groups was compared with that of control participants who were meditation naive and received no MT. At Time 1, the participants in the retreat group demonstrated improved conflict monitoring performance relative to those in the MBSR and control groups. At Time 2, the participants in the MBSR course demonstrated significantly improved orienting in comparison with the control and retreat participants. In contrast, the participants in the retreat group demonstrated altered performance on the alerting component, with improvements in exogenous stimulus detection in comparison with the control and MBSR participants. The groups did not differ in conflict monitoring performance at Time 2. These results suggest that mindfulness training may improve attention-related behavioral responses by enhancing functioning of specific subcomponents of attention. Whereas participation in the MBSR course improved the ability to endogenously orient attention, retreat participation appeared to allow for the development and

  2. [Mind-body approach in the area of preventive medicine: focusing on relaxation and meditation for stress management].

    PubMed

    Kang, Yunesik

    2010-09-01

    Emotional support and a stress management program should be simultaneously provided to clients as effective preventive services for healthy behavioral change. This study was conducted to review various relaxation and meditation intervention methods and their applicability for a preventive service program. The author of this paper tried to find various relaxation and meditation programs through a literature review and program searching and to introduce them. The 'Relaxation Response' and 'Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)' are the most the widely used meditative programs in mainstream medical systems. Abdominal breathing, Progressive Musclular Relaxation (PMR), Relaxative Imagery, Autogenic Training (AT) and Biofeedback are other well-known techniques for relaxation and stress management. I have developed and implemented some programs using these methods. Relaxation and meditation classes for cancer patients and a meditation based stress coping workshop are examples of this program. Relaxation and meditation seem to be good and effective methods for primary, secondary and tertiary preventive service programs. Program development and standardization and further study are needed for more and wider use of the mind-body approach in the preventive service area of medicine.

  3. Increases in the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex and decreases the rostral prefrontal cortex activation after-8 weeks of focused attention based mindfulness meditation.

    PubMed

    Tomasino, Barbara; Fabbro, Franco

    2016-02-01

    Mindfulness meditation is a form of attention control training. The training exercises the ability to repeatedly focus attention. We addressed the activation changes related to an 8-weeks mindfulness-oriented focused attention meditation training on an initially naïve subject cohort. Before and after training participants underwent an fMRI experiment, thus, although not strictly a cross over design, they served as their internal own control. During fMRI they exercised focused attention on breathing and body scan as compared to resting. We found increased and decreased activation in different parts of the prefrontal cortex (PFC) by comparing pre- vs. post-mindfulness training (MT) during breathing and body scan meditation exercises that were compared against their own resting state. In the post-MT (vs. pre-MT) meditation increased activation in the right dorsolateral PFC and in the left caudate/anterior insula and decreased activation in the rostral PFC and right parietal area 3b. Thus a brief mindfulness training caused increased activation in areas involved in sustaining and monitoring the focus of attention (dorsolateral PFC), consistent with the aim of mindfulness that is exercising focused attention mechanisms, and in the left caudate/anterior insula involved in attention and corporeal awareness and decreased activation in areas part of the "default mode" network and is involved in mentalizing (rostral PFC), consistent with the ability trained by mindfulness of reducing spontaneous mind wandering. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. Short Meditation Trainings Enhance Non-REM Sleep Low-Frequency Oscillations

    PubMed Central

    Dentico, Daniela; Ferrarelli, Fabio; Riedner, Brady A.; Smith, Richard; Zennig, Corinna; Lutz, Antoine; Tononi, Giulio; Davidson, Richard J.

    2016-01-01

    Study Objectives We have recently shown higher parietal-occipital EEG gamma activity during sleep in long-term meditators compared to meditation-naive individuals. This gamma increase was specific for NREM sleep, was present throughout the entire night and correlated with meditation expertise, thus suggesting underlying long-lasting neuroplastic changes induced through prolonged training. The aim of this study was to explore the neuroplastic changes acutely induced by 2 intensive days of different meditation practices in the same group of practitioners. We also repeated baseline recordings in a meditation-naive cohort to account for time effects on sleep EEG activity. Design High-density EEG recordings of human brain activity were acquired over the course of whole sleep nights following intervention. Setting Sound-attenuated sleep research room. Patients or Participants Twenty-four long-term meditators and twenty-four meditation-naïve controls. Interventions Two 8-h sessions of either a mindfulness-based meditation or a form of meditation designed to cultivate compassion and loving kindness, hereafter referred to as compassion meditation. Measurements and Results We found an increase in EEG low-frequency oscillatory activities (1–12 Hz, centered around 7–8 Hz) over prefrontal and left parietal electrodes across whole night NREM cycles. This power increase peaked early in the night and extended during the third cycle to high-frequencies up to the gamma range (25–40 Hz). There was no difference in sleep EEG activity between meditation styles in long-term meditators nor in the meditation naïve group across different time points. Furthermore, the prefrontal-parietal changes were dependent on meditation life experience. Conclusions This low-frequency prefrontal-parietal activation likely reflects acute, meditation-related plastic changes occurring during wakefulness, and may underlie a top-down regulation from frontal and anterior parietal areas to the posterior

  5. Brief Online Mindfulness Training

    PubMed Central

    Kemper, Kathi J.

    2016-01-01

    Background. Online training is feasible, but the impact of brief mindfulness training on health professionals needs to be better understood. Methods. We analyzed data from health professionals and trainees who completed self-reflection exercises embedded in online mindfulness training between May 2014 and September, 2015; their changes in mindfulness were measured using standardized scales. Results. Participants included nurses (34%), physicians (24%), social workers and psychologists (10%), dietitians (8%), and others (25%); 85% were women, and 20% were trainees. The most popular module was Introduction to Mindfulness (n = 161), followed by Mindfulness in Daily Life (n = 146), and Mindful Breathing and Walking (n = 129); most (68%) participants who took 1 module took all 3 modules. There were no differences in participation in any module by gender, trainee status, or profession. Completing modules was associated with small but significant improvements on the Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Scale–Revised, the Mindful Attention Awareness Scale, and the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (P < 0.001 for all). Conclusion. Online training reaches diverse health professionals and is associated with immediate improvements in mindfulness. Additional research is warranted to compare the long-term cost-effectiveness of different doses of online and in-person mindfulness training on clinician burnout and quality of care. PMID:27002136

  6. Mindful Reading: Mindfulness Meditation Helps Keep Readers with Dyslexia and ADHD on the Lexical Track

    PubMed Central

    Tarrasch, Ricardo; Berman, Zohar; Friedmann, Naama

    2016-01-01

    impulsivity. Following the meditation workshop, the rate of commission errors decreased, indicating decreased impulsivity, and the variation in RTs in the CPT task decreased, indicating improved sustained attention. Significant improvements were obtained in participants’ mindfulness, perceived-stress, rumination, depression, state-anxiety, and sleep-disturbances. Correlations were also obtained between reading improvement and increased mindfulness following the workshop. Thus, whereas mindfulness training did not affect specific types of errors and did not improve dyslexia, it did affect the reading of adults with developmental dyslexia and ADHD, by helping them to stay on the straight path of the lexical route while reading. Thus, the reading improvement induced by mindfulness sheds light on the intricate relation between attention and reading. Mindfulness reduced impulsivity and improved sustained attention, and this, in turn, improved reading of adults with developmental dyslexia and ADHD, by helping them to read via the straight path of the lexical route. PMID:27242565

  7. A meta-analytic review of the effects of mindfulness meditation on telomerase activity.

    PubMed

    Schutte, Nicola S; Malouff, John M

    2014-04-01

    The enzyme telomerase, through its influence on telomere length, is associated with health and mortality. Four pioneering randomized control trials, including a total of 190 participants, provided information on the effect of mindfulness meditation on telomerase. A meta-analytic effect size of d=0.46 indicated that mindfulness meditation leads to increased telomerase activity in peripheral blood mononuclear cells. These results suggest the need for further large-scale trials investigating optimal implementation of mindfulness meditation to facilitate telomerase functioning. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  8. The Experience of Learning Meditation and Mind/Body Practices in the COPD Population.

    PubMed

    Chan, Roxane Raffin; Lehto, Rebecca H

    2016-01-01

    Persons with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) exhibit high levels of comorbid anxiety that severely worsens their sensation of dyspnea and is associated with high levels of avoidance of essential activities resulting in an increase morbidity and mortality. Increasing meditation and mind/body practices have been shown to decrease anxiety, and improve intrapersonal and interpersonal relationships in general populations, however, results of studies in the COPD population have been mixed. Understanding how persons with COPD experience learning meditation and mind/body skills would aid future meditation-focused mind/body intervention design. A mixed-method study of a community based meditation-focused mind/body intervention for persons with COPD. Reflective journaling, phone exit interviews and survey measures: chronic disease respiratory questionnaire, and Anxiety Sensitivity 3 questionnaire. Eight weekly one hour meditation-focused mind/body classes that taught concentration and insight meditation skills along with mind/body exercises that facilitated increased body and emotional awareness. Out of 41 participants, 32 (73%) contributed detailed experience about learning and practicing meditation and mind/body practices that distilled into four themes, barriers to practice, learning style, emotional processing, and benefits of practice. Of those 32 participants 21 (73%) identified improvement in physical or emotional symptoms. Overall, 13 (40%) participants provided details regarding how they adapted specific meditation skills into daily life to improve emotional function and lessen dyspnea. Anxiety sensitivity to social situations was associated with a lack of participation. Lessons learned for larger scale application to future meditation and mind/body intervention design for chronic illness populations such as COPD are identified. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  9. Use of mindfulness, meditation and relaxation to treat vasomotor symptoms.

    PubMed

    Goldstein, K M; Shepherd-Banigan, M; Coeytaux, R R; McDuffie, J R; Adam, S; Befus, D; Goode, A P; Kosinski, A S; Masilamani, V; Williams, J W

    2017-04-01

    Postmenopausal women with bothersome vasomotor symptoms (VMS) often seek alternatives to hormone-based treatment due to medication risks or personal preference. We sought to identify the effects of meditation, mindfulness, hypnosis and relaxation on VMS and health-related quality of life in perimenopausal and postmenopausal women. To do this, we conducted an umbrella review supplemented by new randomized, controlled trials (RCTs) published since the most recent good-quality systematic review for eligible interventions. We searched MEDLINE and the Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, PubMed, EMBASE, CINAHL and the Allied and Complementary Medicine Databases. We identified five systematic reviews and six new RCTs that met eligibility criteria. In a new meta-analysis examining four RCTs comparing paced respiration with a control group, we found that paced respiration is not associated with a statistically significant decrease in VMS frequency (standardized mean difference (SMD) 0.04, 95% confidence interval (CI) -0.73 to 0.82, I 2  =   56.6%, three trials) or severity (SMD 0.06, 95% CI -0.69 to 0.80; I 2  =   65.1%, three trials). There was not sufficient new information to conduct meta-analyses that examined the effect of mindfulness or hypnosis on our outcomes of interest. No effect on VMS or quality of life was found between various relaxation or mindfulness interventions.

  10. Mindfulness Meditation for Substance Use Disorders: A Systematic Review

    PubMed Central

    Zgierska, Aleksandra; Rabago, David; Chawla, Neharika; Kushner, Kenneth; Koehler, Robert; Marlatt, Allan

    2009-01-01

    Relapse is common in substance use disorders (SUDs), even among treated individuals. The goal of this article was to systematically review the existing evidence on mindfulness meditation-based interventions (MM) for SUDs. The comprehensive search for and review of literature found over 2,000 abstracts and resulted in 25 eligible manuscripts (22 published, 3 unpublished: 8 RCTs, 7 controlled non-randomized, 6 non-controlled prospective, 2 qualitative studies, 1 case report). When appropriate, methodological quality, absolute risk reduction, number needed to treat, and effect size (ES) were assessed. Overall, although preliminary evidence suggests MM efficacy and safety, conclusive data for MM as a treatment of SUDs are lacking. Significant methodological limitations exist in most studies. Further, it is unclear which persons with SUDs might benefit most from MM. Future trials must be of sufficient sample size to answer a specific clinical question and should target both assessment of effect size and mechanisms of action. PMID:19904664

  11. The Effects of Mindfulness Meditation on Adolescents with High-Incidence Disabilities

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Solar, Ernest L., II

    2013-01-01

    Research has shown evidence that mindfulness-based meditation practices may be effective treatment interventions for mental, emotional, and medical disabilities in the adult population. There has been a limited number of research studies showing the effectiveness of meditation practices with secondary students who receive special education…

  12. Relationships among Meditation, Perfectionism, Mindfulness, and Performance Anxiety among Collegiate Music Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Diaz, Frank M.

    2018-01-01

    I examined the use of meditation practices among collegiate-level musicians (N = 255), along with the degree to which these practices contributed to music performance anxiety (MPA) when controlling for trait perfectionism and trait mindfulness. Findings indicated that approximately 48% of the participants sampled had engaged in meditation during…

  13. Frontal Theta Dynamics during Response Conflict in Long-Term Mindfulness Meditators

    PubMed Central

    Jo, Han-Gue; Malinowski, Peter; Schmidt, Stefan

    2017-01-01

    Mindfulness meditators often show greater efficiency in resolving response conflicts than non-meditators. However, the neural mechanisms underlying the improved behavioral efficiency are unclear. Here, we investigated frontal theta dynamics—a neural mechanism involved in cognitive control processes—in long-term mindfulness meditators. The dynamics of EEG theta oscillations (4–8 Hz) recorded over the medial frontal cortex (MFC) were examined in terms of their power (MFC theta power) and their functional connectivity with other brain areas (the MFC-centered theta network). Using a flanker-type paradigm, EEG data were obtained from 22 long-term mindfulness meditators and compared to those from 23 matched controls without meditation experience. Meditators showed more efficient cognitive control after conflicts, evidenced by fewer error responses irrespective of response timing. Furthermore, meditators exhibited enhanced conflict modulations of the MFC-centered theta network shortly before the response, in particular for the functional connection between the MFC and the motor cortex. In contrast, MFC theta power was comparable between groups. These results suggest that the higher behavioral efficiency after conflicts in mindfulness meditators could be a function of increased engagement to control the motor system in association with the MFC-centered theta network. PMID:28638334

  14. Being Allowing and yet Directive: Mindfulness Meditation in the Teaching of Developmental Reading and Writing

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Garretson, Kate

    2010-01-01

    Because learning to meditate shares important qualities with learning to be a better reader and writer--for example, dispassionate noticing, becoming more aware of inner processes, a faith in inner wisdom, effort made with a light touch, the cultivation of a practice through simple, regular doing--practice in mindfulness meditation was used to…

  15. Medial orbital gyrus modulation during spatial perspective changes: Pre- vs. post-8 weeks mindfulness meditation.

    PubMed

    Tomasino, Barbara; Campanella, Fabio; Fabbro, Franco

    2016-02-01

    Mindfulness meditation exercises the ability to shift to an "observer perspective". That means learning to observe internally and externally arising stimulations in a detached perspective. Both before and after attending a 8-weeks mindfulness training (MT) participants underwent an fMRI experiment (serving as their own internal control) and solved a own-body mental transformation task, which is used to investigate embodiment and perspective taking (and an non-bodily mental transformation task as control). We found a stimulus×time-points interaction: the own-body mental transformation task (vs. non-bodily) in the post (vs. pre-MT) significantly increased activations in the medial orbital gyrus. The signal change in the right medial orbital gyrus significantly correlated with changes in a self-maturity personality scale. A brief MT caused increased activation in areas involved in self related processing and person perspective changes, together with an increase in self-maturity, consistently with the aim of mindfulness meditation that is exercising change in self perspective. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Visibility graph analysis on heartbeat dynamics of meditation training

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Jiang, Sen; Bian, Chunhua; Ning, Xinbao; Ma, Qianli D. Y.

    2013-06-01

    We apply the visibility graph analysis to human heartbeat dynamics by constructing the complex networks of heartbeat interval time series and investigating the statistical properties of the network before and during chi and yoga meditation. The experiment results show that visibility graph analysis can reveal the dynamical changes caused by meditation training manifested as regular heartbeat, which is closely related to the adjustment of autonomous neural system, and visibility graph analysis is effective to evaluate the effect of meditation.

  17. Reducing Defensive Responses to Thoughts of Death: Meditation, Mindfulness, and Buddhism.

    PubMed

    Park, Young Chin; Pyszczynski, Tom

    2017-08-24

    Three studies investigated the effects of meditation on responses to reminders of death. Study 1 took a quasi-experimental approach, comparing defensive responses to mortality salience (MS) of South Korean participants with varying levels of experience with Buddhism and meditation. Whereas non-Buddhists without meditation showed the typical increase in worldview defense after mortality salience (MS), this effect was not found among non-Buddhists immediately after an initial meditation experience, nor among lay Buddhists who meditated regularly or Buddhist monks with intensive meditation experience. Study 2, a fully randomized experiment, showed that MS increased worldview defense among South Koreans at a meditation training who were assessed before meditating but not among participants assessed after their first meditation experience. Study 3 showed that whereas American students without prior meditation experience showed increased worldview defense and suppression of death-related thoughts after MS, these effects were eliminated immediately after an initial meditation experience. Death thought accessibility mediated the effect of MS on worldview defense without meditation, but meditation eliminated this mediation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  18. The Meditative Mind: A Comprehensive Meta-Analysis of MRI Studies

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Over the past decade mind and body practices, such as yoga and meditation, have raised interest in different scientific fields; in particular, the physiological mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects observed in meditators have been investigated. Neuroimaging studies have studied the effects of meditation on brain structure and function and findings have helped clarify the biological underpinnings of the positive effects of meditation practice and the possible integration of this technique in standard therapy. The large amount of data collected thus far allows drawing some conclusions about the neural effects of meditation practice. In the present study we used activation likelihood estimation (ALE) analysis to make a coordinate-based meta-analysis of neuroimaging data on the effects of meditation on brain structure and function. Results indicate that meditation leads to activation in brain areas involved in processing self-relevant information, self-regulation, focused problem-solving, adaptive behavior, and interoception. Results also show that meditation practice induces functional and structural brain modifications in expert meditators, especially in areas involved in self-referential processes such as self-awareness and self-regulation. These results demonstrate that a biological substrate underlies the positive pervasive effect of meditation practice and suggest that meditation techniques could be adopted in clinical populations and to prevent disease. PMID:26146618

  19. A Randomized Controlled Pilot Trial of Classroom-Based Mindfulness Meditation Compared to an Active Control Condition in 6th Grade Children

    PubMed Central

    Britton, Willoughby B.; Lepp, Nathaniel E.; Niles, Halsey F.; Rocha, Tomas; Fisher, Nathan; Gold, Jonathan

    2014-01-01

    Children in the United States are at risk for numerous psychological problems, such as anxiety, attention problems, and mood disorders, and are underserved by current mental health provisions. The current study is a pilot trial to examine the effects of a nonelective, classroom-based, teacher-implemented, mindfulness meditation intervention on standard clinical measures of mental health and affect in middle school children. A total of 101 healthy sixth-grade students (55 boys and 46 girls) were randomized to either an Asian history course with daily mindfulness meditation practice (intervention group) or an African history course with a matched experiential activity (active control group). Self-reported data was collected by administering the Youth Self Report (YSR), a modified Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and the Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Measure -Revised before and after 6 weeks of meditation or active control condition. Both meditators and active controls decreased significantly on the YSR Internalizing Problems, Externalizing Problems, and Attention Problems subscales but did not differ in the extent of their improvements. Both groups also showed comparable improvements on measures in affect. Meditators were significantly less likely to develop suicidal ideation or thoughts of self-harm than controls. Improvements in affect were correlated with increases in mindfulness in meditators but not controls. These results suggest that mindfulness training may yield both unique and nonspecific benefits that are shared by other novel activities. PMID:24930819

  20. Mindfulness meditation-based stress reduction: experience with a bilingual inner-city program.

    PubMed

    Roth, B; Creaser, T

    1997-03-01

    This article describes a bilingual mindfulness meditation-based stress reduction program in an inner-city setting. Mindfulness meditation is defined, and the practices of breathing meditation, eating meditation, walking meditation, and mindful yoga are described. Data analysis examined compliance, medical and psychologic symptom reduction, and changes in self-esteem, of English- and Spanish-speaking patients who completed the 8-week Stress Reduction and Relaxation Program at the Community Health Center in Meriden, Conn. Statistically significant decreases in medical and psychologic symptoms and improvement in self-esteem were found. Many program completers reported dramatic changes in attitudes, beliefs, habits, and behaviors. Despite the limitations of the research design, these findings suggest that a mindfulness meditation course can be an effective health care intervention when utilized by English- and Spanish-speaking patients in an inner-city community health center. The article includes a discussion of factors to be considered when establishing a mindfulness meditation-based stress reduction program in a health care setting.

  1. Mindfulness Meditation Versus Physical Exercise in the Management of Depression Among Nursing Students.

    PubMed

    Alsaraireh, Faris Abdelkarim; Aloush, Sami Mohammad

    2017-10-01

    Depression among nursing students is an ongoing problem. Several psychotherapies have been suggested as alternatives to antidepressants in the management of depression. The aim of this randomized controlled study was to compare the effectiveness of mindfulness meditation versus physical exercise in the management of depression among nursing students. A sample of 181 soon-to-graduate nursing students participated in the study and were assigned at random to one of two therapies: physical exercise (n = 90) or mindfulness meditation (n = 91). The Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale was completed by the participants in both groups prior to the therapies and after completion. The findings indicated that both therapies were effective in the management of depression. However, mindfulness meditation is more effective than physical exercise. Mindfulness meditation is recommended over physical exercise in the management of depression among undergraduate nursing students. [J Nurs Educ. 2017;56(10):599-604.]. Copyright 2017, SLACK Incorporated.

  2. Peer-Directed, Brief Mindfulness Training with Adolescents: A Pilot Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jennings, Samuel J.; Jennings, Jerry L.

    2013-01-01

    This pilot study studied the impact of brief mindfulness meditation training with adolescents. Whereas adult mindfulness training programs typically entail weekly 2.5 hour sessions over an eight week period, this program delivered four 50-minute sessions within a three week period. Each session was comprised of two mindfulness exercises delivered…

  3. Mindfulness and meditation: treating cognitive impairment and reducing stress in dementia.

    PubMed

    Russell-Williams, Jesse; Jaroudi, Wafa; Perich, Tania; Hoscheidt, Siobhan; El Haj, Mohamad; Moustafa, Ahmed A

    2018-02-21

    This study investigates the relationship between mindfulness, meditation, cognition and stress in people with Alzheimer's disease (AD), dementia, mild cognitive impairment and subjective cognitive decline. Accordingly, we explore how the use of meditation as a behavioural intervention can reduce stress and enhance cognition, which in turn ameliorates some dementia symptoms. A narrative review of the literature was conducted with any studies using meditation as an intervention for dementia or dementia-related memory conditions meeting inclusion criteria. Studies where moving meditation was the main intervention were excluded due to the possible confounding of exercise. Ten papers were identified and reviewed. There was a broad use of measures across all studies, with cognitive assessment, quality of life and perceived stress being the most common. Three studies used functional magnetic resonance imaging to measure functional changes to brain regions during meditation. The interventions fell into the following three categories: mindfulness, most commonly mindfulness-based stress reduction (six studies); Kirtan Kriya meditation (three studies); and mindfulness-based Alzheimer's stimulation (one study). Three of these studies were randomised controlled trials. All studies reported significant findings or trends towards significance in a broad range of measures, including a reduction of cognitive decline, reduction in perceived stress, increase in quality of life, as well as increases in functional connectivity, percent volume brain change and cerebral blood flow in areas of the cortex. Limitations and directions for future studies on meditation-based treatment for AD and stress management are suggested.

  4. The Cultural Relevance of Mindfulness Meditation as a Health Intervention for African Americans: Implications for Reducing Stress-Related Health Disparities.

    PubMed

    Woods-Giscombé, Cheryl L; Gaylord, Susan A

    2014-09-01

    African Americans experience a disproportionate rate of stress-related health conditions compared to European Americans. Mindfulness meditation has been shown to be effective for managing stress and various stress-related health conditions. This study explored the cultural relevance of mindfulness meditation training for African Americans adults. Fifteen African American adults with past or current experience with mindfulness meditation training were interviewed. Participants felt that mindfulness meditation helped them with enhanced stress management, direct health improvement, and enhanced self-awareness and purposefulness. They felt that they would recommend it and that other African Americans would be open to the practice but suggested that its presentation may need to be adapted. They suggested emphasizing the health benefits, connecting it to familiar spiritual ideology and cultural practices, supplementing the reading material with African American writers, increasing communication (education, instructor availability, "buddy system," etc.), and including African Americans as instructors and participants. By implementing minor adaptations that enhance cultural relevance, mindfulness meditation can be a beneficial therapeutic intervention for this population. © The Author(s) 2014.

  5. Daily Mindful Responding Mediates the Effect of Meditation Practice on Stress and Mood: The Role of Practice Duration and Adherence.

    PubMed

    Lacaille, Julien; Sadikaj, Gentiana; Nishioka, Midori; Carrière, Kimberly; Flanders, Joseph; Knäuper, Bärbel

    2018-01-01

    Although meditation practice is an important component of many mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs), empirical findings of its effects on psychological functioning are mixed and the mechanisms for the effects remain unclear. Responding with mindfulness (i.e., returning one's attention back to a nonjudgmental, present-oriented awareness) is a fundamental skill practiced in meditations. With repeated meditation practice, this skill is thought to become internalized and be applied to one's daily life. We thus hypothesized that the extent to which individuals responded to daily events with mindfulness would mediate the effects of meditation practice (instance, duration, and adherence to instructions) on psychological well-being. Using a daily diary methodology, we tracked the meditation practice, use of mindful responding during the day, and psychological outcomes (perceived stress, negative and positive affect) of 117 mindfulness-based stress reduction program participants. We found that on days when participants meditated, they responded with greater mindfulness to daily events, which accounted for the beneficial effects of meditating on psychological outcomes. Furthermore, findings suggest that on meditation days, longer and more closely adhered meditation practices were independently associated with increases in mindful responding, which in turn were associated with better psychological outcomes. These results suggest that regular, longer, and more closely adhered meditation practice is an important component of MBIs, in part because it leads to responding more mindfully in daily life, which promotes well-being. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  6. Meditation has stronger relationships with mindfulness, kundalini, and mystical experiences than yoga or prayer.

    PubMed

    de Castro, John M

    2015-09-01

    Contemplative practices can have profound effects on mindfulness and on physical and sensory and mystical experiences. Individuals who self-reported meditation, yoga, contemplative prayer, or a combination of practices and their patterns of practice were compared for mindfulness, kundalini effects, and mystical experiences. The results suggest that the amount of practice but not the pattern and social conditions of practice influences mindfulness and possibly mystical experiences. Meditation, yoga, contemplative prayer, or a combination of practices all were found to be associated with enhancements of mindfulness, kundalini effects, and mystical experiences, but meditation had particularly strong associations and may be the basis of the associations of yoga and prayer with these outcomes. The results further suggest that the primary association of contemplative practices is with the real time awareness and appreciation of sensory and perceptual experiences which may be the intermediary between disparate practices and mindfulness, kundalini effects, and mystical experiences. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Meditation

    MedlinePlus

    ... of anxiety in the meditation groups compared to control groups. In a small, NCCIH-funded study, 54 adults ... Practice . 2003;17(6):309–319. Cardoso R, de Souza E, Camano L, et al. Meditation in ...

  8. Spectral power and functional connectivity changes during mindfulness meditation with eyes open: A magnetoencephalography (MEG) study in long-term meditators.

    PubMed

    Wong, W P; Camfield, D A; Woods, W; Sarris, J; Pipingas, A

    2015-10-01

    Whilst a number of previous studies have been conducted in order to investigate functional brain changes associated with eyes-closed meditation techniques, there is a relative scarcity in the literature with regards to changes occurring during eyes-open meditation. The current project used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to investigate differences in spectral power and functional connectivity between 11 long-term mindfulness meditators (LTMMs) with >5 years of experience and 12 meditation-naïve control participants both during baseline eyes-open rest and eyes-open open-monitoring (OM) mindfulness meditation. During resting with eyes-open, prior to meditating, greater mean alpha power was observed for LTMMs in comparison to controls. However, during the course of OM meditation, a significantly greater increase in theta power was observed over a broad fronto-centro-parietal region for control participants in comparison to LTMMs. In contrast, whole-head mean connectivity was found to be significantly greater for long-term meditators in comparison to controls in the theta band both during rest as well as during meditation. Additionally, mean connectivity was significantly lower for long-term meditators in the low gamma band during rest and significantly lower in both low and high gamma bands during meditation; and the variance of low-gamma connectivity scores for long-term meditators was significantly decreased compared to the control group. The current study provides important new information as to the trait functional changes in brain activity associated with long-term mindfulness meditation, as well as the state changes specifically associated with eyes-open open monitoring meditation techniques. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  9. Women Benefit More Than Men in Response to College-based Meditation Training

    PubMed Central

    Rojiani, Rahil; Santoyo, Juan F.; Rahrig, Hadley; Roth, Harold D.; Britton, Willoughby B.

    2017-01-01

    Objectives: While recent literature has shown that mindfulness training has positive effects on treating anxiety and depression, there has been virtually no research investigating whether effects differ across genders—despite the fact that men and women differ in clinically significant ways. The current study investigated whether college-based meditation training had different effects on negative affect for men and women. Methods: Seventy-seven university students (36 women, age = 20.7 ± 3.0 years) participated in 12-week courses with meditation training components. They completed self-report questionnaires of affect, mindfulness, and self-compassion before and after the course. Results: Compared to men, women showed greater decreases in negative affect and greater increases on scales measuring mindfulness and self-compassion. Women’s improvements in negative affect were correlated to improvements in measures of both mindfulness skills and self-compassion. In contrast, men showed non-significant increases in negative affect, and changes in affect were only correlated with ability to describe emotions, not any measures of experiential or self-acceptance. Conclusion: These findings suggest that women may have more favorable responses than men to school-based mindfulness training, and that the effectiveness of mindfulness-based interventions may be maximized by gender-specific modifications. PMID:28473783

  10. Effect of Mindfulness Meditation on Perceived Stress Scores and Autonomic Function Tests of Pregnant Indian Women.

    PubMed

    Muthukrishnan, Shobitha; Jain, Reena; Kohli, Sangeeta; Batra, Swaraj

    2016-04-01

    Various pregnancy complications like hypertension, preeclampsia have been strongly correlated with maternal stress. One of the connecting links between pregnancy complications and maternal stress is mind-body intervention which can be part of Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). Biologic measures of stress during pregnancy may get reduced by such interventions. To evaluate the effect of Mindfulness meditation on perceived stress scores and autonomic function tests of pregnant Indian women. Pregnant Indian women of 12 weeks gestation were randomised to two treatment groups: Test group with Mindfulness meditation and control group with their usual obstetric care. The effect of Mindfulness meditation on perceived stress scores and cardiac sympathetic functions and parasympathetic functions (Heart rate variation with respiration, lying to standing ratio, standing to lying ratio and respiratory rate) were evaluated on pregnant Indian women. There was a significant decrease in perceived stress scores, a significant decrease of blood pressure response to cold pressor test and a significant increase in heart rate variability in the test group (p< 0.05, significant) which indicates that mindfulness meditation is a powerful modulator of the sympathetic nervous system and can thereby reduce the day-to-day perceived stress in pregnant women. The results of this study suggest that mindfulness meditation improves parasympathetic functions in pregnant women and is a powerful modulator of the sympathetic nervous system during pregnancy.

  11. The Role of Perceived Stress and Health Beliefs on College Students' Intentions to Practice Mindfulness Meditation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Rizer, Carol Ann; Fagan, Mary Helen; Kilmon, Carol; Rath, Linda

    2016-01-01

    Background: Understanding why individuals decide to participate in mindfulness-based practices can aid in the development of effective health promotion outreach efforts. Purpose: This study investigated the role of health beliefs and perceived stress on the intention to practice mindfulness meditation among undergraduate college students. Methods:…

  12. Gender differences in response to a school-based mindfulness training intervention for early adolescents.

    PubMed

    Kang, Yoona; Rahrig, Hadley; Eichel, Kristina; Niles, Halsey F; Rocha, Tomas; Lepp, Nathaniel E; Gold, Jonathan; Britton, Willoughby B

    2018-06-01

    Mindfulness training has been used to improve emotional wellbeing in early adolescents. However, little is known about treatment outcome moderators, or individual differences that may differentially impact responses to treatment. The current study focused on gender as a potential moderator for affective outcomes in response to school-based mindfulness training. Sixth grade students (N = 100) were randomly assigned to either the six weeks of mindfulness meditation or the active control group as part of a history class curriculum. Participants in the mindfulness meditation group completed short mindfulness meditation sessions four to five times per week, in addition to didactic instruction (Asian history). The control group received matched experiential activity in addition to didactic instruction (African history) from the same teacher with no meditation component. Self-reported measures of emotional wellbeing/affect, mindfulness, and self-compassion were obtained at pre and post intervention. Meditators reported greater improvement in emotional wellbeing compared to those in the control group. Importantly, gender differences were detected, such that female meditators reported greater increases in positive affect compared to females in the control group, whereas male meditators and control males displayed equivalent gains. Uniquely among females but not males, increases in self-reported self-compassion were associated with improvements in affect. These findings support the efficacy of school-based mindfulness interventions, and interventions tailored to accommodate distinct developmental needs of female and male adolescents. Copyright © 2018 Society for the Study of School Psychology. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  13. Mindfulness on-the-go: Effects of a mindfulness meditation app on work stress and well-being.

    PubMed

    Bostock, Sophie; Crosswell, Alexandra D; Prather, Aric A; Steptoe, Andrew

    2018-05-03

    We investigated whether a mindfulness meditation program delivered via a smartphone application could improve psychological well-being, reduce job strain, and reduce ambulatory blood pressure during the workday. Participants were 238 healthy employees from two large United Kingdom companies that were randomized to a mindfulness meditation practice app or a wait-list control condition. The app offered 45 prerecorded 10- to 20-min guided audio meditations. Participants were asked to complete one meditation per day. Psychosocial measures and blood pressure throughout one working day were measured at baseline and eight weeks later; a follow-up survey was also emailed to participants 16 weeks after the intervention start. Usage data showed that during the 8-week intervention period, participants randomized to the intervention completed an average of 17 meditation sessions (range 0-45 sessions). The intervention group reported significant improvement in well-being, distress, job strain, and perceptions of workplace social support compared to the control group. In addition, the intervention group had a marginally significant decrease in self-measured workday systolic blood pressure from pre- to post-intervention. Sustained positive effects in the intervention group were found for well-being and job strain at the 16-week follow-up assessment. This trial suggests that short guided mindfulness meditations delivered via smartphone and practiced multiple times per week can improve outcomes related to work stress and well-being, with potentially lasting effects. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2018 APA, all rights reserved).

  14. Exploring the Training of Buddhist Teachers: Implications for Mindfulness-Based Practitioners

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Lepore, Joshua David

    2010-01-01

    This dissertation explored how participants' meditation practice and participation in a teacher-training program affected their ability to embody and teach mindfulness. Six participants from the American Vipassana tradition were interviewed. All had at least 10 years of meditative practice, working with both Buddhist and nonBuddhist teachers. …

  15. More meditation, less habituation? The effect of mindfulness practice on the acoustic startle reflex.

    PubMed

    Antonova, Elena; Chadwick, Paul; Kumari, Veena

    2015-01-01

    Mindfulness as a mode of sustained and receptive attention promotes openness to each incoming stimulus, even if repetitive and/or aversive. Mindful attention has been shown to attenuate sensory habituation in expert meditators; however, others were not able to replicate this effect. The present study used acoustic startle reflex to investigate the effect of mindfulness practice intensity on sensory habituation. Auditory Startle Response (ASR) to 36 startling probes (12 trials x 3 block with 40 ms inter-block intervals), was measured using electromyography (EMG) in three groups of participants (N = 12/group): meditation-naïve, moderate practice, and intensive practice. Intensive practice group showed attenuated startle habituation as evidenced by significantly less habituation over the entire experiment relative to the meditation-naïve and moderate practice groups. Furthermore, there was a significant linear effect showing between-block habituation in meditation-naïve and moderate practice groups, but not in the intensive practice group. However, the Block x Group interaction between the intensive practice and the meditation-naive groups was not significant. Moderate practice group was not significantly different from the meditation-naïve in the overall measure of habituation, but showed significantly stronger habituation than both meditation-naïve and intensive practice groups in Block 1. Greater practice intensity was significantly correlated with slower overall habituation and habituation rate in Blocks 2 and 3 in the intensive, but not in the moderate, practice group. The study provides tentative evidence that intensive mindfulness practice attenuates acoustic startle habituation as measured by EMG, but the effect is modest.Moderate practice, on the other hand, appears to enhance habituation, suggesting the effect of mindfulness practice on startle habituation might be non-linear [corrected] . Better understanding of the effect of mindful attention on

  16. Mindfulness Meditation for Chronic Pain: Systematic Review and Meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Hilton, Lara; Hempel, Susanne; Ewing, Brett A; Apaydin, Eric; Xenakis, Lea; Newberry, Sydne; Colaiaco, Ben; Maher, Alicia Ruelaz; Shanman, Roberta M; Sorbero, Melony E; Maglione, Margaret A

    2017-04-01

    Chronic pain patients increasingly seek treatment through mindfulness meditation. This study aims to synthesize evidence on efficacy and safety of mindfulness meditation interventions for the treatment of chronic pain in adults. We conducted a systematic review on randomized controlled trials (RCTs) with meta-analyses using the Hartung-Knapp-Sidik-Jonkman method for random-effects models. Quality of evidence was assessed using the GRADE approach. Outcomes included pain, depression, quality of life, and analgesic use. Thirty-eight RCTs met inclusion criteria; seven reported on safety. We found low-quality evidence that mindfulness meditation is associated with a small decrease in pain compared with all types of controls in 30 RCTs. Statistically significant effects were also found for depression symptoms and quality of life. While mindfulness meditation improves pain and depression symptoms and quality of life, additional well-designed, rigorous, and large-scale RCTs are needed to decisively provide estimates of the efficacy of mindfulness meditation for chronic pain.

  17. Exploring relations among mindfulness facets and various meditation practices: Do they work in different ways?

    PubMed

    Cebolla, Ausiàs; Campos, Daniel; Galiana, Laura; Oliver, Amparo; Tomás, Jose Manuel; Feliu-Soler, Albert; Soler, Joaquim; García-Campayo, Javier; Demarzo, Marcelo; Baños, Rosa María

    2017-03-01

    Several meditation practices are associated with mindfulness-based interventions but little is known about their specific effects on the development of different mindfulness facets. This study aimed to assess the relations among different practice variables, types of meditation, and mindfulness facets. The final sample was composed of 185 participants who completed an on-line survey, including information on the frequency and duration of each meditation practice, lifetime practice, and the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire. A Multiple Indicators Multiple Causes structural model was specified, estimated, and tested. Results showed that the Model's overall fit was adequate: χ 2 (1045)=1542.800 (p<0.001), CFI=0.902, RMSEA=0.042. Results revealed that mindfulness facets were uniquely related to the different variables and types of meditation. Our findings showed the importance of specific practices in promoting mindfulness, compared to compassion and informal practices, and they pointed out which one fits each mindfulness facet better. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Intensive Mindfulness Training and the Reduction of Psychological Distress: A Preliminary Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ostafin, Brian D.; Chawla, Neharika; Bowen, Sarah; Dillworth, Tiara M.; Witkiewitz, Katie; Marlatt, G. Alan

    2006-01-01

    There is increasing evidence for the utility of mindfulness training as a clinical intervention. Most of this research has examined secular-based mindfulness instruction. The current study examined the effects of a 10-day Buddhist mindfulness meditation course on the psychological symptoms of 53 participants. A repeated-measures analysis of…

  19. Meditation awareness training for the treatment of fibromyalgia syndrome: A randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Van Gordon, William; Shonin, Edo; Dunn, Thomas J; Garcia-Campayo, Javier; Griffiths, Mark D

    2017-02-01

    The purpose of this study was to conduct the first randomized controlled trial (RCT) to evaluate the effectiveness of a second-generation mindfulness-based intervention (SG-MBI) for treating fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS). Compared to first-generation mindfulness-based interventions, SG-MBIs are more acknowledging of the spiritual aspect of mindfulness. A RCT employing intent-to-treat analysis. Adults with FMS received an 8-week SG-MBI known as meditation awareness training (MAT; n = 74) or an active control intervention known as cognitive behaviour theory for groups (n = 74). Assessments were performed at pre-, post-, and 6-month follow-up phases. Meditation awareness training participants demonstrated significant and sustained improvements over control group participants in FMS symptomatology, pain perception, sleep quality, psychological distress, non-attachment (to self, symptoms, and environment), and civic engagement. A mediation analysis found that (1) civic engagement partially mediated treatment effects for all outcome variables, (2) non-attachment partially mediated treatment effects for psychological distress and sleep quality, and (3) non-attachment almost fully mediated treatment effects for FMS symptomatology and pain perception. Average daily time spent in meditation was found to be a significant predictor of changes in all outcome variables. Meditation awareness training may be a suitable treatment for adults with FMS and appears to ameliorate FMS symptomatology and pain perception by reducing attachment to self. Statement of contribution What is already known on this subject? Designing interventions to treat fibromyalgia syndrome (FMS) continues to be a challenge. There is growing interest into the applications of mindfulness-based interventions for treating FMS. Second-generation mindfulness-based interventions (SG-MBIs) are a key new direction in mindfulness research. What does this study add? Meditation awareness training - an SG-MBI - resulted

  20. Experienced Mindfulness Meditators Exhibit Higher Parietal-Occipital EEG Gamma Activity during NREM Sleep

    PubMed Central

    Ferrarelli, Fabio; Smith, Richard; Dentico, Daniela; Riedner, Brady A.; Zennig, Corinna; Benca, Ruth M.; Lutz, Antoine; Davidson, Richard J.; Tononi, Giulio

    2013-01-01

    Over the past several years meditation practice has gained increasing attention as a non-pharmacological intervention to provide health related benefits, from promoting general wellness to alleviating the symptoms of a variety of medical conditions. However, the effects of meditation training on brain activity still need to be fully characterized. Sleep provides a unique approach to explore the meditation-related plastic changes in brain function. In this study we performed sleep high-density electroencephalographic (hdEEG) recordings in long-term meditators (LTM) of Buddhist meditation practices (approximately 8700 mean hours of life practice) and meditation naive individuals. We found that LTM had increased parietal-occipital EEG gamma power during NREM sleep. This increase was specific for the gamma range (25–40 Hz), was not related to the level of spontaneous arousal during NREM and was positively correlated with the length of lifetime daily meditation practice. Altogether, these findings indicate that meditation practice produces measurable changes in spontaneous brain activity, and suggest that EEG gamma activity during sleep represents a sensitive measure of the long-lasting, plastic effects of meditative training on brain function. PMID:24015304

  1. A systematic review of neurobiological and clinical features of mindfulness meditations.

    PubMed

    Chiesa, A; Serretti, A

    2010-08-01

    Mindfulness meditation (MM) practices constitute an important group of meditative practices that have received growing attention. The aim of the present paper was to systematically review current evidence on the neurobiological changes and clinical benefits related to MM practice in psychiatric disorders, in physical illnesses and in healthy subjects. A literature search was undertaken using Medline, ISI Web of Knowledge, the Cochrane collaboration database and references of retrieved articles. Controlled and cross-sectional studies with controls published in English up to November 2008 were included. Electroencephalographic (EEG) studies have revealed a significant increase in alpha and theta activity during meditation. Neuroimaging studies showed that MM practice activates the prefrontal cortex (PFC) and the anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) and that long-term meditation practice is associated with an enhancement of cerebral areas related to attention. From a clinical viewpoint, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) has shown efficacy for many psychiatric and physical conditions and also for healthy subjects, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) is mainly efficacious in reducing relapses of depression in patients with three or more episodes, Zen meditation significantly reduces blood pressure and Vipassana meditation shows efficacy in reducing alcohol and substance abuse in prisoners. However, given the low-quality designs of current studies it is difficult to establish whether clinical outcomes are due to specific or non-specific effects of MM. Despite encouraging findings, several limitations affect current studies. Suggestions are given for future research based on better designed methodology and for future directions of investigation.

  2. The Impact of Classroom-Based Meditation Practice on Cognitive Engagement, Mindfulness and Academic Performance of Undergraduate College Students

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Napora, Lisa

    2013-01-01

    This study explored the potential of classroom-based meditation practice as a tool to facilitate learning. Moreover, the impact of meditation on cognitive engagement, mindfulness and academic performance of undergraduate college students was investigated. Additionally, the relationships between mindfulness and cognitive engagement, and between…

  3. Attending to the present: mindfulness meditation reveals distinct neural modes of self-reference

    PubMed Central

    Farb, Norman A. S.; Segal, Zindel V.; Mayberg, Helen; Bean, Jim; McKeon, Deborah; Fatima, Zainab

    2007-01-01

    It has long been theorised that there are two temporally distinct forms of self-reference: extended self-reference linking experiences across time, and momentary self-reference centred on the present. To characterise these two aspects of awareness, we used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to examine monitoring of enduring traits (’narrative’ focus, NF) or momentary experience (’experiential’ focus, EF) in both novice participants and those having attended an 8 week course in mindfulness meditation, a program that trains individuals to develop focused attention on the present. In novices, EF yielded focal reductions in self-referential cortical midline regions (medial prefrontal cortex, mPFC) associated with NF. In trained participants, EF resulted in more marked and pervasive reductions in the mPFC, and increased engagement of a right lateralised network, comprising the lateral PFC and viscerosomatic areas such as the insula, secondary somatosensory cortex and inferior parietal lobule. Functional connectivity analyses further demonstrated a strong coupling between the right insula and the mPFC in novices that was uncoupled in the mindfulness group. These results suggest a fundamental neural dissociation between two distinct forms of self-awareness that are habitually integrated but can be dissociated through attentional training: the self across time and in the present moment. PMID:18985137

  4. Neurobiological Aspects of Mindfulness in Pain Autoregulation: Unexpected Results from a Randomized-Controlled Trial and Possible Implications for Meditation Research

    PubMed Central

    Esch, Tobias; Winkler, Jeremy; Auwärter, Volker; Gnann, Heike; Huber, Roman; Schmidt, Stefan

    2017-01-01

    Background: Research has demonstrated that short meditation training may yield higher pain tolerance in acute experimental pain. Our study aimed at examining underlying mechanisms of this alleged effect. In addition, placebo research has shown that higher pain tolerance is mediated via endogenous neuromodulators: experimental inhibition of opioid receptors by naloxone antagonized this effect. We performed a trial to discern possible placebo from meditation-specific effects on pain tolerance and attention. Objectives: It was proposed that (i) meditation training will increase pain tolerance; (ii) naloxone will inhibit this effect; (iii) increased pain tolerance will correlate with improved attention performance and mindfulness. Methods: Randomized-controlled, partly blinded trial with 31 healthy meditation-naïve adults. Pain tolerance was assessed by the tourniquet test, attention performance was measured by Attention Network Test (ANT), self-perceived mindfulness by Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory. 16 participants received a 5-day meditation training, focusing on body/breath awareness; the control group (N = 15) received no intervention. Measures were taken before the intervention and on 3 consecutive days after the training, with all participants receiving either no infusion, naloxone infusion, or saline infusion (blinded). Blood samples were taken in order to determine serum morphine and morphine glucuronide levels by applying liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry analysis. Results: The meditation group produced fewer errors in ANT. Paradoxically, increases in pain tolerance occurred in both groups (accentuated in control), and correlated with reported mindfulness. Naloxone showed a trend to decrease pain tolerance in both groups. Plasma analyses revealed sporadic morphine and/or morphine metabolite findings with no discernable pattern. Discussion: Main objectives could not be verified. Since underlying study goals had not been made explicit to

  5. Neurobiological Aspects of Mindfulness in Pain Autoregulation: Unexpected Results from a Randomized-Controlled Trial and Possible Implications for Meditation Research.

    PubMed

    Esch, Tobias; Winkler, Jeremy; Auwärter, Volker; Gnann, Heike; Huber, Roman; Schmidt, Stefan

    2016-01-01

    Background: Research has demonstrated that short meditation training may yield higher pain tolerance in acute experimental pain. Our study aimed at examining underlying mechanisms of this alleged effect. In addition, placebo research has shown that higher pain tolerance is mediated via endogenous neuromodulators: experimental inhibition of opioid receptors by naloxone antagonized this effect. We performed a trial to discern possible placebo from meditation-specific effects on pain tolerance and attention. Objectives: It was proposed that (i) meditation training will increase pain tolerance; (ii) naloxone will inhibit this effect; (iii) increased pain tolerance will correlate with improved attention performance and mindfulness. Methods: Randomized-controlled, partly blinded trial with 31 healthy meditation-naïve adults. Pain tolerance was assessed by the tourniquet test, attention performance was measured by Attention Network Test (ANT), self-perceived mindfulness by Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory. 16 participants received a 5-day meditation training, focusing on body/breath awareness; the control group ( N = 15) received no intervention. Measures were taken before the intervention and on 3 consecutive days after the training, with all participants receiving either no infusion, naloxone infusion, or saline infusion (blinded). Blood samples were taken in order to determine serum morphine and morphine glucuronide levels by applying liquid chromatography-tandem mass spectrometry analysis. Results: The meditation group produced fewer errors in ANT. Paradoxically, increases in pain tolerance occurred in both groups (accentuated in control), and correlated with reported mindfulness. Naloxone showed a trend to decrease pain tolerance in both groups. Plasma analyses revealed sporadic morphine and/or morphine metabolite findings with no discernable pattern. Discussion: Main objectives could not be verified. Since underlying study goals had not been made explicit to

  6. The effectiveness of mindfulness meditation for nurses and nursing students: An integrated literature review.

    PubMed

    van der Riet, Pamela; Levett-Jones, Tracy; Aquino-Russell, Catherine

    2018-06-01

    A growing body of literature has identified a range of beneficial physiological and psychological outcomes from the regular practice of mindfulness meditation. For healthcare professionals, mindfulness meditation is claimed to reduce stress, anxiety and burnout, and enhance resilience. The objective of this integrative review was to critically appraise the literature that related to the effectiveness of mindfulness meditation programs for nurses and nursing students. This review was conducted using Whittemore and Knafl's framework for integrated reviews. Using the terms mindfulness, mindfulness-based-stress reduction, Vipassana, nurses, and nurse education a comprehensive search of the following electronic databases was conducted: CINAHAL, Medline, PsycINFO, EMBASE. EMCARE, ERIC and SCOPUS. The initial search located 1703 articles. After screening and checking for eligibility 20 articles were critically appraised using the Critical Appraisal Skills Program checklist for qualitative papers and McMaster's Critical appraisal form for quantitative papers. The final number of papers included in the review was 16. The results of this review identified that mindfulness meditation has a positive impact on nurses' and nursing students' stress, anxiety, depression, burnout, sense of well-being and empathy. However, the majority of the papers described small scale localised studies which limits generalisability. Contemporary healthcare is challenging and complex. This review indicated that mindfulness meditation is an effective strategy for preventing and managing the workplace stress and burnout, which so often plague nursing staff and students. Further studies with larger sample sizes using rigorous research methods would be useful in extending this work. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  7. Mindfulness training induces structural connectome changes in insula networks.

    PubMed

    Sharp, Paul B; Sutton, Bradley P; Paul, Erick J; Sherepa, Nikolai; Hillman, Charles H; Cohen, Neal J; Kramer, Arthur F; Prakash, Ruchika Shaurya; Heller, Wendy; Telzer, Eva H; Barbey, Aron K

    2018-05-21

    Although mindfulness meditation is known to provide a wealth of psychological benefits, the neural mechanisms involved in these effects remain to be well characterized. A central question is whether the observed benefits of mindfulness training derive from specific changes in the structural brain connectome that do not result from alternative forms of experimental intervention. Measures of whole-brain and node-level structural connectome changes induced by mindfulness training were compared with those induced by cognitive and physical fitness training within a large, multi-group intervention protocol (n = 86). Whole-brain analyses examined global graph-theoretical changes in structural network topology. A hypothesis-driven approach was taken to investigate connectivity changes within the insula, which was predicted here to mediate interoceptive awareness skills that have been shown to improve through mindfulness training. No global changes were observed in whole-brain network topology. However, node-level results confirmed a priori hypotheses, demonstrating significant increases in mean connection strength in right insula across all of its connections. Present findings suggest that mindfulness strengthens interoception, operationalized here as the mean insula connection strength within the overall connectome. This finding further elucidates the neural mechanisms of mindfulness meditation and motivates new perspectives about the unique benefits of mindfulness training compared to contemporary cognitive and physical fitness interventions.

  8. The effects of mind-body training on stress reduction, positive affect, and plasma catecholamines.

    PubMed

    Jung, Ye-Ha; Kang, Do-Hyung; Jang, Joon Hwan; Park, Hye Yoon; Byun, Min Soo; Kwon, Soo Jin; Jang, Go-Eun; Lee, Ul Soon; An, Seung Chan; Kwon, Jun Soo

    2010-07-26

    This study was designed to assess the association between stress, positive affect and catecholamine levels in meditation and control groups. The meditation group consisted of 67 subjects who regularly engaged in mind-body training of "Brain-Wave Vibration" and the control group consisted of 57 healthy subjects. Plasma catecholamine (norepinephrine (NE), epinephrine (E), and dopamine (DA)) levels were measured, and a modified form of the Stress Response Inventory (SRI-MF) and the Positive Affect and Negative Affect Scale (PANAS) were administered. The meditation group showed higher scores on positive affect (p=.019) and lower scores on stress (p<.001) compared with the control group. Plasma DA levels were also higher in the meditation (p=.031) than in the control group. The control group demonstrated a negative correlation between stress and positive affects (r=-.408, p=.002), whereas this correlation was not observed in the meditation group. The control group showed positive correlations between somatization and NE/E (r=.267, p=.045) and DA/E (r=.271, p=.042) ratios, whereas these correlations did not emerge in the meditation group. In conclusion, these results suggest that meditation as mind-body training is associated with lower stress, higher positive affect and higher plasma DA levels when comparing the meditation group with the control group. Thus, mind-body training may influence stress, positive affect and the sympathetic nervous system including DA activity. Copyright 2010 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Feasibility, acceptability and preliminary psychological benefits of mindfulness meditation training in a sample of men diagnosed with prostate cancer on active surveillance: results from a randomized controlled pilot trial.

    PubMed

    Victorson, David; Hankin, Vered; Burns, James; Weiland, Rebecca; Maletich, Carly; Sufrin, Nathaniel; Schuette, Stephanie; Gutierrez, Bruriah; Brendler, Charles

    2017-08-01

    In a pilot randomized controlled trial, examine the feasibility and preliminary efficacy of an 8-week, mindfulness training program (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) in a sample of men on active surveillance on important psychological outcomes including prostate cancer anxiety, uncertainty intolerance and posttraumatic growth. Men were randomized to either mindfulness (n = 24) or an attention control arm (n = 19) and completed self-reported measures of prostate cancer anxiety, uncertainty intolerance, global quality of life, mindfulness and posttraumatic growth at baseline, 8 weeks, 6 months and 12 months. Participants in the mindfulness arm demonstrated significant decreases in prostate cancer anxiety and uncertainty intolerance, and significant increases in mindfulness, global mental health and posttraumatic growth. Participants in the control condition also demonstrated significant increases in mindfulness over time. Longitudinal increases in posttraumatic growth were significantly larger in the mindfulness arm than they were in the control arm. While mindfulness training was found to be generally feasible and acceptable among participants who enrolled in the 8-week intervention as determined by completion rates and open-ended survey responses, the response rate between initial enrollment and the total number of men approached was lower than desired (47%). While larger sample sizes are necessary to examine the efficacy of mindfulness training on important psychological outcomes, in this pilot study posttraumatic growth was shown to significantly increase over time for men in the treatment group. Mindfulness training has the potential to help men cope more effectively with some of the stressors and uncertainties associated with active surveillance. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. Copyright © 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  10. Mindfulness meditation regulates anterior insula activity during empathy for social pain.

    PubMed

    Laneri, Davide; Krach, Sören; Paulus, Frieder M; Kanske, Philipp; Schuster, Verena; Sommer, Jens; Müller-Pinzler, Laura

    2017-08-01

    Mindfulness has been shown to reduce stress, promote health, and well-being, as well as to increase compassionate behavior toward others. It reduces distress to one's own painful experiences, going along with altered neural responses, by enhancing self-regulatory processes and decreasing emotional reactivity. In order to investigate if mindfulness similarly reduces distress and neural activations associated with empathy for others' socially painful experiences, which might in the following more strongly motivate prosocial behavior, the present study compared trait, and state effects of long-term mindfulness meditation (LTM) practice. To do so we acquired behavioral data and neural activity measures using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) during an empathy for social pain task while manipulating the meditation state between two groups of LTM practitioners that were matched with a control group. The results show increased activations of the anterior insula (AI) and anterior cingulate cortex (ACC) as well as the medial prefrontal cortex and temporal pole when sharing others' social suffering, both in LTM practitioners and controls. However, in LTM practitioners, who practiced mindfulness meditation just prior to observing others' social pain, left AI activation was lower and the strength of AI activation following the mindfulness meditation was negatively associated with trait compassion in LTM practitioners. The findings suggest that current mindfulness meditation could provide an adaptive mechanism in coping with distress due to the empathic sharing of others' suffering, thereby possibly enabling compassionate behavior. Hum Brain Mapp 38:4034-4046, 2017. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc. © 2017 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  11. Internet-based Mindfulness Meditation for Cognition and Mood in Older Adults: A Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    Wahbeh, Helané; Goodrich, Elena; Oken, Barry S

    2016-01-01

    Older adults are at risk for greater chronic stress and cognitive decline. Training in mindfulness meditation (MM) may help reduce stress and, thus, cognitive decline in older adults, but little research has explored that hypothesis. The current study's primary aim was to evaluate the feasibility and acceptability for use by older adults of the Internet Mindfulness Meditation Intervention (IMMI), a program that had been developed by the research team, as well as of an Internet-based health-and-wellness education program, the control. The secondary aim was to collect preliminary pre- and postintervention data on mood and cognitive function. The study was a randomized, controlled trial (RCT), a pilot study, with participants randomized either to the meditation group or the education group. Participants obtained access to the programs from their homes, and the baseline and endpoint assessments occurred in their homes as well. Older adults aged 65-90 y were recruited from the Portland, OR, metropolitan area. Twenty-one people enrolled in the study. Participants in both groups took part in a 1-h online session each week for 6 wk, with 30 min of daily home practice. Feasibility and acceptability were assessed through measures of adherence to the protocol and a client satisfaction questionnaire. Mood and cognitive outcomes were also evaluated before and after the interventions. Sixteen participants completed the study, 8 in each group, and 5 dropped out, for a 76% completion rate. Participants' mean age was 76.2 y; 88% were Caucasian, and 50% were female. Acceptability was high for the interventions, based on above-average scores on the client satisfaction questionnaire. The IMMI participants completed (1) 4.25 ± 2.4 sessions, with a range of 0-6; (2) 604 ± 506 home-practice minutes, with a range 0-1432; and (3) 21.3 ± 15.5 d of practice, with a range of 0-46. The education group completed (1) 4.75 ± 1.8 sessions, with a range of 2-6; (2) 873 ± 395 home

  12. Brief Mindfulness Meditation Training in Smokers

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-03-11

    the Use of Mobile Technology EMA involves assessing phenomena at the moment they occur in a person’s natural environment. Assessments may be done at...of mobile technology , especially smartphones and tablet computers, provides a soon-to-be ubiquitous platform that can be leveraged to introduce...acute effects of Brief-MM together with an EMA platform is the first step in developing the knowledge base and technology necessary for using a similar

  13. Presence of Mind: A Qualitative Study of Meditating Teachers

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Irwin, Michèle; Miller, John P.

    2016-01-01

    This article presents the results of a study into the effects of meditation practice on the lives of professional educators, specifically educators who either began or continued such practice during course work led by Professor Miller at the University of Toronto. The study incorporates semistructured interviews with 12 participants to track their…

  14. The Serenity of the Meditating Mind: A Cross-Cultural Psychometric Study on a Two-Factor Higher Order Structure of Mindfulness, Its Effects, and Mechanisms Related to Mental Health among Experienced Meditators

    PubMed Central

    Tran, Ulrich S.; Cebolla, Ausiàs; Glück, Tobias M.; Soler, Joaquim; Garcia-Campayo, Javier; von Moy, Theresa

    2014-01-01

    Objective To investigate the psychometric and structural properties of the Five Facets Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ) among meditators, to develop a short form, and to examine associations of mindfulness with mental health and the mechanisms of mindfulness. Methods Two independent samples were used, a German (n = 891) and a Spanish (n = 393) meditator sample, practicing various meditation styles. Structural and psychometric properties of the FFMQ were investigated with multigroup confirmatory factor analysis and exploratory structural equation modeling. Associations with mental health and mechanisms of mindfulness were examined with path analysis. Results The derived short form broadly matched a previous item selection in samples of non-meditators. Self-regulated Attention and Orientation to Experience governed the facets of mindfulness on a higher-order level. Higher-order factors of mindfulness and meditation experience were negatively associated with symptoms of depression and anxiety, and perceived stress. Decentering and nonattachment were the most salient mechanisms of mindfulness. Aspects of emotion regulation, bodily awareness, and nonattachment explained the effects of mindfulness on depression and anxiety. Conclusions A two-component conceptualization for the FFMQ, and for the study of mindfulness as a psychological construct, is recommended for future research. Mechanisms of mindfulness need to be examined in intervention studies. PMID:25330072

  15. The serenity of the meditating mind: a cross-cultural psychometric study on a two-factor higher order structure of mindfulness, its effects, and mechanisms related to mental health among experienced meditators.

    PubMed

    Tran, Ulrich S; Cebolla, Ausiàs; Glück, Tobias M; Soler, Joaquim; Garcia-Campayo, Javier; von Moy, Theresa

    2014-01-01

    To investigate the psychometric and structural properties of the Five Facets Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ) among meditators, to develop a short form, and to examine associations of mindfulness with mental health and the mechanisms of mindfulness. Two independent samples were used, a German (n = 891) and a Spanish (n = 393) meditator sample, practicing various meditation styles. Structural and psychometric properties of the FFMQ were investigated with multigroup confirmatory factor analysis and exploratory structural equation modeling. Associations with mental health and mechanisms of mindfulness were examined with path analysis. The derived short form broadly matched a previous item selection in samples of non-meditators. Self-regulated Attention and Orientation to Experience governed the facets of mindfulness on a higher-order level. Higher-order factors of mindfulness and meditation experience were negatively associated with symptoms of depression and anxiety, and perceived stress. Decentering and nonattachment were the most salient mechanisms of mindfulness. Aspects of emotion regulation, bodily awareness, and nonattachment explained the effects of mindfulness on depression and anxiety. A two-component conceptualization for the FFMQ, and for the study of mindfulness as a psychological construct, is recommended for future research. Mechanisms of mindfulness need to be examined in intervention studies.

  16. Value associated with mindfulness meditation and moderate exercise intervention in acute respiratory infection: the MEPARI Study.

    PubMed

    Rakel, David; Mundt, Marlon; Ewers, Tola; Fortney, Luke; Zgierska, Aleksandra; Gassman, Michele; Barrett, Bruce

    2013-08-01

    Acute respiratory infection (ARI) is among the most common, debilitating and expensive human illnesses. The purpose of this study was to assess ARI-related costs and determine if mindfulness meditation or exercise can add value. One hundred and fifty-four adults ≥50 years from Madison, WI for the 2009-10 cold/flu season were randomized to (i) wait-list control (ii) meditation or (iii) moderate intensity exercise. ARI-related costs were assessed through self-reported medication use, number of missed work days and medical visits. Costs per subject were based on cost of generic medications, missed work days ($126.20) and clinic visits ($78.70). Monte Carlo bootstrap methods evaluated reduced costs of ARI episodes. The total cost per subject for the control group was $214 (95% CI: $105-$358), exercise $136 (95% CI: $64-$232) and meditation $65 (95% CI: $34-$104). The majority of cost savings was through a reduction in missed days of work. Exercise had the highest medication costs at $16.60 compared with $5.90 for meditation (P = 0.004) and $7.20 for control (P = 0.046). Combining these cost benefits with the improved outcomes in incidence, duration and severity seen with the Meditation or Exercise for Preventing Acute Respiratory Infection study, meditation and exercise add value for ARI. Compared with control, meditation had the greatest cost benefit. This savings is offset by the cost of the intervention ($450/subject) that would negate the short-term but perhaps not long-term savings. Meditation and exercise add value to ARI-associated health-related costs with improved outcomes. Further research is needed to confirm results and inform policies on adding value to medical spending.

  17. Value associated with mindfulness meditation and moderate exercise intervention in acute respiratory infection: The MEPARI Study

    PubMed Central

    2013-01-01

    Background and objectives. Acute respiratory infection (ARI) is among the most common, debilitating and expensive human illnesses. The purpose of this study was to assess ARI-related costs and determine if mindfulness meditation or exercise can add value. Methods. One hundred and fifty-four adults ≥50 years from Madison, WI for the 2009–10 cold/flu season were randomized to (i) wait-list control (ii) meditation or (iii) moderate intensity exercise. ARI-related costs were assessed through self-reported medication use, number of missed work days and medical visits. Costs per subject were based on cost of generic medications, missed work days ($126.20) and clinic visits ($78.70). Monte Carlo bootstrap methods evaluated reduced costs of ARI episodes. Results. The total cost per subject for the control group was $214 (95% CI: $105–$358), exercise $136 (95% CI: $64–$232) and meditation $65 (95% CI: $34–$104). The majority of cost savings was through a reduction in missed days of work. Exercise had the highest medication costs at $16.60 compared with $5.90 for meditation (P = 0.004) and $7.20 for control (P = 0.046). Combining these cost benefits with the improved outcomes in incidence, duration and severity seen with the Meditation or Exercise for Preventing Acute Respiratory Infection study, meditation and exercise add value for ARI. Compared with control, meditation had the greatest cost benefit. This savings is offset by the cost of the intervention ($450/subject) that would negate the short-term but perhaps not long-term savings. Conclusions. Meditation and exercise add value to ARI-associated health-related costs with improved outcomes. Further research is needed to confirm results and inform policies on adding value to medical spending. PMID:23515373

  18. Can meditation slow rate of cellular aging? Cognitive stress, mindfulness, and telomeres

    PubMed Central

    Epel, Elissa; Daubenmier, Jennifer; Moskowitz, Judith T.; Folkman, Susan; Blackburn, Elizabeth

    2010-01-01

    Understanding the malleable determinants of cellular aging is critical to understanding human longevity. Telomeres may provide a pathway for exploring this question. Telomeres are the protective caps at the ends of chromosomes. The length of telomeres offers insight into mitotic cell and possibly organismal longevity. Telomere length has now been linked to chronic stress exposure and depression. This raises the question of how might cellular aging be modulated by psychological functioning. We consider two psychological processes or states that are in opposition to one another--threat cognition and mindfulness--and their effects on cellular aging. Psychological stress cognitions, particularly appraisals of threat and ruminative thoughts, can lead to prolonged states of reactivity. In contrast, mindfulness meditation techniques appear to shift cognitive appraisals from threat to challenge, decrease ruminative thought, and reduce stress arousal. Mindfulness may also directly increase positive arousal states. We review data linking telomere length to cognitive stress and stress arousal and present new data linking cognitive appraisal to telomere length. Given the pattern of associations revealed so far, we propose that some forms of meditation may have salutary effects on telomere length by reducing cognitive stress and stress arousal and increasing positive states of mind and hormonal factors that may promote telomere maintenance. Aspects of this model are currently being tested in ongoing trials of mindfulness meditation. PMID:19735238

  19. Is meditation always relaxing? Investigating heart rate, heart rate variability, experienced effort and likeability during training of three types of meditation.

    PubMed

    Lumma, Anna-Lena; Kok, Bethany E; Singer, Tania

    2015-07-01

    Meditation is often associated with a relaxed state of the body. However, meditation can also be regarded as a type of mental task and training, associated with mental effort and physiological arousal. The cardiovascular effects of meditation may vary depending on the type of meditation, degree of mental effort, and amount of training. In the current study we assessed heart rate (HR), high-frequency heart rate variability (HF-HRV) and subjective ratings of effort and likeability during three types of meditation varying in their cognitive and attentional requirements, namely breathing meditation, loving-kindness meditation and observing-thoughts meditation. In the context of the ReSource project, a one-year longitudinal mental training study, participants practiced each meditation exercise on a daily basis for 3 months. As expected HR and effort were higher during loving-kindness meditation and observing-thoughts meditation compared to breathing meditation. With training over time HR and likeability increased, while HF-HRV and the subjective experience of effort decreased. The increase in HR and decrease in HF-HRV over training was higher for loving-kindness meditation and observing-thoughts meditation compared to breathing meditation. In contrast to implicit beliefs that meditation is always relaxing and associated with low arousal, the current results show that core meditations aiming at improving compassion and meta-cognitive skills require effort and are associated with physiological arousal compared to breathing meditation. Overall these findings can be useful in making more specific suggestions about which type of meditation is most adaptive for a given context and population. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Prevalence and patterns of use of mantra, mindfulness and spiritual meditation among adults in the United States.

    PubMed

    Burke, Adam; Lam, Chun Nok; Stussman, Barbara; Yang, Hui

    2017-06-15

    Despite a growing body of scientific literature exploring the nature of meditation there is limited information on the characteristics of individuals who use it. This is particularly true of comparative studies examining prevalence and predictors of use of various forms of meditation. A secondary analysis was conducted using data from the 2012 National Health Interview Survey (n = 34,525). Three popular forms of meditation were compared-mantra, mindfulness, and spiritual-to determine lifetime and 12-month use related to key sociodemographic, health behavior, health status, and healthcare access variables. The 12-month prevalence for meditation practice was 3.1% for spiritual meditation, 1.9% for mindfulness meditation, and 1.6% for mantra meditation. This represents approximately 7.0, 4.3, and 3.6 million adults respectively. A comparison across the three meditation practices found many similarities in user characteristics, suggesting interest in meditation may be more related to the type of person meditating than to the type of practice selected. Across meditation styles use was more prevalent among respondents who were female, non-Hispanic White, college educated, physically active; who used other complementary health practices; and who reported depression. Higher utilization of conventional healthcare services was one of the strongest predictors of use of all three styles. In addition to similarities, important distinctions were observed. For example, spiritual meditation practice was more prevalent among former drinkers. This may reflect use of spiritual meditation practices in support of alcohol treatment and sobriety. Reasons for use of meditation were examined using the sample of respondents who practiced mindfulness meditation. Wellness and prevention (74%) was a more common reason than use to treat a specific health condition (30%). Common reasons for use included stress management (92%) and emotional well-being (91%), and to support other health

  1. Transfer of Mindfulness Training to the Work Setting: A Qualitative Study in a Health Care System.

    PubMed

    Lyddy, Christopher J; Schachter, Yotam; Reyer, Amy; Julliard, Kell

    2016-01-01

    Mindfulness training is now commonly offered as professional development for health care practitioners. Understanding how health care practitioners adopt mindfulness practices is limited, which poses a hurdle to the development of effective mindfulness training programs. To explore how health professionals use and perceive mindfulness practices at work, we conducted an exploratory qualitative study at a large multicomponent inner-city health system. All participants were self-selected health professionals who attended at least one mindfulness training. Training content was derived from the Tergar Meditation Community's nonsectarian Joy of Living program and focused on calming the mind using a flexible and broadly applicable approach. Transcribed interview data were examined using thematic analysis. Individuals receiving mindfulness training varied substantially in their subsequent adoption and utilization of these practices. Interviewees' experiences overall suggest that the workplace presents a relatively challenging but nonetheless viable environment for being mindful. Health care workers relied on more informal practice models than on formal meditation practice routines while at work. Factors reported by some individuals to inhibit effective mindfulness practice supported mindfulness for others, and overall displayed equivocal effects. Adoption and integration of mindfulness practices within the workplace are feasible yet vary significantly by practice type, situation, and the individual. Greater understanding of how individuals adopt workplace mindfulness training could improve future intervention research while clarifying optimal mindfulness training approaches.

  2. Meditation Awareness Training for the Treatment of Sex Addiction: A Case Study

    PubMed Central

    Van Gordon, William; Shonin, Edo; Griffiths, Mark D.

    2016-01-01

    Background Sex addiction is a disorder that can have serious adverse functional consequences. Treatment effectiveness research for sex addiction is currently underdeveloped, and interventions are generally based on the guidelines for treating other behavioral (as well as chemical) addictions. Consequently, there is a need to clinically evaluate tailored treatments that target the specific symptoms of sex addiction. It has been proposed that second-generation mindfulness-based interventions (SG-MBIs) may be an appropriate treatment for sex addiction because in addition to helping individuals increase perceptual distance from craving for desired objects and experiences, some SG-MBIs specifically contain meditations intended to undermine attachment to sex and/or the human body. The current study conducts the first clinical investigation into the utility of mindfulness for treating sex addiction. Case presentation An in-depth clinical case study was conducted involving an adult male suffering from sex addiction that underwent treatment utilizing an SG-MBI known as Meditation Awareness Training (MAT). Following completion of MAT, the participant demonstrated clinically significant improvements in addictive sexual behavior, as well as reductions in depression and psychological distress. The MAT intervention also led to improvements in sleep quality, job satisfaction, and non-attachment to self and experiences. Salutary outcomes were maintained at 6-month follow-up. Discussion and conclusion The current study extends the literature exploring the applications of mindfulness for treating behavioral addiction, and findings indicate that further clinical investigation into the role of mindfulness for treating sex addiction is warranted. PMID:27348560

  3. Meditation Awareness Training for the Treatment of Sex Addiction: A Case Study.

    PubMed

    Van Gordon, William; Shonin, Edo; Griffiths, Mark D

    2016-06-01

    Background Sex addiction is a disorder that can have serious adverse functional consequences. Treatment effectiveness research for sex addiction is currently underdeveloped, and interventions are generally based on the guidelines for treating other behavioral (as well as chemical) addictions. Consequently, there is a need to clinically evaluate tailored treatments that target the specific symptoms of sex addiction. It has been proposed that second-generation mindfulness-based interventions (SG-MBIs) may be an appropriate treatment for sex addiction because in addition to helping individuals increase perceptual distance from craving for desired objects and experiences, some SG-MBIs specifically contain meditations intended to undermine attachment to sex and/or the human body. The current study conducts the first clinical investigation into the utility of mindfulness for treating sex addiction. Case presentation An in-depth clinical case study was conducted involving an adult male suffering from sex addiction that underwent treatment utilizing an SG-MBI known as Meditation Awareness Training (MAT). Following completion of MAT, the participant demonstrated clinically significant improvements in addictive sexual behavior, as well as reductions in depression and psychological distress. The MAT intervention also led to improvements in sleep quality, job satisfaction, and non-attachment to self and experiences. Salutary outcomes were maintained at 6-month follow-up. Discussion and conclusion The current study extends the literature exploring the applications of mindfulness for treating behavioral addiction, and findings indicate that further clinical investigation into the role of mindfulness for treating sex addiction is warranted.

  4. I think therefore I om: cognitive distortions and coping style as mediators for the effects of mindfulness meditation on anxiety, positive and negative affect, and hope.

    PubMed

    Sears, Sharon; Kraus, Sue

    2009-06-01

    This study examined cognitive distortions and coping styles as potential mediators for the effects of mindfulness meditation on anxiety, negative affect, positive affect, and hope in college students. Our pre- and postintervention design had four conditions: control, brief meditation focused on attention, brief meditation focused on loving kindness, and longer meditation combining both attentional and loving kindness aspects of mindfulness. Each group met weekly over the course of a semester. Longer combined meditation significantly reduced anxiety and negative affect and increased hope. Changes in cognitive distortions mediated intervention effects for anxiety, negative affect, and hope. Further research is needed to determine differential effects of types of meditation. Copyright 2009 Wiley Periodicals, Inc.

  5. The association between meditation practice and treatment outcome in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy for bipolar disorder.

    PubMed

    Perich, Tania; Manicavasagar, Vijaya; Mitchell, Philip B; Ball, Jillian R

    2013-07-01

    This study aimed to examine the impact of quantity of mindfulness meditation practice on the outcome of psychiatric symptoms following Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) for those diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Meditation homework was collected at the beginning of each session for the MBCT program to assess quantity of meditation practice. Clinician-administered measures of hypo/mania and depression along with self-report anxiety, depression and stress symptom questionnaires were administered pre-, post-treatment and at 12-month follow-up. A significant correlation was found between a greater number of days meditated throughout the 8-week trial and clinician-rated depression scores on the Montgomery-Åsberg Depression Rating Scale at 12-month follow-up. There were significant differences found between those who meditated for 3 days a week or more and those who meditated less often on trait anxiety post-treatment and clinician-rated depression at 12-month follow-up whilst trends were noted for self-reported depression. A greater number of days meditated during the 8-week MBCT program was related to lower depression scores at 12-month follow-up, and there was evidence to suggest that mindfulness meditation practice was associated with improvements in depression and anxiety symptoms if a certain minimum amount (3 times a week or more) was practiced weekly throughout the 8-week MBCT program. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. A Randomized Controlled Trial Examining the Effect of Mindfulness Meditation on Working Memory Capacity in Adolescents.

    PubMed

    Quach, Dianna; Jastrowski Mano, Kristen E; Alexander, Kristi

    2016-05-01

    To investigate the effectiveness of a mindfulness meditation intervention on working memory capacity (WMC) in adolescents via a randomized controlled trial comparing mindfulness meditation to hatha yoga and a waitlist control group. Participants (N = 198 adolescents) were recruited from a large public middle school in southwest United States and randomly assigned to mindfulness meditation, hatha yoga, or a waitlist control condition. Participants completed a computerized measure of WMC (Automated Operational Span Task) and self-report measures of perceived stress (Perceived Stress Scale) and anxiety (Screen for Childhood Anxiety Related Emotional Disorders) at preintervention and postintervention/waitlist. A series of mixed-design analyses of variance were used to examine changes in WMC, stress, and anxiety at preintervention and postintervention. Participants in the mindfulness meditation condition showed significant improvements in WMC, whereas those in the hatha yoga and waitlist control groups did not. No statistically significant between-group differences were found for stress or anxiety. This is the first study to provide support for the benefits of short-term mindfulness practice, specifically mindfulness meditation, in improving WMC in adolescents. Results highlight the importance of investigating the components of mindfulness-based interventions among adolescents given that such interventions may improve cognitive function. More broadly, mindfulness interventions may be delivered in an abridged format, thus increasing their potential for integration into school settings and into existing treatment protocols. Copyright © 2016 Society for Adolescent Health and Medicine. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Mindful2Work: Effects of Combined Physical Exercise, Yoga, and Mindfulness Meditations for Stress Relieve in Employees. A Proof of Concept Study.

    PubMed

    de Bruin, Esther I; Formsma, Anne R; Frijstein, Gerard; Bögels, Susan M

    2017-01-01

    Work-related stress and associated illness and burnout is rising in western society, with now as much as almost a quarter of European and half of USA's employees estimated to be at the point of burnout. Mindfulness meditation, yoga, and physical exercise have all shown beneficial effects for work-related stress and illness. This proof of concept study assessed the feasibility, acceptability, and preliminary effects of the newly developed Mindful2Work training, a combination of physical exercise, restorative yoga, and mindfulness meditations, delivered in six weekly group sessions plus a follow-up session. Participants ( n  = 26, four males), referred by company doctors with (work-related) stress and burnout complaints, completed measurements pre and post the intervention, as well as at 6-week (FU1) and 6-month (FU2) follow-up. Results showed very high feasibility and acceptability of the Mindful2Work training. The training and trainers were rated with an 8.1 and 8.4 on a 1-10 scale, respectively, and training dropout rate was zero. Significant improvements with (very) large effect sizes were demonstrated for the primary outcome measures of physical and mental workability, and for anxiety, depression, stress, sleep quality, positive and negative affect, which remained (very) large and mostly increased further over time. Risk for long-term dropout from work (checklist individual strength [CIS]) was 92 % at pre-test, reduced to 67 % at post-test, to 44 % at FU1, and 35 % at FU2, whereas employees worked (RTWI) 65 % of their contract hours per week at pre-test, which increased to 73 % at post-test, 81 % at FU1 and 93 % at FU2. Intensity of home practice or number of attended sessions were not related to training effects. To conclude, the newly developed Mindful2Work training seems very feasible, and acceptable, and although no control group was included, the large effects of Mindful2Work are highly promising.

  8. Mindfulness-based stress reduction, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, and Zen meditation for depression, anxiety, pain, and psychological distress.

    PubMed

    Marchand, William R

    2012-07-01

    Mindfulness has been described as a practice of learning to focus attention on moment-bymoment experience with an attitude of curiosity, openness, and acceptance. Mindfulness practices have become increasingly popular as complementary therapeutic strategies for a variety of medical and psychiatric conditions. This paper provides an overview of three mindfulness interventions that have demonstrated effectiveness for psychiatric symptoms and/or pain. The goal of this review is to provide a synopsis that practicing clinicians can use as a clinical reference concerning Zen meditation, mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT). All three approaches originated from Buddhist spiritual practices, but only Zen is an actual Buddhist tradition. MBSR and MBCT are secular, clinically based methods that employ manuals and standardized techniques. Studies indicate that MBSR and MBCT have broad-spectrum antidepressant and antianxiety effects and decrease general psychological distress. MBCT is strongly recommended as an adjunctive treatment for unipolar depression. The evidence suggests that both MBSR and MBCT have efficacy as adjunctive interventions for anxiety symptoms. MBSR is beneficial for general psychological health and stress management in those with medical and psychiatric illness as well as in healthy individuals. Finally, MBSR and Zen meditation have a role in pain management.

  9. Mindfulness Meditation and CBT for Insomnia: A Naturalistic 12-Month Follow-up

    PubMed Central

    Ong, Jason C.; Shapiro, Shauna L.; Manber, Rachel

    2016-01-01

    A unique intervention combining mindfulness meditation with cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia (CBT-I) has been shown to have acute benefits at post-treatment in an open label study. The aim of the present study was to examine the long-term effects of this integrated intervention on measures of sleep and sleep-related distress in an attempt to characterize the natural course of insomnia following this treatment and to identify predictors of poor long-term outcome. Analyses were conducted on 21 participants who provided follow-up data at 6 and 12 months post treatment. At each time point, participants completed one week of sleep and meditation diaries and questionnaires related to mindfulness, sleep, and sleep-related distress, including the Pre-Sleep Arousal Scale (PSAS), Glasgow Sleep Effort Scale (GSES), Kentucky Inventory of Mindfulness Skills (KIMS), and the Insomnia Episode Questionnaire. Analyses examining the pattern of change across time (baseline, end-of-treatment, 6 month, and 12 month) revealed that several sleep-related benefits were maintained during the 12-month follow-up period. Participants who reported at least one insomnia episode (≥ 1 month) during the follow-up period had higher scores on the PSAS (p < .05) and GSES (p < .05) at end-of-treatment compared to those with no insomnia episodes. Correlations between mindfulness skills and insomnia symptoms revealed significant negative correlations (p < .05) between mindfulness skills and daytime sleepiness at each of the three time points but not with nocturnal symptoms of insomnia. These results suggest that most sleep-related benefits of an intervention combining CBT-I and mindfulness meditation were maintained during the 12-month follow-up period with indications that higher pre-sleep arousal and sleep effort at end-of-treatment constitute a risk for occurrence of insomnia during the 12 months following treatment. PMID:19114261

  10. A randomized controlled pilot trial of classroom-based mindfulness meditation compared to an active control condition in sixth-grade children.

    PubMed

    Britton, Willoughby B; Lepp, Nathaniel E; Niles, Halsey F; Rocha, Tomas; Fisher, Nathan E; Gold, Jonathan S

    2014-06-01

    The current study is a pilot trial to examine the effects of a nonelective, classroom-based, teacher-implemented, mindfulness meditation intervention on standard clinical measures of mental health and affect in middle school children. A total of 101 healthy sixth-grade students (55 boys, 46 girls) were randomized to either an Asian history course with daily mindfulness meditation practice (intervention group) or an African history course with a matched experiential activity (active control group). Self-reported measures included the Youth Self Report (YSR), a modified Spielberger State-Trait Anxiety Inventory, and the Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Measure -Revised. Both groups decreased significantly on clinical syndrome subscales and affect but did not differ in the extent of their improvements. Meditators were significantly less likely to develop suicidal ideation or thoughts of self-harm than controls. These results suggest that mindfulness training may yield both unique and non-specific benefits that are shared by other novel activities. Copyright © 2014 Society for the Study of School Psychology. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  11. A perception theory in mind-body medicine: guided imagery and mindful meditation as cross-modal adaptation.

    PubMed

    Bedford, Felice L

    2012-02-01

    A new theory of mind-body interaction in healing is proposed based on considerations from the field of perception. It is suggested that the combined effect of visual imagery and mindful meditation on physical healing is simply another example of cross-modal adaptation in perception, much like adaptation to prism-displaced vision. It is argued that psychological interventions produce a conflict between the perceptual modalities of the immune system and vision (or touch), which leads to change in the immune system in order to realign the modalities. It is argued that mind-body interactions do not exist because of higher-order cognitive thoughts or beliefs influencing the body, but instead result from ordinary interactions between lower-level perceptual modalities that function to detect when sensory systems have made an error. The theory helps explain why certain illnesses may be more amenable to mind-body interaction, such as autoimmune conditions in which a sensory system (the immune system) has made an error. It also renders sensible erroneous changes, such as those brought about by "faith healers," as conflicts between modalities that are resolved in favor of the wrong modality. The present view provides one of very few psychological theories of how guided imagery and mindfulness meditation bring about positive physical change. Also discussed are issues of self versus non-self, pain, cancer, body schema, attention, consciousness, and, importantly, developing the concept that the immune system is a rightful perceptual modality. Recognizing mind-body healing as perceptual cross-modal adaptation implies that a century of cross-modal perception research is applicable to the immune system.

  12. Multifractal analysis of heartbeat dynamics during meditation training

    NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)

    Song, Renliang; Bian, Chunhua; Ma, Qianli D. Y.

    2013-04-01

    We investigate the multifractality of heartbeat dynamics during Chinese CHI meditation in healthy young adults. The results show that the range of multifractal singularity spectrum of heartbeat interval time series during meditation is significantly narrower than those in the pre-meditation state of the same subject, which indicates that during meditation the heartbeat becomes regular and the degree of multifractality decreases.

  13. Defining Contemplative Science: The Metacognitive Self-Regulatory Capacity of the Mind, Context of Meditation Practice and Modes of Existential Awareness

    PubMed Central

    Dorjee, Dusana

    2016-01-01

    The term ‘contemplative’ is now frequently used in the fast growing field of meditation research. Yet, there is no consensus regarding the definition of contemplative science. Meditation studies commonly imply that contemplative practices such as mindfulness or compassion are the subject of contemplative science. Such approach, arguably, contributes to terminological confusions in the field, is not conducive to the development of an overarching theory in contemplative science, and overshadows its unique methodological features. This paper outlines an alternative approach to defining contemplative science which aims to focus the research on the core capacities, processes and states of the mind modified by contemplative practices. It is proposed that contemplative science is an interdisciplinary study of the metacognitive self-regulatory capacity (MSRC) of the mind and associated modes of existential awareness (MEA) modulated by motivational/intentional and contextual factors of contemplative practices. The MSRC is a natural propensity of the mind which enables introspective awareness of mental processes and behavior, and is a necessary pre-requisite for effective self-regulation supporting well-being. Depending on the motivational/intentional and contextual factors of meditation practice, changes in the metacognitive self-regulatory processes enable shifts in MEA which determine our sense of self and reality. It is hypothesized that changes in conceptual processing are essential mediators between the MSRC, motivational/intentional factors, context of meditation practice, and the modulations in MEA. Meditation training fosters and fine-tunes the MSRC of the mind and supports development of motivational/intentional factors with the ultimate aim of facilitating increasingly advanced MEA. Implications of the proposed framework for definitions of mindfulness and for future systematic research across contemplative traditions and practices are discussed. It is

  14. Efficacy of mindfulness meditation for smoking cessation: A systematic review and meta-analysis.

    PubMed

    Maglione, Margaret A; Maher, Alicia Ruelaz; Ewing, Brett; Colaiaco, Benjamin; Newberry, Sydne; Kandrack, Ryan; Shanman, Roberta M; Sorbero, Melony E; Hempel, Susanne

    2017-06-01

    Smokers increasingly seek alternative interventions to assist in cessation or reduction efforts. Mindfulness meditation, which facilitates detached observation and paying attention to the present moment with openness, curiosity, and acceptance, has recently been studied as a smoking cessation intervention. This review synthesizes randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of mindfulness meditation (MM) interventions for smoking cessation. Five electronic databases were searched from inception to October 2016 to identify English-language RCTs evaluating the efficacy and safety of MM interventions for smoking cessation, reduction, or a decrease in nicotine cravings. Two independent reviewers screened literature using predetermined eligibility criteria, abstracted study-level information, and assessed the quality of included studies. Meta-analyses used the Hartung-Knapp-Sidik-Jonkman method for random-effects models. The quality of evidence was assessed using the GRADE approach. Ten RCTs of MM interventions for tobacco use met inclusion criteria. Intervention duration, intensity, and comparison conditions varied considerably. Studies used diverse comparators such as the American Lung Association's Freedom from Smoking (FFS) program, quitline counseling, interactive learning, or treatment as usual (TAU). Only one RCT was rated as good quality and reported power calculations indicating sufficient statistical power. Publication bias was detected. Overall, mindfulness meditation did not have significant effects on abstinence or cigarettes per day, relative to comparator groups. The small number of studies and heterogeneity in interventions, comparators, and outcomes precluded detecting systematic differences between adjunctive and monotherapy interventions. No serious adverse events were reported. MM did not differ significantly from comparator interventions in their effects on tobacco use. Low-quality evidence, variability in study design among the small number of existing

  15. Improving personality/character traits in individuals with alcohol dependence: the influence of mindfulness-oriented meditation.

    PubMed

    Crescentini, Cristiano; Matiz, Alessio; Fabbro, Franco

    2015-01-01

    The study of personality is critical to enhance current knowledge of the psychological characteristics of alcohol dependence. Recent evidence shows that mindfulness-oriented meditation positively influences healthy individuals' character. Here, it was assessed whether 8-week mindfulness-oriented meditation promotes similar changes in a group of alcohol-dependent individuals. A control group with alcohol dependence was also tested. Mindfulness-oriented meditation participants showed an increase in the character scores of the temperament and character inventory together with reduced risks of relapse. These longitudinal data highlight the importance of assessing personality in alcohol-dependent individuals and support the utility of therapeutic interventions for alcohol dependence aimed at enhancing individuals' character.

  16. Meditation training for people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis: a randomized clinical trial.

    PubMed

    Pagnini, F; Marconi, A; Tagliaferri, A; Manzoni, G M; Gatto, R; Fabiani, V; Gragnano, G; Rossi, G; Volpato, E; Banfi, P; Palmieri, A; Graziano, F; Castelnuovo, G; Corbo, M; Molinari, E; Riva, N; Sansone, V; Lunetta, C

    2017-04-01

    Studies investigating psychological interventions for the promotion of well-being in people with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) are lacking. The purpose of the current study was to examine the use of an ALS-specific mindfulness-based intervention for improving quality of life in this population. A randomized, open-label and controlled clinical trial was conducted on the efficacy of an ALS-specific meditation programme in promoting quality of life. Adults who received a diagnosis of ALS within 18 months were randomly assigned either to usual care or to an 8-week meditation training based on the original mindfulness-based stress reduction programme and tailored for people with ALS. Quality of life, assessed with the ALS-Specific Quality of Life Revised scale, represented the primary outcome, whilst secondary outcomes included anxiety and depression, assessed with the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale, and specific quality of life domains. Participants were assessed at recruitment and after 2, 6 and 12 months. The efficacy of the treatment was assessed on an intention-to-treat basis of a linear mixed model. A hundred participants were recruited between November 2012 and December 2014. Over time, there was a significant difference between the two groups in terms of quality of life (β = 0.24, P = 0.015, d = 0.89). Significant differences between groups over time were also found for anxiety, depression, negative emotions, and interaction with people and the environment. An ALS-specific meditation programme is beneficial for the quality of life and psychological well-being of people with ALS. © 2017 EAN.

  17. Effects of mindfulness meditation on chronic pain: a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    la Cour, Peter; Petersen, Marian

    2015-04-01

    This randomized controlled clinical trial investigated the effects of mindfulness meditation on chronic pain. A total of 109 patients with nonspecific chronic pain were randomized to either a standardized mindfulness meditation program (mindfulness-based stress reduction [MBSR]) or to a wait list control. Pain, physical function, mental function, pain acceptance, and health-related quality of life were measured. The SF36 vitality scale was chosen as the primary outcome measure; the primary end point was after completing the MBSR course. Within a 2.5-year period, 43 of the 109 randomized patients completed the mindfulness program, while 47 remained in the control group. Data were compared at three time points: at baseline, after completion of the course/waiting period, and at the 6-month follow-up. Significant effect (Cohen's d = 0.39) was found on the primary outcome measure, the SF36 vitality scale. On the secondary variables, significant medium to large size effects (Cohen's d = 0.37-0.71) were found for lower general anxiety and depression, better mental quality of life (psychological well-being), feeling in control of the pain, and higher pain acceptance. Small (nonsignificant) effect sizes were found for pain measures. There were no significant differences in the measures just after the intervention vs the 6-month follow-up. A standardized mindfulness program (MBSR) contributes positively to pain management and can exert clinically relevant effects on several important dimensions in patients with long-lasting chronic pain. © 2014 American Academy of Pain Medicine.

  18. Physical activity, mindfulness meditation, or heart rate variability biofeedback for stress reduction: a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    van der Zwan, Judith Esi; de Vente, Wieke; Huizink, Anja C; Bögels, Susan M; de Bruin, Esther I

    2015-12-01

    In contemporary western societies stress is highly prevalent, therefore the need for stress-reducing methods is great. This randomized controlled trial compared the efficacy of self-help physical activity (PA), mindfulness meditation (MM), and heart rate variability biofeedback (HRV-BF) in reducing stress and its related symptoms. We randomly allocated 126 participants to PA, MM, or HRV-BF upon enrollment, of whom 76 agreed to participate. The interventions consisted of psycho-education and an introduction to the specific intervention techniques and 5 weeks of daily exercises at home. The PA exercises consisted of a vigorous-intensity activity of free choice. The MM exercises consisted of guided mindfulness meditation. The HRV-BF exercises consisted of slow breathing with a heart rate variability biofeedback device. Participants received daily reminders for their exercises and were contacted weekly to monitor their progress. They completed questionnaires prior to, directly after, and 6 weeks after the intervention. Results indicated an overall beneficial effect consisting of reduced stress, anxiety and depressive symptoms, and improved psychological well-being and sleep quality. No significant between-intervention effect was found, suggesting that PA, MM, and HRV-BF are equally effective in reducing stress and its related symptoms. These self-help interventions provide easily accessible help for people with stress complaints.

  19. Nurse leader mindfulness meditation program for stress management: a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Pipe, Teri Britt; Bortz, Jennifer J; Dueck, Amylou; Pendergast, Debra; Buchda, Vicki; Summers, Jay

    2009-03-01

    The aim of this study was to rigorously evaluate a brief stress management intervention for nurse leaders. Despite the nursing shortage, evidence-based workplace approaches addressing nurse stress have not been well studied. Nurse leaders (n = 33) were randomly assigned to brief mindfulness meditation course (MMC) or leadership course (control). Self-report measures of stress were administered at baseline and within 1 week of course completion. Among MMC participants, change scores (from baseline to postintervention) on several subscales of the Symptom Checklist 90-Revised showed significantly more improvement in self-reported stress symptoms relative to controls. Mindfulness meditation course participants had significantly more improvement in Positive Symptom Distress Index (P = 0.010; confidence interval [CI] = -0.483 to -0.073) and Global Severity Index (P = 0.019; CI = -0.475 to -0.046) and nearly significantly more improvement in Positive Symptom Total (P = 0.066; CI = -16.66 to 0.581) compared with controls. Results support preliminary effectiveness of a 4-week MMC in reducing self-reported stress symptoms among nursing leaders.

  20. Mindfulness meditation and explicit and implicit indicators of personality and self-concept changes

    PubMed Central

    Crescentini, Cristiano; Capurso, Viviana

    2015-01-01

    The scientific interest on mindfulness meditation (MM) has significantly increased in the last two decades probably because of the positive health effects that this practice exerts in a great variety of clinical and non-clinical conditions. Despite attention regulation, emotional regulation, and body awareness have been argued to be critical mechanisms through which MM improves well-being, much less is known on the effects of this practice on personality. Here we review the current state of knowledge about the role of MM in promoting changes in practitioners’ personality profiles and self-concepts. We first focus on studies that investigated the relations between mindfulness and personality using well-known self-report inventories such as the Five-Factor model of personality traits and the Temperament and Character Inventory. Second, based on the intrinsic limitations of these explicit personality measures, we review a key set of results showing effects of MM on implicit, as well as explicit, self-representations. Although the research on MM and personality is still in its infancy, it appears that this form of meditative practice may notably shape individuals’ personality and self-concept toward more healthy profiles. PMID:25688222

  1. Moving beyond Mindfulness: Defining Equanimity as an Outcome Measure in Meditation and Contemplative Research

    PubMed Central

    Gard, Tim; Hoge, Elizabeth A.; Hölzel, Britta K.; Kerr, Catherine; Lazar, Sara W.; Olendzki, Andrew; Vago, David R.

    2014-01-01

    In light of a growing interest in contemplative practices such as meditation, the emerging field of contemplative science has been challenged to describe and objectively measure how these practices affect health and well-being. While “mindfulness” itself has been proposed as a measurable outcome of contemplative practices, this concept encompasses multiple components, some of which, as we review here, may be better characterized as equanimity. Equanimity can be defined as an even-minded mental state or dispositional tendency toward all experiences or objects, regardless of their origin or their affective valence (pleasant, unpleasant, or neutral). In this article we propose that equanimity be used as an outcome measure in contemplative research. We first define and discuss the inter-relationship between mindfulness and equanimity from the perspectives of both classical Buddhism and modern psychology and present existing meditation techniques for cultivating equanimity. We then review psychological, physiological, and neuroimaging methods that have been used to assess equanimity, either directly or indirectly. In conclusion, we propose that equanimity captures potentially the most important psychological element in the improvement of well-being, and therefore should be a focus in future research studies. PMID:25750687

  2. Transcendental Meditation and Assertive Training in the Treatment of Social Anxiety.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wampler, Larry D.; Amira, Stephen B.

    Research indicates that transcendental meditation (TM) may provide relief from accumulated stress and render the meditator better able to cope with future stressful events. Single and combined TM and assertive training programs were compared for effectiveness in the treatment of socially anxious college students. A waiting-list group served as the…

  3. Cultivating Mind Fitness through Mindfulness Training: Applied Neuroscience

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Heydenfeldt, Jo Ann; Herkenhoff, Linda; Coe, Mary

    2011-01-01

    Mindfulness reduces distress, promotes optimal health, improves attentional control, mental agility, emotional intelligence, and situational awareness. Stress management and cognitive performance in Marines who spent more hours practicing Mindfulness Based Mind Fitness Training were superior to those soldiers who practiced fewer hours. Students…

  4. Mind-Body Medicine and the Art of Self-Care: Teaching Mindfulness to Counseling Students through Yoga, Meditation, and Qigong

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Schure, Marc B.; Christopher, John; Christopher, Suzanne

    2008-01-01

    A 4-year qualitative study examined the influence of teaching hatha yoga, meditation, and qigong to counseling graduate students. Participants in the 15-week, 3-credit mindfulness-based stress reduction course reported positive physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, and interpersonal changes and substantial effects on their counseling skills and…

  5. Argentine tango dance compared to mindfulness meditation and a waiting-list control: a randomised trial for treating depression.

    PubMed

    Pinniger, Rosa; Brown, Rhonda F; Thorsteinsson, Einar B; McKinley, Patricia

    2012-12-01

    To determine whether tango dancing is as effective as mindfulness meditation in reducing symptoms of psychological stress, anxiety and depression, and in promoting well-being. This study employed analysis of covariance (ANCOVA) and multiple regression analysis. Ninety-seven people with self-declared depression were randomised into tango dance or mindfulness meditation classes, or to control/waiting-list. classes were conducted in a venue suitable for both activities in the metropolitan area of Sydney, Australia. Participants completed six-week programmes (1½h/week of tango or meditation). The outcome measures were assessed at pre-test and post-test. Depression, Anxiety and Stress Scale; The Self Esteem Scale; Satisfaction with Life Scale, and Mindful Attention Awareness Scale. Sixty-six participants completed the program and were included in the statistical analysis. Depression levels were significantly reduced in the tango (effect size d=0.50, p=.010), and meditation groups (effect size d=0.54, p=.025), relative to waiting-list controls. Stress levels were significantly reduced only in the tango group (effect size d=0.45, p=.022). Attending tango classes was a significant predictor for the increased levels of mindfulness R(2)=.10, adjusted R(2)=.07, F (2,59)=3.42, p=.039. Mindfulness-meditation and tango dance could be effective complementary adjuncts for the treatment of depression and/or inclusion in stress management programmes. Subsequent trials are called to explore the therapeutic mechanisms involved. Crown Copyright © 2012. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  6. Meditation experts try Virtual Reality Mindfulness: A pilot study evaluation of the feasibility and acceptability of Virtual Reality to facilitate mindfulness practice in people attending a Mindfulness conference.

    PubMed

    Navarro-Haro, María V; López-Del-Hoyo, Yolanda; Campos, Daniel; Linehan, Marsha M; Hoffman, Hunter G; García-Palacios, Azucena; Modrego-Alarcón, Marta; Borao, Luis; García-Campayo, Javier

    2017-01-01

    Regular mindfulness practice benefits people both mentally and physically, but many populations who could benefit do not practice mindfulness. Virtual Reality (VR) is a new technology that helps capture participants' attention and gives users the illusion of "being there" in the 3D computer generated environment, facilitating sense of presence. By limiting distractions from the real world, increasing sense of presence and giving people an interesting place to go to practice mindfulness, Virtual Reality may facilitate mindfulness practice. Traditional Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT®) mindfulness skills training was specifically designed for clinical treatment of people who have trouble focusing attention, however severe patients often show difficulties or lack of motivation to practice mindfulness during the training. The present pilot study explored whether a sample of mindfulness experts would find useful and recommend a new VR Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT®) mindfulness skills training technique and whether they would show any benefit. Forty four participants attending a mindfulness conference put on an Oculus Rift DK2 Virtual Reality helmet and floated down a calm 3D computer generated virtual river while listening to digitized DBT® mindfulness skills training instructions. On subjective questionnaires completed by the participants before and after the VR DBT® mindfulness skills training session, participants reported increases/improvements in state of mindfulness, and reductions in negative emotional states. After VR, participants reported significantly less sadness, anger, and anxiety, and reported being significantly more relaxed. Participants reported a moderate to strong illusion of going inside the 3D computer generated world (i.e., moderate to high "presence" in VR) and showed high acceptance of VR as a technique to practice mindfulness. These results show encouraging preliminary evidence of the feasibility and acceptability of using VR to

  7. Meditation experts try Virtual Reality Mindfulness: A pilot study evaluation of the feasibility and acceptability of Virtual Reality to facilitate mindfulness practice in people attending a Mindfulness conference.

    PubMed Central

    Navarro-Haro, María V.; López-del-Hoyo, Yolanda; Campos, Daniel; Linehan, Marsha M.; Hoffman, Hunter G.; García-Palacios, Azucena; Modrego-Alarcón, Marta; Borao, Luis; García-Campayo, Javier

    2017-01-01

    Regular mindfulness practice benefits people both mentally and physically, but many populations who could benefit do not practice mindfulness. Virtual Reality (VR) is a new technology that helps capture participants’ attention and gives users the illusion of “being there” in the 3D computer generated environment, facilitating sense of presence. By limiting distractions from the real world, increasing sense of presence and giving people an interesting place to go to practice mindfulness, Virtual Reality may facilitate mindfulness practice. Traditional Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT®) mindfulness skills training was specifically designed for clinical treatment of people who have trouble focusing attention, however severe patients often show difficulties or lack of motivation to practice mindfulness during the training. The present pilot study explored whether a sample of mindfulness experts would find useful and recommend a new VR Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT®) mindfulness skills training technique and whether they would show any benefit. Forty four participants attending a mindfulness conference put on an Oculus Rift DK2 Virtual Reality helmet and floated down a calm 3D computer generated virtual river while listening to digitized DBT® mindfulness skills training instructions. On subjective questionnaires completed by the participants before and after the VR DBT® mindfulness skills training session, participants reported increases/improvements in state of mindfulness, and reductions in negative emotional states. After VR, participants reported significantly less sadness, anger, and anxiety, and reported being significantly more relaxed. Participants reported a moderate to strong illusion of going inside the 3D computer generated world (i.e., moderate to high “presence” in VR) and showed high acceptance of VR as a technique to practice mindfulness. These results show encouraging preliminary evidence of the feasibility and acceptability of

  8. Use of Mindfulness Sitting Meditation in Chinese American Women in Treatment of Cancer

    PubMed Central

    Liu, Shan; Qiu, Guang; Louie, Wendy

    2016-01-01

    Background. Very few studies have been conducted to examine the prevalence, frequency, perceived effectiveness, and possible influencing factors of use of meditation in patients with cancer. Objectives. To examine use of mindfulness sitting medication (MSM) in Chinese American women in treatment of cancer, its relationship to specific symptom distress, and possible influencing factors of MSM. Methods. Volunteer participants were recruited through the American Cancer Society support groups. The participants completed a demographic data form, a researcher-developed criteria and checklist for MSM, and the Memorial Symptom Assessment Scale–Short Form. Results. Eighty-nine Chinese American women with a mean age of 58 years completed the questionnaires. Twenty-one patients (24%) reported the use of MSM during active treatment of cancer. Patients who had higher education, better income, better English proficiency, and health insurance were more likely to use MSM. Patients who had more symptom distress also reported to use more MSM. Most patients (20/21) who used meditation considered it effective. After controlling other variables, better English proficiency, breast cancer, and higher symptom distress predicted the use of MSM in Chinese American women in treatment of cancer. Conclusions. About 24% of Chinese American women used MSM in the treatment of cancer and most of them considered it effective. Symptom distress and English proficiency levels predicted the use of MSM. Implications for Practice. Given the effectiveness of MSM, oncology nurses could recommend using MSM in Chinese American women in treatment of cancer, especially for patients who had higher symptom distress. PMID:27252075

  9. Use of Mindfulness Sitting Meditation in Chinese American Women in Treatment of Cancer.

    PubMed

    Liu, Shan; Qiu, Guang; Louie, Wendy

    2017-03-01

    Very few studies have been conducted to examine the prevalence, frequency, perceived effectiveness, and possible influencing factors of use of meditation in patients with cancer. To examine use of mindfulness sitting medication (MSM) in Chinese American women in treatment of cancer, its relationship to specific symptom distress, and possible influencing factors of MSM. Volunteer participants were recruited through the American Cancer Society support groups. The participants completed a demographic data form, a researcher-developed criteria and checklist for MSM, and the Memorial Symptom Assessment Scale-Short Form. Eighty-nine Chinese American women with a mean age of 58 years completed the questionnaires. Twenty-one patients (24%) reported the use of MSM during active treatment of cancer. Patients who had higher education, better income, better English proficiency, and health insurance were more likely to use MSM. Patients who had more symptom distress also reported to use more MSM. Most patients (20/21) who used meditation considered it effective. After controlling other variables, better English proficiency, breast cancer, and higher symptom distress predicted the use of MSM in Chinese American women in treatment of cancer. About 24% of Chinese American women used MSM in the treatment of cancer and most of them considered it effective. Symptom distress and English proficiency levels predicted the use of MSM. Given the effectiveness of MSM, oncology nurses could recommend using MSM in Chinese American women in treatment of cancer, especially for patients who had higher symptom distress.

  10. The role of thought suppression in the relation between mindfulness meditation and alcohol use

    PubMed Central

    Bowen, Sarah; Witkiewitz, Katie; Dillworth, Tiara M.; Marlatt, G. Alan

    2007-01-01

    Previous studies have demonstrated that attempts to suppress thoughts about using substances may actually lead to increases in substance use. Vipassana, a mindfulness meditation practice, emphasizes acceptance, rather than suppression, of unwanted thoughts. Bowen and colleagues (2006) studied the effects of a Vipassana course on substance use and in an incarcerated population, showing significant reductions in substance use among the Vipassana group as compared to a treatment as usual control condition (Bowen, Witkiewitz, Dillworth, Chawla, Simpson, Ostafin, et al., 2006). The current study further examines the mediating effects of thought suppression in the relationship between participation in the course and subsequent alcohol use in an incarcerated population. Those who participated in the course reported significant decreases in avoidance of thoughts when compared to controls. The decrease in avoidance partially mediated effects of the course on post-release alcohol use and consequences. PMID:17300875

  11. Enhanced response inhibition during intensive meditation training predicts improvements in self-reported adaptive socioemotional functioning.

    PubMed

    Sahdra, Baljinder K; MacLean, Katherine A; Ferrer, Emilio; Shaver, Phillip R; Rosenberg, Erika L; Jacobs, Tonya L; Zanesco, Anthony P; King, Brandon G; Aichele, Stephen R; Bridwell, David A; Mangun, George R; Lavy, Shiri; Wallace, B Alan; Saron, Clifford D

    2011-04-01

    We examined the impact of training-induced improvements in self-regulation, operationalized in terms of response inhibition, on longitudinal changes in self-reported adaptive socioemotional functioning. Data were collected from participants undergoing 3 months of intensive meditation training in an isolated retreat setting (Retreat 1) and a wait-list control group that later underwent identical training (Retreat 2). A 32-min response inhibition task (RIT) was designed to assess sustained self-regulatory control. Adaptive functioning (AF) was operationalized as a single latent factor underlying self-report measures of anxious and avoidant attachment, mindfulness, ego resilience, empathy, the five major personality traits (extroversion, agreeableness, conscientiousness, neuroticism, and openness to experience), difficulties in emotion regulation, depression, anxiety, and psychological well-being. Participants in Retreat 1 improved in RIT performance and AF over time whereas the controls did not. The control participants later also improved on both dimensions during their own retreat (Retreat 2). These improved levels of RIT performance and AF were sustained in follow-up assessments conducted approximately 5 months after the training. Longitudinal dynamic models with combined data from both retreats showed that improvement in RIT performance during training influenced the change in AF over time, which is consistent with a key claim in the Buddhist literature that enhanced capacity for self-regulation is an important precursor of changes in emotional well-being. PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2011 APA, all rights reserved.

  12. Impact of Mindfulness-Based Teacher Training on MBSR Participant Well-Being Outcomes and Course Satisfaction.

    PubMed

    Ruijgrok-Lupton, Pauline Eva; Crane, Rebecca S; Dorjee, Dusana

    2018-01-01

    Growing interest in mindfulness-based programs (MBPs) has resulted in increased demand for MBP teachers, raising questions around safeguarding teaching standards. Training literature emphasises the need for appropriate training and meditation experience, yet studies into impact of such variables on participant outcomes are scarce, requiring further investigation. This feasibility pilot study hypothesised that participant outcomes would relate to teachers' mindfulness-based teacher training levels and mindfulness-based teaching and meditation experience. Teachers ( n  = 9) with different MBP training levels delivering mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) courses to the general public were recruited together with their course participants ( n  = 31). A teacher survey collected data on their mindfulness-based teacher training, other professional training and relevant experience. Longitudinal evaluations using online questionnaires measured participant mindfulness and well-being before and after MBSR and participant course satisfaction. Course attendees' gains after the MBSR courses were correlated with teacher training and experience. Gains in well-being and reductions in perceived stress were significantly larger for the participant cohort taught by teachers who had completed an additional year of mindfulness-based teacher training and assessment. No correlation was found between course participants' outcomes and their teacher's mindfulness-based teaching and meditation experience. Our results support the hypothesis that higher mindfulness-based teacher training levels are possibly linked to more positive participant outcomes, with implications for training in MBPs. These initial findings highlight the need for further research on mindfulness-based teacher training and course participant outcomes with larger participant samples.

  13. Effects of brief mindfulness and loving-kindness meditation inductions on emotional and behavioral responses to social rejection among individuals with high borderline personality traits.

    PubMed

    Keng, Shian-Ling; Tan, Hui Han

    2018-01-01

    Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is characterized by an enduring pattern of instability across affective, behavioral, cognitive, and interpersonal domains. Individuals with BPD are known to be particularly vulnerable to experiences of social rejection, but little work has examined strategies that may moderate their reactivity to social rejection. Using a laboratory experimental approach, this study investigated the effects of brief mindfulness and loving-kindness meditation (LKM) inductions on emotional and behavioral responses to social rejection in a sample of adults with high BPD traits. One hundred and eighteen participants were randomly assigned to receive 10 min of mindful breathing practice, LKM, or a no-instruction control condition, prior to exposure to a social rejection manipulation. Participants rated their emotions and completed a competitive reaction time task, which provided a proxy measure of aggression. Compared to the control condition, the mindfulness group demonstrated significantly quicker recovery in negative affect and feelings of rejection after social rejection. The mindfulness group also reported significantly quicker recovery in negative affect compared to the LKM group. Whereas baseline trait mindfulness negatively predicted aggressive behaviors across all participants, groups did not differ in immediate emotional reactivity or aggressive behavior following social rejection. The findings suggest that mindfulness training may be a promising strategy in alleviating negative emotional effects of social rejection among individuals with high borderline personality traits, and highlight the limited utility of brief LKM practice in buffering the effects of social rejection. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Mindfulness and Rehabilitation: Teaching Yoga and Meditation to Young Men in an Alternative to Incarceration Program.

    PubMed

    Barrett, Carla J

    2017-11-01

    This study used participant/observation and open-ended interviews to understand how male participants (age 18-24 years) benefited from yoga and mindfulness training within an Alternative to Incarceration (ATI) program. Findings suggest that the male participants (age 18-24 years) benefited from the intervention through reductions in stress and improvements in emotion regulation. Several participants noted the importance of the development of an embodied practice for assisting them in managing anger and impulse control. The young men's narratives suggest that mindfulness-based interventions can contribute positively to rehabilitative outcomes within alternative to incarcerations settings, providing complementary benefit to existing ATI programs, especially for clients amenable to mindfulness training. With many jurisdictions expanding rehabilitation-focused interventions for young offenders, service providers should consider the potential positive contributions that mindfulness-based interventions can have for fostering desistance and reducing recidivism among justice system-involved populations.

  15. Yoga, Meditation and Mind-Body Health: Increased BDNF, Cortisol Awakening Response, and Altered Inflammatory Marker Expression after a 3-Month Yoga and Meditation Retreat.

    PubMed

    Cahn, B Rael; Goodman, Matthew S; Peterson, Christine T; Maturi, Raj; Mills, Paul J

    2017-01-01

    Thirty-eight individuals (mean age: 34.8 years old) participating in a 3-month yoga and meditation retreat were assessed before and after the intervention for psychometric measures, brain derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), circadian salivary cortisol levels, and pro- and anti-inflammatory cytokines. Participation in the retreat was found to be associated with decreases in self-reported anxiety and depression as well as increases in mindfulness. As hypothesized, increases in the plasma levels of BDNF and increases in the magnitude of the cortisol awakening response (CAR) were also observed. The normalized change in BDNF levels was inversely correlated with BSI-18 anxiety scores at both the pre-retreat ( r = 0.40, p < 0.05) and post-retreat ( r = 0.52, p < 0.005) such that those with greater anxiety scores tended to exhibit smaller pre- to post-retreat increases in plasma BDNF levels. In line with a hypothesized decrease in inflammatory processes resulting from the yoga and meditation practices, we found that the plasma level of the anti-inflammatory cytokine Interleukin-10 was increased and the pro-inflammatory cytokine Interleukin-12 was reduced after the retreat. Contrary to our initial hypotheses, plasma levels of other pro-inflammatory cytokines, including Interferon Gamma (IFN-γ), Tumor Necrosis Factor (TNF-α), Interleukin-1β (IL-1β), Interleukin-6 (IL-6), and Interleukin-8 (IL-8) were increased after the retreat. Given evidence from previous studies of the positive effects of meditative practices on mental fitness, autonomic homeostasis and inflammatory status, we hypothesize that these findings are related to the meditative practices throughout the retreat; however, some of the observed changes may also be related to other aspects of the retreat such as physical exercise-related components of the yoga practice and diet. We hypothesize that the patterns of change observed here reflect mind-body integration and well-being. The increased BDNF levels

  16. Mean-field thalamocortical modeling of longitudinal EEG acquired during intensive meditation training.

    PubMed

    Saggar, Manish; Zanesco, Anthony P; King, Brandon G; Bridwell, David A; MacLean, Katherine A; Aichele, Stephen R; Jacobs, Tonya L; Wallace, B Alan; Saron, Clifford D; Miikkulainen, Risto

    2015-07-01

    Meditation training has been shown to enhance attention and improve emotion regulation. However, the brain processes associated with such training are poorly understood and a computational modeling framework is lacking. Modeling approaches that can realistically simulate neurophysiological data while conforming to basic anatomical and physiological constraints can provide a unique opportunity to generate concrete and testable hypotheses about the mechanisms supporting complex cognitive tasks such as meditation. Here we applied the mean-field computational modeling approach using the scalp-recorded electroencephalogram (EEG) collected at three assessment points from meditating participants during two separate 3-month-long shamatha meditation retreats. We modeled cortical, corticothalamic, and intrathalamic interactions to generate a simulation of EEG signals recorded across the scalp. We also present two novel extensions to the mean-field approach that allow for: (a) non-parametric analysis of changes in model parameter values across all channels and assessments; and (b) examination of variation in modeled thalamic reticular nucleus (TRN) connectivity over the retreat period. After successfully fitting whole-brain EEG data across three assessment points within each retreat, two model parameters were found to replicably change across both meditation retreats. First, after training, we observed an increased temporal delay between modeled cortical and thalamic cells. This increase provides a putative neural mechanism for a previously observed reduction in individual alpha frequency in these same participants. Second, we found decreased inhibitory connection strength between the TRN and secondary relay nuclei (SRN) of the modeled thalamus after training. This reduction in inhibitory strength was found to be associated with increased dynamical stability of the model. Altogether, this paper presents the first computational approach, taking core aspects of physiology and

  17. The Effects of Mind Subtraction Meditation on Depression, Social Anxiety, Aggression, and Salivary Cortisol Levels of Elementary School Children in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Yoo, Yang-Gyeong; Lee, Duck-Joo; Lee, In-Soo; Shin, Namin; Park, Ju-Yeon; Yoon, Mi-Ra; Yu, Boas

    2016-01-01

    This study analyzed the effects of a school-based mind subtraction meditation program on depression, social anxiety, aggression, and salivary cortisol levels of 42 elementary school children in South Korea. The research design was a nonequivalent group comparison with pretest and post-test. The experimental group was given 8weeks of the meditation program. The results showed social anxiety, aggression, and salivary cortisol levels were significantly lowered in the experimental group. This demonstrated that the school-based mind subtraction meditation program could be effective in improving psychosocial and behavioral aspects of mental health in elementary school children. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Mindfulness Training Alters Emotional Memory Recall Compared to Active Controls: Support for an Emotional Information Processing Model of Mindfulness

    PubMed Central

    Roberts-Wolfe, Douglas; Sacchet, Matthew D.; Hastings, Elizabeth; Roth, Harold; Britton, Willoughby

    2012-01-01

    Objectives: While mindfulness-based interventions have received widespread application in both clinical and non-clinical populations, the mechanism by which mindfulness meditation improves well-being remains elusive. One possibility is that mindfulness training alters the processing of emotional information, similar to prevailing cognitive models of depression and anxiety. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of mindfulness training on emotional information processing (i.e., memory) biases in relation to both clinical symptomatology and well-being in comparison to active control conditions. Methods: Fifty-eight university students (28 female, age = 20.1 ± 2.7 years) participated in either a 12-week course containing a “meditation laboratory” or an active control course with similar content or experiential practice laboratory format (music). Participants completed an emotional word recall task and self-report questionnaires of well-being and clinical symptoms before and after the 12-week course. Results: Meditators showed greater increases in positive word recall compared to controls [F(1, 56) = 6.6, p = 0.02]. The meditation group increased significantly more on measures of well-being [F(1, 56) = 6.6, p = 0.01], with a marginal decrease in depression and anxiety [F(1, 56) = 3.0, p = 0.09] compared to controls. Increased positive word recall was associated with increased psychological well-being (r = 0.31, p = 0.02) and decreased clinical symptoms (r = −0.29, p = 0.03). Conclusion: Mindfulness training was associated with greater improvements in processing efficiency for positively valenced stimuli than active control conditions. This change in emotional information processing was associated with improvements in psychological well-being and less depression and anxiety. These data suggest that mindfulness training may improve well-being via changes in emotional information processing. Future

  19. Mindfulness training alters emotional memory recall compared to active controls: support for an emotional information processing model of mindfulness.

    PubMed

    Roberts-Wolfe, Douglas; Sacchet, Matthew D; Hastings, Elizabeth; Roth, Harold; Britton, Willoughby

    2012-01-01

    While mindfulness-based interventions have received widespread application in both clinical and non-clinical populations, the mechanism by which mindfulness meditation improves well-being remains elusive. One possibility is that mindfulness training alters the processing of emotional information, similar to prevailing cognitive models of depression and anxiety. The aim of this study was to investigate the effects of mindfulness training on emotional information processing (i.e., memory) biases in relation to both clinical symptomatology and well-being in comparison to active control conditions. Fifty-eight university students (28 female, age = 20.1 ± 2.7 years) participated in either a 12-week course containing a "meditation laboratory" or an active control course with similar content or experiential practice laboratory format (music). Participants completed an emotional word recall task and self-report questionnaires of well-being and clinical symptoms before and after the 12-week course. Meditators showed greater increases in positive word recall compared to controls [F(1, 56) = 6.6, p = 0.02]. The meditation group increased significantly more on measures of well-being [F(1, 56) = 6.6, p = 0.01], with a marginal decrease in depression and anxiety [F(1, 56) = 3.0, p = 0.09] compared to controls. Increased positive word recall was associated with increased psychological well-being (r = 0.31, p = 0.02) and decreased clinical symptoms (r = -0.29, p = 0.03). Mindfulness training was associated with greater improvements in processing efficiency for positively valenced stimuli than active control conditions. This change in emotional information processing was associated with improvements in psychological well-being and less depression and anxiety. These data suggest that mindfulness training may improve well-being via changes in emotional information processing. Future research with a fully randomized design will be

  20. [Effects of Mindfulness Meditation program on perceived stress, ways of coping, and stress response in breast cancer patients].

    PubMed

    Kang, Gwangsoon; Oh, Sangeun

    2012-04-01

    Purpose of this study was to examine the effects of the Mindfulness Meditation program on perceived stress, ways of coping, salivary cortisol level, and psychological stress response in patients with breast cancer. This was a quasi-experimental study with a non-equivalent control group pre-post test design. Participants in this study were 50 patients who had completed breast cancer treatment (experimental group, 25, control group, 25). The experimental group received the Mindfulness Meditation program for 3 hours/session/ week for 8 weeks. Data were analyzed using χ²-test and t-test for subject homogeneity verification, and ANCOVA to examine the hypotheses. The experimental group had significantly lower scores for perceived stress, emotional focused coping, salivary cortisol level, and psychological stress response compared to the control group. However, no significant differences were found between two groups for the scores on problem focused stress coping. According to the results, the Mindfulness Meditation program was useful for decreasing perceived stress, emotional focused coping, salivary cortisol level, and psychological stress response. Therefore, this program is an effective nursing intervention to decrease stress in patients with breast cancer.

  1. Brief Online Mindfulness Training: Immediate Impact.

    PubMed

    Kemper, Kathi J

    2017-01-01

    Online training is feasible, but the impact of brief mindfulness training on health professionals needs to be better understood. We analyzed data from health professionals and trainees who completed self-reflection exercises embedded in online mindfulness training between May 2014 and September, 2015; their changes in mindfulness were measured using standardized scales. Participants included nurses (34%), physicians (24%), social workers and psychologists (10%), dietitians (8%), and others (25%); 85% were women, and 20% were trainees. The most popular module was Introduction to Mindfulness (n = 161), followed by Mindfulness in Daily Life (n = 146), and Mindful Breathing and Walking (n = 129); most (68%) participants who took 1 module took all 3 modules. There were no differences in participation in any module by gender, trainee status, or profession. Completing modules was associated with small but significant improvements on the Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Scale-Revised, the Mindful Attention Awareness Scale, and the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (P < 0.001 for all). Online training reaches diverse health professionals and is associated with immediate improvements in mindfulness. Additional research is warranted to compare the long-term cost-effectiveness of different doses of online and in-person mindfulness training on clinician burnout and quality of care. © The Author(s) 2016.

  2. “I felt like a new person.” The effects of mindfulness meditation on older adults with chronic pain: qualitative narrative analysis of diary entries

    PubMed Central

    Morone, Natalia E.; Lynch, Cheryl S.; Greco, Carol M.; Tindle, Hilary A.; Weiner, Debra K.

    2008-01-01

    To identify the effects of mindfulness meditation on older adults with chronic low back pain (CLBP) we conducted a qualitative study based on grounded theory and used content analysis of diary entries from older adults who had participated in a clinical trial of an eight week mindfulness meditation program. Participants were 27 adults ≥ 65 years with CLBP of at least moderate severity and of at least three months duration. We found several themes reflecting the beneficial effects of mindfulness meditation on pain, attention, sleep, and achieving well-being. Various methods of pain reduction were used, including distraction, increased body awareness leading to behavior change, better pain coping, and direct pain reduction through meditation. Participants described improved attention skills. A number of participants reported improved sleep latency as well as quality of sleep. Participants described achieving well-being during and after a meditation session that had immediate effects on mood elevation but also long-term global effects on improved quality of life. Several themes were identified related to pain reduction, improved attention, improved sleep, and achieving well-being resulting from mindfulness meditation that suggest it has promising potential as a non-pharmacologic treatment of chronic pain for older adults. Perspective Community dwelling older adults with chronic low back pain experience numerous benefits from mindfulness meditation including less pain, improved attention, better sleep, more energy, enhanced well-being, and improved quality of life. Additional research is needed to determine how mindfulness meditation works and how it might help with other chronic illnesses. PMID:18550444

  3. Revision of the Philadelphia Mindfulness Scale for measuring awareness and equanimity in Goenka's Vipassana meditation with Chinese Buddhists.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Xianglong; Li, Mengdan; Zhang, Bo; Liu, Xiangping

    2015-04-01

    Goenka's 10-day Vipassana course is a widespread mindfulness course rooted in traditional Buddhism. Awareness and equanimity are two abilities cultivated in this course that are not featured in modern mindfulness-based psychotherapies and thereby not adequately measured by current mindfulness scales. The present article analyzed the Philadelphia Mindfulness Scale (PHLMS; Cardaciotto et al. in Assessment 15(2):204-223, 2008) and revised it into a short version to avoid confusion when measuring awareness and equanimity. Empirical data obtained using Chinese university students and Chinese Buddhists showed that the psychometric properties of the original version of the PHLMS had low factor loading on some items and that the short version had improved psychometric properties, especially for Buddhists. The short PHLMS also exhibited reasonable relationships with emotional outcomes and meditation practices among Buddhists. Implications for the future application of the PHLMS among Buddhists were also discussed.

  4. Preliminary Investigation of a Mindfulness-Based Intervention for Social Anxiety Disorder That Integrates Compassion Meditation and Mindful Exposure.

    PubMed

    Koszycki, Diana; Thake, Jennifer; Mavounza, Céline; Daoust, Jean-Philippe; Taljaard, Monica; Bradwejn, Jacques

    2016-05-01

    This study evaluated the feasibility and initial efficacy of a 12-week group mindfulness-based intervention tailored for persons with social anxiety disorder (MBI-SAD). The intervention includes elements of the standard mindfulness-based stress reduction program, explicit training in self-compassion aimed at cultivating a more accepting and kinder stance toward oneself, and use of exposure procedures to help participants practice responding mindfully to internal experiences evoked by feared social situations. Participants were randomly assigned to the MBI-SAD (n = 21) or a waitlist (WL) (n = 18) control group. Feasibility was assessed by the number of participants who completed at least 75% of the 12 weekly group sessions. Primary efficacy outcomes were clinician- and self-rated measures of social anxiety. Other outcomes included clinician ratings of illness severity and self-rated depression, social adjustment, mindfulness, and self-compassion. The MBI-SAD was acceptable and feasible, with 81% of participants attending at least 75% of sessions. The MBI-SAD fared better than WL in improving social anxiety symptom severity (p ≤ 0.0001), depression (p ≤ 0.05), and social adjustment (p ≤ 0.05). The intervention also enhanced self-compassion (p ≤ 0.05), and facets of mindfulness (observe and aware; p ≤ .05). MBI-SAD treatment gains were maintained at 3-month follow-up. These preliminary findings suggest that an MBI that integrates explicit training in self-compassion and mindful exposure is a feasible and promising intervention for social anxiety disorder. The next step is to compare the MBI-SAD to the gold standard of cognitive-behavior therapy to determine equivalence or noninferiority and to explore mediators and moderators of treatment outcome.

  5. Smartphone App Using Mindfulness Meditation for Women With Chronic Pelvic Pain (MEMPHIS): Protocol for a Randomized Feasibility Trial

    PubMed Central

    Newton, Sian; Kahan, Brennan C; Forbes, Gordon; Wright, Neil; Cantalapiedra Calvete, Clara; Gibson, Harry A L; Rogozinska, Ewelina; Rivas, Carol; Taylor, Stephanie J C; Birch, Judy; Dodds, Julie

    2018-01-01

    Background Female chronic pelvic pain (CPP) is defined as intermittent or constant pelvic or lower abdominal pain occurring in a woman for at least 6 months. Up to a quarter of women are estimated to be affected by CPP worldwide and it is responsible for one fifth of specialist gynecological referrals in the United Kingdom. Psychological interventions are commonly utilized. As waiting times and funding capacity impede access to face-to-face consultations, supported self-management (SSM) has emerged as a viable alternative. Mindfulness meditation is a potentially valuable SSM tool, and in the era of mobile technology, this can be delivered to the individual user via a smartphone app. Objective To assess the feasibility of conducting a trial of a mindfulness meditation intervention delivered by a mobile phone app for patients with CPP. The main feasibility objectives were to assess patient recruitment and app adherence, to obtain information to be used in the sample size estimate of a future trial, and to receive feedback on usability of the app. Methods Mindfulness Meditation for Women With Chronic Pelvic Pain (MEMPHIS) is a three-arm feasibility trial, that took place in two hospitals in the United Kingdom. Eligible participants were randomized in a 1:1:1 ratio to one of three treatment arms: (1) the intervention arm, consisting of a guided, spoken mindfulness meditation app; (2) an active control arm, consisting of a progressive muscle relaxation app; and (3) usual care (no app). Participants were followed-up for 6 months. Key feasibility outcomes included the time taken to recruit all patients for the study, adherence, and estimates to be used in the sample size calculation for a subsequent full-scale trial. Upon completion of the feasibility trial we will conduct focus groups to explore app usability and reasons for noncompliance. Results Recruitment for MEMPHIS took place between May 2016 and September 2016. The study was closed March 2017 and the report was

  6. Mindfulness meditation for the treatment of chronic low back pain in older adults: A randomized controlled pilot study

    PubMed Central

    Morone, Natalia E.; Greco, Carol M.; Weiner, Debra K.

    2008-01-01

    The objectives of this pilot study were to assess the feasibility of recruitment and adherence to an eight-session mindfulness meditation program for community-dwelling older adults with chronic low back pain (CLBP) and to develop initial estimates of treatment effects. It was designed as a randomized, controlled clinical trial. Participants were 37 community-dwelling older adults aged 65 years and older with CLBP of moderate intensity occurring daily or almost every day. Participants were randomized to an 8-week mindfulness-based meditation program or to a wait-list control group. Baseline, 8-week and 3-month follow-up measures of pain, physical function, attention, and quality of life were assessed. Eighty-nine older adults were screened and 37 found to be eligible and randomized within a 6-month period. The mean age of the sample was 74.9 years, 21/37 (57%) of participants were female and 33/37 (89%) were white. At the end of the intervention 30/37 (81%) participants completed 8-week assessments. Average class attendance of the intervention arm was 6.7 out of 8. They meditated an average of 4.3 days a week and the average minutes per day was 31.6. Compared to the control group, the intervention group displayed significant improvement in the Chronic Pain Acceptance Questionnaire Total Score and Activities Engagement subscale (P = .008, P = .004) and SF-36 Physical Function (P = .03). An 8-week mindfulness-based meditation program is feasible for older adults with CLBP. The program may lead to improvement in pain acceptance and physical function. PMID:17544212

  7. Mindfulness Meditation and Improvement in Sleep Quality and Daytime Impairment Among Older Adults With Sleep Disturbances

    PubMed Central

    Black, David S.; O’Reilly, Gillian A.; Olmstead, Richard; Breen, Elizabeth C.; Irwin, Michael R.

    2015-01-01

    IMPORTANCE Sleep disturbances are most prevalent among older adults and often go untreated. Treatment options for sleep disturbances remain limited, and there is a need for community-accessible programs that can improve sleep. OBJECTIVE To determine the efficacy of a mind-body medicine intervention, called mindfulness meditation, to promote sleep quality in older adults with moderate sleep disturbances. DESIGN, SETTING, AND PARTICIPANTS Randomized clinical trial with 2 parallel groups conducted from January 1 to December 31, 2012, at a medical research center among an older adult sample (mean [SD] age, 66.3 [7.4] years) with moderate sleep disturbances (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index [PSQI] >5). INTERVENTIONS A standardized mindful awareness practices (MAPs) intervention (n = 24) or a sleep hygiene education (SHE) intervention (n = 25) was randomized to participants, who received a 6-week intervention (2 hours per week) with assigned homework. MAIN OUTCOMES AND MEASURES The study was powered to detect between-group differences in moderate sleep disturbance measured via the PSQI at postintervention. Secondary outcomes pertained to sleep-related daytime impairment and included validated measures of insomnia symptoms, depression, anxiety, stress, and fatigue, as well as inflammatory signaling via nuclear factor (NF)–κB. RESULTS Using an intent-to-treat analysis, participants in the MAPs group showed significant improvement relative to those in the SHE group on the PSQI. With the MAPs intervention, the mean (SD) PSQIs were 10.2 (1.7) at baseline and 7.4 (1.9) at postintervention. With the SHE intervention, the mean (SD) PSQIs were 10.2 (1.8) at baseline and 9.1 (2.0) at postintervention. The between-group mean difference was 1.8 (95%CI, 0.6–2.9), with an effect size of 0.89. The MAPs group showed significant improvement relative to the SHE group on secondary health outcomes of insomnia symptoms, depression symptoms, fatigue interference, and fatigue severity (P

  8. Adolescent aggression and differentiation of self: guided mindfulness meditation in the service of individuation.

    PubMed

    Birnbaum, Liora

    2005-06-23

    This paper presents adolescent aggression as mediated by the level of differentiation of self. No research has directly addressed Bowen's notion that level of differentiation impacts child functioning including aggression. Level of differentiation is discussed in conjunction with social, gender and cultural norms as manifested in aggressive behavior. Female adolescent aggression is described as mainly relationship focused and expressed via verbal threats, intimidation and manipulation, while male aggression is described mainly as overt physical violence involving dominance and competitiveness. Research on differentiation focuses mainly on Western cultures that tend to be individualistic. Jewish-Israeli society is in transition from collectivistic to individualistic cultural values in the midst of ongoing hostilities. These processes create conflict regarding togetherness and individuality needs among adolescents, who are exposed to contradictory messages regarding separating and staying close. External as well as internal expressions of aggression (depression, suicide) are presented as coping strategies in the service of a wounded self-negotiating with the world. Guided mindfulness meditation is a powerful technique for facilitating healing and growth toward autonomy by helping adolescents connect to their inner voice. This technique may be especially useful in the adolescent search for self-awareness, meaning and life purpose. Bodily, cognitive and emotional experiences are treated as informative regarding the 'self' and facilitate expansion of self-perception and individuality.

  9. Mindfulness and Behavioral Parent Training: Commentary

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Eyberg, Sheila M.; Graham-Pole, John R.

    2005-01-01

    We review the description of mindfulness-based parent training (MBPT) and the argument that mindfulness practice offers a way to bring behavioral parent training (BPT) in line with current empirical knowledge. The strength of the proposed MBPT model is the attention it draws to process issues in BPT. We suggest, however, that it may not be…

  10. Heart rate variability is enhanced in controls but not maladaptive perfectionists during brief mindfulness meditation following stress-induction: A stratified-randomized trial.

    PubMed

    Azam, Muhammad Abid; Katz, Joel; Fashler, Samantha R; Changoor, Tina; Azargive, Saam; Ritvo, Paul

    2015-10-01

    Heart rate variability (HRV) is a vagal nerve-mediated biomarker of cardiac function used to investigate chronic illness, psychopathology, stress and, more recently, attention-regulation processes such as meditation. This study investigated HRV in relation to maladaptive perfectionism, a stress-related personality factor, and mindfulness meditation, a stress coping practice expected to elevate HRV, and thereby promote relaxation. Maladaptive perfectionists (n=21) and Controls (n=39) were exposed to a lab-based assessment in which HRV was measured during (1) a 5-minute baseline resting phase, (2) a 5-minute cognitive stress-induction phase, and (3) a post-stress phase. In the post-stress phase, participants were randomly assigned to a 10-minute audio-instructed mindfulness meditation condition or a 10-minute rest condition with audio-description of mindfulness meditation. Analyses revealed a significant elevation in HRV during meditation for Controls but not for Perfectionists. These results suggest that mindfulness meditation promotes relaxation following cognitive stress and that the perfectionist personality hinders relaxation possibly because of decreased cardiac vagal tone. The results are discussed in the context of developing psychophysiological models to advance therapeutic interventions for distressed populations. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  11. Functional neural correlates of mindfulness meditations in comparison with psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy and placebo effect. Is there a link?

    PubMed

    Chiesa, Alberto; Brambilla, Paolo; Serretti, Alessandro

    2010-06-01

    Chiesa A, Brambilla P, Serretti A. Functional neural correlates of mindfulness meditations in comparison with psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy and placebo effect. Is there a link? Mindfulness meditations (MM) are a group of meditation practices which are increasingly receiving attention. The aim of the present work is to review current findings about the neural correlates of MM and compare such findings with other specific and non-specific treatments. A literature search was undertaken using MEDLINE, ISI web of knowledge, the Cochrane database and references of retrieved articles. Studies which focused on the functional neural correlates of MM, psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy and placebo published up to August 2009 were screened in order to be considered for the inclusion. Main findings suggest that long-term MM practice allows a more flexible emotional regulation by engaging frontal cortical structures to dampen automatic amygdala activation. A large overlap exists between cerebral areas activated during MM, psychotherapy, pharmacotherapy and those activated by placebo. However, while MM, psychotherapy and placebo seem to act through a top-down regulation, antidepressants seem to act through a bottom-up process. MM seem to target specific brain areas related to emotions and emotional regulation. Similar mechanisms have been observed also in other interventions, particularly psychotherapy.

  12. The Emerging Role of Mindfulness Meditation as Effective Self-Management Strategy, Part 2: Clinical Implications for Chronic Pain, Substance Misuse, and Insomnia.

    PubMed

    Khusid, Marina A; Vythilingam, Meena

    2016-09-01

    Mindfulness-based interventions have been increasingly utilized in the management of chronic pain since 1982. This second review of a two-part series evaluates the efficacy, mechanism, and safety of mindfulness meditation for chronic pain, substance use disorder, tobacco use disorder, and insomnia frequently co-occurring after return from deployment. Standard databases were searched until August 4, 2015. 72 relevant systematic reviews and clinical trials met the inclusion criteria. The Strength of Recommendation Taxonomy was used to assess the quality of individual studies and to rate the strength of recommendation (SOR) for each clinical condition. Mindfulness-based interventions effectively and durably reduce pain intensity, improve functional status, pain-related psychological consequences, quality of life (SOR B). They can also be utilized as an adjunctive intervention aimed at improving health-related quality of life in individuals with substance use disorders interested in self-management strategies (SOR B). Mindfulness training for smokers used adjunctively with pharmacotherapy shows efficacy in maintaining abstinence comparable to that of the current standard of care (SOR B). Future large, well-designed randomized clinical trials using active controls in service members and veterans with co-occurring pain and psychological health conditions are necessary to provide more precise clinical guidance. Reprint & Copyright © 2016 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  13. Effects of Mindfulness Training on Body Awareness to Sexual Stimuli: Implications for Female Sexual Dysfunction

    PubMed Central

    Silverstein, R. Gina; Brown, Anne-Catharine H.; Roth, Harold D.; Britton, Willoughby B.

    2013-01-01

    Objectives Treatments of female sexual dysfunction have been largely unsuccessful because they do not address the psychological factors that underlie female sexuality. Negative self-evaluative processes interfere with the ability to attend and register physiological changes (interoceptive awareness). This study explores the effect of mindfulness meditation training on interoceptive awareness and the three categories of known barriers to healthy sexual functioning: attention, self-judgment, and clinical symptoms. Methods Forty-four college students (30 women) participated in either a 12-week course containing a “meditation laboratory” or an active control course with similar content or laboratory format. Interoceptive awareness was measured by reaction time in rating physiological response to sexual stimuli. Psychological barriers were assessed with self-reported measures of mindfulness and psychological well-being. Results Women who participated in the meditation training became significantly faster at registering their physiological responses (interoceptive awareness) to sexual stimuli compared with active controls (F(1,28) = 5.45, p = .03, ηp2 = 0.15). Female meditators also improved their scores on attention (t = 4.42, df = 11, p = .001), self-judgment, (t = 3.1, df = 11, p = .01), and symptoms of anxiety (t = −3.17, df = 11, p = .009) and depression (t = −2.13, df = 11, p < .05). Improvements in interoceptive awareness were correlated with improvements in the psychological barriers to healthy sexual functioning (r = −0.44 for attention, r = −0.42 for self-judgment, and r = 0.49 for anxiety; all p < .05). Conclusions Mindfulness-based improvements in interoceptive awareness highlight the potential of mindfulness training as a treatment of female sexual dysfunction. PMID:22048839

  14. 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction induces brain changes similar to traditional long-term meditation practice - A systematic review.

    PubMed

    Gotink, Rinske A; Meijboom, Rozanna; Vernooij, Meike W; Smits, Marion; Hunink, M G Myriam

    2016-10-01

    The objective of the current study was to systematically review the evidence of the effect of secular mindfulness techniques on function and structure of the brain. Based on areas known from traditional meditation neuroimaging results, we aimed to explore a neuronal explanation of the stress-reducing effects of the 8-week Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT) program. We assessed the effect of MBSR and MBCT (N=11, all MBSR), components of the programs (N=15), and dispositional mindfulness (N=4) on brain function and/or structure as assessed by (functional) magnetic resonance imaging. 21 fMRI studies and seven MRI studies were included (two studies performed both). The prefrontal cortex, the cingulate cortex, the insula and the hippocampus showed increased activity, connectivity and volume in stressed, anxious and healthy participants. Additionally, the amygdala showed decreased functional activity, improved functional connectivity with the prefrontal cortex, and earlier deactivation after exposure to emotional stimuli. Demonstrable functional and structural changes in the prefrontal cortex, cingulate cortex, insula and hippocampus are similar to changes described in studies on traditional meditation practice. In addition, MBSR led to changes in the amygdala consistent with improved emotion regulation. These findings indicate that MBSR-induced emotional and behavioral changes are related to functional and structural changes in the brain. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  15. Meditation awareness training for the treatment of workaholism: A controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Van Gordon, William; Shonin, Edo; Dunn, Thomas J; Garcia-Campayo, Javier; Demarzo, Marcelo M P; Griffiths, Mark D

    2017-06-01

    Background and aims Workaholism is a form of behavioral addiction that can lead to reduced life and job satisfaction, anxiety, depression, burnout, work-family conflict, and impaired productivity. Given the number of people affected, there is a need for more targeted workaholism treatments. Findings from previous case studies successfully utilizing second-generation mindfulness-based interventions (SG-MBIs) for treating behavioral addiction suggest that SG-MBIs may be suitable for treating workaholism. This study conducted a controlled trial to investigate the effects of an SG-MBI known as meditation awareness training (MAT) on workaholism. Methods Male and female adults suffering from workaholism (n = 73) were allocated to MAT or a waiting-list control group. Assessments were performed at pre-, post-, and 3-month follow-up phases. Results MAT participants demonstrated significant and sustained improvements over control-group participants in workaholism symptomatology, job satisfaction, work engagement, work duration, and psychological distress. Furthermore, compared to the control group, MAT participants demonstrated a significant reduction in hours spent working but without a decline in job performance. Discussion and conclusions MAT may be a suitable intervention for treating workaholism. Further controlled intervention studies investigating the effects of SG-MBIs on workaholism are warranted.

  16. Meditation awareness training for the treatment of workaholism: A controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Van Gordon, William; Shonin, Edo; Dunn, Thomas J.; Garcia-Campayo, Javier; Demarzo, Marcelo M. P.; Griffiths, Mark D.

    2017-01-01

    Background and aims Workaholism is a form of behavioral addiction that can lead to reduced life and job satisfaction, anxiety, depression, burnout, work–family conflict, and impaired productivity. Given the number of people affected, there is a need for more targeted workaholism treatments. Findings from previous case studies successfully utilizing second-generation mindfulness-based interventions (SG-MBIs) for treating behavioral addiction suggest that SG-MBIs may be suitable for treating workaholism. This study conducted a controlled trial to investigate the effects of an SG-MBI known as meditation awareness training (MAT) on workaholism. Methods Male and female adults suffering from workaholism (n = 73) were allocated to MAT or a waiting-list control group. Assessments were performed at pre-, post-, and 3-month follow-up phases. Results MAT participants demonstrated significant and sustained improvements over control-group participants in workaholism symptomatology, job satisfaction, work engagement, work duration, and psychological distress. Furthermore, compared to the control group, MAT participants demonstrated a significant reduction in hours spent working but without a decline in job performance. Discussion and conclusions MAT may be a suitable intervention for treating workaholism. Further controlled intervention studies investigating the effects of SG-MBIs on workaholism are warranted. PMID:28425778

  17. Mindfulness meditation for insomnia: A meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Gong, Hong; Ni, Chen-Xu; Liu, Yun-Zi; Zhang, Yi; Su, Wen-Jun; Lian, Yong-Jie; Peng, Wei; Jiang, Chun-Lei

    2016-10-01

    Insomnia is a widespread and debilitating condition that affects sleep quality and daily productivity. Although mindfulness meditation (MM) has been suggested as a potentially effective supplement to medical treatment for insomnia, no comprehensively quantitative research has been conducted in this field. Therefore, we performed a meta-analysis on the findings of related randomized controlled trials (RCTs) to evaluate the effects of MM on insomnia. Related publications in PubMed, EMBASE, the Cochrane Library and PsycINFO were searched up to July 2015. To calculate the standardized mean differences (SMDs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs), we used a fixed effect model when heterogeneity was negligible and a random effect model when heterogeneity was significant. A total of 330 participants in 6 RCTs that met the selection criteria were included in this meta-analysis. Analysis of overall effect revealed that MM significantly improved total wake time and sleep quality, but had no significant effects on sleep onset latency, total sleep time, wake after sleep onset, sleep efficiency, total wake time, ISI, PSQI and DBAS. Subgroup analyses showed that although there were no significant differences between MM and control groups in terms of total sleep time, significant effects were found in total wake time, sleep onset latency, sleep quality, sleep efficiency, and PSQI global score (absolute value of SMD range: 0.44-1.09, all p<0.05). The results suggest that MM may mildly improve some sleep parameters in patients with insomnia. MM can serve as an auxiliary treatment to medication for sleep complaints. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  18. Positive Effects of a Stress Reduction Program Based on Mindfulness Meditation in Brazilian Nursing Professionals: Qualitative and Quantitative Evaluation.

    PubMed

    dos Santos, Teresa Maria; Kozasa, Elisa Harumi; Carmagnani, Isabel Sampaio; Tanaka, Luiza Hiromi; Lacerda, Shirley Silva; Nogueira-Martins, Luiz Antonio

    2016-01-01

    Mindfulness meditation has been shown to effectively mitigate the negative effects of stress among nursing professionals, but in countries like Brazil, these practices are relatively unexplored. To evaluate the effects of a Stress Reduction Program (SRP) including mindfulness and loving kindness meditation among nursing professionals working in a Brazilian hospital setting. Pilot study with a mixed model using quantitative and qualitative methods was used to evaluate a group of participants. The quantitative data were analyzed at three different time points: pre-intervention, post-intervention, and follow-up. The qualitative data were analyzed at post-intervention. Hospital São Paulo (Brazil). Sample 13 nursing professionals, including nurses, technicians, and nursing assistants working in a hospital. Participants underwent mindfulness and loving kindness meditation during a period of six weeks. Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI), Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), State-Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI), Satisfaction With Life Scale (SWLS), Self-Compassion Scale (SCS), WHOQOL-BREF quality of life assessment, and Work Stress Scale (WSS). Qualitative data were collected via a group interview following six weeks participation in the SRP. The quantitative analyses revealed a significant reduction (P < .05) between pre-intervention and post-intervention scores for perceived stress, burnout, depression, and anxiety (trait). These variables showed no significant differences between post-intervention and follow-up scores. The WHOQOL-BREF revealed significant increase (P < .05) just in the physical and psychological domains at post-intervention scores, which remained at the follow-up. Qualitative results showed improvement in the reactivity to inner experience; a more attentive perception of internal and external experiences; greater attention and awareness of actions and attitudes at every moment; and a positive influence of the SRP in nursing

  19. Mechanisms of Mindfulness in Communication Training

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Huston, Daniel C.; Garland, Eric L.; Farb, Norman A. S.

    2011-01-01

    Mindfulness, an ancient spiritual practice, is becoming an increasingly popular component of communication courses, training individuals to reserve judgment in their dealings with others. However, the effects of mindfulness in communication courses are not well researched. We compared students taking an introductory communication course that…

  20. Credibility in Mindfulness Training for Young People

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Ennis, Harriet

    2018-01-01

    Providing the evidence-base to establish whether mindfulness for young people is beneficial is undoubtedly more challenging than it has been for adults. First of all there are the practical difficulties in training teachers to deliver mindfulness well. Yet this is what needs to be done; teachers with the class management and pedagogical expertise…

  1. Mindfulness and meditation as an adjunctive treatment for adolescents involved in the juvenile justice system: Is repairing the brain and nervous system possible?

    PubMed

    Winters, Drew E; Beerbower, Emily

    2017-08-01

    Adolescents involved in the juvenile justice system are prone to more traumatic events than other adolescents, leaving them in danger of developmental difficulties. Trauma exposure is predictive of poor outcomes including mental and physical health issues as well as criminal activity. Current treatment approaches either have a nominal effect on recidivism rates or increase the likelihood of future criminal offenses. This article explores adolescent brain development, the unique difficulties that juvenile justice youth face, and mindfulness meditation as an adjunctive treatment to system-based treatment. Mindfulness meditation may be a way to redress damage to the brain and facilitate healthy brain development, thus impacting prosocial behavior. Practice implications include integrating mindfulness meditation as an important part of rehabilitative efforts with juvenile justice youth.

  2. The Effects of Meditation Training on Vigilance Performance

    DTIC Science & Technology

    1988-05-01

    was demonstrated across several independent groups which received one- or two-hour sessions. Once it became known in the research community that a... communicate with subjects while they were inside the chamber. Illumination was provided by a 25-watt incandescent lamp located behind the monitor... communicate with me, just press the call button on the intercom. Do not interupt the task if at all possible. Meditation Instructions I will expain and

  3. Mindfulness meditation in older adults with postherpetic neuralgia: a randomized controlled pilot study.

    PubMed

    Meize-Grochowski, Robin; Shuster, George; Boursaw, Blake; DuVal, Michelle; Murray-Krezan, Cristina; Schrader, Ron; Smith, Bruce W; Herman, Carla J; Prasad, Arti

    2015-01-01

    This parallel-group, randomized controlled pilot study examined daily meditation in a diverse sample of older adults with postherpetic neuralgia. Block randomization was used to allocate participants to a treatment group (n = 13) or control group (n = 14). In addition to usual care, the treatment group practiced daily meditation for six weeks. All participants completed questionnaires at enrollment in the study, two weeks later, and six weeks after that, at the study's end. Participants recorded daily pain and fatigue levels in a diary, and treatment participants also noted meditation practice. Results at the 0.10 level indicated improvement in neuropathic, affective, and total pain scores for the treatment group, whereas affective pain worsened for the control group. Participants were able to adhere to the daily diary and meditation requirements in this feasibility pilot study. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  4. The Improvement of Emotion and Attention Regulation after a 6-Week Training of Focused Meditation: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Menezes, Carolina Baptista; Buratto, Luciano G.; Erthal, Fátima; Pereira, Mirtes G.; Bizarro, Lisiane

    2013-01-01

    Self-regulatory trainings can be an effective complementary treatment for mental health disorders. We investigated the effects of a six-week-focused meditation training on emotion and attention regulation in undergraduates randomly allocated to a meditation, a relaxation, or a wait-list control group. Assessment comprised a discrimination task that investigates the relationship between attentional load and emotional processing and self-report measures. For emotion regulation, results showed greater reduction in emotional interference in the low attentional load condition in meditators, particularly compared to relaxation. Only meditators presented a significant association between amount of weekly practice and the reduction in emotion interference in the task and significantly reduced image ratings of negative valence and arousal, perceived anxiety and difficulty during the task, and state and trait-anxiety. For attention regulation, response bias during the task was analyzed through signal detection theory. After training, meditation and relaxation significantly reduced bias in the high attentional load condition. Importantly, there was a dose-response effect on general bias: the lowest in meditation, increasing linearly across relaxation and wait-list. Only meditators reduced omissions in a concentrated attention test. Focused meditation seems to be an effective training for emotion and attention regulation and an alternative for treatments in the mental health context. PMID:23935694

  5. Educator Toolkits on Second Victim Syndrome, Mindfulness and Meditation, and Positive Psychology: The 2017 Resident Wellness Consensus Summit.

    PubMed

    Chung, Arlene S; Smart, Jon; Zdradzinski, Michael; Roth, Sarah; Gende, Alecia; Conroy, Kylie; Battaglioli, Nicole

    2018-03-01

    Burnout, depression, and suicidality among residents of all specialties have become a critical focus of attention for the medical education community. As part of the 2017 Resident Wellness Consensus Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada, resident participants from 31 programs collaborated in the Educator Toolkit workgroup. Over a seven-month period leading up to the summit, this workgroup convened virtually in the Wellness Think Tank, an online resident community, to perform a literature review and draft curricular plans on three core wellness topics. These topics were second victim syndrome, mindfulness and meditation, and positive psychology. At the live summit event, the workgroup expanded to include residents outside the Wellness Think Tank to obtain a broader consensus of the evidence-based toolkits for these three topics. Three educator toolkits were developed. The second victim syndrome toolkit has four modules, each with a pre-reading material and a leader (educator) guide. In the mindfulness and meditation toolkit, there are three modules with a leader guide in addition to a longitudinal, guided meditation plan. The positive psychology toolkit has two modules, each with a leader guide and a PowerPoint slide set. These toolkits provide educators the necessary resources, reading materials, and lesson plans to implement didactic sessions in their residency curriculum. Residents from across the world collaborated and convened to reach a consensus on high-yield-and potentially high-impact-lesson plans that programs can use to promote and improve resident wellness. These lesson plans may stand alone or be incorporated into a larger wellness curriculum.

  6. Educator Toolkits on Second Victim Syndrome, Mindfulness and Meditation, and Positive Psychology: The 2017 Resident Wellness Consensus Summit

    PubMed Central

    Smart, Jon; Zdradzinski, Michael; Roth, Sarah; Gende, Alecia; Conroy, Kylie; Battaglioli, Nicole

    2018-01-01

    Introduction Burnout, depression, and suicidality among residents of all specialties have become a critical focus of attention for the medical education community. Methods As part of the 2017 Resident Wellness Consensus Summit in Las Vegas, Nevada, resident participants from 31 programs collaborated in the Educator Toolkit workgroup. Over a seven-month period leading up to the summit, this workgroup convened virtually in the Wellness Think Tank, an online resident community, to perform a literature review and draft curricular plans on three core wellness topics. These topics were second victim syndrome, mindfulness and meditation, and positive psychology. At the live summit event, the workgroup expanded to include residents outside the Wellness Think Tank to obtain a broader consensus of the evidence-based toolkits for these three topics. Results Three educator toolkits were developed. The second victim syndrome toolkit has four modules, each with a pre-reading material and a leader (educator) guide. In the mindfulness and meditation toolkit, there are three modules with a leader guide in addition to a longitudinal, guided meditation plan. The positive psychology toolkit has two modules, each with a leader guide and a PowerPoint slide set. These toolkits provide educators the necessary resources, reading materials, and lesson plans to implement didactic sessions in their residency curriculum. Conclusion Residents from across the world collaborated and convened to reach a consensus on high-yield—and potentially high-impact—lesson plans that programs can use to promote and improve resident wellness. These lesson plans may stand alone or be incorporated into a larger wellness curriculum. PMID:29560061

  7. Mind-Body Practices and the Self: Yoga and Meditation Do Not Quiet the Ego but Instead Boost Self-Enhancement.

    PubMed

    Gebauer, Jochen E; Nehrlich, Andreas D; Stahlberg, Dagmar; Sedikides, Constantine; Hackenschmidt, Anke; Schick, Doreen; Stegmaier, Clara A; Windfelder, Cara C; Bruk, Anna; Mander, Johannes

    2018-06-01

    Mind-body practices enjoy immense public and scientific interest. Yoga and meditation are highly popular. Purportedly, they foster well-being by curtailing self-enhancement bias. However, this "ego-quieting" effect contradicts an apparent psychological universal, the self-centrality principle. According to this principle, practicing any skill renders that skill self-central, and self-centrality breeds self-enhancement bias. We examined those opposing predictions in the first tests of mind-body practices' self-enhancement effects. In Experiment 1, we followed 93 yoga students over 15 weeks, assessing self-centrality and self-enhancement bias after yoga practice (yoga condition, n = 246) and without practice (control condition, n = 231). In Experiment 2, we followed 162 meditators over 4 weeks (meditation condition: n = 246; control condition: n = 245). Self-enhancement bias was higher in the yoga (Experiment 1) and meditation (Experiment 2) conditions, and those effects were mediated by greater self-centrality. Additionally, greater self-enhancement bias mediated mind-body practices' well-being benefits. Evidently, neither yoga nor meditation fully quiet the ego; to the contrary, they boost self-enhancement.

  8. Mindfulness Meditation Targets Transdiagnostic Symptoms Implicated in Stress-Related Disorders: Understanding Relationships between Changes in Mindfulness, Sleep Quality, and Physical Symptoms.

    PubMed

    Greeson, Jeffrey M; Zarrin, Haley; Smoski, Moria J; Brantley, Jeffrey G; Lynch, Thomas R; Webber, Daniel M; Hall, Martica H; Suarez, Edward C; Wolever, Ruth Q

    2018-01-01

    Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) is an 8-week meditation program known to improve anxiety, depression, and psychological well-being. Other health-related effects, such as sleep quality, are less well established, as are the psychological processes associated with therapeutic change. This prospective, observational study ( n = 213) aimed to determine whether perseverative cognition, indicated by rumination and intrusive thoughts, and emotion regulation, measured by avoidance, thought suppression, emotion suppression, and cognitive reappraisal, partly accounted for the hypothesized relationship between changes in mindfulness and two health-related outcomes: sleep quality and stress-related physical symptoms. As expected, increased mindfulness following the MBSR program was directly correlated with decreased sleep disturbance ( r = -0.21, p = 0.004) and decreased stress-related physical symptoms ( r = -0.38, p < 0.001). Partial correlations revealed that pre-post changes in rumination, unwanted intrusive thoughts, thought suppression, experiential avoidance, emotion suppression, and cognitive reappraisal each uniquely accounted for up to 32% of the correlation between the change in mindfulness and change in sleep disturbance and up to 30% of the correlation between the change in mindfulness and change in stress-related physical symptoms. Results suggest that the stress-reducing effects of MBSR are due, in part, to improvements in perseverative cognition and emotion regulation, two "transdiagnostic" mental processes that cut across stress-related disorders.

  9. A RCT Comparing Daily Mindfulness Meditations, Biofeedback Exercises, and Daily Physical Exercise on Attention Control, Executive Functioning, Mindful Awareness, Self-Compassion, and Worrying in Stressed Young Adults.

    PubMed

    de Bruin, Esther I; van der Zwan, J Esi; Bögels, Susan M

    2016-01-01

    Our Western society is characterized by multitasking, competition, and constant time pressure. Negative effects of stress for the individual (anxiety, depression, somatic complaints) and for organizations and society (costs due to work absence) are very high. Thus, time-efficient self-help interventions to address these issues are necessary. This study assessed the effects of daily mindfulness meditations (MM) versus daily heart rate variability biofeedback (HRV-BF) and daily physical exercise (PE) on attention control, executive functioning, mindful awareness, self-compassion, and worrying. Young adults ( n  = 75, age range 18 to 40) with elevated stress levels were randomized to MM, HRV-BF, or PE, and measurements were taken at pre-test, post-test, and follow-up. Interventions in all three groups were self-guided and lasted for 5 weeks. Generalized estimating equation analyses showed that overall, all three interventions were effective and did not differ from each other. However, practice time differed between groups, with participants in the PE group practicing much more than participants in the other two groups. Therefore, additional analyses were carried out in two subsamples. The optimal dose sample included only those participants who practiced for at least 70 % of the total prescribed time. In the equal dose sample, home practice intensity was equal for all three groups. Again, the effects of the three interventions did not differ. In conclusion, MM, HRV-BF, and PE are all effective self-help methods to improve attention control, executive functioning, mindful awareness, self-compassion, and worrying, and mindfulness meditation was not found to be more effective than HRV-biofeedback or physical exercise for these cognitive processes.

  10. Mindfulness Meditation for Adolescent Stress and Well-Being: A Systematic Review of the Literature with Implications for School Health Programs

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Erbe, Ryan; Lohrmann, David

    2015-01-01

    Stress poses one of the biggest threats to the health and well-being of young people. Adolescents are especially vulnerable to the negative effects of stress due to developmental factors. Recently, Mindfulness Meditation (MM) programs have been implemented into both clinical and school-based settings to reduce stress and promote the health of…

  11. Personal and Planetary Well-Being: Mindfulness Meditation, Pro-Environmental Behavior and Personal Quality of Life in a Survey from the Social Justice and Ecological Sustainability Movement

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Jacob, Jeffrey; Jovic, Emily; Brinkerhoff, Merlin B.

    2009-01-01

    Employing data from a mailed survey of a sample of ecologically and spiritually aware respondents (N = 829), the study tests the hypothesized relationship between ecologically sustainable behavior (ESB) and subjective well-being (SWB). The proposed link between ESB and SWB is the spiritual practice of mindfulness meditation (MM). In multiple…

  12. MAP training: combining meditation and aerobic exercise reduces depression and rumination while enhancing synchronized brain activity

    PubMed Central

    Alderman, B L; Olson, R L; Brush, C J; Shors, T J

    2016-01-01

    Mental and physical (MAP) training is a novel clinical intervention that combines mental training through meditation and physical training through aerobic exercise. The intervention was translated from neuroscientific studies indicating that MAP training increases neurogenesis in the adult brain. Each session consisted of 30 min of focused-attention (FA) meditation and 30 min of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise. Fifty-two participants completed the 8-week intervention, which consisted of two sessions per week. Following the intervention, individuals with major depressive disorder (MDD; n=22) reported significantly less depressive symptoms and ruminative thoughts. Typical healthy individuals (n=30) also reported less depressive symptoms at follow-up. Behavioral and event-related potential indices of cognitive control were collected at baseline and follow-up during a modified flanker task. Following MAP training, N2 and P3 component amplitudes increased relative to baseline, especially among individuals with MDD. These data indicate enhanced neural responses during the detection and resolution of conflicting stimuli. Although previous research has supported the individual beneficial effects of aerobic exercise and meditation for depression, these findings indicate that a combination of the two may be particularly effective in increasing cognitive control processes and decreasing ruminative thought patterns. PMID:26836414

  13. Improvements in emotion regulation following mindfulness meditation: Effects on depressive symptoms and perceived stress in younger breast cancer survivors.

    PubMed

    Boyle, Chloe C; Stanton, Annette L; Ganz, Patricia A; Crespi, Catherine M; Bower, Julienne E

    2017-04-01

    Mindfulness meditation reduces psychological distress among individuals with cancer. However, mechanisms for intervention effects have not been fully determined. This study tested emotion regulation strategies as mediators of intervention effects in a sample of younger women treated for breast cancer, a group at risk for psychological distress. We focused on two distinct strategies targeted by the intervention-rumination and self-kindness-and further examined the broader construct of mindfulness as a potential mediator. Women (n = 71) with Stage 0-III breast cancer diagnosed at or before age 50 who had completed cancer treatment were randomly assigned to a 6-week mindfulness intervention or wait-list control group. Assessments occurred at study entry, postintervention, and a 3-month follow-up. In single mediator analyses, increases in self-kindness (CIB [-7.83, -1.93]), decreases in rumination (CIB [-5.05, -.31]), and increases in mindfulness (CIB [-6.58, -.82]) each mediated reductions in depressive symptoms from pre- to postintervention. Increases in self-kindness also mediated reductions in perceived stress (CIB [-5.37, -.62]) from pre- to postintervention, and increases in self-kindness (CIB [-5.67, -.22]) and in mindfulness (CIB [-5.51, -.16]) each mediated intervention effects on perceived stress from preintervention to 3-month follow-up. In multiple mediator analysis, only self-kindness mediated intervention effects on depressive symptoms from pre- to postintervention (CIB [-6.41, -.61]), and self-kindness and mindfulness together mediated intervention effects on perceived stress from preintervention to follow-up (CIB [-6.77, -.35]). Self-kindness played a consistent role in reducing distress in younger women with breast cancer. The efficacy of this understudied emotion regulation strategy should be evaluated in other clinical populations. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2017 APA, all rights reserved).

  14. Construct Validity of the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire in Meditating and Nonmeditating Samples

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Baer, Ruth A.; Smith, Gregory T.; Lykins, Emily; Button, Daniel; Krietemeyer, Jennifer; Sauer, Shannon; Walsh, Erin; Duggan, Danielle; Williams, J. Mark G.

    2008-01-01

    Previous research on assessment of mindfulness by self-report suggests that it may include five component skills: observing, describing, acting with awareness, nonjudging of inner experience, and nonreactivity to inner experience. These elements of mindfulness can be measured with the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ). The authors…

  15. The Effects of a Mindfulness Meditation Program on Quality of Life in Cancer Outpatients: An Exploratory Study.

    PubMed

    Chang, Yu-Yun; Wang, Li-Yu; Liu, Chia-Yu; Chien, Tsai-Ju; Chen, I-Ju; Hsu, Chung-Hua

    2018-06-01

    Numerous studies have investigated the efficacy of mindfulness meditation (MM) in managing quality of life (QoL) in cancer populations, yet only a few have studied the Asian population. The aim of this exploratory study is to evaluate the effect of a MM program on the QoL outcomes in Taiwanese cancer outpatients. Patients with various cancer diagnoses were enrolled and assigned to the MM group and usual care (UC) group. The meditation intervention consisted of 3 sessions held monthly. The outcomes of the whole intervention were measured using the World Health Organization Quality of Life (WHOQOL-BREF) instrument. A total of 35 participants in the MM group and 34 in the UC group completed the study. The results showed that the postintervention scores were significantly higher than the preintervention scores in the MM group. In the UC group, there was no significant difference between preintervention and postintervention scores, except for the lower environment domain scores. There was no significant difference between the follow-up scores and postintervention scores in the MM group, indicating that improvement can be maintained for 3 months after completing the MM course. The present study provides preliminary outcomes of the effects on the QoL in Taiwanese cancer patients. The results suggest that MM may serve as an effective mind-body intervention for cancer patients to improve their QoL, and the benefits can persist over a 3-month follow-up period. This occurred in a diverse cancer population with various cancer diagnoses, strengthening the possibility of general use.

  16. Long-term meditation training induced changes in the operational synchrony of default mode network modules during a resting state.

    PubMed

    Fingelkurts, Andrew A; Fingelkurts, Alexander A; Kallio-Tamminen, Tarja

    2016-02-01

    Using theoretical analysis of self-consciousness concept and experimental evidence on the brain default mode network (DMN) that constitutes the neural signature of self-referential processes, we hypothesized that the anterior and posterior subnets comprising the DMN should show differences in their integrity as a function of meditation training. Functional connectivity within DMN and its subnets (measured by operational synchrony) has been measured in ten novice meditators using an electroencephalogram (EEG) recording in a pre-/post-meditation intervention design. We have found that while the whole DMN was clearly suppressed, different subnets of DMN responded differently after 4 months of meditation training: The strength of EEG operational synchrony in the right and left posterior modules of the DMN decreased in resting post-meditation condition compared to a pre-meditation condition, whereas the frontal DMN module on the contrary exhibited an increase in the strength of EEG operational synchrony. These findings combined with published data on functional-anatomic heterogeneity within the DMN and on trait subjective experiences commonly found following meditation allow us to propose that the first-person perspective and the sense of agency (the witnessing observer) are presented by the frontal DMN module, while the posterior modules of the DMN are generally responsible for the experience of the continuity of 'I' as embodied and localized within bodily space. Significance of these findings is discussed.

  17. A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Yoga and Mindfulness Meditation in Prison.

    PubMed

    Auty, Katherine M; Cope, Aiden; Liebling, Alison

    2017-05-01

    This article presents results from a systematic review and two meta-analyses that examine whether prison yoga and meditation programs are significantly related to increased psychological well-being and improvements in the behavioural functioning of prisoners. Comprehensive searches of the empirical literature were conducted up to December 2014. Participants who completed yoga or meditation program in prison experienced a small increase in their psychological well-being (Cohen's d = 0.46, 95% confidence interval [CI] = [0.39, 0.54]) and a small improvement in their behavioural functioning (Cohen's d = 0.30, 95% CI = [0.20, 0.40]). Moderator analyses suggested that there was a significant difference in effect sizes for programs of longer duration and less intensity, compared with those that were shorter and more intensive, for psychological well-being. Programs of longer duration had a slightly larger positive effect on behavioural functioning ( d = 0.424), compared with more intensive programs ( d = 0.418). Overall, the evidence suggests that yoga and meditation have favourable effects on prisoners.

  18. Randomized Controlled Pilot Trial of Mindfulness Training for Stress Reduction during Pregnancy

    PubMed Central

    Guardino, Christine M.; Dunkel Schetter, Christine; Bower, Julienne E.; Lu, Michael C.; Smalley, Susan L.

    2014-01-01

    This randomized controlled pilot trial tested a 6-week mindfulness-based intervention in a sample of pregnant women experiencing high levels of perceived stress and pregnancy anxiety. Forty-seven women enrolled between 10 and 25 weeks gestation were randomly assigned to either a series of weekly Mindful Awareness Practices (MAPS) classes (n = 24) with home practice or to a reading control condition (n = 23). Hierarchical linear models of between-group differences in change over time demonstrated that participants in the mindfulness intervention experienced larger decreases from pre-to post-intervention in pregnancy-specific anxiety and pregnancy-related anxiety than participants in the reading control condition. However, these effects were not sustained through follow-up at six weeks post-intervention. Participants in both groups experienced increased mindfulness, as well as decreased perceived stress and state anxiety over the course of the intervention and follow-up periods. This study is one of the first randomized controlled pilot trials of a mindfulness meditation intervention during pregnancy and provides some evidence that mindfulness training during pregnancy may effectively reduce pregnancy-related anxiety and worry. We discuss some of the dilemmas in pursuing this translational strategy and offer suggestions for researchers interested in conducting mind-body interventions during pregnancy. PMID:24180264

  19. Pons to Posterior Cingulate Functional Projections Predict Affective Processing Changes in the Elderly Following Eight Weeks of Meditation Training.

    PubMed

    Shao, Robin; Keuper, Kati; Geng, Xiujuan; Lee, Tatia M C

    2016-08-01

    Evidence indicates meditation facilitates affective regulation and reduces negative affect. It also influences resting-state functional connectivity between affective networks and the posterior cingulate (PCC)/precuneus, regions critically implicated in self-referential processing. However, no longitudinal study employing active control group has examined the effect of meditation training on affective processing, PCC/precuneus connectivity, and their association. Here, we report that eight-week meditation, but not relaxation, training 'neutralized' affective processing of positive and negative stimuli in healthy elderly participants. Additionally, meditation versus relaxation training increased the positive connectivity between the PCC/precuneus and the pons, the direction of which was largely directed from the pons to the PCC/precuneus, as revealed by dynamic causal modeling. Further, changes in connectivity between the PCC/precuneus and pons predicted changes in affective processing after meditation training. These findings indicate meditation promotes self-referential affective regulation based on increased regulatory influence of the pons on PCC/precuneus, which new affective-processing strategy is employed across both resting state and when evaluating affective stimuli. Such insights have clinical implications on interventions on elderly individuals with affective disorders. Copyright © 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  20. Mindful Parenting Training in Child Psychiatric Settings: Heightened Parental Mindfulness Reduces Parents' and Children's Psychopathology.

    PubMed

    Meppelink, Renée; de Bruin, Esther I; Wanders-Mulder, Femy H; Vennik, Corinne J; Bögels, Susan M

    Mindful parenting training is an application of mindfulness-based interventions that allows parents to perceive their children with unbiased and open attention without prejudgment and become more attentive and less reactive in their parenting. This study examined the effectiveness of mindful parenting training in a clinical setting on child and parental psychopathology and of mindfulness as a predictor of these outcomes. Seventy parents of 70 children (mean age = 8.7) who were referred to a mental health care clinic because of their children's psychopathology participated in an 8-week mindful parenting training. Parents completed questionnaires at pre-test, post-test and 8-week follow-up. A significant decrease was found in children's and parents' psychopathology and a significant increase in mindful parenting and in general mindful awareness. Improvement in general mindful awareness, but not mindful parenting, was found to predict a reduction in parental psychopathology, whereas improvement in mindful parenting, but not general mindful awareness, predicted the reduction of child psychopathology. This study adds to the emerging body of evidence indicating that mindful parenting training is effective for parents themselves and, indirectly, for their children suffering from psychopathology. As parents' increased mindful parenting, but not increased general mindfulness, is found to predict child psychopathology, mindful parenting training rather than general mindfulness training appears to be the training of choice. However, RCTs comparing mindful parenting to general mindfulness training and to parent management training are needed in order to shed more light on the effects of mindful parenting and mechanisms of change.

  1. Being present at school: implementing mindfulness in schools.

    PubMed

    Bostic, Jeff Q; Nevarez, Michael D; Potter, Mona P; Prince, Jefferson B; Benningfield, Margaret M; Aguirre, Blaise A

    2015-04-01

    Developmentally sensitive efforts to help students learn, practice, and regularly use mindfulness tactics easily and readily in and beyond the classroom are important to help them manage future stresses. Mindfulness emphasizes consciously focusing the mind in the present moment, purposefully, without judgment or attachment. Meditation extends this to setting aside time and places to practice mindfulness, and additionally, yoga includes physical postures and breathing techniques that enhance mindfulness and meditation. Several mindfulness programs and techniques have been applied in schools, with positive benefits reported. Some elements of these programs require modifications to be sensitive to the developmental state of the children receiving mindfulness training. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Rhythmic brain stimulation reduces anxiety-related behavior in a mouse model based on meditation training.

    PubMed

    Weible, Aldis P; Piscopo, Denise M; Rothbart, Mary K; Posner, Michael I; Niell, Cristopher M

    2017-03-07

    Meditation training induces changes at both the behavioral and neural levels. A month of meditation training can reduce self-reported anxiety and other dimensions of negative affect. It also can change white matter as measured by diffusion tensor imaging and increase resting-state midline frontal theta activity. The current study tests the hypothesis that imposing rhythms in the mouse anterior cingulate cortex (ACC), by using optogenetics to induce oscillations in activity, can produce behavioral changes. Mice were randomly assigned to groups and were given twenty 30-min sessions of light pulses delivered at 1, 8, or 40 Hz over 4 wk or were assigned to a no-laser control condition. Before and after the month all mice were administered a battery of behavioral tests. In the light/dark box, mice receiving cortical stimulation had more light-side entries, spent more time in the light, and made more vertical rears than mice receiving rhythmic cortical suppression or no manipulation. These effects on light/dark box exploratory behaviors are associated with reduced anxiety and were most pronounced following stimulation at 1 and 8 Hz. No effects were seen related to basic motor behavior or exploration during tests of novel object and location recognition. These data support a relationship between lower-frequency oscillations in the mouse ACC and the expression of anxiety-related behaviors, potentially analogous to effects seen with human practitioners of some forms of meditation.

  3. The effects of mindfulness and relaxation training for insomnia (MRTI) on postmenopausal women: a pilot study.

    PubMed

    Garcia, Marcelo C; Kozasa, Elisa H; Tufik, Sergio; Mello, Luiz Eugênio A M; Hachul, Helena

    2018-05-21

    The aim of the study was to evaluate the effects of mindfulness and relaxation training for insomnia on insomnia and quality of life in postmenopausal women. Thirty postmenopausal women aged 50 to 65 years, who were not using hormone therapy, and had a diagnosis of insomnia and an apnea-hypopnea index of less than 15, were randomly assigned to two groups: a mindfulness intervention group and a control group. They were assessed before the intervention, and 8 weeks after its completion using questionnaires assessing sleep quality (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index), insomnia (Insomnia Severity Index), quality of life in menopause (Menopause-Specific Quality of Life), menopausal symptoms (Kupperman Menopausal Index), and level of attention (Mindfulness Awareness Attention Scale). They were also assessed through ambulatory polysomnography. This is a pilot study and is limited by its small sample size. The results of the questionnaires showed significant differences in the group that received mindfulness training compared with the control group, namely, improvements in sleep quality, a reduction in the severity of insomnia, a better quality of life, improved attention levels, and a reduction in menopausal and vasomotor symptoms. Polysomnography results showed no differences between the groups. Eight weeks mindfulness meditation training improved sleep quality, quality of life, attention levels, and reduced vasomotor symptoms in postmenopausal women with insomnia.

  4. Mindfulness & Self-Compassion Meditation for Combat Posttraumatic Stress Disorder: Randomized Controlled Trial and Mechanistic Study

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2013-10-01

    VA Ann Arbor PTSD clinic; and c.) conducting a translational neuroimaging mechanistic study with pre- and post fMRI and neurocognitive testing . 15...might be helpful – both in terms of the psychological characteristics of change, and in terms of neural mechanisms in the brain. Mindfulness...neurocognitive testing . Our novel 16 week Mindfulness and Self-compassion group intervention, “Mindfulness-based Exposure therapy” (MBET), was developed

  5. A mixed-methods pilot study of the acceptability and effectiveness of a brief meditation and mindfulness intervention for people with diabetes and coronary heart disease.

    PubMed

    Keyworth, Chris; Knopp, Jasmin; Roughley, Kate; Dickens, Chris; Bold, Stuart; Coventry, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Mindfulness-based interventions can successfully target negative perseverative cognitions such as worry and thought suppression, but their acceptability and effectiveness in people with long-term conditions is uncertain. We therefore pilot tested a six-week meditation and mindfulness intervention in people (n = 40) with diabetes mellitus and coronary heart disease. We used a sequential mixed-methods approach that measured change in worry and thought suppression and qualitatively explored acceptability, feasibility, and user experience with a focus group (n = 11) and in-depth interviews (n = 16). The intervention was highly acceptable, with 90% completing ≥5 sessions. Meditation and mindfulness skills led to improved sleep, greater relaxation, and more-accepting approaches to illness and illness experience. At the end of the six-week meditation course, worry, and thought suppression were significantly reduced. Positive impacts of mindfulness-based interventions on psychological health may relate to acquisition and development of meta-cognitive skills but this needs experimental confirmation.

  6. A Mixed-Methods Pilot Study of the Acceptability and Effectiveness of a Brief Meditation and Mindfulness Intervention for People with Diabetes and Coronary Heart Disease

    PubMed Central

    Keyworth, Chris; Knopp, Jasmin; Roughley, Kate; Dickens, Chris; Bold, Stuart; Coventry, Peter

    2014-01-01

    Mindfulness-based interventions can successfully target negative perseverative cognitions such as worry and thought suppression, but their acceptability and effectiveness in people with long-term conditions is uncertain. We therefore pilot tested a six-week meditation and mindfulness intervention in people (n = 40) with diabetes mellitus and coronary heart disease. We used a sequential mixed-methods approach that measured change in worry and thought suppression and qualitatively explored acceptability, feasibility, and user experience with a focus group (n = 11) and in-depth interviews (n = 16). The intervention was highly acceptable, with 90% completing ≥5 sessions. Meditation and mindfulness skills led to improved sleep, greater relaxation, and more-accepting approaches to illness and illness experience. At the end of the six-week meditation course, worry, and thought suppression were significantly reduced. Positive impacts of mindfulness-based interventions on psychological health may relate to acquisition and development of meta-cognitive skills but this needs experimental confirmation. PMID:24754440

  7. The Effects of Mind Subtraction Meditation on Breast Cancer Survivors' Psychological and Spiritual Well-being and Sleep Quality: A Randomized Controlled Trial in South Korea.

    PubMed

    Yun, Mi Ra; Song, Misoon; Jung, Kyung-Hae; Yu, Boas J; Lee, Kyung Jae

    Most breast cancer survivors experience psychological and spiritual distress, including depression, anxiety, perceived stress, and loss of meaningfulness in life. This distress can negatively impact physical health, quality of life, and quality of sleep. The aim of this study was to compare and examine the effectiveness of mind subtraction meditation (MSM) and a self-management education (SME) group on breast cancer survivors. A randomized controlled trial was conducted with South Korean female breast cancer survivors (stages I-III). Self-reported questionnaires were administered to both MSM group (n = 22) and SME group (n = 24) to measure psychological and spiritual well-being, as well as quality of sleep. Compared with the SME group, the MSM group reported a significant decrease in depression (P = .034), anxiety (P = .036), and perceived stress (P = .009) and an increase in quality of life (P < .001), satisfaction with life (P < .001), posttraumatic growth (P = .007), and quality of sleep (P = .010). Mind subtraction meditation may have positive therapeutic effects among breast cancer survivors. This meditation program may be useful to manage psychological and spiritual distress, as well as improve quality of life and sleep, in clinical settings among breast cancer survivors. This study demonstrated the clinical effectiveness and the feasibility of applying the MSM method to breast cancer survivors. The participants had a high attendance rate in the program, which speaks to the likelihood of the applicability of the meditation program on an outpatient basis.

  8. The exploration of meditation in the neuroscience of attention and consciousness.

    PubMed

    Raffone, Antonino; Srinivasan, Narayanan

    2010-02-01

    Many recent behavioral and neuroscientific studies have revealed the importance of investigating meditation states and traits to achieve an increased understanding of cognitive and affective neuroplasticity, attention and self-awareness, as well as for their increasingly recognized clinical relevance. The investigation of states and traits related to meditation has especially pronounced implications for the neuroscience of attention, consciousness, self-awareness, empathy and theory of mind. In this article we present the main features of meditation-based mental training and characterize the current scientific approach to meditation states and traits with special reference to attention and consciousness, in light of the articles contributed to this issue.

  9. Meditation programs for veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder: Aggregate findings from a multi-site evaluation.

    PubMed

    Heffner, Kathi L; Crean, Hugh F; Kemp, Jan E

    2016-05-01

    Interest in meditation to manage posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms is increasing. Few studies have examined the effectiveness of meditation programs offered to Veterans within Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) mental health services. The current study addresses this gap using data from a multisite VA demonstration project. Evaluation data collected at 6 VA sites (N = 391 Veterans) before and after a meditation program, and a treatment-as-usual (TAU) program, were examined here using random effects meta-analyses. Site-specific and aggregate between group effect sizes comparing meditation programs to TAU were determined for PTSD severity measured by clinical interview and self-report. Additional outcomes included experiential avoidance and mindfulness. In aggregate, analyses showed medium effect sizes for meditation programs compared to TAU for PTSD severity (clinical interview: effect size (ES) = -0.32; self-report: ES = -0.39). Similarly sized effects of meditation programs were found for overall mindfulness (ES = 0.41) and 1 specific aspect of mindfulness, nonreactivity to inner experience (ES = .37). Additional findings suggested meditation type and program completion differences each moderated program effects. VA-sponsored meditation programs show promise for reducing PTSD severity in Veterans receiving mental health services. Where meditation training fits within mental health services, and for whom programs will be of interest and effective, require further clarification. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  10. Mindfulness meditation lowers muscle sympathetic nerve activity and blood pressure in African-American males with chronic kidney disease.

    PubMed

    Park, Jeanie; Lyles, Robert H; Bauer-Wu, Susan

    2014-07-01

    Mindfulness meditation (MM) is a stress-reduction technique that may have real biological effects on hemodynamics but has never previously been tested in chronic kidney disease (CKD) patients. In addition, the mechanisms underlying the potential blood pressure (BP)-lowering effects of MM are unknown. We sought to determine whether MM acutely lowers BP in CKD patients, and whether these hemodynamic changes are mediated by a reduction in sympathetic nerve activity. In 15 hypertensive African-American (AA) males with CKD, we conducted a randomized, crossover study in which participants underwent 14 min of MM or 14 min of BP education (control intervention) during two separate random-order study visits. Muscle sympathetic nerve activity (MSNA), beat-to-beat arterial BP, heart rate (HR), and respiratory rate (RR) were continuously measured at baseline and during each intervention. A subset had a third study visit to undergo controlled breathing (CB) to determine whether a reduction in RR alone was sufficient in exacting hemodynamic changes. We observed a significantly greater reduction in systolic BP, diastolic BP, mean arterial pressure, and HR, as well as a significantly greater reduction in MSNA, during MM compared with the control intervention. Participants had a significantly lower RR during MM; however, in contrast to MM, CB alone did not reduce BP, HR, or MSNA. MM acutely lowers BP and HR in AA males with hypertensive CKD, and these hemodynamic effects may be mediated by a reduction in sympathetic nerve activity. RR is significantly lower during MM, but CB alone without concomitant meditation does not acutely alter hemodynamics or sympathetic activity in CKD.

  11. MAP Training My Brain™: Meditation Plus Aerobic Exercise Lessens Trauma of Sexual Violence More Than Either Activity Alone

    PubMed Central

    Shors, Tracey J.; Chang, Han Y. M.; Millon, Emma M.

    2018-01-01

    Sexual violence against women often leads to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a mental illness characterized by intrusive thoughts and memories about the traumatic event (Shors and Millon, 2016). These mental processes are obviously generated by the brain but often felt in the body. MAP Training My Brain™ is a novel clinical intervention that combines mental training of the brain with physical training of the body (Curlik and Shors, 2013; Shors et al., 2014). Each training session begins with 20-min of sitting meditation, followed by 10-min of slow-walking meditation, and ending with 30-min of aerobic exercise at 60–80% of the maximum heart rate (see maptrainmybrain.com). In previous studies, the combination of mental and physical (MAP) training together significantly reduced symptoms of depression and ruminative thoughts, while reducing anxiety (Shors et al., 2014, 2017; Alderman et al., 2016). We also documented positive changes in brain activity during cognitive control and whole-body oxygen consumption in various populations. In the present pilot study, we asked whether the combination of meditation and aerobic exercise during MAP Training would reduce trauma-related thoughts, ruminations, and memories in women and if so, whether the combination would be more effective than either activity alone. To test this hypothesis, interventions were provided to a group of women (n = 105), many of whom had a history of sexual violence (n = 32). Groups were trained with (1) MAP Training, (2) meditation alone, (3) aerobic exercise alone, or (4) not trained. Individuals in training groups completed two sessions a week for at least 6 weeks. MAP Training My Brain™ significantly reduced post-traumatic cognitions and ruminative thoughts in women with a history of sexual violence, whereas meditation alone, and exercise alone did not. MAP Training significantly enhanced a measure of self-worth, whereas meditation and exercise alone did not. Similar positive effects

  12. MAP Training My Brain™: Meditation Plus Aerobic Exercise Lessens Trauma of Sexual Violence More Than Either Activity Alone.

    PubMed

    Shors, Tracey J; Chang, Han Y M; Millon, Emma M

    2018-01-01

    Sexual violence against women often leads to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), a mental illness characterized by intrusive thoughts and memories about the traumatic event (Shors and Millon, 2016). These mental processes are obviously generated by the brain but often felt in the body. MAP Training My Brain ™ is a novel clinical intervention that combines mental training of the brain with physical training of the body (Curlik and Shors, 2013; Shors et al., 2014). Each training session begins with 20-min of sitting meditation, followed by 10-min of slow-walking meditation, and ending with 30-min of aerobic exercise at 60-80% of the maximum heart rate (see maptrainmybrain.com). In previous studies, the combination of mental and physical (MAP) training together significantly reduced symptoms of depression and ruminative thoughts, while reducing anxiety (Shors et al., 2014, 2017; Alderman et al., 2016). We also documented positive changes in brain activity during cognitive control and whole-body oxygen consumption in various populations. In the present pilot study, we asked whether the combination of meditation and aerobic exercise during MAP Training would reduce trauma-related thoughts, ruminations, and memories in women and if so, whether the combination would be more effective than either activity alone. To test this hypothesis, interventions were provided to a group of women ( n = 105), many of whom had a history of sexual violence ( n = 32). Groups were trained with (1) MAP Training, (2) meditation alone, (3) aerobic exercise alone, or (4) not trained. Individuals in training groups completed two sessions a week for at least 6 weeks. MAP Training My Brain ™ significantly reduced post-traumatic cognitions and ruminative thoughts in women with a history of sexual violence, whereas meditation alone, and exercise alone did not. MAP Training significantly enhanced a measure of self-worth, whereas meditation and exercise alone did not. Similar positive effects

  13. Signal or noise: brain network interactions underlying the experience and training of mindfulness.

    PubMed

    Mooneyham, Benjamin W; Mrazek, Michael D; Mrazek, Alissa J; Schooler, Jonathan W

    2016-04-01

    A broad set of brain regions has been associated with the experience and training of mindfulness. Many of these regions lie within key intrinsic brain networks, including the executive control, salience, and default networks. In this paper, we review the existing literature on the cognitive neuroscience of mindfulness through the lens of network science. We describe the characteristics of the intrinsic brain networks implicated in mindfulness and summarize the relevant findings pertaining to changes in functional connectivity (FC) within and between these networks. Convergence across these findings suggests that mindfulness may be associated with increased FC between two regions within the default network: the posterior cingulate cortex and the ventromedial prefrontal cortex. Additionally, extensive meditation experience may be associated with increased FC between the insula and the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. However, little consensus has emerged within the existing literature owing to the diversity of operational definitions of mindfulness, neuroimaging methods, and network characterizations. We describe several challenges to develop a coherent cognitive neuroscience of mindfulness and to provide detailed recommendations for future research. © 2016 New York Academy of Sciences.

  14. Training Emotion Cultivates Morality: How Loving-Kindness Meditation Hones Compassion and Increases Prosocial Behavior.

    PubMed

    Bankard, Joseph

    2015-12-01

    Traditional moral philosophy has long focused on rationality, principled thinking, and good old-fashioned willpower, but recent evidence strongly suggests that moral judgments and prosocial behavior are more heavily influenced by emotion and intuition. As the evidence mounts, rational traditions emphasizing deliberative analysis and conscious decision making are called into question. The first section highlights some compelling evidence supporting the primacy of affective states in motivating moral judgments and behavior. The real challenge is finding a way to align intuition with desired behavior. In cool reflective states, one may desire to be a kind and loving person. But when it is time to act, the moment is often accompanied by strong affect-laden intuitions. I argue that if affective states are the primary motivators of behavior, then moral sentiments must be trained through habituation in order to increase prosocial behavior. The second section provides empirical evidence linking emotional training with increased prosociality. To highlight this connection, focus is placed on the relationship between habitual meditation training, compassion, and prosocial behavior. Recent studies by Antoine Lutz, Richard Davidson, Susanne Leiberg, and others show that various meditation practices can dramatically affect the human person at various levels, i.e., increased physical health, neural restructuring, regulation and development of emotions, and increased helping behavior, to name a few. The current article focuses on the impact the habit of loving-kindness meditation (LKM) has on compassion and prosocial behavior. Recent studies strongly support the conclusion that LKM training hones compassion and ultimately leads to an increase in compassionate behavior.

  15. The effect of body-mind relaxation meditation induction on major depressive disorder: A resting-state fMRI study.

    PubMed

    Chen, Fangfang; Lv, Xueyu; Fang, Jiliang; Yu, Shan; Sui, Jing; Fan, Lingzhong; Li, Tao; Hong, Yang; Wang, XiaoLing; Wang, Weidong; Jiang, Tianzi

    2015-09-01

    Meditation has been increasingly evaluated as an important complementary therapeutic tool for the treatment of depression. The present study employed resting-state functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) to examine the effect of body-mind relaxation meditation induction (BMRMI) on the brain activity of depressed patients and to investigate possible mechanisms of action for this complex intervention. 21 major depressive disorder patients (MDDs) and 24 age and gender-matched healthy controls (HCs) received rs-fMRI scans at baseline and after listening to a selection of audio designed to induce body-mind relaxation meditation. The rs-fMRI data were analyzed using Matlab toolbox to obtain the amplitude of low-frequency fluctuations (ALFF) of the BOLD signal for the whole brain. A mixed-design repeated measures analysis of variance (ANOVA) was performed on the whole brain to find which brain regions were affected by the BMRMI. An additional functional connectivity analysis was used to identify any atypical connection patterns after the BMRMI. After the BMRMI experience, both the MDDs and HCs showed decreased ALFF values in the bilateral frontal pole (BA10). Additionally, increased functional connectivity from the right dorsal medial prefrontal cortex (dmPFC) to the left dorsal lateral prefrontal cortex (dlPFC) and the left lateral orbitofrontal cortex (OFC) was identified only in the MDDs after the BMRMI. In order to exclude the impact of other events on the participants׳ brain activity, the Hamilton Rating Scales for Depression (HDRS) was not measured after the body-mind relaxation induction. Our findings support the hypothesis that body-mind relaxation meditation induction may regulate the activities of the prefrontal cortex and thus may have the potential to help patients construct reappraisal strategies that can modulate the brain activity in multiple emotion-processing systems. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  16. Phone-Delivered Mindfulness Training for Patients with Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillators: Results of a Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Salmoirago-Blotcher, Elena; Crawford, Sybil L.; Carmody, James; Rosenthal, Lawrence; Yeh, Gloria; Stanley, Mary; Rose, Karen; Browning, Clifford; Ockene, Ira S.

    2013-01-01

    Background The reduction in adrenergic activity and anxiety associated with meditation may be beneficial for patients with implantable cardioverter defibrillators. Purpose To determine the feasibility of a phone-delivered mindfulness intervention in patients with defibrillators and to obtain preliminary indications of efficacy on mindfulness and anxiety. Methods Clinically stable outpatients were randomized to a mindfulness intervention (8 weekly individual phone sessions) or to a scripted follow-up phone call. We used the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale and the Five Facets of Mindfulness to measure anxiety and mindfulness; and multivariate linear regression to estimate the intervention effect on pre-post intervention changes in these variables. Results We enrolled 45 patients (23 mindfulness, 22 control; age 43–83; 30 % women). Retention was 93 %; attendance was 94 %. Mindfulness (beta = 3.31; p = .04) and anxiety (beta = − 1.15; p = .059) improved in the mindfulness group. Conclusions Mindfulness training can be effectively phone-delivered and may improve mindfulness and anxiety in cardiac defibrillator outpatients. PMID:23605175

  17. Effect of mindfulness meditation on short-term weight loss and eating behaviors in overweight and obese adults: A randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Spadaro, Kathleen C; Davis, Kelliann K; Sereika, Susan M; Gibbs, Bethany B; Jakicic, John M; Cohen, Susan M

    2017-12-05

    Background There is a significant health crisis with rates of obesity continuing to increase despite research and clinical standard behavioral weight loss programs (SBWP). Mindfulness meditation (MM), with demonstrated benefits on physical, psychological health, and self-regulation behaviors was explored with SBWP. Methods Forty-six adults (BMI=32.5±3.7 kg/m2; age=45.2±8.2 years, 87 % female, 21.7 % African American) were randomly assigned to a 6-month SBWP only (n=24) or SBWP+MM (n=22) at a university-based physical activity and weight management research center in a northeastern US city. Participants were instructed to decrease intake (1200-1500 kcal/day), increase physical activity (300 min/wk), and attend weekly SBWP or SBWP+MM sessions. SBWP+MM had the same SBWP lessons with addition of focused MM training. Outcome measures collected at 0, 3, and 6 months included: weight, Block Food Frequency Questionnaire, Eating Behavior Inventory, Eating Inventory and Paffenbarger Physical Activity Questionnaire. Data were analyzed using linear mixed modeling for efficacy analysis of weight (primary) and eating, exercise and mindfulness (secondary outcomes). Results Retention rate was 76.1 % (n=35). A significant group by time interaction (p=0.03) was found for weight, with weight loss favoring SBWP+MM (-6.9 kg+2.9) over SBWP (-4.1 kg+2.8). Eating behaviors (p=0.02) and dietary restraint (p=0.02) improved significantly in SBWP+MM, compared to SBWP. MM enhanced weight loss by 2.8 kg potentially through greater improvements in eating behaviors and dietary restraint. Conclusions These findings support further study into the use of MM strategies with overweight and obese adults. The use of this low-cost, portable strategy with standard behavioral interventions could improve weight management outcomes.

  18. Caregiver Training in Mindfulness-Based Positive Behavior Supports (MBPBS): Effects on Caregivers and Adults with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

    PubMed Central

    Singh, Nirbhay N.; Lancioni, Giulio E.; Karazsia, Bryan T.; Myers, Rachel E.

    2016-01-01

    Caregivers often manage the aggressive behavior of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities that reside in community group homes. Sometimes this results in adverse outcomes for both the caregivers and the care recipients. We provided a 7-day intensive Mindfulness-Based Positive Behavior Support (MBPBS) training to caregivers from community group homes and assessed the outcomes in terms of caregiver variables, individuals’ behaviors, and an administrative outcome. When compared to pre-MBPBS training, the MBPBS training resulted in the caregivers using significantly less physical restraints, and staff stress and staff turnover were considerably reduced. The frequency of injury to caregivers and peers caused by the individuals was significantly reduced. A benefit-cost analysis showed substantial financial savings due to staff participation in the MBPBS program. This study provides further proof-of-concept for the effectiveness of MBPBS training for caregivers, and strengthens the call for training staff in mindfulness meditation. PMID:26903906

  19. Mind-Body Skills Training to Improve Distress Tolerance in Medical Students: A Pilot Study.

    PubMed

    Kraemer, Kristen M; Luberto, Christina M; O'Bryan, Emily M; Mysinger, Erica; Cotton, Sian

    2016-01-01

    Medical students face rigorous and stressful work environments, resulting in high rates of psychological distress. However, there has been a dearth of empirical work aimed at modifying risk factors for psychopathology among this at-risk group. Distress tolerance, defined as the ability to withstand emotional distress, is one factor that may be important in promoting psychological well-being in medical students. Thus, the aim of the current mixed-methods study was (a) to describe changes in facets of distress tolerance (i.e., emotional tolerance, absorption, appraisal, regulation) for medical students who completed a mind-body skills training group, and a no-intervention control group of students; (b) to examine the relationship between changes in psychological variables and changes in distress tolerance; and (c) to report students' perceptions of the mind-body group, with an emphasis on how the group may have affected personal and professional functioning due to improvements in distress tolerance. The mind-body program was an 11-week, 2-hour skills training group that focused on introducing, practicing, and processing mind-body skills such as biofeedback, guided imagery, relaxation, several forms of meditation (e.g., mindfulness), breathing exercises, and autogenic training. Participants were 52 first- and second-year medical students (62.7% female, Mage = 23.45, SD = 1.51) who participated in a mind-body group or a no-intervention control group and completed self-report measures before and after the 11-week period. Students in the mind-body group showed a modest improvement in all distress tolerance subscales over time (ΔM = .42-.53, p = .01-.03, d = .44-.53), whereas the control group showed less consistent changes across most subscales (ΔM = .11-.42, p = .10-.65, d = .01-.42). Students in the mind-body group qualitatively reported an improved ability to tolerate affective distress. Overall, improvements in psychological symptoms were associated with

  20. Turning Towards or Turning Away: A Comparison of Mindfulness Meditation and Guided Imagery Relaxation in Patients with Acute Depression.

    PubMed

    Costa, Ana; Barnhofer, Thorsten

    2016-07-01

    Disengaging from maladaptive thinking is an important imperative in the treatment of depression. Mindfulness training is aimed at helping patients acquire relevant skills for this purpose. It remains unclear, however, whether this practice is helpful when patients are acutely depressed. In order to investigate effects of mindfulness on symptoms and self-regulatory capacities in this group, the current study compared a brief training in mindfulness (n = 19) to guided imagery relaxation (n = 18). Participants were introduced to the respective techniques in a single session, and practised daily over one week. Self-reported severity of symptoms, difficulties in emotion-regulation, attentional control, the ability to decentre, and mindfulness were assessed pre and postintervention, and at a one-week follow-up. Symptoms of depression significantly decreased and self-regulatory functioning significantly increased in both groups, with changes being maintained during follow-up. When controlling for change in depressive symptoms, results showed significantly higher improvements in emotion regulation at follow-up in the mindfulness group. The ability to decentre predicted changes in symptoms from pre to postintervention, while mindfulness skills predicted changes in symptoms during the maintenance phase. The findings suggest that both practices can help to instigate reductions in symptoms and enhance self-regulatory functioning in depression. However, in order to improve emotion regulation above levels explained by reductions in symptoms more intentional mental training seems necessary. Furthermore, while the ability to disengage from negative patterns of thinking seems crucial for initial reduction of symptoms, maintenance of gains might require broader skills in mindfulness.

  1. Feasibility of central meditation and imagery therapy for dementia caregivers.

    PubMed

    Jain, Felipe A; Nazarian, Nora; Lavretsky, Helen

    2014-08-01

    Family dementia caregivers are at high risk of depression and burnout. We assessed the feasibility of Central Meditation and Imagery Therapy for Caregivers (CMIT-C), a novel 8-week group meditation and guided imagery group therapy program, for dementia caregivers reporting stress because of caregiving responsibilities. Twelve family dementia caregivers enrolled in CMIT-C. Primary outcomes included depression and anxiety, and secondary outcomes included insomnia, quality of life, and mindfulness. Changes over the study and 3 month follow-up were analyzed with non-parametric related samples tests. Correlations of feeling state changes from meditation diaries at 1 week were made with symptom changes post meditation training. Ten participants completed the study. Completers came to an average of 7 ± 1 sessions out of a possible 8 sessions, and turned in home practice logs of 90 ± 10% of the time. Anxiety, depression, and insomnia symptoms decreased, and mindfulness ratings improved with large effects (all p < 0.05 and Cohen's d ≥ 0.7). Gains were stable at 3 months. Early response during the first week of meditation practice was associated with subsequent home meditation practice, anxiety change at 8 weeks, and endpoint satisfaction with CMIT-C. Central Meditation and Imagery Therapy for Caregivers is a feasible intervention for dementia caregivers. Results suggest that this therapeutic technique can reduce symptoms of anxiety, depression, and insomnia, and increase levels of mindfulness. Early response to meditation practice predicted those with the greatest short-term benefits, and this may inform future studies of meditation. Larger controlled efficacy studies of CMIT-C for dementia caregivers are warranted. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  2. Mindfulness meditation and improvement in sleep quality and daytime impairment among older adults with sleep disturbances: a randomized clinical trial.

    PubMed

    Black, David S; O'Reilly, Gillian A; Olmstead, Richard; Breen, Elizabeth C; Irwin, Michael R

    2015-04-01

    Sleep disturbances are most prevalent among older adults and often go untreated. Treatment options for sleep disturbances remain limited, and there is a need for community-accessible programs that can improve sleep. To determine the efficacy of a mind-body medicine intervention, called mindfulness meditation, to promote sleep quality in older adults with moderate sleep disturbances. Randomized clinical trial with 2 parallel groups conducted from January 1 to December 31, 2012, at a medical research center among an older adult sample (mean [SD] age, 66.3 [7.4] years) with moderate sleep disturbances (Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index [PSQI] >5). A standardized mindful awareness practices (MAPs) intervention (n = 24) or a sleep hygiene education (SHE) intervention (n = 25) was randomized to participants, who received a 6-week intervention (2 hours per week) with assigned homework. The study was powered to detect between-group differences in moderate sleep disturbance measured via the PSQI at postintervention. Secondary outcomes pertained to sleep-related daytime impairment and included validated measures of insomnia symptoms, depression, anxiety, stress, and fatigue, as well as inflammatory signaling via nuclear factor (NF)-κB. Using an intent-to-treat analysis, participants in the MAPs group showed significant improvement relative to those in the SHE group on the PSQI. With the MAPs intervention, the mean (SD) PSQIs were 10.2 (1.7) at baseline and 7.4 (1.9) at postintervention. With the SHE intervention, the mean (SD) PSQIs were 10.2 (1.8) at baseline and 9.1 (2.0) at postintervention. The between-group mean difference was 1.8 (95% CI, 0.6-2.9), with an effect size of 0.89. The MAPs group showed significant improvement relative to the SHE group on secondary health outcomes of insomnia symptoms, depression symptoms, fatigue interference, and fatigue severity (P < .05 for all). Between-group differences were not observed for anxiety, stress, or NF-κB, although NF

  3. Acute Effects of Online Mind-Body Skills Training on Resilience, Mindfulness, and Empathy.

    PubMed

    Kemper, Kathi J; Khirallah, Michael

    2015-10-01

    Some studies have begun to show benefits of brief in-person mind-body skills training. We evaluated the effects of 1-hour online elective mind-body skills training for health professionals on mindfulness, resilience, and empathy. Between May and November, 2014, we described enrollees for the most popular 1-hour modules in a new online mind-body skills training program; compared enrollees' baseline stress and burnout to normative samples; and assessed acute changes in mindfulness, resilience, and empathy. The 513 enrollees included dietitians, nurses, physicians, social workers, clinical trainees, and health researchers; about 1/4 were trainees. The most popular modules were the following: Introduction to Stress, Resilience, and the Relaxation Response (n = 261); Autogenic Training (n = 250); Guided Imagery and Hypnosis for Pain, Insomnia, and Changing Habits (n = 112); Introduction to Mindfulness (n = 112); and Mindfulness in Daily Life (n = 102). Initially, most enrollees met threshold criteria for burnout and reported moderate to high stress levels. Completing 1-hour modules was associated with significant acute improvements in stress (P < .001), mindfulness (P < .001), empathy (P = .01), and resilience (P < .01). Online mind-body skills training reaches diverse, stressed health professionals and is associated with acute improvements in stress, mindfulness, empathy, and resilience. Additional research is warranted to compare the long-term cost-effectiveness of different doses of online and in-person mind-body skills training for health professionals. © The Author(s) 2015.

  4. Development and initial evaluation of a mobile application to help with mindfulness training and practice.

    PubMed

    Plaza García, Inmaculada; Sánchez, Carlos Medrano; Espílez, Ángel Sánchez; García-Magariño, Iván; Guillén, Guillermo Azuara; García-Campayo, Javier

    2017-09-01

    Different review articles support the usefulness and effectiveness of mindfulness techniques in health and wellbeing. In this paper we present a first prototype of a mobile application to help with the training and practice of mindfulness, taking into account the lacks detected in a previous literature review. Our aim was to measure acceptance and perceived quality, as well as gather data about app usage. Their dependence on demographic variables and the change in mindful level was also measured. Two versions of a new application were developed, "Mindfulness" and "Mindfulness Sci". The application has been tested in two pilot studies: in traditional face-to-face mindfulness groups and in individual and independent use. 3977 users were involved in this study: 26 in the first trial during an 8-week usage period and 3951 in the second trial during 17 months. In the first study, participants assessed the app with high scores. They considered it as a helping tool for mindfulness practice, user-friendly and with high quality of use. The positive perception was maintained after 8-weeks meditation workshops, and participants considered that its use could contribute to obtain benefits for mental and physical health. In the second study, we found rather weak associations between usage time and age, nationality and educational level. The mindful level showed a weak positive correlation with the session accomplished but slightly above the boundary of statistical significance (p-value=0.051). Videos and information stood out as the most accessed resources. Up to our knowledge, this is the first app developed with the help of health professionals in Spanish that could be used with a general aim, in health and wellbeing. The results are promising with a positive evaluation in face-to-face and independent use situations. Therefore, the number of potential users is enormous in a global worldwide context. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  5. Meditation for Depression: A Systematic Review of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy for Major Depressive Disorder

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-10-01

    studies. Physical Therapy Reviews, 13(5), 355-365. Systematic review Piet, J., and Hougaard, E. (2011). The effect of mindfulness-based cognitive...Rutger I. and Probst, M. (2013). A systematic review on physical therapy interventions for patients with binge eating disorder. Disability and...disorder; persistent antisocial behavior; persistent self-injury requiring clinical management/ therapy ; unable to engage with MBCT for physical

  6. [Review of the effects of mindfulness meditation on mental and physical health and its mechanisms of action].

    PubMed

    Ngô, Thanh-Lan

    2013-01-01

    Interventions based on mindfulness have become increasingly popular. This article reviews the empirical literature on its effects on mental and physical health, discusses presumed mechanisms of action as well as its proposed neurobiological underpinning. Mindfulness is associated with increased well-being as well as reduced cognitive reactivity and behavioral avoidance. It seems to contribute to enhance immune functions, diminish inflammation, diminish the reactivity of the autonomic nervous system, increase telomerase activity, lead to higher levels of plasmatic melatonin and serotonin. It enhances the quality of life for patients suffering from chronic pain, fibromylagia and HIV infection. It facilitates adaptation to the diagnosis of cancer and diabetes. It seems to lead to symptomatic improvement in irritable bowel syndrome, chronic fatigue syndrome, hot flashes, insomnia, stress related hyperphagia. It diminishes craving in substance abuse. The proposed mechanism of action are enhanced metacognitive conscience, interoceptive exposure, experiential acceptance, self-management, attention control, memory, relaxation. Six mechanism of actions for which neurological underpinnings have been published are: attention regulation (anterior cingulate cortex), body awareness (insula, temporoparietal junction), emotion regulation (modulation of the amygdala by the lateral prefrontal cortex), cognitive re-evaluation (activation of the dorsal medial prefrontal cortex or diminished activity in prefrontal regions), exposure/extinction/reconsolidation (ventromedial prefrontal cortex, hippocampus, amygdala) and flexible self-concept (prefrontal median cortex, posterior cingulated cortex, insula, temporoparietal junction). The neurobiological effects of meditation are described. These are: (1) the deactivation of the default mode network that generates spontaneous thoughts, contributes to the maintenance of the autobiographical self and is associated with anxiety and depression

  7. Psychobehavioral Effects of Meditation.

    PubMed

    Pokorski, Mieczyslaw; Suchorzynska, Anna

    2018-01-01

    Meditation is an increasingly popular psychobehavioral therapy. Various meditation techniques in use make it hard to objectively scrutinize the psychological benefits. Therefore, in this study we set out to examine the effects of two fundamentally different meditative techniques, Zazen, 'seated meditation', in which the body and mind are calmed, and Tai Chi, 'meditation in motion', based on energetic martial art performance. The aim was to compare the effects of both techniques on personality structure, emotional intelligence, mood, and coping with stress. The study was conducted in 48 healthy volunteers, aged 39-50, divided into those practicing Zazen, Tai Chi, and the non-meditating controls, each group consisting of 16 persons. The psychometric tools consisted of Coping Inventory for Stressful Situations (CISS), the University of Wales Institute of Science and Technology Mood Adjective Checklist (UMACL), Emotional Intelligence Inventory (INTE), and the NEO Five-Factor Inventory (NEO-FFI). We found that both Zazen and Tai Chi meditations significantly enhanced openness to experience, one of the personality dimensions of the Big Five Model. The enhanced openness was associated with improved strategies for coping with stress. The meditators had less avoidance-oriented approaches to perceived stress. They also had improved mood compared with non-meditating controls. The findings suggest that enhanced openness to experience could shape one's desire to hold onto the meditation regimen. We conclude that both, diametrically different types of meditation, are conducive to mental health by improving the general well-being, counteracting stress, and leading to a better vigor of spirit. Meditation may thus be considered a complimentary, albeit rather modestly acting, adjunct to psychotherapy.

  8. Mindfulness training improves working memory capacity and GRE performance while reducing mind wandering.

    PubMed

    Mrazek, Michael D; Franklin, Michael S; Phillips, Dawa Tarchin; Baird, Benjamin; Schooler, Jonathan W

    2013-05-01

    Given that the ability to attend to a task without distraction underlies performance in a wide variety of contexts, training one's ability to stay on task should result in a similarly broad enhancement of performance. In a randomized controlled investigation, we examined whether a 2-week mindfulness-training course would decrease mind wandering and improve cognitive performance. Mindfulness training improved both GRE reading-comprehension scores and working memory capacity while simultaneously reducing the occurrence of distracting thoughts during completion of the GRE and the measure of working memory. Improvements in performance following mindfulness training were mediated by reduced mind wandering among participants who were prone to distraction at pretesting. Our results suggest that cultivating mindfulness is an effective and efficient technique for improving cognitive function, with wide-reaching consequences.

  9. Magnetoencephalographic alpha band connectivity reveals differential default mode network interactions during focused attention and open monitoring meditation

    PubMed Central

    Marzetti, Laura; Di Lanzo, Claudia; Zappasodi, Filippo; Chella, Federico; Raffone, Antonino; Pizzella, Vittorio

    2014-01-01

    According to several conceptualizations of meditation, the interplay between brain systems associated to self-related processing, attention and executive control is crucial for meditative states and related traits. We used magnetoencephalography (MEG) to investigate such interplay in a highly selected group of “virtuoso” meditators (Theravada Buddhist monks), with long-term training in the two main meditation styles: focused attention (FA) and open monitoring (OM) meditation. Specifically, we investigated the differences between FA meditation, OM meditation and resting state in the coupling between the posterior cingulate cortex, core node of the Default Mode Network (DMN) implicated in mind wandering and self-related processing, and the whole brain, with a recently developed phase coherence approach. Our findings showed a state dependent coupling of posterior cingulate cortex (PCC) to nodes of the DMN and of the executive control brain network in the alpha frequency band (8–12 Hz), related to different attentional and cognitive control processes in FA and OM meditation, consistently with the putative role of alpha band synchronization in the functional mechanisms for attention and consciousness. The coupling of PCC with left medial prefrontal cortex (lmPFC) and superior frontal gyrus characterized the contrast between the two meditation styles in a way that correlated with meditation expertise. These correlations may be related to a higher mindful observing ability and a reduced identification with ongoing mental activity in more expert meditators. Notably, different styles of meditation and different meditation expertise appeared to modulate the dynamic balance between fronto-parietal (FP) and DMN networks. Our results support the idea that the interplay between the DMN and the FP network in the alpha band is crucial for the transition from resting state to different meditative states. PMID:25360102

  10. The Effectiveness of Mindfulness Training for Children with ADHD and Mindful Parenting for their Parents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van der Oord, Saskia; Bogels, Susan M.; Peijnenburg, Dorreke

    2012-01-01

    This study evaluated the effectiveness of an 8-week mindfulness training for children aged 8-12 with ADHD and parallel mindful parenting training for their parents. Parents (N = 22) completed questionnaires on their child's ADHD and ODD symptoms, their own ADHD symptoms, parenting stress, parental overreactivity, permissiveness and mindful…

  11. Integrating Mindfulness with Parent Training: Effects of the Mindfulness-Enhanced Strengthening Families Program

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Coatsworth, J. Douglas; Duncan, Larissa G.; Nix, Robert L.; Greenberg, Mark T.; Gayles, Jochebed G.; Bamberger, Katharine T.; Berrena, Elaine; Demi, Mary Ann

    2015-01-01

    There is growing support for the efficacy of mindfulness training with parents as an intervention technique to improve parenting skills and reduce risk for youth problem behaviors. The evidence, however, has been limited to small scale studies, many with methodological shortcomings. This study sought to integrate mindfulness training with parents…

  12. Mindfulness Training Assists Individuals with Moderate Mental Retardation to Maintain Their Community Placements

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Singh, Nirbhay N.; Lancioni, Giulio E.; Winton, Alan S. W.; Adkins, Angela D.; Singh, Judy; Singh, Ashvind N.

    2007-01-01

    The mindfulness procedure "Meditation on the Soles of the Feet" can help individuals with mild mental retardation control aggressive behavior. In this study, our aim was to teach this mindfulness technique, using a multiple baseline design, to 3 individuals with moderate mental retardation who were at risk of losing their community placements…

  13. Motor Consciousness during Intention-Based and Stimulus-Based Actions: Modulating Attention Resources through Mindfulness Meditation

    PubMed Central

    Delevoye-Turrell, Yvonne Nathalie; Bobineau, Claudie

    2012-01-01

    Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction meditation (MBSR) may offer optimal performance through heightened attention for increased body consciousness. To test this hypothesis, MBSR effects were assessed on the simple task of lifting an object. A dual task paradigm was included to assess the opposite effect of a limited amount of attention on motor consciousness. In a stimulus-based condition, the subjects’ task was to lift an object that was hefted with weights. In an intentional-based condition, subjects were required to lift a light object while imagining that the object was virtually heavier and thus, adjust their grip voluntarily. The degree of motor consciousness was evaluated by calculating correlation factors for each participant between the grip force level used during the lift trial (“lift the object”) and that used during its associated reproduce trial (“without lifting, indicate the force you think you used in the previous trial”). Under dual task condition, motor consciousness decreased for intention- and stimulus-based actions, revealing the importance of top-down attention for building the motor representation that guides action planning. For MBSR-experts, heightened attention provided stronger levels of motor consciousness; this was true for both intention and stimulus-based actions. For controls, heightened attention decreased the capacity to reproduce force levels, suggesting that voluntary top-down attention interfered with the automatic bottom-up emergence of body sensations. Our results provide strong arguments for involvement of two types of attention for the emergence of motor consciousness. Bottom-up attention would serve as an amplifier of motor-sensory afferences; top-down attention would help transfer the motor-sensory content from a preconscious to a conscious state of processing. MBSR would be a specific state for which both types of attention are optimally combined to provide experts with total experiences of their body in movement

  14. Feasibility of Central Meditation and Imagery Therapy for Dementia Caregivers

    PubMed Central

    Jain, Felipe A.; Nazarian, Nora; Lavretsky, Helen

    2014-01-01

    Objectives Family dementia caregivers are at high risk of depression and burnout. We aimed to assess the feasibility of Central Meditation and Imagery Therapy for Caregivers (CMIT-C), a novel 8-week group meditation and guided imagery group therapy program, for dementia caregivers reporting stress due to caregiving responsibilities. Methods 12 family dementia caregivers enrolled in CMIT-C. Primary outcomes included depression and anxiety, and secondary included insomnia, quality of life, and mindfulness. Changes over the study and three month follow-up were analyzed with non-parametric related samples tests. Correlations of feeling state changes from meditation diaries at 1 week were made with symptom changes post meditation training. Results 10 participants completed the study. Completers came to an average of 7 ± 1 sessions out of a possible 8, and turned in home practice logs 90 ± 10% of the time. Anxiety, depression and insomnia symptoms decreased, and mindfulness ratings improved with large effects (all p < 0.05 and Cohen's d ≥ 0.7). Gains were stable at 3 months. Early response during the first week of meditation practice was associated with subsequent home meditation practice, anxiety change at eight weeks, and endpoint satisfaction with CMIT-C. Conclusions CMIT-C is a feasible intervention for dementia caregivers. Results suggest that this therapeutic technique can reduce symptoms of anxiety, depression, and insomnia, and increase levels of mindfulness. Early response to meditation practice predicted those with the greatest short-term benefits, and this may inform future studies of meditation. Larger, controlled efficacy studies of CMIT-C for dementia caregivers are warranted. PMID:24477920

  15. Mindfulness Meditation Improves Mood, Quality of Life, and Attention in Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

    PubMed

    Bueno, Viviane Freire; Kozasa, Elisa H; da Silva, Maria Aparecida; Alves, Tânia Maria; Louzã, Mario Rodrigues; Pompéia, Sabine

    2015-01-01

    Adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) display affective problems and impaired attention. Mood in ADHD can be improved by mindful awareness practices (MAP), but results are mixed regarding the enhancement of attentional performance. Here we evaluated MAP-induced changes in quality of life (QoL), mood, and attention in adult ADHD patients and controls using more measures of attention than prior studies. Twenty-one ADHD patients and 8 healthy controls underwent 8 weekly MAP sessions; 22 similar patients and 9 controls did not undergo the intervention. Mood and QoL were assessed using validated questionnaires, and attention was evaluated using the Attentional Network Test (ANT) and the Conners Continuous Performance Test (CPT II), before and after intervention. MAP enhanced sustained attention (ANT) and detectability (CPT II) and improved mood and QoL of patients and controls. MAP is a complementary intervention that improves affect and attention of adults with ADHD and controls.

  16. Meditation, Health and Scientific Investigations: Review of the Literature.

    PubMed

    Sampaio, Cynthia Vieira Sanches; Lima, Manuela Garcia; Ladeia, Ana Marice

    2017-04-01

    A growing number of people are seeking health recovery treatments with a holistic approach to the human being. Meditation is a mental training capable of producing connection between the mind, body and spirit. Its practice helps people to achieve balance, relaxation and self-control, in addition to the development of consciousness. At present, meditation is classified as a complementary and integrative technique in the area of health. The purpose of this review of the literature was to describe what meditation is, its practices and effects on health, demonstrated by consistent scientific investigations. Recently, the advances in researches with meditation, the discovery of its potential as an instrument of self-regulation of the human body and its benefits to health have shown that it is a consistent alternative therapy when associated with conventional medical treatments.

  17. Hypnosis and Mindfulness: The Twain Finally Meet.

    PubMed

    Otani, Akira

    2016-04-01

    Mindfulness meditation (or simply mindfulness) is an ancient method of attention training. Arguably, developed originally by the Buddha, it has been practiced by Buddhists over 2,500 years as part of their spiritual training. The popularity in mindfulness has soared recently following its adaptation as Mindfulness-Based Stress Management by Jon Kabat-Zinn (1995). Mindfulness is often compared to hypnosis but not all assertions are accurate. This article, as a primer, delineates similarities and dissimilarities between mindfulness and hypnosis in terms of 12 specific facets, including putative neuroscientific findings. It also provides a case example that illustrates clinical integration of the two methods.

  18. Sexual Functioning in Experienced Meditators.

    PubMed

    Dascalu, Iulia; Brotto, Lori A

    2017-11-21

    Given evidence of the benefits of mindfulness for women's sexual difficulties, we investigated the relationship between meditation experience and women's sexual function. Women (N = 450) answered online survey questions about meditation experience, sexual function and desire, interoceptive awareness, health and mood. Women who meditated scored higher than nonmeditators on measures of sexual function and desire, however there was no significant correlation between frequency/length of meditation experience and either of these domains. Global mental health was a significant predictor of both increased sexual function and desire in women who meditate. These findings suggest that, compared to women with no meditation experience, women who meditate to any extent have, on average, improved sexual function associated with better overall mental health.

  19. Mindfulness Meditation Improves Mood, Quality of Life, and Attention in Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

    PubMed Central

    2015-01-01

    Objective. Adults with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) display affective problems and impaired attention. Mood in ADHD can be improved by mindful awareness practices (MAP), but results are mixed regarding the enhancement of attentional performance. Here we evaluated MAP-induced changes in quality of life (QoL), mood, and attention in adult ADHD patients and controls using more measures of attention than prior studies. Methods. Twenty-one ADHD patients and 8 healthy controls underwent 8 weekly MAP sessions; 22 similar patients and 9 controls did not undergo the intervention. Mood and QoL were assessed using validated questionnaires, and attention was evaluated using the Attentional Network Test (ANT) and the Conners Continuous Performance Test (CPT II), before and after intervention. Results. MAP enhanced sustained attention (ANT) and detectability (CPT II) and improved mood and QoL of patients and controls. Conclusion. MAP is a complementary intervention that improves affect and attention of adults with ADHD and controls. PMID:26137496

  20. Pilot randomized trial on mindfulness training for smokers in young adult binge drinkers.

    PubMed

    Davis, James M; Mills, David M; Stankevitz, Kristin A; Manley, Alison R; Majeskie, Matthew R; Smith, Stevens S

    2013-09-03

    We report results of a pilot study designed to test a novel smoking cessation intervention, Mindfulness Training for Smokers (MTS), in smokers age 18-29 years with regular episodes of binge drinking. Mindfulness is a cognitive skill of applying close moment-to-moment attention to experience with a mental posture of acceptance and non-reactivity. The MTS intervention consisted of six weekly classes that provided instruction on how to use mindfulness to manage known precursors of smoking relapse including smoking triggers, strong emotions, stressful situations, addictive thoughts, urges, and withdrawal symptoms. The MTS intervention was compared to Interactive Learning for Smokers (ILS), a time/intensity matched control group using daily non-directed walking instead of mindfulness meditation. Recruitment was conducted primarily at local technical colleges. Primary outcome measures included biochemically-confirmed smoking abstinence and reduction in alcohol use at the end of treatment (2-weeks post-quit attempt). The sample (N = 55) was 70.9% male, with a mean age of 21.9 years, and a mean of 11.76 alcoholic drinks consumed per week. Intent-to-treat analysis showed biochemically-confirmed 7-day point prevalence abstinence rates at 2-weeks post-quit for MTS = 20.0% and ILS = 4.0%, p = .08. Secondary analysis showed number of drinks per week in the first 2-weeks post-quit correlated with smoking relapse at 2-weeks post-quit (p < .01). This pilot study demonstrated that Mindfulness Training for Smokers shows promise for smoking cessation and alcohol use reduction in treating young adult smokers with alcohol abuse. Results suggest the need for a study with larger sample size and methods that reduce attrition. ClnicalTrial.gov, NCT01679236.

  1. The Emerging Role of Mindfulness Meditation as Effective Self-Management Strategy, Part 1: Clinical Implications for Depression, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Anxiety.

    PubMed

    Khusid, Marina A; Vythilingam, Meena

    2016-09-01

    Mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs) have been increasingly utilized in the management of mental health conditions. This first review of a two-part series evaluates the efficacy, mechanism, and safety of mindfulness meditation for mental health conditions frequently seen after return from deployment. Standard databases were searched until August 4, 2015. 52 systematic reviews and randomized clinical trials were included. The Strength of Recommendation (SOR) Taxonomy was used to assess the quality of individual studies and to rate the strength of evidence for each clinical condition. Adjunctive mindfulness-based cognitive therapy is effective for decreasing symptom severity during current depressive episode, and for reducing relapse rate in recovered patients during maintenance phase of depression management (SOR moderate [SOR B]). Adjunctive mindfulness-based stress reduction is effective for improving symptoms, mental health-related quality of life, and mindfulness in veterans with combat post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) (SOR B). Currently, there is no sufficient data to recommend MBIs for generalized anxiety disorder (SOR B). MBIs are safe, portable, cost-effective, and can be recommended as an adjunct to standard care or self-management strategy for major depressive disorder and PTSD. Future large, well-designed randomized clinical trials in service members and veterans can help plan for the anticipated increase in demand for behavioral health services. Reprint & Copyright © 2016 Association of Military Surgeons of the U.S.

  2. Evaluation of Vipassana Meditation Course Effects on Subjective Stress, Well-being, Self-kindness and Mindfulness in a Community Sample: Post-course and 6-month Outcomes.

    PubMed

    Szekeres, Roberta A; Wertheim, Eleanor H

    2015-12-01

    Residential Vipassana meditation courses, which teach mindfulness skills, are widely available globally but under-evaluated. This study examined effects of a standardized, community-based Vipassana course, on subjective stress, well-being, self-kindness and trait mindfulness in a community sample. Participants completed self-report measures of these variables at pre-course and post-course (n = 122), and outcomes were compared to a control group of early enrollers (EEs) (n = 50) who completed measures at parallel time points before course commencement. Six-month follow-up was undertaken in the intervention group (n = 90). Findings, including intention-to-complete analyses, suggested positive effects of the Vipassana course in reducing subjective stress and increasing well-being, self-kindness and overall mindfulness (present-moment awareness and non-reaction). Although some reductions in post-course gains were found at follow-up, particularly in stress, follow-up scores still showed improvements compared to pre-course scores. Mindfulness change scores between pre-course and 6-month follow-up were moderately to highly correlated with outcome variable change scores, consistent with the idea that effects of the Vipassana course on stress and well-being operate, at least partially, through increasing mindfulness. The present research underscores the importance of undertaking further investigations into Vipassana courses' effects and applications. Copyright © 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.

  3. The effects of a mindfulness meditation-based stress reduction program on mood and symptoms of stress in cancer outpatients: 6-month follow-up.

    PubMed

    Carlson, L E; Ursuliak, Z; Goodey, E; Angen, M; Speca, M

    2001-03-01

    The goals of this work were to assess the effects of participation in a mindfulness meditation-based stress reduction program on mood disturbance and symptoms of stress in cancer outpatients immediately after and 6 months after program completion. A convenience sample of eligible cancer patients were enrolled after they had given informed consent. All patients completed the Profile of Mood States (POMS) and Symptoms of Stress Inventory (SOSI) both before and after the intervention and 6 months later. The intervention consisted of a mindfulness meditation group lasting 1.5 h each week for 7 weeks, plus daily home meditation practice. A total of 89 patients, average age 51, provided pre-intervention data. Eighty patients provided post-intervention data, and 54 completed the 6-month follow-up The participants were heterogeneous with respect to type and stage of cancer. Patients' scores decreased significantly from before to after the intervention on the POMS and SOSI total scores and most subscales, indicating less mood disturbance and fewer symptoms of stress, and these improvements were maintained at the 6-month follow-up. More advanced stages of cancer were associated with less initial mood disturbance, while more home practice and higher initial POMS scores predicted improvements on the POMS between the pre- and post-intervention scores. Female gender and more education were associated with higher initial SOSI scores, and improvements on the SOSI were predicted by more education and greater initial mood disturbance. This program was effective in decreasing mood disturbance and stress symptoms for up to 6 months in both male and female patients with a wide variety of cancer diagnoses, stages of illness, and educational background, and with disparate ages.

  4. Predictors and moderators of biopsychological social stress responses following brief self-compassion meditation training.

    PubMed

    Arch, Joanna J; Landy, Lauren N; Brown, Kirk Warren

    2016-07-01

    Arch et al. (2014) demonstrated that brief self-compassion meditation training (SCT) dampened sympathetic (salivary alpha-amylase) and subjective anxiety responses to the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST), relative to attention and no-instruction control conditions. The present study examined baseline predictors and moderators of these SCT intervention effects. Baseline characteristics included two stress vulnerability traits (social anxiety and rumination) and two potential resiliency traits (non-attachment and self-compassion). We investigated how these traits moderated the effects of SCT on response to the TSST, relative to the control conditions. We also tested how these individual differences predicted TSST responses across conditions in order to uncover characteristics that confer increased vulnerability and resiliency to social stressors. Trait non-attachment, rumination (for sympathetic TSST response only), and social anxiety (for subjective TSST response only) interacted with training condition to moderate TSST responses such that following SCT, lower attachment and lower social anxiety predicted lower TSST stress responses, relative to those scoring higher on these traits. In contrast, trait self-compassion neither moderated nor predicted responses to the TSST. Thus, although SCT had robust effects on buffering stress across individuals with varying levels of trait self-compassion, other psychological traits enhanced or dampened the effect of SCT on TSST responses. These findings support the importance of examining the role of relevant baseline psychological traits to predict sympathetic and subjective responses to social evaluative threat, particularly in the context of resiliency training. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  5. The effectiveness of a stress coping program based on mindfulness meditation on the stress, anxiety, and depression experienced by nursing students in Korea.

    PubMed

    Kang, Yune Sik; Choi, So Young; Ryu, Eunjung

    2009-07-01

    This study examined the effectiveness of a stress coping program based on mindfulness meditation on the stress, anxiety, and depression experienced by nursing students in Korea. A nonequivalent, control group, pre-posttest design was used. A convenience sample of 41 nursing students were randomly assigned to experimental (n=21) and control groups (n=20). Stress was measured with the PWI-SF (5-point) developed by Chang. Anxiety was measured with Spieberger's state anxiety inventory. Depression was measured with the Beck depression inventory. The experimental group attended 90-min sessions for eight weeks. No intervention was administered to the control group. Nine participants were excluded from the analysis because they did not complete the study due to personal circumstances, resulting in 16 participants in each group for the final analysis. Results for the two groups showed (1) a significant difference in stress scores (F=6.145, p=0.020), (2) a significant difference in anxiety scores (F=6.985, p=0.013), and (3) no significant difference in depression scores (t=1.986, p=0.056). A stress coping program based on mindfulness meditation was an effective intervention for nursing students to decrease their stress and anxiety, and could be used to manage stress in student nurses. In the future, long-term studies should be pursued to standardize and detail the program, with particular emphasis on studies to confirm the effects of the program in patients with diseases, such as cancer.

  6. Effect of Compassion Meditation on Neuroendocrine, Innate Immune and Behavioral Responses to Psychosocial Stress

    PubMed Central

    Pace, Thaddeus W.W.; Negi, Lobsang Tenzin; Adame, Daniel D.; Cole, Steven P.; Sivilli, Teresa I.; Brown, Timothy D.; Issa, Michael J.; Raison, Charles L.

    2009-01-01

    Summary Meditation practices may impact physiological pathways that are modulated by stress and relevant to disease. While much attention has been paid to meditation practices that emphasize calming the mind, improving focused attention, or developing mindfulness, less is known about meditation practices that foster compassion. Accordingly, the current study examined the effect of compassion meditation on innate immune, neuroendocrine and behavioral responses to psychosocial stress and evaluated the degree to which engagement in meditation practice influenced stress-reactivity. Sixty-one healthy adults were randomized to 6 weeks of training in compassion meditation (n=33) or participation in a health discussion control group (n=28) followed by exposure to a standardized laboratory stressor (Trier Social Stress Test [TSST]). Physiologic and behavioral responses to the TSST were determined by repeated assessments of plasma concentrations of interleukin (IL)-6 and cortisol as well as total distress scores on the Profile of Mood States (POMS). No main effect of group assignment on TSST responses was found for IL-6, cortisol or POMS scores. However, within the meditation group, increased meditation practice was correlated with decreased TSST-induced IL-6 (rp =-0.46, p=0.008) and POMS distress scores (rp =-0.43, p=0.014). Moreover, individuals with meditation practice times above the median exhibited lower TSST-induced IL-6 and POMS distress scores compared to individuals below the median, who did not differ from controls. These data suggest that engagement in compassion meditation may reduce stress-induced immune and behavioral responses, although future studies are required to determine whether individuals who engage in compassion meditation techniques are more likely to exhibit reduced stress reactivity. PMID:18835662

  7. Mindfulness Meditation and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Intervention Reduces Pain Severity and Sensitivity in Opioid-Treated Chronic Low Back Pain: Pilot Findings from a Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Burzinski, Cindy A.; Cox, Jennifer; Kloke, John; Stegner, Aaron; Cook, Dane B.; Singles, Janice; Mirgain, Shilagh; Coe, Christopher L.; Bačkonja, Miroslav

    2016-01-01

    Objective. To assess benefits of mindfulness meditation and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)-based intervention for opioid-treated chronic low back pain (CLBP). Design. 26-week parallel-arm pilot randomized controlled trial (Intervention and Usual Care versus Usual Care alone). Setting. Outpatient. Subjects. Adults with CLBP, prescribed ≥30 mg/day of morphine-equivalent dose (MED) for at least 3 months. Methods. The intervention comprised eight weekly group sessions (meditation and CLBP-specific CBT components) and 30 minutes/day, 6 days/week of at-home practice. Outcome measures were collected at baseline, 8, and 26 weeks: primary-pain severity (Brief Pain Inventory) and function/disability (Oswestry Disability Index); secondary-pain acceptance, opioid dose, pain sensitivity to thermal stimuli, and serum pain-sensitive biomarkers (Interferon-γ; Tumor Necrosis Factor-α; Interleukins 1ß and 6; C-reactive Protein). Results. Thirty-five (21 experimental, 14 control) participants were enrolled and completed the study. They were 51.8 ± 9.7 years old, 80% female, with severe CLBP-related disability (66.7 ± 11.4), moderate pain severity (5.8 ± 1.4), and taking 148.3 ± 129.2 mg/day of MED. Results of the intention-to-treat analysis showed that, compared with controls, the meditation-CBT group reduced pain severity ratings during the study (P = 0.045), with between-group difference in score change reaching 1 point at 26 weeks (95% Confidence Interval: 0.2,1.9; Cohen’s d = 0.86), and decreased pain sensitivity to thermal stimuli (P < 0.05), without adverse events. Exploratory analyses suggested a relationship between the extent of meditation practice and the magnitude of intervention benefits. Conclusions. Meditation-CBT intervention reduced pain severity and sensitivity to experimental thermal pain stimuli in patients with opioid-treated CLBP. PMID:26968850

  8. Mindfulness Meditation and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Intervention Reduces Pain Severity and Sensitivity in Opioid-Treated Chronic Low Back Pain: Pilot Findings from a Randomized Controlled Trial.

    PubMed

    Zgierska, Aleksandra E; Burzinski, Cindy A; Cox, Jennifer; Kloke, John; Stegner, Aaron; Cook, Dane B; Singles, Janice; Mirgain, Shilagh; Coe, Christopher L; Bačkonja, Miroslav

    2016-10-01

    To assess benefits of mindfulness meditation and cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)-based intervention for opioid-treated chronic low back pain (CLBP). 26-week parallel-arm pilot randomized controlled trial (Intervention and Usual Care versus Usual Care alone). Outpatient. Adults with CLBP, prescribed ≥30 mg/day of morphine-equivalent dose (MED) for at least 3 months. The intervention comprised eight weekly group sessions (meditation and CLBP-specific CBT components) and 30 minutes/day, 6 days/week of at-home practice. Outcome measures were collected at baseline, 8, and 26 weeks: primary-pain severity (Brief Pain Inventory) and function/disability (Oswestry Disability Index); secondary-pain acceptance, opioid dose, pain sensitivity to thermal stimuli, and serum pain-sensitive biomarkers (Interferon-γ; Tumor Necrosis Factor-α; Interleukins 1ß and 6; C-reactive Protein). Thirty-five (21 experimental, 14 control) participants were enrolled and completed the study. They were 51.8 ± 9.7 years old, 80% female, with severe CLBP-related disability (66.7 ± 11.4), moderate pain severity (5.8 ± 1.4), and taking 148.3 ± 129.2 mg/day of MED. Results of the intention-to-treat analysis showed that, compared with controls, the meditation-CBT group reduced pain severity ratings during the study (P = 0.045), with between-group difference in score change reaching 1 point at 26 weeks (95% Confidence Interval: 0.2,1.9; Cohen's d = 0.86), and decreased pain sensitivity to thermal stimuli (P < 0.05), without adverse events. Exploratory analyses suggested a relationship between the extent of meditation practice and the magnitude of intervention benefits. Meditation-CBT intervention reduced pain severity and sensitivity to experimental thermal pain stimuli in patients with opioid-treated CLBP. © 2016 American Academy of Pain Medicine. All rights reserved. For permissions, please e-mail: journals.permissions@oup.com.

  9. Effects of brief mindful breathing and loving-kindness meditation on shame and social problem solving abilities among individuals with high borderline personality traits.

    PubMed

    Keng, Shian-Ling; Tan, Jun Xian

    2017-10-01

    Borderline personality disorder (BPD) is a severe mental condition characterized by a range of cognitive and behavioral vulnerabilities, including chronic shame and deficits in social problem solving (SPS) abilities. Little research however, has examined strategies that may alleviate shame and SPS deficits among individuals with BPD traits. Using a laboratory experimental approach, the present study compared the effects of a brief mindfulness versus loving-kindness meditation (LKM) induction on shame and SPS abilities in a sample of adults with high BPD traits. Eighty-eight participants underwent a shame induction procedure involving recall of a negative autobiographical memory. They were then randomly assigned to 10 min of mindful breathing or LKM, or a no-instruction condition. Shame and SPS abilities were assessed via visual analogue scales and the Means-Ends Problem Solving task respectively. Results indicated that there were significant decreases in shame from pre-to post-regulation in the mindfulness group versus the LKM and no-instruction groups. Groups did not differ on changes in SPS abilities from pre-to post-regulation. Overall, the findings support the efficacy of mindfulness as a strategy to regulate shame among individuals with BPD traits, and raises questions with regard to the utility of LKM in modulating shame in the context of high emotional arousal. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  10. Training Social Cognition: From Imitation to Theory of Mind

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Santiesteban, Idalmis; White, Sarah; Cook, Jennifer; Gilbert, Sam J.; Heyes, Cecilia; Bird, Geoffrey

    2012-01-01

    Evidence for successful socio-cognitive training in typical adults is rare. This study attempted to improve Theory of Mind (ToM) and visual perspective taking in healthy adults by training participants to either imitate or to inhibit imitation. Twenty-four hours after training, all participants completed tests of ToM and visual perspective taking.…

  11. The MindfulBreather: Motion Guided Mindfulness

    PubMed Central

    Mole, Tom B.; Galante, Julieta; Walker, Iona C.; Dawson, Anna F.; Hannah, Laura A.; Mackeith, Pieter; Ainslie, Mark; Jones, Peter B.

    2017-01-01

    For millennia, humans have focused their attention on the breath to develop mindfulness, but finding a scientific way to harness mindful breathing has proven elusive. Existing attempts to objectively measure and feedback on mindfulness have relied on specialist external hardware including electroencephalograms or respirometers that have been impractical for the majority of people learning to meditate. Consequently, training in the key skill of breath-awareness has lacked practical objective measures and guidance to enhance training. Here, we provide a brief technology report on an invention, The MindfulBreather® that addresses these issues. The technology is available to download embedded in a smartphone app that targets, measures and feedbacks on mindfulness of breathing in realtime to enhance training. The current article outlines only the technological concept with future studies quantifying efficacy, validity and reliability to be reported elsewhere. The MindfulBreather works by generating Motion Guided Mindfulness through interacting gyroscopic and touchscreen sensors in a three phase process: Mindfulness Induction (Phase I) gives standardized instruction to users to place their smartphone on their abdomen, breathe mindfully and to tap only at the peak of their inhalation. The smartphone’s gyroscope detects periodic tilts during breathing to generate sinusoidal waveforms. Waveform-tap patterns are analyzed to determine whether the user is mindfully tapping only at the correct phase of the breathing cycle, indicating psychobiological synchronization. Mindfulness Maintenance (Phase II) provides reinforcing pleasant feedback sounds each time a breath is mindfully tapped at the right time, and the App records a mindful breath. Lastly, data-driven Insights are fed back to the user (Phase III), including the number of mindful breaths tapped and breathing rate reductions associated with parasympathetic engagement during meditation. The new MGM technology is then

  12. The MindfulBreather: Motion Guided Mindfulness.

    PubMed

    Mole, Tom B; Galante, Julieta; Walker, Iona C; Dawson, Anna F; Hannah, Laura A; Mackeith, Pieter; Ainslie, Mark; Jones, Peter B

    2017-01-01

    For millennia, humans have focused their attention on the breath to develop mindfulness, but finding a scientific way to harness mindful breathing has proven elusive. Existing attempts to objectively measure and feedback on mindfulness have relied on specialist external hardware including electroencephalograms or respirometers that have been impractical for the majority of people learning to meditate. Consequently, training in the key skill of breath-awareness has lacked practical objective measures and guidance to enhance training. Here, we provide a brief technology report on an invention, The MindfulBreather ® that addresses these issues. The technology is available to download embedded in a smartphone app that targets, measures and feedbacks on mindfulness of breathing in realtime to enhance training. The current article outlines only the technological concept with future studies quantifying efficacy, validity and reliability to be reported elsewhere. The MindfulBreather works by generating Motion Guided Mindfulness through interacting gyroscopic and touchscreen sensors in a three phase process: Mindfulness Induction (Phase I) gives standardized instruction to users to place their smartphone on their abdomen, breathe mindfully and to tap only at the peak of their inhalation. The smartphone's gyroscope detects periodic tilts during breathing to generate sinusoidal waveforms. Waveform-tap patterns are analyzed to determine whether the user is mindfully tapping only at the correct phase of the breathing cycle, indicating psychobiological synchronization. Mindfulness Maintenance (Phase II) provides reinforcing pleasant feedback sounds each time a breath is mindfully tapped at the right time, and the App records a mindful breath. Lastly, data-driven Insights are fed back to the user (Phase III), including the number of mindful breaths tapped and breathing rate reductions associated with parasympathetic engagement during meditation. The new MGM technology is then

  13. Online Training in Specific Meditation Practices Improves Gratitude, Well-Being, Self-Compassion, and Confidence in Providing Compassionate Care Among Health Professionals.

    PubMed

    Rao, Nisha; Kemper, Kathi J

    2016-04-06

    Mind-body practices that intentionally generate positive emotion could improve health professionals' well-being and compassion. However, the feasibility and impact of clinician training in these practices is unknown. Data were analyzed from 3 online modules offered to health professionals: (a) Gratitude, (b) Positive Word, and (c) Loving-kindness/Compassion meditation. Pairedttests were used to assess pre- to posttraining changes in gratitude (Gratitude Questionnaire), well-being (World Health Organization Well-Being Index), self-compassion (Neff's Self-Compassion Scale), and confidence in providing compassionate care (Confidence in Providing Calm, Compassionate Care Scale). The 177 enrollees included diverse practitioners (nurses, physicians, social workers, and others). Training was associated with statistically significant improvements in gratitude (38.3 ± 4.6 to 39.5 ± 3.3), well-being (16.4 ± 4.0 to 17.9 ± 4.2), self-compassion (39.5 ± 8.1 to 43.1 ± 7.6), and confidence in providing compassionate care (73.3 ± 16.4 to 80.9 ± 13.8;P< .001 for all comparisons). Brief, online training appeals to diverse health professionals and improves their gratitude, well-being, self-compassion, and confidence in providing compassionate care. © The Author(s) 2016.

  14. Online Training in Specific Meditation Practices Improves Gratitude, Well-Being, Self-Compassion, and Confidence in Providing Compassionate Care Among Health Professionals

    PubMed Central

    Rao, Nisha; Kemper, Kathi J.

    2016-01-01

    Mind-body practices that intentionally generate positive emotion could improve health professionals’ well-being and compassion. However, the feasibility and impact of clinician training in these practices is unknown. Data were analyzed from 3 online modules offered to health professionals: (a) Gratitude, (b) Positive Word, and (c) Loving-kindness/Compassion meditation. Paired t tests were used to assess pre- to posttraining changes in gratitude (Gratitude Questionnaire), well-being (World Health Organization Well-Being Index), self-compassion (Neff’s Self-Compassion Scale), and confidence in providing compassionate care (Confidence in Providing Calm, Compassionate Care Scale). The 177 enrollees included diverse practitioners (nurses, physicians, social workers, and others). Training was associated with statistically significant improvements in gratitude (38.3 ± 4.6 to 39.5 ± 3.3), well-being (16.4 ± 4.0 to 17.9 ± 4.2), self-compassion (39.5 ± 8.1 to 43.1 ± 7.6), and confidence in providing compassionate care (73.3 ± 16.4 to 80.9 ± 13.8; P < .001 for all comparisons). Brief, online training appeals to diverse health professionals and improves their gratitude, well-being, self-compassion, and confidence in providing compassionate care. PMID:27055823

  15. Just a minute meditation: Rapid voluntary conscious state shifts in long term meditators.

    PubMed

    Nair, Ajay Kumar; Sasidharan, Arun; John, John P; Mehrotra, Seema; Kutty, Bindu M

    2017-08-01

    Meditation induces a modified state of consciousness that remains under voluntary control. Can meditators rapidly and reversibly bring about mental state changes on demand? To check, we carried out 128 channel EEG recordings on Brahma Kumaris Rajayoga meditators (36 long term: median 14240h meditation; 25 short term: 1095h) and controls (25) while they tried to switch every minute between rest and meditation states in different conditions (eyes open and closed; before and after an engaging task). Long term meditators robustly shifted states with enhanced theta power (4-8Hz) during meditation. Short term meditators had limited ability to shift between states and showed increased lower alpha power (8-10Hz) during eyes closed meditation only when pre and post task data were combined. Controls could not shift states. Thus trained beginners can reliably meditate but it takes long term practice to exercise more refined control over meditative states. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  16. Mindfulness Group Work: Preventing Stress and Increasing Self-Compassion among Helping Professionals in Training

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Newsome, Sandy; Waldo, Michael; Gruszka, Clare

    2012-01-01

    This study examined the effects a 6-week mindfulness group had on 31 college students who were intending to enter helping professions (e.g., nursing, social work, counseling, psychology, and teaching). Group activities included meditation, yoga, a body scan exercise, and qi gong. The group members completed the Perceived Stress Scale, the…

  17. Exploring The effects Of An online asynchronous mindfulness meditation intervention with nursing students On Stress, mood, And Cognition: A descriptive study.

    PubMed

    Spadaro, Kathleen C; Hunker, Diane F

    2016-04-01

    Nurses returning to school while working, raising families, and maintaining other roles, can experience stress, mood changes and cognition disturbance that negatively impact their academic success. To explore the effect of an online mindfulness meditation intervention with distance nursing students on stress, mood and cognition. A 24 week descriptive study. An 8 week online intervention was offered to all undergraduate and graduate nursing students, of three nursing programs of a middle-sized university in mid-Atlantic US. A total of 26 nursing students completed the study. An 8 week online, asynchronous mindfulness intervention was provided through the learning management system with a 16 week follow-up. Perceived Stress Scale (PSS), Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale (HADS), and Attention Network Test (ANT). Stress was significantly reduced (F(2,24)=4.163, p=.019). A decreasing trend for anxiety was noted with significant difference between time points (F(1,23)=6.889, p=.015) when practice frequency was weekly to daily. Cognition: ability to shift attention, attention selection, concentration, and accuracy improved. Findings from this study may illuminate the usefulness of a mindfulness based stress reduction program offered to distance nursing students. Further studies are needed to better demonstrate the effectiveness of the intervention. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  18. [Mindfulness training for psychiatrists in residency: a pilot study].

    PubMed

    Hoenders, H J R; Booij, S H; Knegtering, H; van den Brink, H

    Medical students and psychiatrists in residency run a high risk for burnout. Furthermore, while at medical school, students seem to experience a reduction in empathy; this seems to be linked to a high level of stress. Interventions based on mindfulness training appear to reduce stress and increase empathy in medical students. Trainees in psychiatric residency might also benefit from mindfulness training.
    AIM: To assess the effects that a mindfulness course has on perceived stress and empathy in psychiatrists in residency.
    METHOD: In this pilot study 13 trainees in psychiatric residency participated in an eight-week course in mindfulness. Before and after the training, 11 of the participants completed questionnaires relating to their empathy, perceived stress and mindfulness.
    RESULTS: Participants reported experiencing considerably more empathy after their course than before it. Perceived stress also diminished, but not significantly.
    CONCLUSION: The results support our suggestion that mindfulness training can be a valuable part of the curriculum for trainees in psychiatric residency.

  19. Development of Managers' Emotional Competencies: Mind-Body Training Implication

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gruicic, Dusan; Benton, Stephen

    2015-01-01

    Purpose: This paper aims to research about the effect of mind-body training on the development of emotional competencies of managers. Design/methodology/approach: Quasi-experimental design, i.e. before and after (test-retest). Findings: Results showed that the experimental group, after training, achieved around 15 per cent higher scores compared…

  20. Minds "at attention": mindfulness training curbs attentional lapses in military cohorts.

    PubMed

    Jha, Amishi P; Morrison, Alexandra B; Dainer-Best, Justin; Parker, Suzanne; Rostrup, Nina; Stanley, Elizabeth A

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the impact of mindfulness training (MT) on attentional performance lapses associated with task-unrelated thought (i.e., mind wandering). Periods of persistent and intensive demands may compromise attention and increase off-task thinking. Here, we investigated if MT may mitigate these deleterious effects and promote cognitive resilience in military cohorts enduring a high-demand interval of predeployment training. To better understand which aspects of MT programs are most beneficial, three military cohorts were examined. Two of the three groups were provided MT. One group received an 8-hour, 8-week variant of Mindfulness-based Mind Fitness Training (MMFT) emphasizing engagement in training exercises (training-focused MT, n = 40), a second group received a didactic-focused variant emphasizing content regarding stress and resilience (didactic-focused MT, n = 40), and the third group served as a no-training control (NTC, n = 24). Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART) performance was indexed in all military groups and a no-training civilian group (CIV, n = 45) before (T1) and after (T2) the MT course period. Attentional performance (measured by A', a sensitivity index) was lower in NTC vs. CIV at T2, suggesting that performance suffers after enduring a high-demand predeployment interval relative to a similar time period of civilian life. Yet, there were significantly fewer performance lapses in the military cohorts receiving MT relative to NTC, with training-focused MT outperforming didactic-focused MT at T2. From T1 to T2, A' degraded in NTC and didactic-focused MT but remained stable in training-focused MT and CIV. In sum, while protracted periods of high-demand military training may increase attentional performance lapses, practice-focused MT programs akin to training-focused MT may bolster attentional performance more than didactic-focused programs. As such, training-focused MT programs should be further examined in cohorts experiencing

  1. Neuroscience of Meditation

    PubMed Central

    Deshmukh, Vinod D.

    2006-01-01

    Dhyana-Yoga is a Sanskrit word for the ancient discipline of meditation, as a means to Samadhi or enlightenment. Samadhi is a self-absorptive, adaptive state with realization of ones being in harmony with reality. It is unitive, undifferentiated, reality-consciousness, an essential being, which can only be experienced by spontaneous intuition and self-understanding. Modern neuroscience can help us to better understand Dhyana-Yoga. This article discusses topics including brain-mind-reality, consciousness, attention, emotional intelligence, sense of self, meditative mind, and meditative brain. A new hypothesis is proposed for a better understanding of the meditative mind. Meditation is an art of being serene and alert in the present moment, instead of constantly struggling to change or to become. It is an art of efficient management of attentional energy with total engagement (poornata, presence, mindfulness) or disengagement (shunyata, silence, emptiness). In both states, there is an experience of spontaneous unity with no sense of situational interactive self or personal time. It is a simultaneous, participatory consciousness rather than a dualistic, sequential attentiveness. There is a natural sense of well being with self-understanding, spontaneous joy, serenity, freedom, and self-fulfillment. It is where the ultimate pursuit of happiness and the search for meaning of life resolve. One realizes the truth of ones harmonious being in nature and nature in oneself. It is being alive at its fullest, when each conscious moment becomes a dynamic process of discovery and continuous learning of the ever-new unfolding reality. PMID:17370019

  2. Individuals with tension and migraine headaches exhibit increased heart rate variability during post-stress mindfulness meditation practice but a decrease during a post-stress control condition - A randomized, controlled experiment.

    PubMed

    Azam, Muhammad Abid; Katz, Joel; Mohabir, Vina; Ritvo, Paul

    2016-12-01

    Current research suggests that associations between headache conditions (migraine, tension) and imbalances in the autonomic nervous system (ANS) are due to stress-related dysregulation in the activity of the parasympathetic-sympathetic branches. Mindfulness meditation has demonstrated effectiveness in reducing pain-related distress, and in enhancing heart rate variability-a vagal-mediated marker of ANS balance. This study examined HRV during cognitive stress and mindfulness meditation in individuals with migraine and tension headaches. Undergraduate students with tension and migraine headaches (n=36) and headache-free students (n=39) were recruited for an experiment involving HRV measurement during baseline, cognitive stress-induction, and after randomization to post-stress conditions of audio-guided mindfulness meditation practice (MMP) or mindfulness meditation description (MMD). HRV was derived using electrocardiograms as the absolute power in the high frequency bandwidth (ms 2 ). A three-way ANOVA tested the effects of Group (headache vs. headache-free), Phase (baseline, stress, & post-stress), and Condition (MMP vs. MMD) on HRV. ANOVA revealed a significant three-way interaction. Simple effects tests indicated: 1) HRV increased significantly from stress to MMP for headache and headache-free groups (p<0.001), 2) significantly greater HRV for headache (p<0.001) and headache-free (p<0.05) groups during MMP compared to MMD, and 3) significantly lower HRV in the headache vs. headache-free group during the post-stress MMD condition (p<0.05). Results suggest mindfulness practice can promote effective heart rate regulation, and thereby promote effective recovery after a stressful event for individuals with headache conditions. Moreover, headache conditions may be associated with dysregulated stress recovery, thus more research is needed on the cardiovascular health and stress resilience of headache sufferers. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

  3. Integrating mindfulness with parent training: effects of the Mindfulness-Enhanced Strengthening Families Program.

    PubMed

    Coatsworth, J Douglas; Duncan, Larissa G; Nix, Robert L; Greenberg, Mark T; Gayles, Jochebed G; Bamberger, Katharine T; Berrena, Elaine; Demi, Mary Ann

    2015-01-01

    There is growing support for the efficacy of mindfulness training with parents as an intervention technique to improve parenting skills and reduce risk for youth problem behaviors. The evidence, however, has been limited to small scale studies, many with methodological shortcomings. This study sought to integrate mindfulness training with parents into the Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14), an empirically-validated family-based preventive intervention. It used a randomized-controlled comparative effectiveness study design (N = 432 families, 31% racial/ethnic minority) to test the efficacy of the Mindfulness-Enhanced Strengthening Families Program (MSFP), compared to standard SFP 10-14 and a minimal-treatment home study control condition. Results indicated that, in general, MSFP was as effective as SFP 10-14 in improving multiple dimensions of parenting, including interpersonal mindfulness in parenting, parent-youth relationship quality, youth behavior management, and parent well-being, according to both parent and youth reports at both postintervention and 1-year follow-up. This study also found that in some areas MSFP boosted and better sustained the effects of SFP 10-14, especially for fathers. Although the pattern of effects was not as uniform as hypothesized, this study provides intriguing evidence for the unique contribution of mindfulness activities to standard parent training.

  4. Integrating Mindfulness with Parent Training: Effects of the Mindfulness-Enhanced Strengthening Families Program

    PubMed Central

    Coatsworth, J. Douglas; Duncan, Larissa G.; Nix, Robert L.; Greenberg, Mark T.; Gayles, Jochebed G.; Bamberger, Katharine T.; Berrena, Elaine; Demi, Mary Ann

    2015-01-01

    There is growing support for the efficacy of mindfulness training with parents as an intervention technique to improve parenting skills and reduce risk for youth problem behaviors. The evidence, however, has been limited to small scale studies, many with methodological shortcomings. This study sought to integrate mindfulness training with parents into the Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14 (SFP 10-14), an empirically-validated family-based preventive intervention. It used a randomized-controlled comparative effectiveness study design (N = 432 families, 31% racial/ethnic minority) to test the efficacy of the Mindfulness-Enhanced Strengthening Families Program (MSFP), compared to standard SFP 10-14 and a minimal-treatment home study control condition. Results indicated that, in general, MSFP was as effective as SFP 10-14 in improving multiple dimensions of parenting, including interpersonal mindfulness in parenting, parent-youth relationship quality, youth behavior management, and parent well-being, according to both parent and youth reports at both post-intervention and one-year follow-up. This study also found that in some areas MSFP boosted and better sustained the effects of SFP 10-14, especially for fathers. Although the pattern of effects was not as uniform as hypothesized, this study provides intriguing evidence for the unique contribution of mindfulness activities to standard parent training. PMID:25365122

  5. Comparison of cognitive behavioral and mindfulness meditation interventions on adaptation to rheumatoid arthritis for patients with and without history of recurrent depression.

    PubMed

    Zautra, Alex J; Davis, Mary C; Reich, John W; Nicassario, Perry; Tennen, Howard; Finan, Patrick; Kratz, Anna; Parrish, Brendt; Irwin, Michael R

    2008-06-01

    This research examined whether cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness interventions that target responses to chronic stress, pain, and depression reduce pain and improve the quality of everyday life for adults with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The 144 RA participants were clustered into groups of 6-10 participants and randomly assigned to 1 of 3 treatments: cognitive behavioral therapy for pain (P); mindfulness meditation and emotion regulation therapy (M); or education-only group (E), which served as an attention placebo control. The authors took a multimethod approach, employing daily diaries and laboratory assessment of pain and mitogen-stimulated levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6), a proinflammatory cytokine. Participants receiving P showed the greatest Pre to Post improvement in self-reported pain control and reductions in the IL-6; both P and M groups showed more improvement in coping efficacy than did the E group. The relative value of the treatments varied as a function of depression history. RA patients with recurrent depression benefited most from M across several measures, including negative and positive affect and physicians' ratings of joint tenderness, indicating that the emotion regulation aspects of that treatment were most beneficial to those with chronic depressive features. (c) 2008 APA, all rights reserved

  6. Effects of a brief mindfulness-meditation intervention on neural measures of response inhibition in cigarette smokers

    PubMed Central

    Cosmelli, Diego; Slagter, Heleen A.; Franken, Ingmar H. A.

    2018-01-01

    Research suggests that mindfulness-practices may aid smoking cessation. Yet, the neural mechanisms underlying the effects of mindfulness-practices on smoking are unclear. Response inhibition is a main deficit in addiction, is associated with relapse, and could therefore be a candidate target for mindfulness-based practices. The current study hence investigated the effects of a brief mindfulness-practice on response inhibition in smokers using behavioral and electroencephalography (EEG) measures. Fifty participants (33 females, mean age 20 years old) underwent a protocol of cigarette exposure to induce craving (cue-exposure) and were then randomly assigned to a group receiving mindfulness-instructions or control-instructions (for 15 minutes approximately). Immediately after this, they performed a smoking Go/NoGo task, while their brain activity was recorded. At the behavioral level, no group differences were observed. However, EEG analyses revealed a decrease in P3 amplitude during NoGo vs. Go trials in the mindfulness versus control group. The lower P3 amplitude might indicate less-effortful response inhibition after the mindfulness-practice, and suggest that enhanced response inhibition underlies observed positive effects of mindfulness on smoking behavior. PMID:29370256

  7. Effects of a brief mindfulness-meditation intervention on neural measures of response inhibition in cigarette smokers.

    PubMed

    Andreu, Catherine I; Cosmelli, Diego; Slagter, Heleen A; Franken, Ingmar H A

    2018-01-01

    Research suggests that mindfulness-practices may aid smoking cessation. Yet, the neural mechanisms underlying the effects of mindfulness-practices on smoking are unclear. Response inhibition is a main deficit in addiction, is associated with relapse, and could therefore be a candidate target for mindfulness-based practices. The current study hence investigated the effects of a brief mindfulness-practice on response inhibition in smokers using behavioral and electroencephalography (EEG) measures. Fifty participants (33 females, mean age 20 years old) underwent a protocol of cigarette exposure to induce craving (cue-exposure) and were then randomly assigned to a group receiving mindfulness-instructions or control-instructions (for 15 minutes approximately). Immediately after this, they performed a smoking Go/NoGo task, while their brain activity was recorded. At the behavioral level, no group differences were observed. However, EEG analyses revealed a decrease in P3 amplitude during NoGo vs. Go trials in the mindfulness versus control group. The lower P3 amplitude might indicate less-effortful response inhibition after the mindfulness-practice, and suggest that enhanced response inhibition underlies observed positive effects of mindfulness on smoking behavior.

  8. Mechanisms of mindfulness training: Monitor and Acceptance Theory (MAT).

    PubMed

    Lindsay, Emily K; Creswell, J David

    2017-02-01

    Despite evidence linking trait mindfulness and mindfulness training with a broad range of effects, still little is known about its underlying active mechanisms. Mindfulness is commonly defined as (1) the ongoing monitoring of present-moment experience (2) with an orientation of acceptance. Building on conceptual, clinical, and empirical work, we describe a testable theoretical account to help explain mindfulness effects on cognition, affect, stress, and health outcomes. Specifically, Monitor and Acceptance Theory (MAT) posits that (1), by enhancing awareness of one's experiences, the skill of attention monitoring explains how mindfulness improves cognitive functioning outcomes, yet this same skill can increase affective reactivity. Second (2), by modifying one's relation to monitored experience, acceptance is necessary for reducing affective reactivity, such that attention monitoring and acceptance skills together explain how mindfulness improves negative affectivity, stress, and stress-related health outcomes. We discuss how MAT contributes to mindfulness science, suggest plausible alternatives to the account, and offer specific predictions for future research. Copyright © 2016 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  9. Mechanisms of Mindfulness Training: Monitor and Acceptance Theory (MAT)1

    PubMed Central

    Lindsay, Emily K.; Creswell, J. David

    2016-01-01

    Despite evidence linking trait mindfulness and mindfulness training with a broad range of effects, still little is known about its underlying active mechanisms. Mindfulness is commonly defined as (1) the ongoing monitoring of present-moment experience (2) with an orientation of acceptance. Building on conceptual, clinical, and empirical work, we describe a testable theoretical account to help explain mindfulness effects on cognition, affect, stress, and health outcomes. Specifically, Monitor and Acceptance Theory (MAT) posits that (1), by enhancing awareness of one’s experiences, the skill of attention monitoring explains how mindfulness improves cognitive functioning outcomes, yet this same skill can increase affective reactivity. Second (2), by modifying one’s relation to monitored experience, acceptance is necessary for reducing affective reactivity, such that attention monitoring and acceptance skills together explain how mindfulness improves negative affectivity, stress, and stress-related health outcomes. We discuss how MAT contributes to mindfulness science, suggest plausible alternatives to the account, and offer specific predictions for future research. PMID:27835764

  10. Re-Training the Addicted Brain: A Review of Hypothesized Neurobiological Mechanisms of Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention

    PubMed Central

    Witkiewitz, Katie; Lustyk, M. Kathleen B.; Bowen, Sarah

    2013-01-01

    Addiction has generally been characterized as a chronic relapsing condition. Several laboratory, preclinical, and clinical studies have provided evidence that craving and negative affect are strong predictors of the relapse process. These states, as well as the desire to avoid them, have been described as primary motives for substance use. A recently developed behavioral treatment, Mindfulness-Based Relapse Prevention (MBRP), was designed to target experiences of craving and negative affect and their roles in the relapse process. MBRP offers skills in cognitive behavioral relapse prevention integrated with mindfulness meditation. The mindfulness practices in MBRP are intended to increase discriminative awareness, with a specific focus on acceptance of uncomfortable states or challenging situations without reacting “automatically.” A recent efficacy trial found that those randomized to MBRP, as compared to those in a control group, demonstrated significantly lower rates of substance use and greater decreases in craving following treatment. Furthermore, individuals in MBRP did not report increased craving or substance use in response to negative affect. Importantly, areas of the brain that have been associated with craving, negative affect, and relapse have also been shown to be affected by mindfulness training. Drawing from the neuroimaging literature, we review several plausible mechanisms by which MBRP might be changing neural responses to the experiences of craving and negative affect, which subsequently may reduce risk for relapse. We hypothesize that MBRP may affect numerous brain systems and may reverse, repair, or compensate for the neuroadaptive changes associated with addiction and addictive behavior relapse. PMID:22775773

  11. The subtle body: an interoceptive map of central nervous system function and meditative mind-brain-body integration.

    PubMed

    Loizzo, Joseph J

    2016-06-01

    Meditation research has begun to clarify the brain effects and mechanisms of contemplative practices while generating a range of typologies and explanatory models to guide further study. This comparative review explores a neglected area relevant to current research: the validity of a traditional central nervous system (CNS) model that coevolved with the practices most studied today and that provides the first comprehensive neural-based typology and mechanistic framework of contemplative practices. The subtle body model, popularly known as the chakra system from Indian yoga, was and is used as a map of CNS function in traditional Indian and Tibetan medicine, neuropsychiatry, and neuropsychology. The study presented here, based on the Nalanda tradition, shows that the subtle body model can be cross-referenced with modern CNS maps and challenges modern brain maps with its embodied network model of CNS function. It also challenges meditation research by: (1) presenting a more rigorous, neural-based typology of contemplative practices; (2) offering a more refined and complete network model of the mechanisms of contemplative practices; and (3) serving as an embodied, interoceptive neurofeedback aid that is more user friendly and complete than current teaching aids for clinical and practical applications of contemplative practice. © 2016 New York Academy of Sciences.

  12. Meditation therapy for anxiety disorders.

    PubMed

    Krisanaprakornkit, T; Krisanaprakornkit, W; Piyavhatkul, N; Laopaiboon, M

    2006-01-25

    Anxiety disorders are characterised by long term worry, tension, nervousness, fidgeting and symptoms of autonomic system hyperactivity. Meditation is an age-old self regulatory strategy which is gaining more interest in mental health and psychiatry. Meditation can reduce arousal state and may ameliorate anxiety symptoms in various anxiety conditions. To investigate the effectiveness of meditation therapy in treating anxiety disorders Electronic databases searched include CCDANCTR-Studies and CCDANCTR-References, complementary and alternative medicine specific databases, Science Citation Index, Health Services/Technology Assessment Text database, and grey literature databases. Conference proceedings, book chapters and references were checked. Study authors and experts from religious/spiritual organisations were contacted. Types of studies: Randomised controlled trials. patients with a diagnosis of anxiety disorders, with or without another comorbid psychiatric condition. Types of interventions: concentrative meditation or mindfulness meditation. Comparison conditions: one or combination of 1) pharmacological therapy 2) other psychological treatment 3) other methods of meditation 4) no intervention or waiting list. Types of outcome: 1) improvement in clinical anxiety scale 2) improvement in anxiety level specified by triallists, or global improvement 3) acceptability of treatment, adverse effects 4) dropout. Data were independently extracted by two reviewers using a pre-designed data collection form. Any disagreements were discussed with a third reviewer, and the authors of the studies were contacted for further information. Two randomised controlled studies were eligible for inclusion in the review. Both studies were of moderate quality and used active control comparisons (another type of meditation, relaxation, biofeedback). Anti-anxiety drugs were used as standard treatment. The duration of trials ranged from 3 months (12 weeks) to 18 weeks. In one study

  13. A single session of meditation reduces of physiological indices of anger in both experienced and novice meditators.

    PubMed

    Fennell, Alexander B; Benau, Erik M; Atchley, Ruth Ann

    2016-02-01

    The goal of the present study was to explore how anger reduction via a single session of meditation might be measured using psychophysiological methodologies. To achieve this, 15 novice meditators (Experiment 1) and 12 practiced meditators (Experiment 2) completed autobiographical anger inductions prior to, and following, meditation training while respiration rate, heart rate, and blood pressure were measured. Participants also reported subjective anger via a visual analog scale. At both stages, the experienced meditators' physiological reaction to the anger induction reflected that of relaxation: slowed breathing and heart rate and decreased blood pressure. Naïve meditators exhibited physiological reactions that were consistent with anger during the pre-meditation stage, while after meditation training and a second anger induction they elicited physiological evidence of relaxation. The current results examining meditation training show that the naïve group's physiological measures mimicked those of the experienced group following a single session of meditation training. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier Inc.

  14. Pranic meditation affects phagocyte functions and hormonal levels of recent practitioners.

    PubMed

    Fernandes, César A; Nóbrega, Yanna K M; Tosta, C Eduardo

    2012-08-01

    Despite the recognized importance of phagocytes in the maintenance and recovery of health, the influence of meditation on their functions is not properly established. This investigation aimed at evaluating the influence of pranic meditation on the functions of phagocytes, and on the levels of hormones that influence them. A pre-post design was adopted. The investigation was carried out at a university research laboratory. Twenty-nine (29) healthy individuals of both sexes, 24-67 years old (median 45), with no previous experience in meditation, received 3-hour-duration weekly training on pranic meditation during 10 weeks and agreed to engage in daily home practice for 20 minutes. Pranic meditation is a novel method of meditation, based on the Vedic tradition, which uses techniques of breathing and visualization for quieting the mind, and for capturing and intentionally directing prana ("vital energy") wherever necessary. For assessing phagocytosis, the production of hydrogen peroxide and nitric oxide by monocytes, and the concentrations of corticotrophin and cortisol, blood was collected at the beginning (week 1), at the middle (week 5), and by the end (week 10) of the practice period. At the same intervals, melatonin concentrations were evaluated in the saliva. Those who meditated for more than 980 minutes showed increased phagocytosis, their monocytes produced higher concentrations of hydrogen peroxide, and their plasma levels of corticotrophin were reduced. The production of nitric oxide by monocytes, and the levels of cortisol and melatonin were not modified by meditation. This is the first study to show that a short program of pranic meditation practice was able to upregulate the function and metabolism of phagocytes, in parallel with the reduction of the plasma levels of corticotrophin. The results of this study point to a possible causal effect between these events, and indicate that pranic meditation could be useful for stimulating the function and

  15. Relationship of mindful awareness to neural processing of angry faces and impact of mindfulness training: A pilot investigation.

    PubMed

    Lee, Athene K W; Gansler, David A; Zhang, Nanyin; Jerram, Matthew W; King, Jean A; Fulwiler, Carl

    2017-06-30

    Mindfulness is paying attention, non-judgmentally, to experience in the moment. Mindfulness training reduces depression and anxiety and influences neural processes in midline self-referential and lateralized somatosensory and executive networks. Although mindfulness benefits emotion regulation, less is known about its relationship to anger and the corresponding neural correlates. This study examined the relationship of mindful awareness and brain hemodynamics of angry face processing, and the impact of mindfulness training. Eighteen healthy volunteers completed an angry face processing fMRI paradigm and measurement of mindfulness and anger traits. Ten of these participants were recruited from a Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) class and also completed imaging and other assessments post-training. Self-reported mindful awareness increased after MBSR, but trait anger did not change. Baseline mindful awareness was negatively related to left inferior parietal lobule activation to angry faces; trait anger was positively related to right middle frontal gyrus and bilateral angular gyrus. No significant pre-post changes in angry face processing were found, but changes in trait mindful awareness and anger were associated with sub-threshold differences in paralimbic activation. These preliminary and hypothesis-generating findings, suggest the analysis of possible impact of mindfulness training on anger may begin with individual differences in angry face processing. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. Mind-Body Skills Training for Resident Wellness: A Pilot Study of a Brief Mindfulness Intervention.

    PubMed

    Romcevich, Laura E; Reed, Suzanne; Flowers, Stacy R; Kemper, Kathi J; Mahan, John D

    2018-01-01

    Interventions to address burnout include mind-body skills training (MBST), but few studies have evaluated the feasibility of MBST for busy pediatric residents. In this pilot study, we tested the feasibility of a brief MBST intervention, using in-person peer-led training supported by online modules, to decrease stress and burnout in pediatric resident physicians. Of 99 (10%) residents, 10 residents at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Ohio participated in up to four 90-minute MBST sessions more than 1 month, led by a co-resident with 5 years of informal training in mind-body skills. Participants were offered 8 assigned online modules through OSU Center for Integrative Health and Wellness. Measures including Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI), Cohen's Perceived Stress, Smith's Brief Resilience, Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Scale-Revised, and Neff's Self-Compassion Scale (NSS) were administered before (T1) and after (T2) the course. Participants were offered optional monthly "maintenance" sessions for 6 months and completed a third set of measures at this follow-up (T3). The residents completed an average of 4.3/8 online modules and attended an average of 2.8/4 in-person sessions. There was significant improvement in positive attitude, perceived stress, and resilience post intervention (T2). Follow-up evaluation (T3) also demonstrated significant improvement in burnout (depersonalization) and mindfulness. More than 75% of participants found the course worthwhile. A short mixed-method mindfulness-based skills course may be a practical way to offer resilience and stress management training to busy resident physicians.

  17. Mind-Body Skills Training for Resident Wellness: A Pilot Study of a Brief Mindfulness Intervention

    PubMed Central

    Romcevich, Laura E; Reed, Suzanne; Flowers, Stacy R; Kemper, Kathi J; Mahan, John D

    2018-01-01

    Background: Interventions to address burnout include mind-body skills training (MBST), but few studies have evaluated the feasibility of MBST for busy pediatric residents. Objective: In this pilot study, we tested the feasibility of a brief MBST intervention, using in-person peer-led training supported by online modules, to decrease stress and burnout in pediatric resident physicians. Methods: Of 99 (10%) residents, 10 residents at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Ohio participated in up to four 90-minute MBST sessions more than 1 month, led by a co-resident with 5 years of informal training in mind-body skills. Participants were offered 8 assigned online modules through OSU Center for Integrative Health and Wellness. Measures including Maslach Burnout Inventory (MBI), Cohen’s Perceived Stress, Smith’s Brief Resilience, Cognitive and Affective Mindfulness Scale-Revised, and Neff’s Self-Compassion Scale (NSS) were administered before (T1) and after (T2) the course. Participants were offered optional monthly “maintenance” sessions for 6 months and completed a third set of measures at this follow-up (T3). Results: The residents completed an average of 4.3/8 online modules and attended an average of 2.8/4 in-person sessions. There was significant improvement in positive attitude, perceived stress, and resilience post intervention (T2). Follow-up evaluation (T3) also demonstrated significant improvement in burnout (depersonalization) and mindfulness. More than 75% of participants found the course worthwhile. Conclusions: A short mixed-method mindfulness-based skills course may be a practical way to offer resilience and stress management training to busy resident physicians. PMID:29780891

  18. Minds “At Attention”: Mindfulness Training Curbs Attentional Lapses in Military Cohorts

    PubMed Central

    Jha, Amishi P.; Morrison, Alexandra B.; Dainer-Best, Justin; Parker, Suzanne; Rostrup, Nina; Stanley, Elizabeth A.

    2015-01-01

    We investigated the impact of mindfulness training (MT) on attentional performance lapses associated with task-unrelated thought (i.e., mind wandering). Periods of persistent and intensive demands may compromise attention and increase off-task thinking. Here, we investigated if MT may mitigate these deleterious effects and promote cognitive resilience in military cohorts enduring a high-demand interval of predeployment training. To better understand which aspects of MT programs are most beneficial, three military cohorts were examined. Two of the three groups were provided MT. One group received an 8-hour, 8-week variant of Mindfulness-based Mind Fitness Training (MMFT) emphasizing engagement in training exercises (training-focused MT, n = 40), a second group received a didactic-focused variant emphasizing content regarding stress and resilience (didactic-focused MT, n = 40), and the third group served as a no-training control (NTC, n = 24). Sustained Attention to Response Task (SART) performance was indexed in all military groups and a no-training civilian group (CIV, n = 45) before (T1) and after (T2) the MT course period. Attentional performance (measured by A’, a sensitivity index) was lower in NTC vs. CIV at T2, suggesting that performance suffers after enduring a high-demand predeployment interval relative to a similar time period of civilian life. Yet, there were significantly fewer performance lapses in the military cohorts receiving MT relative to NTC, with training-focused MT outperforming didactic-focused MT at T2. From T1 to T2, A’ degraded in NTC and didactic-focused MT but remained stable in training-focused MT and CIV. In sum, while protracted periods of high-demand military training may increase attentional performance lapses, practice-focused MT programs akin to training-focused MT may bolster attentional performance more than didactic-focused programs. As such, training-focused MT programs should be further examined in cohorts experiencing

  19. Electroencephalographic correlates of states of concentrative meditation.

    PubMed

    DeLosAngeles, Dylan; Williams, Graham; Burston, John; Fitzgibbon, Sean P; Lewis, Trent W; Grummett, Tyler S; Clark, C Richard; Pope, Kenneth J; Willoughby, John O

    2016-12-01

    Meditative techniques aim for and meditators report states of mental alertness and focus, concurrent with physical and emotional calm. We aimed to determine the electroencephalographic (EEG) correlates of five states of Buddhist concentrative meditation, particularly addressing a correlation with meditative level. We studied 12 meditators and 12 pair-matched meditation-naïve participants using high-resolution scalp-recorded EEG. To maximise reduction of EMG, data were pre-processed using independent component analysis and surface Laplacian transformed data. Two non-meditative and five meditative states were used: resting baseline, mind-wandering, absorptions 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 (corresponding to four levels of absorption and an absorption with a different object of focus, otherwise equivalent to level 4; these five meditative states produce repeatable, distinctly different experiences for experienced meditators). The experimental protocol required participants to experience the states in the order listed above, followed immediately by the reverse. We then calculated EEG power in standard frequency bands from 1 to 80Hz. We observed decreases of central scalp beta (13-25Hz), and central low gamma (25-48Hz) power in meditators during deeper absorptions. In contrast, we identified increases in frontal midline and temporo-parietal theta power in meditators, again, during deeper absorptions. Alpha activity was increased over all meditative states, not depth-related. This study demonstrates that the subjective experiences of deepening meditation partially correspond to measures of EEG. Our results are in accord with prior studies on non-graded meditative states. These results are also consistent with increased theta correlating with tightness of focus, and reduced beta/gamma with the desynchronization associated with enhanced alertness. Copyright © 2016. Published by Elsevier B.V.

  20. Mindfulness Training: Worthwhile as a Means to Enhance First Responder Crisis Decision Making

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2016-09-01

    attention training , mindfulness-based mind fitness training , strength training for attention and resilience in ROTC cadets 15. NUMBER OF PAGES 127...situational awareness SIY search inside yourself program STARR strength training for attention and resilience in ROTC USAF United States Air Force...biochemical evidence in the argument for MT training , branding mindfulness, and MT with terms that would tend to be attractive to first responders, crafting

  1. Meditate to Create: The Impact of Focused-Attention and Open-Monitoring Training on Convergent and Divergent Thinking

    PubMed Central

    Colzato, Lorenza S.; Ozturk, Ayca; Hommel, Bernhard

    2012-01-01

    The practice of meditation has seen a tremendous increase in the western world since the 60s. Scientific interest in meditation has also significantly grown in the past years; however, so far, it has neglected the idea that different type of meditations may drive specific cognitive-control states. In this study we investigate the possible impact of meditation based on focused-attention (FA) and meditation based on open-monitoring (OM) on creativity tasks tapping into convergent and divergent thinking. We show that FA meditation and OM meditation exert specific effect on creativity. First, OM meditation induces a control state that promotes divergent thinking, a style of thinking that allows many new ideas of being generated. Second, FA meditation does not sustain convergent thinking, the process of generating one possible solution to a particular problem. We suggest that the enhancement of positive mood induced by meditating has boosted the effect in the first case and counteracted in the second case. PMID:22529832

  2. Is Mindfulness Training Useful for Pre-Service Teachers? An Exploratory Investigation

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kerr, Sandra L.; Lucas, Lisa J.; DiDomenico, Grace E.; Mishra, Vipanchi; Stanton, Brian J.; Shivde, Geeta; Pero, Alexandra N.; Runyen, Madeline E.; Terry, Gabriella M.

    2017-01-01

    In this study, we investigated the effects of mindfulness training with 23 pre-service teachers. Subjects were assigned to either a six-week mindfulness training program or a control condition. Postintervention, mindfulness participants reported greater emotional clarity and improved regulation of negative emotions. In particular, the mindfulness…

  3. Four Weekly Ayahuasca Sessions Lead to Increases in “Acceptance” Capacities: A Comparison Study With a Standard 8-Week Mindfulness Training Program

    PubMed Central

    Soler, Joaquim; Elices, Matilde; Dominguez-Clavé, Elisabeth; Pascual, Juan C.; Feilding, Amanda; Navarro-Gil, Mayte; García-Campayo, Javier; Riba, Jordi

    2018-01-01

    Background: The therapeutic effects of the Amazonian plant tea ayahuasca may relate to its ability to enhance mindfulness capacities. Ayahuasca induces a modified state of awareness through the combined action of its active principles: the psychedelic N,N-dimethyltryptamine (DMT) and a series of centrally acting β-carbolines, mainly harmine and tetrahydroharmine. To better understand the therapeutic potential of ayahuasca, here we compared the impact on mindfulness capacities induced by two independent interventions: (a) participation in four ayahuasca sessions without any specific purpose related to improving mindfulness capacities; and (b) participation in a standard mindfulness training course: 8 weeks mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), with the specific goal of improving these skills. Methods: Participants of two independent groups completed two self-report instruments: The Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ) and the Experiences Questionnaire (EQ). The MINDSENS Composite Index was also calculated, including those EQ and FFMQ items that have proven to be the most sensitive to meditation practice. Group A (n = 10) was assessed before and after the last of four closely spaced consecutive ayahuasca sessions. Group B (n = 10) was assessed before and after completion of a standard 8-week MBSR course. Results: MBSR training led to greater increases in overall mindfulness scores after the 8-week period. MBSR but not ayahuasca led to increases in the MINDSENS Composite Index. However, the ayahuasca sessions induced comparable increases in the Non-Judging subscale of the FFMQ, specifically measuring “acceptance.” Improving this capacity allows for a more detached and less judgmental stance toward potentially distressing thoughts and emotions. Results: The present findings suggest that a small number of ayahuasca sessions can be as effective at improving acceptance as more lengthy and costly interventions. Future studies should address the benefits of

  4. Four Weekly Ayahuasca Sessions Lead to Increases in "Acceptance" Capacities: A Comparison Study With a Standard 8-Week Mindfulness Training Program.

    PubMed

    Soler, Joaquim; Elices, Matilde; Dominguez-Clavé, Elisabeth; Pascual, Juan C; Feilding, Amanda; Navarro-Gil, Mayte; García-Campayo, Javier; Riba, Jordi

    2018-01-01

    Background: The therapeutic effects of the Amazonian plant tea ayahuasca may relate to its ability to enhance mindfulness capacities. Ayahuasca induces a modified state of awareness through the combined action of its active principles: the psychedelic N,N- dimethyltryptamine (DMT) and a series of centrally acting β-carbolines, mainly harmine and tetrahydroharmine. To better understand the therapeutic potential of ayahuasca, here we compared the impact on mindfulness capacities induced by two independent interventions: (a) participation in four ayahuasca sessions without any specific purpose related to improving mindfulness capacities; and (b) participation in a standard mindfulness training course: 8 weeks mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR), with the specific goal of improving these skills. Methods: Participants of two independent groups completed two self-report instruments: The Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ) and the Experiences Questionnaire (EQ). The MINDSENS Composite Index was also calculated, including those EQ and FFMQ items that have proven to be the most sensitive to meditation practice. Group A ( n = 10) was assessed before and after the last of four closely spaced consecutive ayahuasca sessions. Group B ( n = 10) was assessed before and after completion of a standard 8-week MBSR course. Results: MBSR training led to greater increases in overall mindfulness scores after the 8-week period. MBSR but not ayahuasca led to increases in the MINDSENS Composite Index. However, the ayahuasca sessions induced comparable increases in the Non-Judging subscale of the FFMQ, specifically measuring "acceptance." Improving this capacity allows for a more detached and less judgmental stance toward potentially distressing thoughts and emotions. Results: The present findings suggest that a small number of ayahuasca sessions can be as effective at improving acceptance as more lengthy and costly interventions. Future studies should address the benefits of

  5. Theory of mind training causes honest young children to lie

    PubMed Central

    Ding, Xiao Pan; Wellman, Henry; Wang, Yu; Fu, Genyue; Lee, Kang

    2015-01-01

    Theory of mind (ToM) has long been recognized to play a major role in children’s social functioning. However, no direct evidence confirms the causal linkage between the two. Here we addressed this significant gap by examining whether ToM causes the emergence of lying, an important social skill. We showed that after participating in ToM training to learn about mental state concepts, 3-year-olds who originally had been unable to lie began to deceive consistently. This training effect lasted for more than a month. In contrast, 3-year-olds who participated in control training to learn about physical concepts were significantly less inclined to lie than the ToM trained children. These findings provide the first experimental evidence supporting the causal role of ToM in the development of social competence in early childhood. PMID:26431737

  6. Cost of opioid-treated chronic low back pain: Findings from a pilot randomized controlled trial of mindfulness meditation-based intervention.

    PubMed

    Zgierska, Aleksandra E; Ircink, James; Burzinski, Cindy A; Mundt, Marlon P

    Opioid-treated chronic low back pain (CLBP) is debilitating, costly, and often refractory to existing treatments. This secondary analysis aims to pilot-test the hypothesis that mindfulness meditation (MM) can reduce economic burden related to opioid-treated CLBP. Twenty-six-week unblinded pilot randomized controlled trial, comparing MM, adjunctive to usual-care, to usual care alone. Outpatient. Thirty-five adults with opioid-treated CLBP (≥30 morphine-equivalent mg/day) for 3 + months enrolled; none withdrew. Eight weekly therapist-led MM sessions and at-home practice. Costs related to self-reported healthcare utilization, medication use (direct costs), lost productivity (indirect costs), and total costs (direct + indirect costs) were calculated for 6-month pre-enrollment and postenrollment periods and compared within and between the groups. Participants (21 MM; 14 control) were 20 percent men, age 51.8 ± 9.7 years, with severe disability, opioid dose of 148.3 ± 129.2 morphine-equivalent mg/d, and individual annual income of $18,291 ± $19,345. At baseline, total costs were estimated at $15,497 ± 13,677 (direct: $10,635 ± 9,897; indirect: $4,862 ± 7,298) per participant. Although MM group participants, compared to controls, reduced their pain severity ratings and pain sensitivity to heat stimuli (p < 0.05), no statistically significant within-group changes or between-group differences in direct and indirect costs were noted. Adults with opioid-treated CLBP experience a high burden of disability despite the high costs of treatment. Although this pilot study did not show a statistically significant impact of MM on costs related to opioid-treated CLBP, MM can improve clinical outcomes and should be assessed in a larger trial with long-term follow-up.

  7. Cost of Opioid-Treated Chronic Low Back Pain: Findings from a Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial of Mindfulness Meditation-Based Intervention

    PubMed Central

    Ircink, James; Burzinski, Cindy A.; Mundt, Marlon P.

    2018-01-01

    Objective Opioid-treated chronic low back pain (CLBP) is debilitating, costly and often refractory to existing treatments. This secondary analysis aims to pilot-test the hypothesis that mindfulness meditation (MM) can reduce economic burden related to opioid-treated CLBP. Design 26-week unblinded pilot randomized controlled trial, comparing MM, adjunctive to usual-care, to usual care alone. Setting Outpatient Participants Thirty-five adults with opioid-treated CLBP (≥ 30 morphine-equivalent mg/day) for 3+ months enrolled; none withdrew. Intervention 8 weekly therapist-led MM sessions and at-home practice. Outcome Measures Costs related to self-reported healthcare utilization, medication use (direct costs), lost productivity (indirect costs), and total costs (direct+indirect costs) were calculated for 6-month pre- and post-enrollment periods and compared within and between the groups. Results Participants (21 MM; 14 control) were 20% men, age 51.8 ± 9.7 years, with severe disability, opioid dose of 148.3 ± 129.2 morphine-equivalent mg/day, and individual annual income of $18,291 ± $19,345. At baseline, total costs were estimated at $15,497 ± 13,677 (direct: $10,635 ± 9,897; indirect: $4,862 ± 7,298) per participant. Although MM group participants, compared to controls, reduced their pain severity ratings and pain sensitivity to heat-stimuli (p<0.05), no statistically significant within-group changes or between-group differences in direct and indirect costs were noted. Conclusions Adults with opioid-treated CLBP experience a high burden of disability despite the high costs of treatment. Although this pilot study did not show a statistically significant impact of MM on costs related to opioid-treated CLBP, MM can improve clinical outcomes and should be assessed in a larger trial with long-term follow-up. PMID:28829518

  8. Interoception drives increased rational decision-making in meditators playing the ultimatum game.

    PubMed

    Kirk, Ulrich; Downar, Jonathan; Montague, P Read

    2011-01-01

    Human decision-making is often conceptualized as a competition between cognitive and emotional processes in the brain. Deviations from rational processes are believed to derive from inclusion of emotional factors in decision-making. Here, we investigate whether experienced Buddhist meditators are better equipped to regulate emotional processes compared with controls during economic decision-making in the Ultimatum Game. We show that meditators accept unfair offers on more than half of the trials, whereas controls only accept unfair offers on one-quarter of the trials. By applying fMRI we show that controls recruit the anterior insula during unfair offers. Such responses are powerful predictors of rejecting offers in social interaction. By contrast, meditators display attenuated activity in high-level emotional representations of the anterior insula and increased activity in the low-level interoceptive representations of the posterior insula. In addition we show that a subset of control participants who play rationally (i.e., accepts >85% unfair offers) recruits the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex presumably reflecting increased cognitive demands, whereas rational meditators by contrast display elevated activity in the somatosensory cortex and posterior superior temporal cortex. In summary, when assessing unfairness in the Ultimatum Game, meditators activate a different network of brain areas compared with controls enabling them to uncouple negative emotional reactions from their behavior. These findings highlight the clinically and socially important possibility that sustained training in mindfulness meditation may impact distinct domains of human decision-making.

  9. MEDITATIVE PSYCHOANALYSIS.

    PubMed

    Rubin, Jeffrey B

    2016-03-01

    Psychoanalysis and meditation not only compensate for the other's blind spots, but also, when practiced together, can provide a richer experience than either discipline pursued alone. After considering the way meditation cultivates heightened attentiveness, refines sensory clarity, lessens self-criticism, and increases affect tolerance, thereby deepening psychoanalytic listening, I'll examine how psychoanalytic perspectives on unconscious communication and meaning illuminate and transform the nearsightedness of meditation, aiding therapists and clients in understanding troubling thoughts, feelings, and behavior. This helps therapists deepen their capacity to help those people with whom they work. The paper also attempts to illuminate how the therapeutic relationship, conceived of in a freer and more empathic way--as the vehicle for both validating a person's experience and providing opportunities for new forms of relatedness and self-transformation--provides a crucible in which old and dysfunctional ways of caring for oneself and relating to other people emerge and new patterns of self-care and intimacy can be established. In the concluding section, I will delineate meditative psychoanalysis, my own integration of meditation and psychoanalysis. Clinical material will illustrate my theoretical reflections.

  10. [Mindfulness-based intervention in attention-deficit-/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)].

    PubMed

    Schmiedeler, Sandra

    2015-03-01

    This paper reviews the current literature on mindfulness-based interventions in the treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Mindfulness means paying attention and being aware of the experiences occurring in the present moment, and it is usually developed by the practice of meditation. Research shows that mindfulness training is associated with improved attention systems and self-regulation, and that it therefore fosters those skills that are underdeveloped in individuals with ADHD. Although only few studies have investigated the effectiveness of mindfulness training in ADHD (many of which showing methodological limitations), the findings do suggest that mindfulness may be useful in ADHD interventions.

  11. When Traits Match States: Examining the Associations between Self-Report Trait and State Mindfulness following a State Mindfulness Induction.

    PubMed

    Bravo, Adrian J; Pearson, Matthew R; Wilson, Adam D; Witkiewitz, Katie

    2018-02-01

    Previous research has found inconsistent relationships between trait mindfulness and state mindfulness. To extend previous research, we sought to examine the unique associations between self-report trait mindfulness and state mindfulness by levels of meditation experience (meditation-naïve vs. meditation-experienced) and by mindfulness induction (experimentally induced mindful state vs. control group). We recruited 299 college students (93 with previous mindfulness meditation experience) to participate in an experiment that involved the assessment of five facets of trait mindfulness (among other constructs), followed by a mindfulness induction (vs. control), followed by the assessment of state mindfulness of body and mind. Correlational analyses revealed limited associations between trait mindfulness facets and facets of state mindfulness, and demonstrated that a brief mindfulness exercise focused on bodily sensations and the breath elicited higher state mindfulness of body but not state mindfulness of mind. We found significant interactions such that individuals with previous meditation experience and higher scores on the observing facet of trait mindfulness had the highest levels of state mindfulness of body and mind. Among individuals with meditation experience, the strengths of the associations between observing trait mindfulness and the state mindfulness facets increased with frequency of meditation practice. Some other interactions ran counter to expectations. Overall, the relatively weak associations between trait and state mindfulness demonstrates the need to improve our operationalizations of mindfulness, advance our understanding of how to best cultivate mindfulness, and reappraise the ways in which mindfulness can manifest as a state and as a trait.

  12. Hypertension analysis of stress reduction using mindfulness meditation and yoga: results from the HARMONY randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Blom, Kimberly; Baker, Brian; How, Maxine; Dai, Monica; Irvine, Jane; Abbey, Susan; Abramson, Beth L; Myers, Martin G; Kiss, Alex; Perkins, Nancy J; Tobe, Sheldon W

    2014-01-01

    The HARMONY study was a randomized, controlled trial examining the efficacy of an 8-week mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) program for blood pressure (BP) lowering among unmedicated stage 1 hypertensive participants. Participants diagnosed with stage 1 hypertension based on ambulatory BP were randomized to either immediate treatment of MBSR for 8 weeks or wait-list control. Primary outcome analysis evaluated whether change in awake and 24-hour ambulatory BP from baseline to week 12 was significantly different between the 2 groups. A within-group before and after MBSR analysis was also performed. The study enrolled 101 adults (38% male) with baseline average 24-hour ambulatory BP of 135±7.9/82±5.8mm Hg and daytime ambulatory BP of 140±7.7/87±6.3 mmHg. At week 12, the change from baseline in 24-hour ambulatory BP was 0.4±6.7/0.0±4.9mm Hg for the immediate intervention and 0.4±7.8/-0.4±4.6mm Hg for the wait-list control. There were no significant differences between intervention and wait-list control for all ambulatory BP parameters. The secondary within-group analysis found a small reduction in BP after MBSR compared with baseline, a finding limited to female subjects in a sex analysis. MBSR did not lower ambulatory BP by a statistically or clinically significant amount in untreated, stage 1 hypertensive patients when compared with a wait-list control group. It leaves untested whether MBSR might be useful for lowering BP by improving adherence in treated hypertensive participants. NCT00825526.

  13. The effect of meditation on regulation of internal body states

    PubMed Central

    Khalsa, Sahib S.; Rudrauf, David; Davidson, Richard J.; Tranel, Daniel

    2015-01-01

    Meditation is commonly thought to induce physiologically quiescent states, as evidenced by decreased autonomic parameters during the meditation practice including reduced heart rate, respiratory rate, blood pressure, skin conductance, and increased alpha activity in the electroencephalogram. Preliminary empirical support for this idea was provided in a case report by Dimsdale and Mills (2002), where it was found that meditation seemed to regulate increased levels of cardiovascular arousal induced by bolus isoproterenol infusions. In that study, while meditating, a self-taught meditator exhibited unexpected decreases in heart rate while receiving moderate intravenous doses of the beta adrenergic agonist isoproterenol. This effect was no longer observed when the individual received isoproterenol infusions while not meditating. The current study was designed to explore this phenomenon empirically in a group of formally trained meditators. A total of 15 meditators and 15 non-meditators individually matched on age, sex, and body mass index were recruited. Participants received four series of infusions in a pseudorandomized order: isoproterenol while meditating (or during a relaxation condition for the non-meditators), isoproterenol while resting, saline while meditating (or during a relaxation condition for the non-meditators), and saline while resting. Heart rate was continuously measured throughout all infusions, and several measures of heart rate were derived from the instantaneous cardiac waveform. There was no evidence at the group or individual level suggesting that meditation reduced the cardiovascular response to isoproterenol, across all measures. These results suggest that meditation is not associated with increased regulation of elevated cardiac adrenergic tone. PMID:26217263

  14. [Feasibility and effectiveness of mindfulness training in adults with ADHD: a pilot study].

    PubMed

    Hepark, S; Kan, C C; Speckens, A

    2014-01-01

    Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a developmental disorder that often continues into adulthood. Stimulant medication is the common treatment for ADHD. However, there is a need for psychosocial interventions in addition to medication. To conduct a pilot study which examines the feasibility and effectiveness of mindfulness training for adults with ADHD. Eleven adults with ADHD participated in a mindfulness training scheme lasting 10 weeks. ADHD symptoms, anxiety and depressive symptoms, quality of life, mindfulness skills and attentional tasks were measured before and after the period of mindfulness training. Nine participants completed the mindfulness training and were satisfied with the training. Eight of these reported improvement in their ADHD symptoms. For all participants, their quality of life, awareness of their actions and executive control had also improved. Mindfulness is a feasible treatment strategy for adults with ADHD and seems to have a positive effect on ADHD symptoms and executive control.

  15. Anticipatory sensitization to repeated stressors: the role of initial cortisol reactivity and meditation/emotion skills training.

    PubMed

    Turan, Bulent; Foltz, Carol; Cavanagh, James F; Wallace, B Alan; Cullen, Margaret; Rosenberg, Erika L; Jennings, Patricia A; Ekman, Paul; Kemeny, Margaret E

    2015-02-01

    Anticipation may play a role in shaping biological reactions to repeated stressors-a common feature of modern life. We aimed to demonstrate that: (a) individuals who display a larger cortisol response to an initial stressor exhibit progressive anticipatory sensitization, showing progressively higher cortisol levels before subsequent exposures, and (b) attention/emotional skills training can reduce the magnitude of this effect on progressive anticipatory sensitization. Female school teachers (N=76) were randomly assigned to attention/emotion skills and meditation training or to a control group. Participants completed 3 separate Trier Social Stress Tests (TSST): at baseline (Session 1), post-training (Session 2), and five months post (Session 3). Each TSST session included preparing and delivering a speech and performing an arithmetic task in front of critical evaluators. In each session participants' salivary cortisol levels were determined before and after the stressor. Control participants with larger cortisol reactivity to the first stressor showed increasing anticipatory (pre-stressor) cortisol levels with each successive stressor exposure (TSST session)-suggesting progressive anticipatory sensitization. Yet this association was absent in the training group. Supplementary analyses indicated that these findings occurred in the absence of group differences in cortisol reactivity. Findings suggest that the stress response can undergo progressive anticipatory sensitization, which may be modulated by attention/emotion-related processes. An important implication of the construct of progressive anticipatory sensitization is a possible self-perpetuating effect of stress reactions, providing a candidate mechanism for the translation of short-to-long-term stress reactions. Copyright © 2014 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  16. A Comparison of Mindfulness-Based Group Training and Skills Group Training in Adults With ADHD.

    PubMed

    Edel, Marc-Andreas; Hölter, Tanja; Wassink, Kristina; Juckel, Georg

    2017-04-01

    To compare a novel "third wave" mindfulness-based training program with an established skills training derived from dialectical behavior therapy, to reduce ADHD symptoms and improve mindfulness and self-efficacy. Ninety-one adults with ADHD (combined and inattentive type, mainly medicated) were non-randomly assigned to and treated within a mindfulness-based training group (MBTG, n = 39) or a skills training group (STG, n = 52), each performed in 13 weekly 2-hr sessions. General linear models with repeated measures revealed that both programs resulted in a similar reduction of ADHD symptoms, and improvement of mindfulness and self-efficacy. However, the effect sizes were in the small-to-medium range. A decrease in ADHD symptoms ≥30% was observed in 30.8% of the MBTG participants and 11.5% of the STG participants. The comparatively weak results may be due to limitations such as the absence of randomization, the lack of a control group without intervention, and the lack of matching groups for borderline, depression, and anxiety status. Moreover, audio instructions for home exercises and more stringent monitoring of participants' progress and eventual absence from sessions might have improved the outcome.

  17. A mind you can count on: validating breath counting as a behavioral measure of mindfulness.

    PubMed

    Levinson, Daniel B; Stoll, Eli L; Kindy, Sonam D; Merry, Hillary L; Davidson, Richard J

    2014-01-01

    Mindfulness practice of present moment awareness promises many benefits, but has eluded rigorous behavioral measurement. To date, research has relied on self-reported mindfulness or heterogeneous mindfulness trainings to infer skillful mindfulness practice and its effects. In four independent studies with over 400 total participants, we present the first construct validation of a behavioral measure of mindfulness, breath counting. We found it was reliable, correlated with self-reported mindfulness, differentiated long-term meditators from age-matched controls, and was distinct from sustained attention and working memory measures. In addition, we employed breath counting to test the nomological network of mindfulness. As theorized, we found skill in breath counting associated with more meta-awareness, less mind wandering, better mood, and greater non-attachment (i.e., less attentional capture by distractors formerly paired with reward). We also found in a randomized online training study that 4 weeks of breath counting training improved mindfulness and decreased mind wandering relative to working memory training and no training controls. Together, these findings provide the first evidence for breath counting as a behavioral measure of mindfulness.

  18. Mindfulness Meditation-Based Intervention Is Feasible, Acceptable, and Safe for Chronic Low Back Pain Requiring Long-Term Daily Opioid Therapy

    PubMed Central

    Burzinski, Cindy A.; Cox, Jennifer; Kloke, John; Singles, Janice; Mirgain, Shilagh; Stegner, Aaron; Cook, Dane B.; Bačkonja, Miroslav

    2016-01-01

    Abstract Objective: Although mindfulness meditation (MM) is increasingly used for chronic pain treatment, limited evidence supports its clinical application for opioid-treated chronic low back pain (CLBP). The goal of this study was to determine feasibility, acceptability, and safety of an MM-based intervention in patients with CLBP requiring daily opioid therapy. Design: 26-week pilot randomized controlled trial comparing MM-based intervention, combined with usual care, to usual care alone. Setting: Outpatient. Patients: Adults with CLBP treated with ≥30 mg of morphine-equivalent dose (MED) per day for 3 months or longer. Interventions: Targeted MM-based intervention consisted of eight weekly 2-hour group sessions and home practice (30 minutes/d, 6 days/wk) during the study. “Usual care” for opioid-treated CLBP was provided to participants by their regular clinicians. Outcome measures: Feasibility and acceptability of the MM intervention were assessed by adherence to intervention protocol and treatment satisfaction among experimental participants. Safety was evaluated by inquiry about side effects/adverse events and opioid dose among all study participants. Results: Thirty-five participants enrolled during the 10-week recruitment period. The mean age (±standard deviation) was 51.8 ± 9.7 years; the patients were predominantly female, with substantial CLBP-related pain and disability, and treated with 148.3 ± 129.2 mg of MED per day. All participants completed baseline assessments; none missed both follow-up assessments or withdrew. Among experimental participants (n = 21), 19 attended 1 or more intervention sessions and 14 attended 4 or more. They reported, on average, 164.0 ± 122.1 minutes of formal practice per week during the 26-week study and 103.5 ± 111.5 minutes of brief, informal practice per week. Seventeen patients evaluated the intervention, indicating satisfaction; their qualitative responses described the course as

  19. The Chinese medicine construct "stagnation" in mind-body connection mediates the effects of mindfulness training on depression and anxiety.

    PubMed

    Lo, Herman H M; Ng, Siu Man; Chan, Cecilia L W; Lam, K F; Lau, Bobo H P

    2013-08-01

    Previous studies have identified different, but highly correlated variables explaining the effects of mindfulness training. Many of them are limited by tautological explanation. Under the framework of the mind-body connection, mindfulness training cultivates body awareness and promotes self-management of illness. Stagnation, a concept from Chinese medicine, may help explain the mechanism of change in mindfulness training. Individuals with depressive and anxiety symptoms (n=82) were randomized to either a Compassion-Mindfulness Therapy (C-MT) program or a waitlist control condition. The effect of stagnation as a mediator was investigated for dependent variables including depression, anxiety, and other physical and mental health variables. Depression, anxiety, stagnation, physical distress, daily functioning, positive affect, negative affect. Compared with the participants in the control group, those who completed C-MT demonstrated significant decreases in depression, F(1, 78)=15.67, p<.001, anxiety, F(1, 78)=7.72, p<.001, stagnation, F(1, 78)=4.96, p<.001, and other body-mind-spirit well-being measures. After entering the change in stagnation as the mediator, the effect of treatment reduced: depression (.35-.22), anxiety (.33-.05), and same patterns in other three secondary measures. The Sobel test was administered and significant reductions between group and depression (z=2.18, p=.029), anxiety (z=2.21, p=.027), and three secondary other measures (p<.05) were indicated. The study provides initial support for the role of stagnation in mediating changes in mindfulness training. It adds evidence to body-mind nondualism and offers new possibilities in studying treatment process and change mechanism. Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  20. Prison Meditation Movements and Mass Incarceration1

    PubMed Central

    Lyons, Thomas; Cantrell, Wm. Dustin

    2015-01-01

    By some estimates more than half of inmates held in jails and prisons in the United States have a substance use disorder. Treatments involving the teaching of meditation and other contemplative practices have been developed for a variety of physical and mental disorders including drug and alcohol addiction. At the same time, an expanding volunteer movement across the country has been bringing meditation and yoga into jails and prisons. This review first examines the experimental research on one such approach - mindfulness meditation as a treatment for drug and alcohol addiction, as well as the research on mindfulness in incarcerated settings. We argue that in order to make a substantial impact on recidivism, such programs must mirror volunteer programs which emphasize interdependency and non-duality between the “helper” and the “helped,” and the building of meditation communities both inside and outside of prison. PMID:25941214

  1. Prison Meditation Movements and Mass Incarceration.

    PubMed

    Lyons, Thomas; Cantrell, W Dustin

    2016-09-01

    By some estimates, more than half of inmates held in jails and prisons in the United States have a substance use disorder. Treatments involving the teaching of meditation and other contemplative practices have been developed for a variety of physical and mental disorders, including drug and alcohol addiction. At the same time, an expanding volunteer movement across the country has been bringing meditation and yoga into jails and prisons. This review first examines the experimental research on one such approach-mindfulness meditation as a treatment for drug and alcohol addiction, as well as the research on mindfulness in incarcerated settings. We argue that to make a substantial impact on recidivism, such programs must mirror volunteer programs which emphasize interdependency and non-duality between the "helper" and the "helped," and the building of meditation communities both inside and outside of prison. © The Author(s) 2015.

  2. Mindfulness training for smokers via web-based video instruction with phone support: a prospective observational study.

    PubMed

    Davis, James M; Manley, Alison R; Goldberg, Simon B; Stankevitz, Kristin A; Smith, Stevens S

    2015-03-29

    Many smokers are unable to access effective behavioral smoking cessation therapies due to location, financial limitations, schedule, transportation issues or other reasons. We report results from a prospective observational study in which a promising novel behavioral intervention, Mindfulness Training for Smokers was provided via web-based video instruction with telephone-based counseling support. Data were collected on 26 low socioeconomic status smokers. Participants were asked to watch eight video-based classes describing mindfulness skills and how to use these skills to overcome various core challenges in tobacco dependence. Participants received eight weekly phone calls from a smoking cessation coach who provided general support and answered questions about the videos. On the quit day, participants received two weeks of nicotine patches. Participants were a mean of 40.5 years of age, smoked 16.31 cigarettes per day for 21.88 years, with a mean of 6.81 prior failed quit attempts. Participants completed a mean of 5.55 of 8 online video classes with a mean of 23.33 minutes per login, completed a mean of 3.19 of 8 phone coach calls, and reported a mean meditation practice time of 12.17 minutes per day. Smoking abstinence was defined as self-reported abstinence on a smoking calendar with biochemical confirmation via carbon monoxide breath-test under 7 parts per million. Intent-to-treat analysis demonstrated 7-day point prevalence smoking abstinence at 4 and 6-months post-quit of 23.1% and 15.4% respectively. Participants showed a significant pre- to post-intervention increase in mindfulness as measured by the Five-Factor Mindfulness Questionnaire, and a significant pre- to post-intervention decrease in the Anxiety Sub-scale of the Depression Anxiety and Stress Scale. Results suggest that Mindfulness Training for Smokers can be provided via web-based video instruction with phone support and yield reasonable participant engagement on intervention practices and that

  3. Meditation is associated with increased brain network integration.

    PubMed

    van Lutterveld, Remko; van Dellen, Edwin; Pal, Prasanta; Yang, Hua; Stam, Cornelis Jan; Brewer, Judson

    2017-09-01

    This study aims to identify novel quantitative EEG measures associated with mindfulness meditation. As there is some evidence that meditation is associated with higher integration of brain networks, we focused on EEG measures of network integration. Sixteen novice meditators and sixteen experienced meditators participated in the study. Novice meditators performed a basic meditation practice that supported effortless awareness, which is an important quality of experience related to mindfulness practices, while their EEG was recorded. Experienced meditators performed a self-selected meditation practice that supported effortless awareness. Network integration was analyzed with maximum betweenness centrality and leaf fraction (which both correlate positively with network integration) as well as with diameter and average eccentricity (which both correlate negatively with network integration), based on a phase-lag index (PLI) and minimum spanning tree (MST) approach. Differences between groups were assessed using repeated-measures ANOVA for the theta (4-8 Hz), alpha (8-13 Hz) and lower beta (13-20 Hz) frequency bands. Maximum betweenness centrality was significantly higher in experienced meditators than in novices (P = 0.012) in the alpha band. In the same frequency band, leaf fraction showed a trend toward being significantly higher in experienced meditators than in novices (P = 0.056), while diameter and average eccentricity were significantly lower in experienced meditators than in novices (P = 0.016 and P = 0.028 respectively). No significant differences between groups were observed for the theta and beta frequency bands. These results show that alpha band functional network topology is better integrated in experienced meditators than in novice meditators during meditation. This novel finding provides the rationale to investigate the temporal relation between measures of functional connectivity network integration and meditation quality, for example using

  4. Stress Management: A Case Study of Professional Students on Impact of Meditation & Yoga on Stress Levels

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reddy, T. L. Narasimha; Ammani, S.

    2013-01-01

    Meditation is one of the Five Principles of Yoga. It is the practice by which there is constant observation of the mind. It requires you to focus your mind at one point and make your mind still in order to perceive the "self". Through the practice of Meditation, it will help achieve a greater sense of purpose and strength of will. It…

  5. Meditation Breath Attention Scores (MBAS): Development and investigation of an internet-based assessment of focused attention during meditation practice.

    PubMed

    Frewen, Paul; Hargraves, Heather; DePierro, Jonathan; D'Andrea, Wendy; Flodrowski, Les

    2016-07-01

    Meditation Breath Attention Scores (MBAS) represent a self-report, state measure of focused attention (FA) during the practice of meditation. The MBAS assessment procedure involves sounding a bell at periodic intervals during meditation practice, at which times participants indicate if they were attending toward breathing (scored 1) or if instead they had become distracted (e.g., by mind wandering; scored 0); scores are then tallied to yield participants' MBAS for that meditation. The current study developed and evaluated a fully automated and Internet-based version of MBAS in 1,101 volunteers. Results suggested that: (a) MBAS are internally consistent across bell rings; (b) MBAS total scores exhibit a non-normal distribution identifying subgroups of participants with particularly poor or robust FA during meditation; (c) MBAS decrease linearly with the duration of meditation practices, indicating that participants tend to experience less FA later as opposed to earlier in the meditation; (d) in the case of eyes-open meditation, MBAS are higher when the amount of time between bells is shorter; (e) MBAS correlate with various self-reported subjective experiences occurring during meditation; and (f) MBAS are weakly associated with higher trait mindful "acting with awareness," lesser ADHD-related symptoms of inattentiveness, and estimated minutes of meditation practiced in the past month. In sum, results provide further support for the construct validity of MBAS and serve to further characterize the dynamics of individual differences in FA during meditation. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2016 APA, all rights reserved).

  6. Brief training of psychoneuroendocrinoimmunology-based meditation (PNEIMED) reduces stress symptom ratings and improves control on salivary cortisol secretion under basal and stimulated conditions.

    PubMed

    Bottaccioli, Francesco; Carosella, Antonia; Cardone, Raffaella; Mambelli, Monica; Cemin, Marisa; D'Errico, Marcello M; Ponzio, Elisa; Bottaccioli, Anna Giulia; Minelli, Andrea

    2014-01-01

    Meditation is proposed as an anti-stress practice lowering allostatic load and promoting well-being, with brief formats providing some of the benefits of longer interventions. PsychoNeuroEndocrinoImmunology-based meditation (PNEIMED) combines the teaching of philosophy and practice of Buddhist meditation with a grounding in human physiology from a systemic and integrative perspective. We evaluated the effects of four-day PNEIMED training (30 h) on subjective and objective indices of stress in healthy adults. A non-randomized, controlled, before-and-after study was conducted. Participants (n = 125, mostly health practitioners) answered a questionnaire rating stress symptom before (T0) and after (Tf) a PNEIMED course. In an additional sample (n = 40; smokers, overweight persons, women taking contraceptives, and subjects with oral pathologies were excluded), divided into PNEIMED-attending (intervention, n = 21) and non-meditating (control, n = 19) groups, salivary cortisol was measured upon awakening and during a challenging mental task. Self-rated distress scores were highly reduced after the PNEIMED course. In the intervention group, improvement of psychological well-being was accompanied by decrease in cortisol levels at awakening. No T0-vs-Tf changes in distress scores and morning cortisol were found in controls. Based on baseline-to-peak increment of cortisol response at T0, 26 subjects (n = 13 for each group) were classified as task-responders. The amplitude and duration of the cortisol response decreased after PNEIMED, whereas no effects were found in controls. Brief PNEIMED training yields immediate benefits, reducing distress symptoms and adrenocortical activity under basal and stimulated conditions. PNEIMED may represent an effective practice to manage stress and anxiety, particularly among subjects facing a multitude of job-related stressors, such as healthcare workers. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  7. Post traumatic Headache and Psychological Health: Mindfulness Training for Mild TraumaticBrain Injury

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2015-10-01

    Award Number: W81XWH-10-1-1021 TITLE: Post-traumatic Headache and Psychological Health: Mindfulness Training for Mild Traumatic Brain Injury...traumatic Headache and Psychological Health: Mindfulness Training for Mild Traumatic Brain Injury” 5b. GRANT NUMBER 5c. PROGRAM ELEMENT NUMBER 6. AUTHOR...health, and quality of life of our soldiers. This project addresses multiple FY09 TBI/PH topic areas by validating an evidence-based, mind -body approach

  8. The Effectiveness of Mindfulness Training on Behavioral Problems and Attentional Functioning in Adolescents with ADHD

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    van de Weijer-Bergsma, Eva; Formsma, Anne R.; de Bruin, Esther I.; Bogels, Susan M.

    2012-01-01

    The effectiveness of an 8-week mindfulness training for adolescents aged 11-15 years with ADHD and parallel Mindful Parenting training for their parents was evaluated, using questionnaires as well as computerized attention tests. Adolescents (N = 10), their parents (N = 19) and tutors (N = 7) completed measurements before, immediately after, 8…

  9. "MYmind": Mindfulness Training for Youngsters with Autism Spectrum Disorders and Their Parents

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    de Bruin, Esther I.; Blom, René; Smit, Franka M. A.; van Steensel, Francisca J. A.; Bögels, Susan M.

    2015-01-01

    Background: Despite the dramatic increase in autism spectrum disorder in youth and the extremely high costs, hardly any evidence-based interventions are available. The aim of this study is to examine the effects of mindfulness training for adolescents with autism spectrum disorder, combined with Mindful Parenting training. Method: A total of 23…

  10. A critical analysis of the concepts and measurement of awareness and equanimity in Goenka's Vipassana meditation.

    PubMed

    Zeng, Xianglong; Oei, Tian P S; Ye, Yiqing; Liu, Xiangping

    2015-04-01

    Goenka's Vipassana meditation (GVM), a widely applied mindfulness training system rooted in Buddhism, is currently widely used. Although the two abilities cultivated in GVM, awareness and equanimity, exhibit certain similarities with the mindfulness cultivated in mindfulness-based psychotherapies (MBTs), they are not major concerns in MBTs. While many mindfulness scales have been created to measure different aspects of mindfulness constructs and certain scales and items can indeed reflect the basic abilities of awareness and equanimity, none of them can adequately capture the way in which those abilities and related ideas are applied in GVM. This paper presents a critical examination of the problems associated with the concepts and measurement of awareness and equanimity and presents potential solutions for achieving better measurement of these concepts in the future.

  11. Teaching mindfulness to occupational therapy students: pilot evaluation of an online curriculum.

    PubMed

    Reid, Denise T

    2013-02-01

    How mindfulness can be learned by occupational therapy students to manage their own self-care processes has not been fully examined as yet. This article describes an online curriculum approach for teaching a general introductory mindfulness course and examines outcomes with master's entry-level occupational therapy students. Fifteen students participated in an 8-week online mindfulness curriculum and completed a pre- and post-training survey. The Mindfulness Attention and Awareness Scale (MAAS) was used to measure mindfulness. Demographic, MAAS-scored mindfulness, and clinical utility data were collected. Results showed a statistically significant change (t = -4.82, p = 0.002) in MAAS mindfulness scores from the program start to end. Informal practice exercises and guided meditations were perceived by participants as being more helpful ways for developing an understanding and approach to mindfulness than were readings about mindfulness. This study suggests that mindfulness can be taught using an online approach.

  12. MYmind: Mindfulness training for Youngsters with autism spectrum disorders and their parents.

    PubMed

    de Bruin, Esther I; Blom, René; Smit, Franka Ma; van Steensel, Francisca Ja; Bögels, Susan M

    2015-11-01

    Despite the dramatic increase in autism spectrum disorder in youth and the extremely high costs, hardly any evidence-based interventions are available. The aim of this study is to examine the effects of mindfulness training for adolescents with autism spectrum disorder, combined with Mindful Parenting training. A total of 23 adolescents with autism spectrum disorder, referred to a mental health clinic, received nine weekly sessions of mindfulness training in group format. Their parents (18 mothers, 11 fathers) participated in parallel Mindful Parenting training. A pre-test, post-test, and 9-week follow-up design was used. Data were analyzed using multi-level analyses. Attendance rate was 88% for adolescents and fathers and 86% for mothers. Adolescents reported an increase in quality of life and a decrease in rumination, but no changes in worry, autism spectrum disorder core symptoms, or mindful awareness. Although parents reported no change in adolescent's autism spectrum disorder core symptoms, they reported improved social responsiveness, social communication, social cognition, preoccupations, and social motivation. About themselves, parents reported improvement in general as well as in parental mindfulness. They reported improved competence in parenting, overall parenting styles, more specifically a less lax, verbose parenting style, and an increased quality of life. Mindfulness training for adolescents with autism spectrum disorder combined with Mindful Parenting is feasible. Although the sample size was small and no control group was included, the first outcomes of this innovative training are positive. © The Author(s) 2014.

  13. EEG-guided meditation: A personalized approach.

    PubMed

    Fingelkurts, Andrew A; Fingelkurts, Alexander A; Kallio-Tamminen, Tarja

    2015-12-01

    The therapeutic potential of meditation for physical and mental well-being is well documented, however the possibility of adverse effects warrants further discussion of the suitability of any particular meditation practice for every given participant. This concern highlights the need for a personalized approach in the meditation practice adjusted for a concrete individual. This can be done by using an objective screening procedure that detects the weak and strong cognitive skills in brain function, thus helping design a tailored meditation training protocol. Quantitative electroencephalogram (qEEG) is a suitable tool that allows identification of individual neurophysiological types. Using qEEG screening can aid developing a meditation training program that maximizes results and minimizes risk of potential negative effects. This brief theoretical-conceptual review provides a discussion of the problem and presents some illustrative results on the usage of qEEG screening for the guidance of mediation personalization. Copyright © 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  14. Reduced interference in working memory following mindfulness training is associated with increases in hippocampal volume.

    PubMed

    Greenberg, Jonathan; Romero, Victoria L; Elkin-Frankston, Seth; Bezdek, Matthew A; Schumacher, Eric H; Lazar, Sara W

    2018-03-17

    Proactive interference occurs when previously relevant information interferes with retaining newer material. Overcoming proactive interference has been linked to the hippocampus and deemed critical for cognitive functioning. However, little is known about whether and how this ability can be improved or about the neural correlates of such improvement. Mindfulness training emphasizes focusing on the present moment and minimizing distraction from competing thoughts and memories. It improves working memory and increases hippocampal density. The current study examined whether mindfulness training reduces proactive interference in working memory and whether such improvements are associated with changes in hippocampal volume. 79 participants were randomized to a 4-week web-based mindfulness training program or a similarly structured creative writing active control program. The mindfulness group exhibited lower proactive interference error rates compared to the active control group following training. No group differences were found in hippocampal volume, yet proactive interference improvements following mindfulness training were significantly associated with volume increases in the left hippocampus. These results provide the first evidence to suggest that (1) mindfulness training can protect against proactive interference, and (2) that these benefits are related to hippocampal volumetric increases. Clinical implications regarding the application of mindfulness training in conditions characterized by impairments to working memory and reduced hippocampal volume such as aging, depression, PTSD, and childhood adversity are discussed.

  15. Mindfulness-Based Mind Fitness Training: A Case Study of a High-Stress Predeployment Military Cohort

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Stanley, Elizabeth A.; Schaldach, John M.; Kiyonaga, Anastasia; Jha, Amishi P.

    2011-01-01

    Current military deployments have resulted in many psychological and physical health issues and created interest in protective measures to mitigate effects of prolonged and repetitive stress. Mindfulness training has been successfully used for stress reduction in other contexts. The following case report presents a detachment of U.S. Marines who…

  16. Meditation or Exercise for Preventing Acute Respiratory Infection: A Randomized Controlled Trial

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Bruce; Hayney, Mary S.; Muller, Daniel; Rakel, David; Ward, Ann; Obasi, Chidi N.; Brown, Roger; Zhang, Zhengjun; Zgierska, Aleksandra; Gern, James; West, Rebecca; Ewers, Tola; Barlow, Shari; Gassman, Michele; Coe, Christopher L.

    2012-01-01

    PURPOSE This study was designed to evaluate potential preventive effects of meditation or exercise on incidence, duration, and severity of acute respiratory infection (ARI) illness. METHODS Community-recruited adults aged 50 years and older were randomized to 1 of 3 study groups: 8-week training in mindfulness meditation, matched 8-week training in moderate-intensity sustained exercise, or observational control. The primary outcome was area-under-the-curve global illness severity during a single cold and influenza season, using the Wisconsin Upper Respiratory Symptom Survey (WURSS-24) to assess severity. Health care visits and days of missed work were counted. Nasal wash collected during ARI illness was assayed for neutrophils, interleukin-8, and viral nucleic acid. RESULTS Of 154 adults randomized into the study, 149 completed the trial (82% female, 94% white, mean age 59.3 ± 6.6 years). There were 27 ARI episodes and 257 days of ARI illness in the meditation group (n = 51), 26 episodes and 241 illness days in the exercise group (n = 47), and 40 episodes and 453 days in the control group (n = 51). Mean global severity was 144 for meditation, 248 for exercise, and 358 for control. Compared with control, global severity was significantly lower for meditation (P = .004). Both global severity and total days of illness (duration) trended toward being lower for the exercise group (P=.16 and P=.032, respectively), as did illness duration for the meditation group (P=.034). Adjusting for covariates using zero-inflated multivariate regression models gave similar results. There were 67 ARI-related days of-work missed in the control group, 32 in the exercise group (P = .041), and 16 in the meditation group (P <.001). Health care visits did not differ significantly. Viruses were identified in 54% of samples from meditation, 42% from exercise, and 54% from control groups. Neutrophil count and interleukin-8 levels were similar among intervention groups. CONCLUSIONS Training in

  17. A Randomized Controlled Study of Mind-Body Skills Groups for Treatment of War-Zone Stress in Military and Veteran Populations

    DTIC Science & Technology

    2010-10-01

    of meditation, guided imagery, and breathing techniques; self-expression through words, drawings and movement; autogenic training and biofeedback...facilitating the mind-body skills group intervention have co-facilitated groups under the supervision of the clinical director and are fully trained ...exclusion criteria by the research coordinator. 2. The clinical director will supervise the trained group leaders who will be facilitating the mind

  18. Cognitive Effects of Mindfulness Training: Results of a Pilot Study Based on a Theory Driven Approach

    PubMed Central

    Wimmer, Lena; Bellingrath, Silja; von Stockhausen, Lisa

    2016-01-01

    The present paper reports a pilot study which tested cognitive effects of mindfulness practice in a theory-driven approach. Thirty-four fifth graders received either a mindfulness training which was based on the mindfulness-based stress reduction approach (experimental group), a concentration training (active control group), or no treatment (passive control group). Based on the operational definition of mindfulness by Bishop et al. (2004), effects on sustained attention, cognitive flexibility, cognitive inhibition, and data-driven as opposed to schema-based information processing were predicted. These abilities were assessed in a pre-post design by means of a vigilance test, a reversible figures test, the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, a Stroop test, a visual search task, and a recognition task of prototypical faces. Results suggest that the mindfulness training specifically improved cognitive inhibition and data-driven information processing. PMID:27462287

  19. Cognitive Effects of Mindfulness Training: Results of a Pilot Study Based on a Theory Driven Approach.

    PubMed

    Wimmer, Lena; Bellingrath, Silja; von Stockhausen, Lisa

    2016-01-01

    The present paper reports a pilot study which tested cognitive effects of mindfulness practice in a theory-driven approach. Thirty-four fifth graders received either a mindfulness training which was based on the mindfulness-based stress reduction approach (experimental group), a concentration training (active control group), or no treatment (passive control group). Based on the operational definition of mindfulness by Bishop et al. (2004), effects on sustained attention, cognitive flexibility, cognitive inhibition, and data-driven as opposed to schema-based information processing were predicted. These abilities were assessed in a pre-post design by means of a vigilance test, a reversible figures test, the Wisconsin Card Sorting Test, a Stroop test, a visual search task, and a recognition task of prototypical faces. Results suggest that the mindfulness training specifically improved cognitive inhibition and data-driven information processing.

  20. Using a Mindfulness-Based Procedure in the Community: Translating Research to Practice

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Adkins, Angela D.; Singh, Ashvind N.; Winton, Alan S. W.; McKeegan, Gerald F.; Singh, Judy

    2010-01-01

    Maladaptive behaviors, such as aggressive and disruptive behaviors, are a significant risk factor for maintaining community placement by individuals with intellectual disabilities. When experienced researchers provide training to individuals with intellectual disabilities on a mindfulness-based strategy, "Meditation on the Soles of the Feet," the…

  1. Peer with Intellectual Disabilities as a Mindfulness-Based Anger and Aggression Management Therapist

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Singh, Nirbhay N.; Lancioni, Giulio E.; Winton, Alan S. W.; Singh, Judy; Singh, Ashvind N. A.; Singh, Angela D. A.

    2011-01-01

    A young man with intellectual disabilities (ID) and mental illness, who had previously been taught to successfully manage his aggressive behavior by using "Meditation on the Soles of the Feet," reported that he shared his mindfulness practice with his peers with ID. When requested by his peers, and without any training as a therapist, he began to…

  2. Mindful movement and skilled attention

    PubMed Central

    Clark, Dav; Schumann, Frank; Mostofsky, Stewart H.

    2015-01-01

    Bodily movement has long been employed as a foundation for cultivating mental skills such as attention, self-control or mindfulness, with recent studies documenting the positive impacts of mindful movement training, such as yoga and tai chi. A parallel “mind-body connection” has also been observed in many developmental disorders. We elaborate a spectrum of mindfulness by considering ADHD, in which deficient motor control correlates with impaired (disinhibited) behavioral control contributing to defining features of excessive distractibility and impulsivity. These data provide evidence for an important axis of variation for wellbeing, in which skillful cognitive control covaries with a capacity for skillful movement. We review empirical and theoretical literature on attention, cognitive control, mind wandering, mindfulness and skill learning, endorsing a model of skilled attention in which motor plans, attention, and executive goals are seen as mutually co-defining aspects of skilled behavior that are linked by reciprocal inhibitory and excitatory connections. Thus, any movement training should engage “higher-order” inhibition and selection and develop a repertoire of rehearsed procedures that coordinate goals, attention and motor plans. However, we propose that mindful movement practice may improve the functional quality of rehearsed procedures, cultivating a transferrable skill of attention. We adopt Langer’s spectrum of mindful learning that spans from “mindlessness” to engagement with the details of the present task and contrast this with the mental attitudes cultivated in standard mindfulness meditation. We particularly follow Feldenkrais’ suggestion that mindful learning of skills for organizing the body in movement might transfer to other forms of mental activity. The results of mindful movement training should be observed in multiple complementary measures, and may have tremendous potential benefit for individuals with ADHD and other

  3. Effects of meditation practice on spontaneous eyeblink rate.

    PubMed

    Kruis, Ayla; Slagter, Heleen A; Bachhuber, David R W; Davidson, Richard J; Lutz, Antoine

    2016-05-01

    A rapidly growing body of research suggests that meditation can change brain and cognitive functioning. Yet little is known about the neurochemical mechanisms underlying meditation-related changes in cognition. Here, we investigated the effects of meditation on spontaneous eyeblink rates (sEBR), a noninvasive peripheral correlate of striatal dopamine activity. Previous studies have shown a relationship between sEBR and cognitive functions such as mind wandering, cognitive flexibility, and attention-functions that are also affected by meditation. We therefore expected that long-term meditation practice would alter eyeblink activity. To test this, we recorded baseline sEBR and intereyeblink intervals (IEBI) in long-term meditators (LTM) and meditation-naive participants (MNP). We found that LTM not only blinked less frequently, but also showed a different eyeblink pattern than MNP. This pattern had good to high degree of consistency over three time points. Moreover, we examined the effects of an 8-week course of mindfulness-based stress reduction on sEBR and IEBI, compared to an active control group and a waitlist control group. No effect of short-term meditation practice was found. Finally, we investigated whether different types of meditation differentially alter eyeblink activity by measuring sEBR and IEBI after a full day of two kinds of meditation practices in the LTM. No effect of meditation type was found. Taken together, these findings may suggest either that individual difference in dopaminergic neurotransmission is a self-selection factor for meditation practice, or that long-term, but not short-term meditation practice induces stable changes in baseline striatal dopaminergic functioning. © 2016 Society for Psychophysiological Research.

  4. Effects of Meditation Practice on Spontaneous Eye Blink Rate

    PubMed Central

    Kruis, Ayla; Slagter, Heleen A.; Bachhuber, David R.W.; Davidson, Richard J.; Lutz, Antoine

    2016-01-01

    A rapidly growing body of research suggests that meditation can change brain and cognitive functioning. Yet little is known about the neurochemical mechanisms underlying meditation-related changes in cognition. Here we investigated the effects of meditation on spontaneous Eye Blink Rates (sEBR), a non-invasive peripheral correlate of striatal dopamine activity. Previous studies have shown a relationship between sEBR and cognitive functions such as mind-wandering, cognitive flexibility, and attention–functions that are also affected by meditation. We therefore expected that long-term meditation practice would alter eye-blink activity. To test this, we recorded baseline sEBR and Inter Eye-Blink Intervals (IEBI) in long-term meditators (LTM) and meditation naive participants (MNP). We found that LTM not only blinked less frequently, but also showed a different eye-blink pattern than MNP. This pattern had good to high degree of consistency over three time points. Moreover, we examined the effects of an 8 week-course of Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) on sEBR and IEBI, compared to an active control group and a waitlist-control group. No effect of short-term meditation practice was found. Finally, we investigated whether different types of meditation differentially alter eye blink activity by measuring sEBR and IEBI after a full day of two kinds of meditation practices in the LTM. No effect of meditation type was found. Taken together, these findings may suggest either that individual difference in dopaminergic neurotransmission is a self-selection factor for meditation practice, or that long-term, but not short-term meditation practice induces stable changes in baseline striatal dopaminergic functioning. PMID:26871460

  5. Reducing teachers' psychological distress through a mindfulness training program.

    PubMed

    Franco, Clemente; Mañas, Israel; Cangas, Adolfo J; Moreno, Emilio; Gallego, José

    2010-11-01

    Teachers constitute one of the professional collectives most affected by psychological problems. The purpose of this quasi-experimental study is to examine the efficacy of a mindfulness training programme to reduce psychological distress in a group of teachers. The sample comprised 68 teachers of Secondary School Education, from various public schools; half of them formed the experimental group, and the another half the control group. The levels of psychological distress were measured, in both groups, by the Symptom Checklist-90-R (SCL-90-R) before and after the application of the programme. Statistical analysis shows the significant reduction of three general measures of psychological distress (Global Severity Index, Positive Symptom Distress Index, and Positive Symptom Total), as well in all its dimensions (somatization, obsessive-compulsive, interpersonal sensibility, depression, anxiety, hostility, phobic anxiety, paranoid ideation, and psychoticism), in the experimental group compared with the control group. Follow-up measures show that these results were maintained for four months after termination of the intervention in the experimental group.

  6. A training study of theory of mind and executive function in children with autistic spectrum disorders.

    PubMed

    Fisher, Naomi; Happé, Francesca

    2005-12-01

    This study investigated the relationship between theory of mind and executive functioning in children with autistic spectrum disorders through a training study. Ten children were trained on theory of mind, whilst ten were trained in executive function. Seven children were assigned to a control group, receiving no intervention. Training programmes were administered individually, lasting for 25 minutes per day for 5-10 days. Children were tested before training, after training and at a two-month follow-up. Significant improvements were seen in performance on theory of mind tasks in both trained groups, whilst the control group showed no improvement. No improvement on the executive function tasks was seen in any of the groups. The implications of these findings are discussed.

  7. Randomized Clinical Trial of Mindfulness Skills Augmentation in Parent Training

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gershy, Naama; Meehan, Kevin B.; Omer, Haim; Papouchis, Nicholas; Schorr Sapir, Irit

    2017-01-01

    Background: The development of mindfulness parenting programs in recent years offers a promising direction for targeting parental emotional dysregulation in families of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Nevertheless, research on the effectiveness of mindfulness parenting programs is limited, and little is known about…

  8. A training programme involving automatic self-transcending meditation in late-life depression: preliminary analysis of an ongoing randomised controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Vasudev, Akshya; Arena, Amanda; Burhan, Amer M; Ionson, Emily; Hirjee, Hussein; Maldeniya, Pramudith; Wetmore, Stephen; Newman, Ronnie I

    2016-03-01

    Late-life depression affects 2-6% of seniors aged 60 years and above. Patients are increasingly embracing non-pharmacological therapies, many of which have not been scientifically evaluated. This study aimed to evaluate a category of meditation, automatic self-transcending meditation (ASTM), in alleviating symptoms of depression when augmenting treatment as usual (NCT02149810). The preliminary results of an ongoing single-blind randomised controlled trial comparing a training programme involving ASTM with a wait-list control indicate that a 12-week ASTM programme may lead to significantly greater reductions in depression and anxiety severity. As such, ASTM may be an effective adjunctive therapy in the treatment of late-life depression. R.I.N. is Director of Research and Health Promotion for the Art of Living Foundation, Canada and supervised the staff providing ASTM training. © The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2016. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) licence.

  9. A training programme involving automatic self-transcending meditation in late-life depression: preliminary analysis of an ongoing randomised controlled trial

    PubMed Central

    Arena, Amanda; Burhan, Amer M.; Ionson, Emily; Hirjee, Hussein; Maldeniya, Pramudith; Wetmore, Stephen; Newman, Ronnie I.

    2016-01-01

    Late-life depression affects 2–6% of seniors aged 60 years and above. Patients are increasingly embracing non-pharmacological therapies, many of which have not been scientifically evaluated. This study aimed to evaluate a category of meditation, automatic self-transcending meditation (ASTM), in alleviating symptoms of depression when augmenting treatment as usual (NCT02149810). The preliminary results of an ongoing single-blind randomised controlled trial comparing a training programme involving ASTM with a wait-list control indicate that a 12-week ASTM programme may lead to significantly greater reductions in depression and anxiety severity. As such, ASTM may be an effective adjunctive therapy in the treatment of late-life depression. Declaration of interest R.I.N. is Director of Research and Health Promotion for the Art of Living Foundation, Canada and supervised the staff providing ASTM training. Copyright and usage © The Royal College of Psychiatrists 2016. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Non-Commercial, No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) licence. PMID:27703774

  10. Contemplative Meditation and Neuroscience: Prospects for Mental Health.

    PubMed

    Larrivee, Denis; Echarte, Luis

    2018-06-01

    Numerous studies show that personal spirituality developed through prayer positively influences mental health. Phenomenological and neuroscientific studies of mindfulness, an Eastern meditative prayer form, reveal significant health benefits now yielding important insights useful for guiding treatment of psychological disorders. By contrast, and despite its practice for millennia, Christian meditation is largely unrepresented in studies of clinical efficacy. Resemblances between mindfulness and disciplinary acts in Christian meditation taken from the ancient Greek practice of askesis suggest that Christian meditation will prove similarly beneficial; furthermore, psychological and neuroscientific studies suggest that its retention of a dialogical and transcendent praxis will additionally benefit social and existential psychotherapy. This paper thus argues that study of contemplative meditation for its therapeutic potential is warranted.

  11. What Is the Impact of Online Training in Mind-Body Skills?

    PubMed

    Kemper, Kathi J; Lynn, Joanne; Mahan, John D

    2015-10-01

    Mind-body skills (MBS) training is popular, but in-person training can be inconvenient and costly. We assessed the impact of online MBS training on clinicians' and trainees' stress, mindfulness, and confidence in providing calm, compassionate care. This was a prospective cohort trial. Trainees entering medical school; graduate programs in nursing, social work, and dietetics; and residencies in family medicine and pediatrics at a large Midwestern academic health center were invited to complete online surveys before and 12 weeks after enrolling in online elective integrative health courses on MBS training or not. The elective offered no course credit and had no mandated deadlines for completion. At baseline, the 60 who engaged in MBS training were similar to the 43 who did not in terms of profession, gender, perceived stress levels, mindfulness, resilience, and compassion. MBS participants engaged in a median of 3 of 12 available modules with a bimodal distribution peaking at 1 to 2 and 12 modules. Twelve weeks later, those who participated in MBS showed significantly greater improvements in measures of stress, mindfulness, and confidence in providing calm, compassionate care than those who did not. Online elective training offers a feasible strategy to improve mindfulness, stress, and confidence in providing calm, compassionate care. Additional studies are needed to determine the impact of required versus elective courses, the optimal dosage and content of training, and the costs and benefits of online versus in-person training. © The Author(s) 2015.

  12. A mindfulness-based stress prevention training for medical students (MediMind): study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Kuhlmann, Sophie Merle; Bürger, Arne; Esser, Günter; Hammerle, Florian

    2015-02-08

    Medical training is very demanding and associated with a high prevalence of psychological distress. Compared to the general population, medical students are at a greater risk of developing a psychological disorder. Various attempts of stress management training in medical school have achieved positive results on minimizing psychological distress; however, there are often limitations. Therefore, the use of a rigorous scientific method is needed. The present study protocol describes a randomized controlled trial to examine the effectiveness of a specifically developed mindfulness-based stress prevention training for medical students that includes selected elements of cognitive behavioral strategies (MediMind). This study protocol presents a prospective randomized controlled trial, involving four assessment time points: baseline, post-intervention, one-year follow-up and five-year follow-up. The aims include evaluating the effect on stress, coping, psychological morbidity and personality traits with validated measures. Participants are allocated randomly to one of three conditions: MediMind, Autogenic Training or control group. Eligible participants are medical or dental students in the second or eighth semester of a German university. They form a population of approximately 420 students in each academic term. A final total sample size of 126 (at five-year follow-up) is targeted. The trainings (MediMind and Autogenic Training) comprise five weekly sessions lasting 90 minutes each. MediMind will be offered to participants of the control group once the five-year follow-up is completed. The allotment is randomized with a stratified allocation ratio by course of studies, semester, and gender. After descriptive statistics have been evaluated, inferential statistical analysis will be carried out with a repeated measures ANOVA-design with interactions between time and group. Effect sizes will be calculated using partial η-square values. Potential limitations of this study

  13. Online Training in Mind-Body Therapies: Different Doses, Long-term Outcomes.

    PubMed

    Kemper, Kathi J; Rao, Nisha; Gascon, Gregg; Mahan, John D

    2017-10-01

    There is a high rate of burnout among health professionals, driving diverse attempts to promote resilience and well-being to counter this trend. The purpose of this project was to assess the dose-response relationship between the number of hours of online mind-body skills training for health professionals and relevant outcomes a year later. Among 1438 registrants for online training (including up to 12 hours of training on mind-body practices) between December 2013 and November 2015, we analyzed responses from the first 10% who responded to an anonymous online survey between December 1, 2015 and February 1, 2016. Questions included the type and frequency of mind-body practice in the past 30 days and whether the online training had any impact on personal life or professional practice. Standardized measures were used to assess stress, mindfulness, confidence in providing compassionate care, and burnout. The 149 respondents represented a variety of ages and health professions; 55% completed one or more mind-body training modules an average of 14 months previously. Most (78%) engaged in one or more mind-body practices in the 30 days before the survey; 79% reported changes in self-care and 71% reported changes in the care of others as a result of participating. Increasing number of hours of training were significantly associated with practicing mind-body skills more frequently; increasing practice frequency was associated with less stress and burnout, which were associated with missing less work. Greater practice frequency was also associated with improvements in stress, mindfulness, and resilience, which were associated with increased confidence in providing compassionate care. Online training in mind-body therapies is associated with changes in self-reported behavior one year later; increasing doses of training are associated with more frequent practice which is associated with less stress, burnout, and missing work, and higher levels of mindfulness, resilience, and

  14. Mindfulness training for smoking cessation: A meta-analysis of randomized-controlled trials.

    PubMed

    Oikonomou, Maria Theodora; Arvanitis, Marios; Sokolove, Robert L

    2017-12-01

    Recent studies have shown that mindfulness training has a promising potential for smoking treatment. In order to examine the efficacy of mindfulness training in smoking cessation, we performed a systematic review of the literature and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials. Four randomized controlled trials with 474 patients were included in our analysis. The results showed that 25.2 percent of participants remained abstinent for more than 4 months in the mindfulness group compared to 13.6 percent of those who received usual care therapy (relative risk, 1.88; 95 percent confidence interval, 1.04-3.40). Our results suggest that mindfulness training may have an important role to play in efforts to lower cigarette smoking rates.

  15. Embodied Wisdom: Meditations on Memoir and Education

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Pryer, Alison

    2010-01-01

    "Embodied Wisdom: Meditations on Memoir and Education" by Alison Pryer, Ph.D. explores the interconnectedness of body, mind and spirit within diverse educational contexts. Evocative, sensual prose carries the reader on a journey through the personal and the remembered in a layered series of autobiographical essays, each one affording deeper…

  16. Tai chi and meditation: A conceptual (re)synthesis?

    PubMed

    Posadzki, Paul; Jacques, Samantha

    2009-06-01

    The aim of this article is to review the literature on Tai Chi and meditation. A coherent construct is developed that includes a comparative analysis and conceptual synthesis of existing theories. The authors discuss a set of assumptions that justify this synthesis; they also argue that this construct would facilitate greater understanding of Tai Chi from the perspective of meditation. Such synthesis may bring "additional" benefits to Tai Chi practitioners as they could recognize that this mind-body technique holds the essence of meditation. Within the scope of this article, the evidence shows a majority of common features when concerning Tai Chi and meditation. These mutual similarities should be taken into account when performing this type of mind-body medicine by patients and/or therapists. Finally, the authors suggest that this inspiring compilation of movements and mindfulness can be used for practical purposes.

  17. The enhancement of visuospatial processing efficiency through Buddhist Deity meditation.

    PubMed

    Kozhevnikov, Maria; Louchakova, Olga; Josipovic, Zoran; Motes, Michael A

    2009-05-01

    This study examined the effects of meditation on mental imagery, evaluating Buddhist monks' reports concerning their extraordinary imagery skills. Practitioners of Buddhist meditation were divided into two groups according to their preferred meditation style: Deity Yoga (focused attention on an internal visual image) or Open Presence (evenly distributed attention, not directed to any particular object). Both groups of meditators completed computerized mental-imagery tasks before and after meditation. Their performance was compared with that of control groups, who either rested or performed other visuospatial tasks between testing sessions. The results indicate that all the groups performed at the same baseline level, but after meditation, Deity Yoga practitioners demonstrated a dramatic increase in performance on imagery tasks compared with the other groups. The results suggest that Deity meditation specifically trains one's capacity to access heightened visuospatial processing resources, rather than generally improving visuospatial imagery abilities.

  18. Mindful Climate Action: Health and Environmental Co-Benefits from Mindfulness-Based Behavioral Training

    PubMed Central

    Barrett, Bruce; Grabow, Maggie; Middlecamp, Cathy; Mooney, Margaret; Checovich, Mary M.; Converse, Alexander K.; Gillespie, Bob; Yates, Julia

    2016-01-01

    Greenhouse gases from human activities are causing climate change, creating risks for people around the globe. Behaviors involving transportation, diet, energy use, and purchasing drive greenhouse gas emissions, but are also related to health and well-being, providing opportunity for co-benefits. Replacing shorter automobile trips with walking or cycling, or eating plants rather than animals, for example, may increase personal health, while also reducing environmental impact. Mindfulness-based practices have been shown to enhance a variety of health outcomes, but have not been adapted towards environmental purposes. We designed the Mindful Climate Action (MCA) curriculum to help people improve their health while simultaneously lowering their carbon footprints. Combining mindfulness-based practices with the Stages of Change theory, the MCA program aims to: (1) improve personal health and well-being; (2) decrease energy use; (3) reduce automobile use; (4) increase active transport; (5) shift diet towards plant-based foods; and (6) reduce unnecessary purchasing. Mindfulness practices will foster attentional awareness, openness, and response flexibility, supporting positive behavior change. We plan to test MCA in a randomized controlled trial, with rigorous assessment of targeted outcomes. Our long-term goal is to refine and adapt the MCA program to a variety of audiences, in order to enhance public health and environmental sustainability. PMID:28008371

  19. The Emerging Role of Meditation in Addressing Psychiatric Illness, with a Focus on Substance Use Disorders

    PubMed Central

    Dakwar, Elias; Levin, Frances R.

    2011-01-01

    Over the past 30 years the practice of meditation has become increasingly popular in clinical settings. In addition to evidence-based medical uses, meditation may have psychiatric benefits. In this review, the literature on the role of meditation in addressing psychiatric issues, and specifically substance use disorders, is discussed. Each of the three meditation modalities that have been most widely studied—transcendental meditation, Buddhist meditation, and mindfulness-based meditation—is critically examined in terms of its background, techniques, mechanisms of action, and evidence-based clinical applications, with special attention given to its emerging role in the treatment of substance use disorders. The unique methodological difficulties that beset the study of meditation are also considered. A brief discussion then integrates the research that has been completed thus far, elucidates the specific ways that meditation may be helpful for substance use disorders, and suggests new avenues for research. PMID:19637074

  20. Acceptance lowers stress reactivity: Dismantling mindfulness training in a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Lindsay, Emily K; Young, Shinzen; Smyth, Joshua M; Brown, Kirk Warren; Creswell, J David

    2018-01-01

    Mindfulness interventions, which train practitioners to monitor their present-moment experience with a lens of acceptance, are known to buffer stress reactivity. Little is known about the active mechanisms driving these effects. We theorize that acceptance is a critical emotion regulation mechanism underlying mindfulness stress reduction effects. In this three-arm parallel trial, mindfulness components were dismantled into three structurally equivalent 15-lesson smartphone-based interventions: (1) training in both monitoring and acceptance (Monitor+Accept), (2) training in monitoring only (Monitor Only), or (3) active control training (Coping control). 153 stressed adults (mean age=32years; 67% female; 53% white, 21.5% black, 21.5% Asian, 4% other race) were randomly assigned to complete one of three interventions. After the intervention, cortisol, blood pressure, and subjective stress reactivity were assessed using a modified Trier Social Stress Test. As predicted, Monitor+Accept training reduced cortisol and systolic blood pressure reactivity compared to Monitor Only and control trainings. Participants in all three conditions reported moderate levels of subjective stress. This study provides the first experimental evidence that brief smartphone mindfulness training can impact stress biology, and that acceptance training drives these effects. We discuss implications for basic and applied research in contemplative science, emotion regulation, stress and coping, health, and clinical interventions. Copyright © 2017 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

  1. School-Based Mindfulness Training and the Economisation of Attention: A Stieglerian View

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Reveley, James

    2015-01-01

    Educational theorists may be right to suggest that providing mindfulness training in schools can challenge oppressive pedagogies and overcome Western dualism. Before concluding that this training is liberatory, however, one must go beyond pedagogy and consider schooling's role in enacting the educational neurofuture envisioned by mindfulness…

  2. Implementation of Mindfulness Training for Mental Health Staff: Organizational Context and Stakeholder Perspectives.

    PubMed

    Byron, Gerard; Ziedonis, Douglas M; McGrath, Caroline; Frazier, Jean A; deTorrijos, Fernando; Fulwiler, Carl

    2015-08-01

    Occupational stress and burnout adversely impacts mental health care staff well-being and patient outcomes. Mindfulness training reduces staff stress and may improve patient care. However, few studies explore mental health setting implementation. This qualitative study used focus groups to evaluate stakeholders' perceptions of organizational factors affecting implementation of an adapted version of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) for staff on adolescent mental health units. Common facilitators included leadership securing buy-in with staff, allocating staff time to participate, and quiet space for training and practice. Other facilitators were past staff knowledge of mindfulness, local champions, and acculturating staff with mindfulness through a non-mandatory training attendance policy. Common barriers were limited staff time to attend training sessions and insufficient training coverage for some staff. Staff also reported improved focus when interacting with adolescents and improved social cohesion on the units. We conclude that a mindfulness-based program for reducing occupational stress can be successfully implemented on adolescent mental health units. Implementation appeared to change the social context of the units, including staff and patient interactions. More broadly, our findings highlight the importance of environmental factors in shaping attitudes, diffusion of innovation, and acculturation of wellness program implementations.

  3. Implementation of Mindfulness Training for Mental Health Staff: Organizational Context and Stakeholder Perspectives

    PubMed Central

    Byron, Gerard; Ziedonis, Douglas M.; McGrath, Caroline; Frazier, Jean A.; deTorrijos, Fernando

    2014-01-01

    Occupational stress and burnout adversely impacts mental health care staff well-being and patient outcomes. Mindfulness training reduces staff stress and may improve patient care. However, few studies explore mental health setting implementation. This qualitative study used focus groups to evaluate stakeholders’ perceptions of organizational factors affecting implementation of an adapted version of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) for staff on adolescent mental health units. Common facilitators included leadership securing buy-in with staff, allocating staff time to participate, and quiet space for training and practice. Other facilitators were past staff knowledge of mindfulness, local champions, and acculturating staff with mindfulness through a non-mandatory training attendance policy. Common barriers were limited staff time to attend training sessions and insufficient training coverage for some staff. Staff also reported improved focus when interacting with adolescents and improved social cohesion on the units. We conclude that a mindfulness-based program for reducing occupational stress can be successfully implemented on adolescent mental health units. Implementation appeared to change the social context of the units, including staff and patient interactions. More broadly, our findings highlight the importance of environmental factors in shaping attitudes, diffusion of innovation, and acculturation of wellness program implementations. PMID:26500708

  4. Mind, Body, and Spirit: The Benefits of Martial Arts Training.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Walters, Karrie P.

    1997-01-01

    Explains how martial arts, specifically karate, can benefit today's youth. States that karate promotes physical fitness, and also helps students learn to relax and calm their bodies, develop strong mind/body connections, and enhance mental calmness. Karate students also show increased self-esteem, attain goals, and develop an understanding of…

  5. Study protocol on comparative effectiveness of mindfulness meditation and qigong on psychophysiological outcomes for patients with colorectal cancer: a randomized controlled trial.

    PubMed

    Ho, Rainbow T H; Wan, Adrian H Y; Chan, Jessie S M; Ng, S M; Chung, K F; Chan, Cecilia L W

    2017-08-08

    Colorectal cancer imposes threats to patients' well-being. Although most physical symptoms can be managed by medication, psychosocial stressors may complicate survival and hamper quality of life. Mindfulness and Qigong, two kinds of mind-body exercise rooted in Eastern health philosophy, has been found effective in symptoms management, improving mental health, and reducing stress. With these potential benefits, a randomized controlled trial (RCT) is planned to investigate the comparative effectiveness of mindfulness and Baduanjin intervention on the bio-psychosocial wellbeing of people with colorectal cancer. A 3-arm RCT with waitlist control design will be used in this study. One hundred eighty-nine participants will be randomized into (i) Mindfulness, (ii) Baduanjin, or (iii) waitlist control groups. Participants in both the Baduanjin and mindfulness groups will receive 8-weeks of specific intervention. All three groups will undergo four assessment phases: (i) at baseline, (ii) at 4-week, (iii) at 8-week (post-intervention), and 6-month post-intervention (maintenance). All participants will be assessed in terms of cancer-related symptoms and symptom distress, mental health status, quality of life, stress level based on physiological marker. Based on prior research studies, participants in both the mindfulness and Baduanjn intervention group are expected to have better symptoms management, lower stress level, better mental health, and higher level of quality of life than the control group. This study contributes to better understanding on the common and unique effectiveness of mindfulness and Baduanjin qigong, as such patients and qualified healthcare professionals can select or provide practices which will produce maximum benefits, satisfaction, adherence, and sustainability. The trial has been registered in the Clinical Trials Centre of the University of Hong Kong ( HKCTR-2198 ) on 08 March 2017.

  6. Meditation: Process and effects.

    PubMed

    Sharma, Hari

    2015-01-01

    Meditation has become popular in many Western nations, especially the USA. An increasing body of research shows various health benefits associated with meditation and these findings have sparked interest in the field of medicine. The practice of meditation originated in the ancient Vedic times of India and is described in the ancient Vedic texts. Meditation is one of the modalities used in Ayurveda (Science of Life), the comprehensive, natural health care system that originated in the ancient Vedic times of India. The term "meditation" is now loosely used to refer to a large number of diverse techniques. According to Vedic science, the true purpose of meditation is to connect oneself to one's deep inner Self. Techniques which achieve that goal serve the true purpose of meditation. Neurological and physiological correlates of meditation have been investigated previously. This article describes the process of meditation at a more fundamental level and aims to shed light on the deeper underlying mechanism of the beneficial effects associated with meditation. Research on the effects of meditation is summarized.

  7. Open Hearts Build Lives: Positive Emotions, Induced Through Loving-Kindness Meditation, Build Consequential Personal Resources

    PubMed Central

    Fredrickson, Barbara L.; Cohn, Michael A.; Coffey, Kimberly A.; Pek, Jolynn; Finkel, Sandra M.

    2011-01-01

    B. L. Fredrickson’s (1998, 2001) broaden-and-build theory of positive emotions asserts that people’s daily experiences of positive emotions compound over time to build a variety of consequential personal resources. The authors tested this build hypothesis in a field experiment with working adults (n = 139), half of whom were randomly-assigned to begin a practice of loving-kindness meditation. Results showed that this meditation practice produced increases over time in daily experiences of positive emotions, which, in turn, produced increases in a wide range of personal resources (e.g., increased mindfulness, purpose in life, social support, decreased illness symptoms). In turn, these increments in personal resources predicted increased life satisfaction and reduced depressive symptoms. Discussion centers on how positive emotions are the mechanism of change for the type of mind-training practice studied here and how loving-kindness meditation is an intervention strategy that produces positive emotions in a way that outpaces the hedonic treadmill effect. PMID:18954193

  8. Improving creativity performance by short-term meditation.

    PubMed

    Ding, Xiaoqian; Tang, Yi-Yuan; Tang, Rongxiang; Posner, Michael I

    2014-03-19

    One form of meditation intervention, the integrative body-mind training (IBMT) has been shown to improve attention, reduce stress and change self-reports of mood. In this paper we examine whether short-term IBMT can improve performance related to creativity and determine the role that mood may play in such improvement. Forty Chinese undergraduates were randomly assigned to short-term IBMT group or a relaxation training (RT) control group. Mood and creativity performance were assessed by the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) and Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (TTCT) questionnaire respectively. As predicted, the results indicated that short-term (30 min per day for 7 days) IBMT improved creativity performance on the divergent thinking task, and yielded better emotional regulation than RT. In addition, cross-lagged analysis indicated that both positive and negative affect may influence creativity in IBMT group (not RT group). Our results suggested that emotion-related creativity-promoting mechanism may be attributed to short-term meditation.

  9. Improving creativity performance by short-term meditation

    PubMed Central

    2014-01-01

    Background One form of meditation intervention, the integrative body-mind training (IBMT) has been shown to improve attention, reduce stress and change self-reports of mood. In this paper we examine whether short-term IBMT can improve performance related to creativity and determine the role that mood may play in such improvement. Methods Forty Chinese undergraduates were randomly assigned to short-term IBMT group or a relaxation training (RT) control group. Mood and creativity performance were assessed by the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule (PANAS) and Torrance Tests of Creative Thinking (TTCT) questionnaire respectively. Results As predicted, the results indicated that short-term (30 min per day for 7 days) IBMT improved creativity performance on the divergent thinking task, and yielded better emotional regulation than RT. In addition, cross-lagged analysis indicated that both positive and negative affect may influence creativity in IBMT group (not RT group). Conclusions Our results suggested that emotion-related creativity-promoting mechanism may be attributed to short-term meditation. PMID:24645871

  10. Increased Gamma Brainwave Amplitude Compared to Control in Three Different Meditation Traditions

    PubMed Central

    Cahn, B. Rael; Levy, Jonathan; Fernandez, Manuel; Delorme, Arnaud

    2017-01-01

    Despite decades of research, effects of different types of meditation on electroencephalographic (EEG) activity are still being defined. We compared practitioners of three different meditation traditions (Vipassana, Himalayan Yoga and Isha Shoonya) with a control group during a meditative and instructed mind-wandering (IMW) block. All meditators showed higher parieto-occipital 60–110 Hz gamma amplitude than control subjects as a trait effect observed during meditation and when considering meditation and IMW periods together. Moreover, this gamma power was positively correlated with participants meditation experience. Independent component analysis was used to show that gamma activity did not originate in eye or muscle artifacts. In addition, we observed higher 7–11 Hz alpha activity in the Vipassana group compared to all the other groups during both meditation and instructed mind wandering and lower 10–11 Hz activity in the Himalayan yoga group during meditation only. We showed that meditation practice is correlated to changes in the EEG gamma frequency range that are common to a variety of meditation practices. PMID:28118405

  11. Increased Gamma Brainwave Amplitude Compared to Control in Three Different Meditation Traditions.

    PubMed

    Braboszcz, Claire; Cahn, B Rael; Levy, Jonathan; Fernandez, Manuel; Delorme, Arnaud

    2017-01-01

    Despite decades of research, effects of different types of meditation on electroencephalographic (EEG) activity are still being defined. We compared practitioners of three different meditation traditions (Vipassana, Himalayan Yoga and Isha Shoonya) with a control group during a meditative and instructed mind-wandering (IMW) block. All meditators showed higher parieto-occipital 60-110 Hz gamma amplitude than control subjects as a trait effect observed during meditation and when considering meditation and IMW periods together. Moreover, this gamma power was positively correlated with participants meditation experience. Independent component analysis was used to show that gamma activity did not originate in eye or muscle artifacts. In addition, we observed higher 7-11 Hz alpha activity in the Vipassana group compared to all the other groups during both meditation and instructed mind wandering and lower 10-11 Hz activity in the Himalayan yoga group during meditation only. We showed that meditation practice is correlated to changes in the EEG gamma frequency range that are common to a variety of meditation practices.

  12. The effects of amount of home meditation practice in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy on hazard of relapse to depression in the Staying Well after Depression Trial

    PubMed Central

    Crane, Catherine; Crane, Rebecca S.; Eames, Catrin; Fennell, Melanie J.V.; Silverton, Sarah; Williams, J. Mark G.; Barnhofer, Thorsten

    2014-01-01

    Few empirical studies have explored the associations between formal and informal mindfulness home practice and outcome in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). In this study ninety-nine participants randomised to MBCT in a multi-centre randomised controlled trial completed self-reported ratings of home practice over 7 treatment weeks. Recurrence of Major Depression was assessed immediately after treatment, and at 3, 6, 9, and 12-months post-treatment. Results identified a significant association between mean daily duration of formal home practice and outcome and additionally indicated that participants who reported that they engaged in formal home practice on at least 3 days a week during the treatment phase were almost half as likely to relapse as those who reported fewer days of formal practice. These associations were independent of the potentially confounding variable of participant-rated treatment plausibility. The current study identified no significant association between informal home practice and outcome, although this may relate to the inherent difficulties in quantifying informal home mindfulness practice. These findings have important implications for clinicians discussing mindfulness-based interventions with their participants, in particular in relation to MBCT, where the amount of participant engagement in home practice appears to have a significant positive impact on outcome. PMID:25261599

  13. The effects of amount of home meditation practice in Mindfulness Based Cognitive Therapy on hazard of relapse to depression in the Staying Well after Depression Trial.

    PubMed

    Crane, Catherine; Crane, Rebecca S; Eames, Catrin; Fennell, Melanie J V; Silverton, Sarah; Williams, J Mark G; Barnhofer, Thorsten

    2014-12-01

    Few empirical studies have explored the associations between formal and informal mindfulness home practice and outcome in Mindfulness-based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT). In this study ninety-nine participants randomised to MBCT in a multi-centre randomised controlled trial completed self-reported ratings of home practice over 7 treatment weeks. Recurrence of Major Depression was assessed immediately after treatment, and at 3, 6, 9, and 12-months post-treatment. Results identified a significant association between mean daily duration of formal home practice and outcome and additionally indicated that participants who reported that they engaged in formal home practice on at least 3 days a week during the treatment phase were almost half as likely to relapse as those who reported fewer days of formal practice. These associations were independent of the potentially confounding variable of participant-rated treatment plausibility. The current study identified no significant association between informal home practice and outcome, although this may relate to the inherent difficulties in quantifying informal home mindfulness practice. These findings have important implications for clinicians discussing mindfulness-based interventions with their participants, in particular in relation to MBCT, where the amount of participant engagement in home practice appears to have a significant positive impact on outcome. Copyright © 2014 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.. All rights reserved.

  14. Comparison of Cognitive Behavioral and Mindfulness Meditation Interventions on Adaptation to Rheumatoid Arthritis for Patients with and without History of Recurrent Depression

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Zautra, Alex J.; Davis, Mary C.; Reich, John W.; Nicassio, Perry; Tennen, Howard; Finan, Patrick; Kratz, Anna; Parrish, Brendt; Irwin, Michael R.

    2008-01-01

    This research examined whether cognitive behavioral therapy and mindfulness interventions that target responses to chronic stress, pain, and depression reduce pain and improve the quality of everyday life for adults with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The 144 RA participants were clustered into groups of 6-10 participants and randomly assigned to 1 of…

  15. Effect of Dynamic Meditation on Mental Health.

    PubMed

    Iqbal, Naved; Singh, Archana; Aleem, Sheema

    2016-02-01

    Although traditional meditation has been found to be effective in improving physical and mental health of subjects, there was a paucity of research of the effect of active or dynamic meditation on these variables. Therefore, the present study was aimed at studying the effect of dynamic meditation on mental health of the subjects. Total sample of the present study comprised 60 subjects, 30 each in experimental and control group. Subjects in experimental group were given 21-day training in dynamic meditation. Mental health of the experimental and control group subjects was measured in pre- and post-condition with the help of Mental Health Inventory developed by Jagadish and Srivastava (Mental Health inventory, Manovaigyanik Parikshan Sansthan, Varanasi, 1983). Obtained data were analyzed with the help of ANCOVA. In post-condition, experimental group scored better than control group on integration of personality, autonomy and environmental mastery. Effect sizes of dynamic meditation on these dimensions of mental health were large. However, experimental group and control group did not differ significantly on positive self-evaluation, perception of reality and group-oriented attitude dimensions of mental health in post-condition. Overall, dynamic meditation training was effective in improving mental health of the subjects.

  16. Meditation: Process and effects

    PubMed Central

    Sharma, Hari

    2015-01-01

    Meditation has become popular in many Western nations, especially the USA. An increasing body of research shows various health benefits associated with meditation and these findings have sparked interest in the field of medicine. The practice of meditation originated in the ancient Vedic times of India and is described in the ancient Vedic texts. Meditation is one of the modalities used in Ayurveda (Science of Life), the comprehensive, natural health care system that originated in the ancient Vedic times of India. The term “meditation” is now loosely used to refer to a large number of diverse techniques. According to Vedic science, the true purpose of meditation is to connect oneself to one's deep inner Self. Techniques which achieve that goal serve the true purpose of meditation. Neurological and physiological correlates of meditation have been investigated previously. This article describes the process of meditation at a more fundamental level and aims to shed light on the deeper underlying mechanism of the beneficial effects associated with meditation. Research on the effects of meditation is summarized. PMID:27313408

  17. Mindfulness Plus Reflection Training: Effects on Executive Function in Early Childhood

    PubMed Central

    Zelazo, Philip David; Forston, Jessica L.; Masten, Ann S.; Carlson, Stephanie M.

    2018-01-01

    Executive function (EF) skills are essential for academic achievement, and poverty-related stress interferes with their development. This pre-test, post-test, follow-up randomized-control trial assessed the impact of an intervention targeting reflection and stress reduction on children's EF skills. Preschool children (N = 218) from schools serving low-income families in two U.S. cities were randomly assigned to one of three options delivered in 30 small-group sessions over 6 weeks: Mindfulness + Reflection training; Literacy training; or Business as Usual (BAU). Sessions were conducted by local teachers trained in a literacy curriculum or Mindfulness + Reflection intervention, which involved calming activities and games that provided opportunities to practice reflection in the context of goal-directed problem solving. EF improved in all groups, but planned contrasts indicated that the Mindfulness + Reflection group significantly outperformed the BAU group at Follow-up (4 weeks post-test). No differences in EF were observed between the BAU and Literacy training groups. Results suggest that a brief, small-group, school-based intervention teaching mindfulness and reflection did not improve EF skills more than literacy training but is promising compared to BAU for improving EF in low-income preschool children several weeks following the intervention. PMID:29535661

  18. The effectiveness of mindfulness training on reducing the symptoms of postpartum depression.

    PubMed

    Sheydaei, Hajieh; Ghasemzadeh, Azizreza; Lashkari, Amir; Kajani, Parvaneh Ghorbani

    2017-07-01

    Postpartum depression is one of the prevalent disorders among new mothers. The present research aimed to examine the effectiveness of mindfulness training on reducing the symptoms of postpartum depression. The present quasi-experimental research was conducted on 410 new mothers in Shahid Chamran Hospital, Tehran in 2014. Using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Structured Clinical Interview and Psychological Clinical Diagnosis, 67 mothers were selected and then randomly divided into experimental and control groups, each of which with 32 applicants. Afterwards, the experimental group received mindfulness training for 8 sessions, each lasting for two hours while the control group received no training. The data were analyzed through descriptive statistics and Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) in SPSS, version 20. Results showed that based on Beck Inventory, the scores for the experimental group in post-test were significant (p<0.001), compared to those for the control group. Also, it was revealed that pre- and posttest mean scores for postpartum depression in the control group were 25.81 and 25.12 respectively while the scores for the experimental group were 24.75 and 18.5 respectively. Since the posttest mean score in the experimental group was lower than that in the pretest, it can be said that the treatment, i.e., mindfulness training, was effective in reducing depression symptoms in mothers. Findings proved that mindfulness training was effective in reducing the symptoms of postpartum depression in new mothers.

  19. Mindfulness in cultural context.

    PubMed

    Kirmayer, Laurence J

    2015-08-01

    Mindfulness meditation and other techniques drawn from Buddhism have increasingly been integrated into forms of psychotherapeutic intervention. In much of this work, mindfulness is understood as a mode of awareness that is present-centered and nonevaluative. This form of awareness is assumed to have intrinsic value in promoting positive mental health and adaptation by interrupting discursive thoughts that give rise to suffering. However, in the societies where it originated, mindfulness meditation is part of a larger system of Buddhist belief and practice with strong ethical and moral dimensions. Extracting techniques like mindfulness meditation from the social contexts in which they originate may change the nature and effects of the practice. The papers in this issue of Transcultural Psychiatry explore the implications of a cultural and contextual view of mindfulness for continued dialogue between Buddhist thought and psychiatry. This introductory essay considers the meanings of mindfulness meditation in cultural context and the uses of mindfulness as a therapeutic intervention in contemporary psychiatry and psychology. © The Author(s) 2015.

  20. Meditation Interventions for Chronic Disease Populations: A Systematic Review.

    PubMed

    Chan, Roxane Raffin; Larson, Janet L

    2015-12-01

    The rapidly growing body of research regarding the use of meditation interventions in chronic disease presents an opportunity to compare outcomes based on intervention content. For this review, meditation interventions were described as those interventions delivered to persons with chronic disease where sitting meditation was the main or only content of the intervention with or without the addition of mindful movement. This systematic review identified 45 individual research studies that examined meditations effect on levels of anxiety, depression, and chronic disease symptoms in persons with chronic disease. Individual studies were assessed based on interventional content, the consistency with which interventions were applied, and the research quality. This study identified seven categories of meditation interventions based on the meditation skills and mindful movement practices that were included in the intervention. Overall, half of the interventions had clearly defined and specific meditation interventions (25/45) and half of the studies were conducted using randomized control trials (24/45). © The Author(s) 2015.

  1. Can Mindfulness Training Improve Medication Adherence? Integrative Review of the Current Evidence and Proposed Conceptual Model.

    PubMed

    Salmoirago-Blotcher, Elena; Carey, Michael P

    Medication adherence is a complex, multi-determined behavior that is often influenced by system- (e.g., cost), drug- (e.g., regimen complexity), and patient-related (e.g., depression) factors. System-level approaches (e.g., making medications more affordable) are critically important but do not address patient-level factors that can undermine adherence. In this paper, we identify patient-level determinants of non-adherence and discuss whether mindfulness-training approaches that target these determinants can help to improve adherence to medical treatment. We highlight two chronic medical conditions (viz., heart failure and HIV) where poor adherence is a significant concern, and examine the evidence regarding the use of mindfulness interventions to improve medication adherence in these two conditions. We also discuss the theoretical underpinnings of mindfulness training with respect to medication adherence, and conclude by suggesting directions for future research. Copyright © 2018 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

  2. Mental Verb Input for Promoting Children's Theory of Mind: A Training Study

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Gola, Alice Ann Howard

    2012-01-01

    An experimental study investigated the effect of the type of mental verb input (i.e., input with "think", "know", and "remember") on preschoolers' theory of mind development. Preschoolers (n = 72) heard 128 mental verb utterances presented in video format across four sessions over two weeks. The training conditions differed only in the way the…

  3. Craving to quit: psychological models and neurobiological mechanisms of mindfulness training as treatment for addictions.

    PubMed

    Brewer, Judson A; Elwafi, Hani M; Davis, Jake H

    2013-06-01

    Humans suffer heavily from substance use disorders and other addictions. Despite much effort that has been put into understanding the mechanisms of the addictive process, treatment strategies have remained suboptimal over the past several decades. Mindfulness training, which is based on ancient Buddhist models of human suffering, has recently shown preliminary efficacy in treating addictions. These early models show remarkable similarity to current models of the addictive process, especially in their overlap with operant conditioning (positive and negative reinforcement). Further, they may provide explanatory power for the mechanisms of mindfulness training, including its effects on core addictive elements, such as craving, and the underlying neurobiological processes that may be active therein. In this review, using smoking as an example, we will highlight similarities between ancient and modern views of the addictive process, review studies of mindfulness training for addictions and their effects on craving and other components of this process, and discuss recent neuroimaging findings that may inform our understanding of the neural mechanisms of mindfulness training. 2013 APA, all rights reserved

  4. Craving to Quit: psychological models and neurobiological mechanisms of mindfulness training as treatment for addictions

    PubMed Central

    Brewer, Judson A.; Elwafi, Hani M.; Davis, Jake H.

    2012-01-01

    Humans suffer heavily from substance use disorders and other addictions. Despite much effort that has been put into understanding the mechanisms of the addictive process, treatment strategies have remained sub-optimal over the past several decades. Mindfulness training, which is based on ancient Buddhist models of human suffering, has recently shown preliminary efficacy in treating addictions. Interestingly, these early models show remarkable similarity to current models of the addictive process, especially in their overlap with operant conditioning (positive and negative reinforcement). Further, they may provide explanatory power for the mechanisms of mindfulness training, including its effects on core addictive elements, such as craving, and the underlying neurobiological processes that may be active therein. In this review, using smoking as an example, we will highlight similarities between ancient and modern views of the addictive process, review studies of mindfulness training for addictions and their effects on craving and other components of this process, and discuss recent neuroimaging findings that may inform our understanding of the neural mechanisms of mindfulness training. PMID:22642859

  5. The Impact of Mindfulness Training on Middle Grades Students' Office Discipline Referrals

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Martinez, Tonnie; Zhao, Yuanyuan

    2018-01-01

    Young adolescents who experience stress may also exhibit negative behaviors at school. Students whose misbehavior causes an interruption to classroom learning may be sent to the office and, as a result, lose instructional time and learning. The goal of this quasi-experimental pilot study was to determine if mindfulness training would decrease the…

  6. Training Theory of Mind and Executive Control: A Tool for Improving School Achievement?

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Kloo, Daniela; Perner, Josef

    2008-01-01

    In the preschool years, there are marked improvements in theory of mind (ToM) and executive functions. And, children's competence in these two core cognitive domains is associated with their academic achievement. Therefore, training ToM and executive control could be a valuable tool for improving children's success in school. This article reviews…

  7. Mindfulness Training in Stuttering Therapy: A Tutorial for Speech-Language Pathologists

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Boyle, Michael P.

    2011-01-01

    The use of mindfulness training for increasing psychological well-being in a variety of clinical and nonclinical populations has exploded over the last decade. In the area of stuttering, it has been widely recognized that effective long-term management often necessitates treatment of cognitive and affective dimensions of the disorder in addition…

  8. Effects of Meditation on Anxiety and Chemical Dependency.

    ERIC Educational Resources Information Center

    Wong, Martin R.; And Others

    1981-01-01

    Studied a non-self-selected sample of chemically dependent people instructed in meditation techniques. Differences established upon training termination were no longer evident in the instructed group after six months. Subjects who reported continuing at least minimal meditative practices, however, showed differences in social adjustment, work…

  9. Subjective expansion of extended time-spans in experienced meditators.

    PubMed

    Wittmann, Marc; Otten, Simone; Schötz, Eva; Sarikaya, Anna; Lehnen, Hanna; Jo, Han-Gue; Kohls, Niko; Schmidt, Stefan; Meissner, Karin

    2014-01-01

    Experienced meditators typically report that they experience time slowing down in meditation practice as well as in everyday life. Conceptually this phenomenon may be understood through functional states of mindfulness, i.e., by attention regulation, body awareness, emotion regulation, and enhanced memory. However, hardly any systematic empirical work exists regarding the experience of time in meditators. In the current cross-sectional study, we investigated whether 42 experienced mindfulness meditation practitioners (with on average 10 years of experience) showed differences in the experience of time as compared to 42 controls without any meditation experience matched for age, sex, and education. The perception of time was assessed with a battery of psychophysical tasks assessing the accuracy of prospective time judgments in duration discrimination, duration reproduction, and time estimation in the milliseconds to minutes range as well with several psychometric instruments related to subjective time such as the Zimbardo Time Perspective Inventory, the Barratt Impulsivity Scale and the Freiburg Mindfulness Inventory. In addition, subjective time judgments on the current passage of time and retrospective time ranges were assessed. While subjective judgements of time were found to be significantly different between the two groups on several scales, no differences in duration estimates in the psychophysical tasks were detected. Regarding subjective time, mindfulness meditators experienced less time pressure, more time dilation, and a general slower passage of time. Moreover, they felt that the last week and the last month passed more slowly. Overall, although no intergroup differences in psychophysical tasks were detected, the reported findings demonstrate a close association between mindfulness meditation and the subjective feeling of the passage of time captured by psychometric instruments.

  10. Mindfulness Training in Primary Schools Decreases Negative Affect and Increases Meta-Cognition in Children

    PubMed Central

    Vickery, Charlotte E.; Dorjee, Dusana

    2016-01-01

    Studies investigating the feasibility and impact of mindfulness programs on emotional well-being when delivered by school teachers in pre-adolescence are scarce. This study reports the findings of a controlled feasibility pilot which assessed acceptability and emotional well-being outcomes of an 8-week mindfulness program (Paws b) for children aged 7–9 years. The program was delivered by school teachers within a regular school curriculum. Emotional well-being was measured using self-report questionnaires at baseline, post-training and 3 months follow-up, and informant reports were collected at baseline and follow-up. Seventy one participants aged 7–9 years were recruited from three primary schools in the UK (training group n = 33; control group n = 38). Acceptability of the program was high with 76% of children in the training group reporting ‘liking’ practicing mindfulness at school, with a strong link to wanting to continue practicing mindfulness at school (p < 0.001). Self-report comparisons revealed that relative to controls, the training group showed significant decreases in negative affect at follow-up, with a large effect size (p = 0.010, d = 0.84). Teacher reports (but not parental ratings) of meta-cognition also showed significant improvements at follow-up with a large effect size (p = 0.002, d = 1.08). Additionally, significant negative correlations were found between changes in mindfulness and emotion regulation scores from baseline to post-training (p = 0.038) and baseline to follow-up (p = 0.033). Findings from this study provide initial evidence that the Paws b program in children aged 7–9 years (a) can be feasibly delivered by primary school teachers as part of the regular curriculum, (b) is acceptable to the majority of children, and (c) may significantly decrease negative affect and improve meta-cognition. PMID:26793145

  11. A randomized controlled trial of smartphone-based mindfulness training for smoking cessation: a study protocol.

    PubMed

    Garrison, Kathleen A; Pal, Prasanta; Rojiani, Rahil; Dallery, Jesse; O'Malley, Stephanie S; Brewer, Judson A

    2015-04-14

    Tobacco use is responsible for the death of about 1 in 10 individuals worldwide. Mindfulness training has shown preliminary efficacy as a behavioral treatment for smoking cessation. Recent advances in mobile health suggest advantages to smartphone-based smoking cessation treatment including smartphone-based mindfulness training. This study evaluates the efficacy of a smartphone app-based mindfulness training program for improving smoking cessation rates at 6-months follow-up. A two-group parallel-randomized clinical trial with allocation concealment will be conducted. Group assignment will be concealed from study researchers through to follow-up. The study will be conducted by smartphone and online. Daily smokers who are interested in quitting smoking and own a smartphone (n = 140) will be recruited through study advertisements posted online. After completion of a baseline survey, participants will be allocated randomly to the control or intervention group. Participants in both groups will receive a 22-day smartphone-based treatment program for smoking. Participants in the intervention group will receive mobile mindfulness training plus experience sampling. Participants in the control group will receive experience sampling-only. The primary outcome measure will be one-week point prevalence abstinence from smoking (at 6-months follow-up) assessed using carbon monoxide breath monitoring, which will be validated through smartphone-based video chat. This is the first intervention study to evaluate smartphone-based delivery of mindfulness training for smoking cessation. Such an intervention may provide treatment in-hand, in real-world contexts, to help individuals quit smoking. Clinicaltrials.gov NCT02134509 . Registered 7 May 2014.

  12. Mind-Body Training for At-Risk Populations: Preventive Medicine at its Best.

    PubMed

    Elder, Charles

    2017-01-01

    This article is a companion to "Transcendental meditation and reduced trauma symptoms in female inmates: A randomized controlled pilot study," available at: www.thepermanentejournal.org/issues/2017/6290-meditation.html, and on page 39 and to "Reduced trauma symptoms and perceived stress in male prison inmates through the Transcendental Meditation program: A randomized controlled trial," available at: www.thepermanentejournal.org/issues/2016/fall/6227-incarcerated-healthcare.html and in the Fall 2016 issue of The Permanente Journal.

  13. Sitting-Meditation Interventions Among Youth: A Review of Treatment Efficacy

    PubMed Central

    Black, David S.; Milam, Joel; Sussman, Steve

    2011-01-01

    OBJECTIVE Although the efficacy of meditation interventions has been examined among adult samples, meditation treatment effects among youth are relatively unknown. We systematically reviewed empirical studies for the health-related effects of sitting-meditative practices implemented among youth aged 6 to 18 years in school, clinic, and community settings. METHODS A systematic review of electronic databases (PubMed, Ovid, Web of Science, Cochrane Reviews Database, Google Scholar) was conducted from 1982 to 2008, obtaining a sample of 16 empirical studies related to sitting-meditation interventions among youth. RESULTS Meditation modalities included mindfulness meditation, transcendental meditation, mindfulness-based stress reduction, and mindfulness-based cognitive therapy. Study samples primarily consisted of youth with preexisting conditions such as high-normal blood pressure, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, and learning disabilities. Studies that examined physiologic outcomes were composed almost entirely of African American/black participants. Median effect sizes were slightly smaller than those obtained from adult samples and ranged from 0.16 to 0.29 for physiologic outcomes and 0.27 to 0.70 for psychosocial/behavioral outcomes. CONCLUSIONS Sitting meditation seems to be an effective intervention in the treatment of physiologic, psychosocial, and behavioral conditions among youth. Because of current limitations, carefully constructed research is needed to advance our understanding of sitting meditation and its future use as an effective treatment modality among younger populations. PMID:19706568

  14. What Is the Molecular Signature of Mind-Body Interventions? A Systematic Review of Gene Expression Changes Induced by Meditation and Related Practices.

    PubMed

    Buric, Ivana; Farias, Miguel; Jong, Jonathan; Mee, Christopher; Brazil, Inti A

    2017-01-01

    There is considerable evidence for the effectiveness of mind-body interventions (MBIs) in improving mental and physical health, but the molecular mechanisms of these benefits remain poorly understood. One hypothesis is that MBIs reverse expression of genes involved in inflammatory reactions that are induced by stress. This systematic review was conducted to examine changes in gene expression that occur after MBIs and to explore how these molecular changes are related to health. We searched PubMed throughout September 2016 to look for studies that have used gene expression analysis in MBIs (i.e., mindfulness, yoga, Tai Chi, Qigong, relaxation response, and breath regulation). Due to the limited quantity of studies, we included both clinical and non-clinical samples with any type of research design. Eighteen relevant studies were retrieved and analyzed. Overall, the studies indicate that these practices are associated with a downregulation of nuclear factor kappa B pathway; this is the opposite of the effects of chronic stress on gene expression and suggests that MBI practices may lead to a reduced risk of inflammation-related diseases. However, it is unclear how the effects of MBIs compare to other healthy interventions such as exercise or nutrition due to the small number of available studies. More research is required to be able to understand the effects of MBIs at the molecular level.

  15. Taming a wandering attention: short-form mindfulness training in student cohorts.