Article

Mindfulness Research Update: 2008.

Duke Integrative Medicine, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC.
Complementary health practice review 01/2009; 14(1):10-18. DOI: 10.1177/1533210108329862
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT OBJECTIVE: To briefly review the effects of mindfulness on the mind, the brain, the body, and behavior. METHODS: Selective review of MEDLINE, PsycINFO, and Google Scholar databases (2003-2008) using the terms "mindfulness", "meditation", "mental health", "physical health", "quality of life", and "stress reduction." A total of 52 exemplars of empirical and theoretical work were selected for review. RESULTS: Both basic and clinical research indicate that cultivating a more mindful way of being is associated with less emotional distress, more positive states of mind, and better quality of life. In addition, mindfulness practice can influence the brain, the autonomic nervous system, stress hormones, the immune system, and health behaviors, including eating, sleeping and substance use, in salutary ways. CONCLUSION: The application of cutting-edge technology toward understanding mindfulness - an "inner technology" - is elucidating new ways in which attention, awareness, acceptance, and compassion may promote optimal health - in mind, body, relationships, and spirit.

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Available from: Jeffrey Greeson, Jul 28, 2015
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    • "Ainsi, des étudiants soumis à un stress mental de calcul présentent une moindre élévation du cortisol s'ils ont pratiqué des exercices de méditation (Integrative Body-Mental Training; 30). Le tonus parasympathique est augmenté chez les sujets pratiquant la Mindfulness que ce soit lors d'exercices de méditation ou face à un stress [36] [37]. Une observation analogue est faite pour d'autres types de méditation [38]. "
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    ABSTRACT: The first part of this paper describes the long history of the concept of Mindfulness. Contrary to the belief that Mindfulness only has Buddhist and Hindu origins, it is also rooted in Jewish, Islamic and Christian religions. Furthermore, western philosophers have described a mindful path to become more aware of thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations. Mindfulness can be considered as a universal human ability embodied to foster clear thinking and open-heartedness. As such, this form of being requires no particular religious or cultural belief system. The current acceptance of what a mindful path is, refers to a psychological quality that involves bringing one's complete attention to present experience on a moment-to-moment basis, in a particular way: in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally. Although such a definition is well accepted in France, the French translation for Mindfulness is not easy to use: being conscious and being aware are translated with the same French word. The French language fails to clearly separate the dimensional attributes of a mindful subject from the ways for developing mindfulness through formal meditation practice. In line with this conception, stability and assessments of Mindfulness mainly were examined. How this disposition allows the development of concentration, attention and acceptance moment by moment in a nonjudgmental way is described in the second part. Particular attention is paid to its positive effects in several aspects of mental and physical health. In particular, positive effects on the ability to cope with stress are described from a physiological point of view. Third, this article intends to present neurobiological aspects currently proposed to explain the benefits of Mindfulness meditation. Modifications of cerebral networks and neurobiological functioning are described in relation to expertise in meditation practice. The hypothesis of the role of meditation on neuroplasticity is also discussed. Furthermore, the specific impact of Mindfulness meditation practice on these mechanisms will be considered in comparison with relaxation techniques. With the increasing growth of well-designed and well-controlled meditation research, however, future studies will be needed to compare between different meditation techniques. This will enable researchers to outline the effects of the technique-specific differences on behavior, cognitive function, underlying physiology and neurobiology and clinical effectiveness. Finally, the most recent data on the changes in functioning of a resting brain (Brain Default Mode) induced by a Mindfulness practice, demonstrate differences in the default-mode network that are consistent with decreased mind-wandering. That is a way to better understand possible neural mechanisms of meditation for health benefits of Mindfulness.
    L Encéphale 12/2014; DOI:10.1016/j.encep.2014.08.006 · 0.60 Impact Factor
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    • "Ainsi, des étudiants soumis à un stress mental de calcul présentent une moindre élévation du cortisol s'ils ont pratiqué des exercices de méditation (Integrative Body-Mental Training; 30). Le tonus parasympathique est augmenté chez les sujets pratiquant la Mindfulness que ce soit lors d'exercices de méditation ou face à un stress [36] [37]. Une observation analogue est faite pour d'autres types de méditation [38]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The first part of this paper describes the long history of the concept of Mindfulness. Contrary to the belief that Mindfulness only has Buddhist and Hindu origins, it is also rooted in Jewish, Islamic and Christian religions. Furthermore, western philosophers have described a mindful path to become more aware of thoughts, feelings, and bodily sensations. Mindfulness can be considered as a universal human ability embodied to foster clear thinking and open-heartedness. As such, this form of being requires no particular religious or cultural belief system. The current acceptance of what a mindful path is, refers to a psychological quality that involves bringing one's complete attention to present experience on a moment-to-moment basis, in a particular way: in the present moment, and nonjudgmentally. Although such a definition is well accepted in France, the French translation for Mindfulness is not easy to use: being conscious and being aware are translated with the same French word. The French language fails to clearly separate the dimensional attributes of a mindful subject from the ways for developing mindfulness through formal meditation practice. In line with this conception, stability and assessments of Mindfulness mainly were examined. How this disposition allows the development of concentration, attention and acceptance moment by moment in a nonjudgmental way is described in the second part. Particular attention is paid to its positive effects in several aspects of mental and physical health. In particular, positive effects on the ability to cope with stress are described from a physiological point of view. Third, this article intends to present neurobiological aspects currently proposed to explain the benefits of Mindfulness meditation. Modifications of cerebral networks and neurobiological functioning are described in relation to expertise in meditation practice. The hypothesis of the role of meditation on neuroplasticity is also discussed. Furthermore, the specific impact of Mindfulness meditation practice on these mechanisms will be considered in comparison with relaxation techniques. With the increasing growth of well-designed and well-controlled meditation research, however, future studies will be needed to compare between different meditation techniques. This will enable researchers to outline the effects of the technique-specific differences on behavior, cognitive function, underlying physiology and neurobiology and clinical effectiveness. Finally, the most recent data on the changes in functioning of a resting brain (Brain Default Mode) induced by a Mindfulness practice, demonstrate differences in the default-mode network that are consistent with decreased mind-wandering. That is a way to better understand possible neural mechanisms of meditation for health benefits of Mindfulness.
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    • "Mindfulness-based interventions have successfully treated disorders of self-regulation, e.g., depression, pain, and self-injury (Baer, 2003; Greeson, 2009), because they emphasize observation, acceptance , tolerance, and regulation of unpleasant emotions, allowing inhibition of impulsive eating behavior and more rapid restoration of equilibrium (Gupta, Rosenthal, Mancini, Cheavens, & Lynch, 2008; Roemer & Orsillo, 2003). Being mindful focuses attention on automatic thoughts and emotions and promotes development of new, more adaptable responses (Greeson, 2009). Mindful eating approaches increase awareness of emotions and hunger, and help the individual to balance eating responses (Kristeller & Wolever, 2011). "
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this mixed methods study was to: 1) describe the effect of an 8-week mindful eating intervention on mindful eating, weight loss self-efficacy, depression, and biomarkers of weight in urban, underserved, obese women; and 2) identify themes of the lived experience of mindful eating. A convenience sample of 12 obese women was recruited with data collected at baseline and 8weeks followed by a focus group. Only self-efficacy for weight loss significantly increased over 8weeks (t=-2.63, P=.04). Qualitative findings of mindful eating supported quantitative findings and extended understanding about the effect of the intervention.
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