Studies of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) are taking off, with the recent addition of a study to be published in Neuroimaging today.  Will more people be nudged to meditate if they can measure and visualize the impact on their physical and emotional well-being in increasingly compelling ways?

Here is an accessible description of the research from Friday’s New York Times titled “How Meditation May Change the Brain” by Sindya Bhanoo:

The researchers report that those who meditated for about 30 minutes a day for eight weeks had measurable changes in gray-matter density in parts of the brain associated with memory, sense of self, empathy and stress. The findings will appear in the Jan. 30 issue of Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging.

M.R.I. brain scans taken before and after the participants’ meditation regimen found increased gray matter in the hippocampus, an area important for learning and memory. The images also showed a reduction of gray matter in the amygdala, a region connected to anxiety and stress. A control group that did not practice meditation showed no such changes.

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Note:  Also posted on the IFTF blog, FutureNow

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