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From Meditation to MBSR

meditationVery nice Los Angeles Times article on the growing research behind, and acceptance of, meditation in mainstream medicine (through what is called Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, or MBSR): Doctor’s orders: Cross your legs and say ‘Om’.

A few quotes:

– “It appears to work. In a new study, published in October in the journal Pain, Natalia Morone, an assistant professor of medicine at the University of Pittsburgh, tracked the effect of mindfulness meditation on chronic lower back pain in adults 65 and older. The randomized, controlled clinical trial found that the 37 people who participated in an eight-week mindfulness meditation program had significantly greater pain acceptance and physical function than a similar size control group. Subsequently, the control group took the same eight-week program and had similar results.”

– “As a meditator, I learned the value of being present and how that allows clarity in processing our daily lives,” Zeltzer said. “The clinical team sees children with chronic pain who are very difficult to treat and have been to many other specialists and feel discouraged by the time they come to us. I felt that learning to meditate would help the team feel a sense of balance and equanimity in the face of the anxiety and distress brought to them by these patients and their families.”

– “SCIENTISTS have studied the effects of meditation on pain for nearly three decades, ever since 1979, when MIT-trained microbiologist Jon Kabat-Zinn, professor emeritus and founder of the Center for Mindfulness at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center, used mindfulness meditation in a 10-week program to teach chronic pain patients how to cope. Kabat-Zinn’s 1990 bestseller, “Full Catastrophe Living,” described the technique he used — mindfulness-based stress reduction, or MBSR.”

Full article: Doctor’s orders: Cross your legs and say ‘Om’

Related posts:

Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) and other stress management techniques

Mind & Life Institute

Pic: Dennis Collette, via Flickr

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5 Responses

  1. Hey, great stuff. I’ve always been looking for information on the scientific perspective on something “spiritual” like meditation, and this is some nice info. Thanks for digging it up.

  2. Alvaro says:

    Thank you for stopping by, Albert. Yes, it is very interesting how practices like meditation are being shown to have a clear effect on our brain, like Sharon Begley wrote in her great book Train Your Mind, Change Your Brain.

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