Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Study finds clear–yet surprisingly different–benefits in 3 types of meditation-based mental training

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As cit­i­zens of the 21st cen­tu­ry, we face many prob­lems that come with an indus­tri­al­ized and glob­al­ized world. I’m not a lawyer or a politi­cian, but a psy­chol­o­gist and neu­ro­sci­en­tist. So research on how to train help­ful men­tal and social capac­i­ties is my way to con­tribute to a more healthy, com­mu­nal, and coop­er­a­tive civ­i­liza­tion.

For the past five years, that research has tak­en the form of the ReSource Project, one of the longest and most com­pre­hen­sive stud­ies on the effects of med­i­ta­tion-based men­tal train­ing to date. Lots of research treats the con­cept of med­i­ta­tion as a sin­gle prac­tice, when in fact med­i­ta­tion encom­pass­es a diver­si­ty of men­tal prac­tices that train dif­fer­ent skills and dif­fer­ent parts of the brain. Our goal was to study the spe­cif­ic effects of Read the rest of this entry »

Want to feel more Calm, get some Headspace, and practice Mindfulness Daily?

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Let me ask again…want to feel more Calm, get some Head­space, and prac­tice Mind­ful­ness Dai­ly?

There are apps for that—hundreds of them, besides the three I just men­tioned.

These apps make a promise: Rather than invest­ing count­less hours and dol­lars in mind­ful­ness class­es or mind­ful­ness-based ther­a­py, we can choose to med­i­tate from the com­fort of our smart­phones. Users are flock­ing to mind­ful­ness apps in hopes of cul­ti­vat­ing kind atten­tion to their own thoughts and feel­ings, and of reap­ing the men­tal and phys­i­cal ben­e­fits that go along with mind­ful­ness.

But do they work? What does sci­ence say about mind­ful­ness apps? Read the rest of this entry »

Six tips for social-emotional learning (SEL) to transfer into real-world skills

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Social-emo­tion­al learn­ing (SEL) teach­es the key atti­tudes and skills nec­es­sary for under­stand­ing and man­ag­ing emo­tions, lis­ten­ing, feel­ing and show­ing empa­thy for oth­ers, and mak­ing thought­ful, respon­si­ble deci­sions. For five years, I was an edu­ca­tor in the field teach­ing mind­ful­ness and emo­tion­al skills to teenagers at six dif­fer­ent high schools.

Over and over, I saw the pow­er of mind­ful­ness to trans­form the inner lives of stu­dents. Stu­dents became less stressed, more self-reg­u­lat­ed, and more thought­ful toward their class­mates. But I also saw that Read the rest of this entry »

Growing research aims at helping cancer patients in distress access most-likely-to-help self-care options, from Mindfulness training to Web-based cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)

Cred­it: UCIrvine/flickr , CC BY-NC-ND

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Mind­ful­ness in can­cer treat­ment: time to stop and think (The Con­ver­sa­tion):

Breathe deeply and focus on the moment: mind­ful­ness now appears every­where as a tech­nique to improve well-being, includ­ing in health care.

Mind­ful­ness train­ing is often sug­gest­ed for can­cer patients to reduce high lev­els of anx­i­ety and dis­tress asso­ci­at­ed with diag­no­sis, treat­ment and antic­i­pa­tion of pos­si­ble dis­ease recur­rence. But two ques­tions per­sist: does mind­ful­ness work and, if so, for whom? Read the rest of this entry »

UCSF, Stanford, VieLight & Lumos Labs at the frontier of brain health & enhancement

On Decem­ber 7th select­ed Sum­mit Spon­sors and Part­ners show­cased their most promis­ing brain health & enhance­ment ini­tia­tives and solu­tions.

At the fron­tier with Neu­roscape, VR/ AR and Pho­to­bio­mod­u­la­tion (record­ings require reg­is­tra­tion; view slid­edeck for all am ses­sions Here)

  • Adam Gaz­za­leyUCSF Pro­fes­sor of Neu­rol­o­gy, presents Neu­roscape
  • Dr. Wal­ter Green­leaf, Med­ical VR/ AR Expert at Stan­ford Vir­tu­al Human Inter­ac­tion Lab, pro­vides an overview of health appli­ca­tions of vir­tu­al & aug­ment­ed real­i­ty (VR/AR)
  • Dr. Lew Lim, Founder & CEO of Vielight, dis­cuss­es pho­to­bio­mod­u­la­tion as a new way to enhance brain func­tion

Dr. Bob Schafer, Direc­tor of Research at Lumos Labs, presents their expand­ing vision for brain train­ing, includ­ing mind­ful­ness.

Slid­edeck sup­port­ing ses­sion held dur­ing the 2017 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit: Brain Health & Enhance­ment in the Dig­i­tal Age (Decem­ber 5–7th). All ses­sion record­ings avail­able for pur­chase (50+ Speak­ers, 15+ Hours, $150).

About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

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