Brain Mysteries
Recent News |  Archives |  Tags |  Newsletter |  Message Board/Forum |  About |  Links |  Subscribe to BrainMysteries.com RSS Feed Subscribe


More Articles
Chemists' work with small peptide chains may revolutionize study of enzymes and diseasesChemists' work with small peptide chains may revolutionize study of enzymes and diseases

Satellite shows high productivity from US corn beltSatellite shows high productivity from US corn belt

Emerging research suggests a new paradigm for 'unconventional superconductors'Emerging research suggests a new paradigm for 'unconventional superconductors'

Virus structure inspires novel understanding of onion-like carbon nanoparticlesVirus structure inspires novel understanding of onion-like carbon nanoparticles

Sperm meets egg: Protein essential for fertilization discoveredSperm meets egg: Protein essential for fertilization discovered

Warm US West, cold East: A 4,000-year patternWarm US West, cold East: A 4,000-year pattern

At the origin of cell divisionAt the origin of cell division

Researchers determine how mechanical forces affect T-cell recognition and signalingResearchers determine how mechanical forces affect T-cell recognition and signaling

La Brea Tar Pit fossil research shows climate change drove evolution of Ice Age predatorsLa Brea Tar Pit fossil research shows climate change drove evolution of Ice Age predators

The surprising consequences of banning chocolate milkThe surprising consequences of banning chocolate milk

Running geese give insight into low oxygen toleranceRunning geese give insight into low oxygen tolerance

Galactic serial killerGalactic serial killer

Babies prefer fairness -- but only if it benefits them -- in choosing a playmateBabies prefer fairness -- but only if it benefits them -- in choosing a playmate

An ultrathin collagen matrix biomaterial tool for 3D microtissue engineeringAn ultrathin collagen matrix biomaterial tool for 3D microtissue engineering

Friedreich's ataxia -- an effective gene therapy in an animal modelFriedreich's ataxia -- an effective gene therapy in an animal model

A new twist makes for better steel, researchers findA new twist makes for better steel, researchers find

Renewable energy market share climbs despite 2013 dip in investmentsRenewable energy market share climbs despite 2013 dip in investments

Research suggests autumn is ending later in the northern hemisphereResearch suggests autumn is ending later in the northern hemisphere

Sniff study suggests humans can distinguish more  than 1 trillion scentsSniff study suggests humans can distinguish more than 1 trillion scents

Study finds gaming augments players' social livesStudy finds gaming augments players' social lives

A breakthrough in creating invisibility cloaks, stealth technologyA breakthrough in creating invisibility cloaks, stealth technology

Off the shelf, on the skin: Stick-on electronic patches for health monitoringOff the shelf, on the skin: Stick-on electronic patches for health monitoring

Overcoming structural uncertainty in computer modelsOvercoming structural uncertainty in computer models

Monkey caloric restriction study shows big benefit; contradicts earlier studyMonkey caloric restriction study shows big benefit; contradicts earlier study

Researchers developed world's first fluorescent sensor to detect date rape drugResearchers developed world's first fluorescent sensor to detect date rape drug

Copied from nature: Detecting software errors via genetic algorithmsCopied from nature: Detecting software errors via genetic algorithms

Turning back the clock on aging muscles?Turning back the clock on aging muscles?

Gecko-inspired adhesion: Self-cleaning and reliableGecko-inspired adhesion: Self-cleaning and reliable

New study finds differences in concussion risk between football helmetsNew study finds differences in concussion risk between football helmets

Mindfulness meditation reduces loneliness in older adults, study shows (8/1/2012)

Tags:
loneliness, meditation

For older adults, loneliness is a major risk factor for health problems - such as cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer's - and death. Attempts to diminish loneliness with social networking programs like creating community centers to encourage new relationships have not been effective.

However, a new study led by Carnegie Mellon University's J. David Creswell offers the first evidence that mindfulness meditation reduces loneliness in older adults. Published in "Brain, Behavior & Immunity," the researchers also found that mindfulness meditation - a 2,500-year-old practice dating back to Buddha that focuses on creating an attentive awareness of the present moment - lowered inflammation levels, which is thought to promote the development and progression of many diseases. These findings provide valuable insights into how mindfulness meditation training can be used as a novel approach for reducing loneliness and the risk of disease in older adults.

"We always tell people to quit smoking for health reasons, but rarely do we think about loneliness in the same way," said Creswell, assistant professor of psychology within CMU's Dietrich College of Humanities and Social Sciences. "We know that loneliness is a major risk factor for health problems and mortality in older adults. This research suggests that mindfulness meditation training is a promising intervention for improving the health of older adults."

For the study, the research team recruited 40 healthy adults aged 55-85 who indicated an interest in learning mindfulness meditation techniques. Each person was assessed at the beginning and end of the study using an established loneliness scale. Blood samples also were collected.

The participants were randomly assigned to receive either the eight-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) program or no treatment. The MBSR program consisted of weekly two-hour meetings in which participants learned body awareness techniques - noticing sensations and working on breathing - and worked their way toward understanding how to mindfully attend to their emotions and daily life practices. They also were asked to practice mindfulness meditation exercises for 30 minutes each day at home and attended a daylong retreat.

The researchers found that eight weeks of the mindfulness meditation training decreased the participants' loneliness. Using the blood samples collected, they found that the older adult sample had elevated pro-inflammatory gene expression in their immune cells at the beginning of the study, and that the training reduced this pro-inflammatory gene expression, as well as a measure of C-Reactive Protein (CRP). These findings suggest that mindfulness meditation training may reduce older adults' inflammatory disease risk.

"Reductions in the expression of inflammation-related genes were particularly significant because inflammation contributes to a wide variety of the health threats including cancer, cardiovascular diseases and neurodegenerative diseases," said study collaborator Steven Cole, professor of medicine and psychiatry and biobehavioral sciences at the UCLA School of Medicine.

While the health effects of the observed gene expression changes were not directly measured in the study, Cole noted that "these results provide some of the first indications that immune cell gene expression profiles can be modulated by a psychological intervention."

Creswell added that while this research suggests a promising new approach for treating loneliness and inflammatory disease risk in older adults, more work needs to be done. "If you're interested in using mindfulness meditation, find an instructor in your city," he said. "It's important to train your mind like you train your biceps in the gym."

For older adults, loneliness is a major risk factor for health problems -- such as cardiovascular disease and Alzheimer's -- and death. Initial attempts to diminish loneliness with social networking programs like creating community centers to encourage new relationships have not been effective. However, a new study led by Carnegie Mellon University's J. David Creswell offers the first evidence that mindfulness meditation reduces loneliness in older adults. Published in [I]Brain, Behavior & Immunity,[/I] the researchers also found that mindfulness meditation reduces pro-inflammatory gene expression and lowered inflammation levels; inflammation is thought to promote the development and progression of many diseases. These findings provide valuable insights into how mindfulness meditation training can be used as a novel approach for reducing loneliness and the risk of disease in older adults. For more information, visit http://www.cmu.edu/news/stories/archives/2012/july/july24_meditationstudy.html. - Carnegie Mellon University

Note: This story has been adapted from a news release issued by the Carnegie Mellon University

Post Comments:

Search
New Articles
Green tea boosts your brainGreen tea boosts your brain

Feelings of failure, not violent content, foster aggression in video gamersFeelings of failure, not violent content, foster aggression in video gamers

New research suggests connection between white matter and cognitive health

Scientists identify part of brain linked to gambling addiction

The social circuits that track how we like people and ideas

Vascular changes caused by deep brain stimulation using brain MRI

Research method integrates meditation, science

A brain region for resisting alcohol's allureA brain region for resisting alcohol's allure

Positive, negative thinkers' brains revealedPositive, negative thinkers' brains revealed

Dopamine and hippocampus

Eyes in the cereal aisle -- how Cap'n Crunch's gaze is influencing your purchasingEyes in the cereal aisle -- how Cap'n Crunch's gaze is influencing your purchasing

Noisy brain signals: How the schizophrenic brain misinterprets the world

Great minds think alike

Research shows link between states' personalities and their politics

Can gratitude reduce costly impatience?



Archives
April 2014
March 2014
February 2014
January 2014
December 2013
November 2013
October 2013
September 2013
August 2013
July 2013
June 2013
May 2013
April 2013
March 2013
February 2013
January 2013
December 2012
November 2012
October 2012
September 2012
August 2012
July 2012
June 2012
May 2012
April 2012
March 2012
February 2012
January 2012
December 2011
November 2011
October 2011
September 2011
August 2011
July 2011
June 2011
May 2011
April 2011
March 2011
February 2011
January 2011
December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010
December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009
December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008
December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007


Science Friends
Agricultural Science
Astronomy News
Sports Tech
Biology News
Biomimicry Science
Chemistry News
Tissue Engineering
Cancer Research
Cybernetics Research
Electonics Research
Forensics Report
Fossil News
Genetic Archaeology
Genetics News
Geology News
Microbiology Research
Nanotech News
Parenting News
Physics News


  Archives |  Submit News |  Advertise With Us |  Contact Us |  Links
Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. All contents © 2000 - 2015 Web Doodle, LLC. All rights reserved.