Brain changes following MBSR training

Lazar, S. (2014). Change in brainstem gray matter concentration following a mindfulness-based intervention is correlated with improvement in psychological well-being. Name: Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, 8, 33. Full text via Abstract.

Individuals can improve their levels of psychological well-being through utilization of psychological interventions, including the practice of mindfulness meditation, which is defined as the non-judgmental awareness of experiences in the present moment.

We recently reported that an 8-week Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) course lead to increases in gray matter concentration in several brain areas, as detected with voxel-based morphometry of MPRAGE MRI scans, including the pons/raphe/locus coeruleus area of the brainstem. Given the role of the pons and raphe in mood and arousal, we hypothesized that changes in this region might underlie changes in well-being.