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Meditation, Conscious Breathing, Nature Videos

  1. Tai Chi, Imagery and Water Aerobics - a Winning Combo for Arthritis

    A water aerobics instructor reports that guided imagery with a distinctly Christian flavor is a helpful element in the cool-down phase of her water aerobics and with water tai chi classes, designed for people suffering from arthritis.  Here are her own words:

    Dear Health Journeys,

    I am a water aerobics instructor, who also teaches tai chi in the water to people suffering from arthritis.  I discovered imagery in the library on the internet.  Now that we have a nice, new, warm, 30-person, hydrotherapy pool, I now use my own guided imagery for the cool-down part of my classes.

    I use sayings and visualizations that I have written and say quietly to my classes, as they move their arms and legs slowly to keep warm during this time.  I encourage them to close their eyes and imagine.
    Because this is a Bible-based faith community, I use images of Jesus, and I close with prayer.  This seems to be a very effective, soothing and a much-appreciated way to conclude my classes.
    Blessings to all of you,

    Vicky B.

    [Ed. Note: For excellent, Bible-based guided imagery, the Rev. Donna Shenk and Dr. Robert Miller have created the Tranquilities Series, which can be found here.]

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  2. Comparing Two Mind-Body Techniques for Help with Sleep for Cancer Survivors

    Researchers from the Utah Center for Exploring Mind-Body Interactions at the University of Utah Medical School in Salt Lake City conducted a randomized, controlled trial to see whether two mind-body interventions – Mind-Body Bridging (MBB) and Mindfulness Meditation (MM) could improve sleep disturbances and other symptoms in posttreatment cancer survivors, as compared to sleep hygiene education (SHE) as an active control.

    Fifty-seven cancer survivors with clinically significant self-reported sleep disturbance were randomly assigned to receive MBB, MM, or SHE. All interventions were conducted in three sessions, once per week. Patient-reported outcomes were assessed via the Medical Outcomes Study Sleep Scale and other indicators of psychosocial functioning relevant to quality of life, stress, depression, mindfulness, self-compassion, and well-being.

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  3. Mindfulness Beats Expressive-Supportive Tx with Stressed-Out Cancer Patients

    Researchers from the University of Calgary in Alberta, Canada, compared the effectiveness of 2 evidence-based group interventions to help stressed breast cancer survivors cope - mindfulness-based cancer recovery (MBCR) and classic, supportive-expressive group therapy (SET).
    This multisite, randomized controlled trial assigned 271 distressed survivors of stage I - III breast cancer to one of the two group interventions or a 1-day stress management control condition.

    MBCR focused on training in mindfulness meditation and gentle yoga, whereas SET focused on emotional expression and group support. Both intervention groups included 18 hours of professional contact.

    Measures were collected at baseline and post-intervention by blinded assessors. Primary outcome measures were mood and diurnal salivary cortisol slopes. Secondary outcomes were stress symptoms, quality of life and social support.

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  4. Mindfulness (MBSR) and Aerobic Exercise both a Help for Social Anxiety

    Researchers from Stanford University investigated the effectiveness of MBSR (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction) on Social Anxiety Disorder, as compared with aerobic exercise.

    Fifty-six adults (52% female; 41% Caucasian; age mean [M] ± standard deviation [SD]: 32.8 ± 8.4) with SAD were randomized to either an MBSR condition or the active comparison condition of aerobic exercise (AE).
    At baseline and post-intervention, participants completed measures of social anxiety , depression, stress and sense of well-being (Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale, Social Interaction Anxiety Scale, Beck Depression Inventory-II, and Perceived Stress Scale, Rosenberg Self-Esteem Scale, Satisfaction with Life Scale, Self-Compassion Scale, and UCLA-8 Loneliness Scale).

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  5. Horse Race Results In: Mindfulness v. Relaxation for Acute Pain

    Researchers from the University of Sydney in Australia, investigated the efficacy of mindfulness training in comparison with relaxation training on acute pain - threshold and tolerance - during a cold pressor task.

    Undergraduate psychology students (n = 140) were randomly assigned to receive reassuring or threatening information about the cold pressor.  Participants were then re-randomized to receive mindfulness or the control intervention- relaxation  training.

    Analyses confirmed that the threat manipulation was effective in increasing worry, fear of harm and expectations of pain, and reducing coping efficacy.

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  6. Meditation Lowers Blood Pressure in Low Income, African American Seniors

    In a feasibility study at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, investigators looked at whether Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) could decrease blood pressure in low-income, urban, African-American older adults, and whether such an intervention would be acceptable to and feasible with minority, low income, older adults when provided at home. 

    The study was launched because (1) hypertension affects a large proportion of urban African-American older adults; and (2) many older adults don’t have access to medications and/or don’t take them when they do have them.

    Participants were at least 62 years old and residents of a low-income senior residence. All were African-American, mostly female. Twenty participants were randomized to the mindfulness-based intervention or a social support control group, both of which were 8 weeks duration.
    Blood pressure was measured with the Omron automatic blood pressure machine at baseline and at the end of the 8-week intervention.

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  7. What’s the Difference between Mindfulness Meditation and Guided Imagery?


    Over the past couple of weeks I have read articles bragging on the benefits of mindfulness meditation.  Can you help me understand how and what mindfulness can and can't do, as compared to guided imagery? 

    My impression is that the end result of the two techniques is pretty much the same.  It’s just the process of getting there that is different  - is that true? 


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  8. So What's So Special about Your Recordings, Anyway?

    Hello... got a couple of questions I would like you to answer...

    1--What, specifically, makes your products "more effective and/or unique" than your competitors?

    2--Do your CD's contain any underlying subliminal suggestions?


I sincerely appreciate your response!


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  9. Mind-Body Therapies vs CBT for Undergrad Stress

    Investigators from Buenos Aires University examined psychoneuroendocrine responses to three different types of stress management programs. The first arm was training in deep breathing, relaxation response, meditation, and guided imagery (RRGI); the second arm was training in cognitive behavioral techniques (CB); and the third arm of the study included both RRGI and CB (RRGICB).

    Fifty-two undergraduate students were randomly assigned to one of the 3 conditions or a control group. A pre/post experimental design was used, measuring  anxiety, anger, hopelessness, neuroticism, respiration rate, and salivary cortisol levels.

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  10. When Are the Best Times to Meditate?



    First, I have to say I don't know where I'd be without your Panic Attacks CD - LOVE IT.   I have 3 quick questions for you..

    1. Should I not meditate before/after I eat? I try to leave an hour in between the two.

    2. I've read meditating twice a day is best, is there a certain length of time for each session that's best as well?

    3. Have you ever heard of gagging as a symptom of stress/anxiety? (literally gagging, not just a choking feeling.. I've had this problem since January '11.)

    Thank you so much,

    Cora Lee

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