Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Meditation Enhances Brain Function, Study Finds

Reinforcement of white matter could prevent mental illness:

Two U.S. scientists have updated findings that link a form of Chinese meditation to positive changes in brain structure, suggesting that just 11 hours of practising the technique over a month could help prevent mental illness.

In a paper to be released this week in the online version of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers Yi-Yuan Tang and Michael Posner report that the practice known as integrative body-mind training (IBMT) can have a positive physical affect on the brain, boosting connectivity and efficiency.

Increases in the integrity of white matter "pathways," which connect the regions of the brain, were shown after MRI scans of 68 students at China's Dalian University of Technology two years ago. The students meditated for about half an hour a day over the course of a month.

Posner said the latest study revisited the 2010 research, when both researchers were working at the University of Oregon, and confirmed what the authors called a "pattern of neural plasticity" induced by the meditation, which focuses on body relaxation, breathing, posture and mental imagery. (MORE)


Source: CBC News

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