The benefits of mindfulness can be seen in brain scans, Elizabeth Tracey reports


Mindfulness practice has been shown to help with anxiety and depression, with rigorous imaging studies of the brain using techniques such as PET scans showing actual changes in how the brain works. Neda Gould, a mindfulness expert at Johns Hopkins, describes what’s been shown.

Gould: What we see from imaging studies is that there is increased activity in the wiser parts of our brains, the prefrontal cortex, the parts of the brain that allows us to make better decisions, to have analytical and reasoning skill, and we also see decreased activity in the amygdala, the part of the brain that turns on our stress response. With mindfulness practice we see decreased activity in this region.  :32

Gould says mindfulness practice helps hardwire the brain so such changes persist. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.