Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Bibliotherapy

This randomized controlled investigation examined the effectiveness of a self-help bibliotherapy format of the evidence-based mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) intervention.

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College students seeking stress reduction were randomly assigned to a 10-week MBSR bibliotherapy intervention group (n = 47) or a no-treatment control group (n = 45). Self-report measures were collected at baseline and postintervention.

This MBSR workbook may provide an acceptable and effective alternative for motivated individuals seeking to reduce stress, at least for a select group of individuals who are willing and able to sustain participation in the intervention.

Full reference: Hazlett-Stevens, H. & Oren, Y. (2017) Effectiveness of Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Bibliotherapy: A Preliminary Randomized Controlled Trial. Journal of Clinical Psychology. 73,(6) PP. 626–637

Efficacy of mindfulness meditation for smoking cessation

This systematic review summarizes randomized controlled trials of mindfulness meditation for smoking cessation.

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Smokers increasingly seek alternative interventions to assist in cessation or reduction efforts. Mindfulness meditation, which facilitates detached observation and paying attention to the present moment with openness, curiosity, and acceptance, has recently been studied as a smoking cessation intervention.

MM did not differ significantly from comparator interventions in their effects on tobacco use. Low-quality evidence, variability in study design among the small number of existing studies, and publication bias suggest that additional, high-quality adequately powered RCTs should be conducted.

Full reference: Maglionea, M.A. et al. (2017) Efficacy of mindfulness meditation for smoking cessation: A systematic review and meta-analysis. Addictive Behaviors
69(June) pp. 27–34

Mindfulness and pain in knee osteoarthritis

Previous studies suggest that higher mindfulness is associated with less pain and depression. However, the role of mindfulness has never been studied in knee osteoarthritis (OA)

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Method: We performed a secondary analysis of baseline data from our randomized comparative trial in participants with knee OA. Mindfulness was assessed using the Five Facet Mindfulness Questionnaire (FFMQ). We measured pain, physical function, quality of life, depression, stress, and self-efficacy with commonly-used patient-reported measures. Simple and multivariable regression models were utilized to assess associations between mindfulness and health outcomes. We further tested whether mindfulness moderated the pain-psychological outcome associations.

Conclusion: Mindfulness is associated with depression, stress, self-efficacy, and quality of life among knee OA patients. Mindfulness also moderates the influence of pain on stress, which suggests that mindfulness may alter the way one copes with pain. Future studies examining the benefits of mind-body therapy, designed to increase mindfulness, for patients with OA are warranted.

Full reference: Lee, A et al. (2017) Mindfulness is associated with psychological health and moderates pain in knee osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis and Cartilage. 25(6) pp. 824-831

Mindfulness-based recovery for distressed survivors of breast cancer

Despite growing evidence in support of mindfulness as an underlying mechanism of mindfulness-based interventions (MBIs), it has been suggested that nonspecific therapeutic factors, such as the experience of social support, may contribute to the positive effects of MBIs.

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In the present study, we examined whether change in mindfulness and/or social support mediated the effect of Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery (MBCR) compared to another active intervention (i.e. Supportive Expressive Group Therapy (SET)), on change in mood disturbance, stress symptoms and quality of life. A secondary analysis was conducted of a multi-site randomized clinical trial investigating the impacts of MBCR and SET on distressed breast cancer survivors (MINDSET).

Findings showed that increased social support was related to more improvement in mood and stress after MBCR compared to support groups, whereas changes in mindfulness were not. This suggests a more important role for social support in enhancing outcomes in MBCR than previously thought.

Full reference: Schellekens, M.P.J. et al. (2017) Mindfulness-Based Cancer Recovery (MBCR) versus Supportive Expressive Group Therapy (SET) for distressed breast cancer survivors: evaluating mindfulness and social support as mediators. Journal of Behavioral Medicine. 40(3) pp. 414–422

Associations Between State Mindfulness and Everyday Affective Experience.

Pathways to Happiness Are Multidirectional. Mindfulness is commonly defined as a multidimensional mode of being attentive to, and aware of, momentary experiences while taking a nonjudgmental and accepting stance | Emotion

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These qualities have been linked to 2 different facets of affective well-being: being attentive is proposed to lead to an appreciation of experiences as they are, and thus to positive affect (PA). Accepting unpleasant experiences in a nonjudgmental fashion has been hypothesized to reduce negative affect (NA). Alternatively, however, attention may increase both positive and negative affectivity, whereas nonjudgmental acceptance may modify how people relate to their experiences. Previous research has considered such differential associations at the trait level, although a mindful mode may be understood as a state of being.

Full reference: Blanke, E.S. et al. (2017) Pathways to Happiness Are Multidirectional: Associations Between State Mindfulness and Everyday Affective Experience. Emotion. Published online: 8 May 2017

Mindfulness-based stress reduction for breast cancer patients

A mixed method study on what patients experience as a suitable stage to participate | Supportive Care in Cancer

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Purpose: Breast cancer is associated with high levels of psychological distress. Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) has proven to be effective in reducing distress in cancer patients. In several studies, patients who are currently undergoing somatic anticancer treatment are excluded from participating in MBSR. Little is known about what would be the most suitable stage of disease to offer MBSR. We examined whether stage of disease facilitated and/or hindered participation in MBSR for breast cancer patients.

Conclusions: In contrast to the common practice to tailoring the timing of MBSR to physical impairments or demands of the anticancer treatment, our findings revealed that emotional readiness is equally important to take into account. These findings might support professionals in their choices whether and when to inform and refer patients to MBSR.

Full reference: Bisseling, E.M., Schellekens, M.P., Jansen, E.T. et al. (2017) Mindfulness-based stress reduction for breast cancer patients: a mixed method study on what patients experience as a suitable stage to participate. Support Care Cancer.  doi:10.1007/s00520-017-3714-8

Mindful eating can help weight loss, study shows

Eating without the distraction of work, computers or TV can help people lose weight and maintain the loss, researchers say | The Guardian Health

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Eating mindfully, choosing and savouring food away from the distractions of computers and televisions, can help people lose weight, a study has shown.

A programme in the US tells people they can eat what they want, including their favourite high-calorie, fattening foods. But they must eat it mindfully, thinking about nothing but the enjoyment of eating their food – although not necessarily eating all of it.