Meditation, yoga, deep breathing and prayer are all ways to evoke a physiologic state of deep rest known as the relaxation response. New research published in the journal PLOS ONE finds that eliciting this response triggers immediate changes in gene expression that can affect the body’s immune function, energy metabolism and insulin secretion.
A new study from investigators at the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind/Body Medicine at MGH and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center finds that elicitation of the relaxation response produces immediate changes in the expression of genes involved in immune function, energy metabolism and insulin secretion.
12/10/2012: Compassionate Care for Cancer: Why We Need It
This essay, written by a patient of the Benson-Henry Institute, discusses the healing power of compassion.
Ann Webster has been honored at the Yeshiva University Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology's annual Gala in New York City. Her work in the field of mental health has earned her the honor of being recognized as a Distinguished Alum.
This book was written for parents who want to help their children overcome stress. It's conveniently available online at Barnes & Noble and Amazon.com.
This short article discusses three of BHI’s most popular programs, and shares powerful patient stories. Mind body medicine, positive thinking and lifestyle changes have markedly impacted these patients' quality of life and diminished medical symptoms.
07/27/2012: British soccer team learns relaxation response
Members of the Liverpool Football Club participated in a relaxation response training courtesy of The Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine (BHI) at the MGH.
Through their continuing medical education (CME) program, the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine is educating physicians, nurses, social workers and other healthcare providers about the benefits of mind body medicine. BHI delivered its most recent course in June, and now is preparing for an upcoming program in September.
07/16/2012: Taking Charge
At the Mass General Wellness Center and the Benson-Henry Institute, patients from across Massachusetts receive yoga, acupuncture and other forms of mind-body care designed to reduce stress and promote healthier lifestyles.
The Education Initiative (E.I.) at the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine (BHI) is honored to be a part of the important Center for Community Health Improvement programs (CCHI) at MGH. This short article describes the Bicentennial Scholars Program, and BHI's contributions to the program's curriculum. On May 31, 2012, the first class of MGH Bicentennial Scholars graduated from high school!
A small study from MGH researchers found that online virtual communities may be an effective way to train patients in meditation and other mind/body techniques. The ability to learn and practice approaches that elicit the relaxation response in a virtual environment could help surmount several barriers that can restrict participation.
The faculty of the Benson-Henry Institute are consistently asked to speak at highly-regarded local and national events, educational seminars and conferences.
Compassion and Healing in Medicine and Society, Dr. Fricchione's latest book has recently been published and is for sale.
Peter Slavin, MD, President of Mass General, recently visited BHI to present Excellence in Action awards to Darshan Mehta, MD, Medical Director, Peg Baim, MS, NP, and Ann Webster, PhD.
09/30/2010: Summer Seminar: Mind/Body - Components, Research, Techniques and Applications with the RR
This course, which will be both didactic and experiential, will focus on understanding the foundation of mind/body medicine, the role of stress in illness, recent research advances, and techniques and applications.
09/20/2010: Safe Supplements
Dietary supplements are big business in the United States, but there are some considerations to make before starting a new vitamin, mineral or herb.
06/22/2010: Relaxation Revolution
Dr. Herbert Benson's new, comprehensive guide to mind body therapies, "RELAXATION REVOLUTION: Enhancing Your Personal Health Through the Science and Genetics of Mind Body Healing" is now available.
Lighten Up Program for Weight Loss Starts April 29 at MGH West in Waltham
12/17/2009: It's the most wonderful time of the year
Dr. Herbert Benson of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital offers suggestions for avoiding holiday stress
07/31/2009: Laughter is the best medicine
MGH Hotline 07.31.09 Those walking by the Thier Conference Room during the afternoon of July 24 may have heard something unexpected from behind the closed doors: uproarious laughter. Led by Laura Malloy, LICSW, the gigglers were part of a group of approximately 30 individuals participating in a session of “laughter yoga,” a growing trend in integrative medicine that combines hearty laughter with relaxed, yoga-style breathing.
06/30/2009: Expanded Mind Body Consultation Service
Come in for a consultation, leave with a comprehensive treatment plan. We’ll develop a comprehensive mind body treatment plan that will help you return to equilibrium.
Three new DVDs are now for sale in our store. These DVDs are live recordings of lectures from our popular Clinical Training in Mind Body Medicine, a five-day course we offer in partnership with Harvard Medical School.
Improving the environment in which rats are reared can significantly strengthen the physiological process of wound healing, according to a report in the open-access journal PLoS ONE. MGH researchers found that giving rats living in isolation the opportunity to build nests led to faster and more complete healing of burn injuries.
01/07/2013: Coping Magazine
Staying Positive After a Cancer Diagnosis
In this short article, Ann Webster, PhD shares some ways to stay positive after being diagnosed with cancer. Mind body strategies, laughter, and gratitude can all help foster positive emotions during difficult times. Dr. Webster leads the Mind Body Program for Cancer at BHI.
12/11/2012: Wonder Women of Boston
The Importance of Self-Care
In this essay, Leslee Kagan, MS, FNP discusses the importance of self care for women.
11/26/2012: Boston Globe
Meditation can improve health
In this article, published in the Boston Globe, Dr. Benson and "The Relaxation Response" are mentioned in terms of the reseach into the effectiveness of meditation in improving ones health.
10 Tips for Reducing Health Fears
This short article discusses common health fears related to natural disasters and how to overcome them. Meditation is recommended and Dr. Benson is cited.
10/29/2012: Boston Globe
No Cure for Back Pain
In this article, published in the Boston Globe, Ann Webster, PhD explains how mind body techniques can help alleviate back pain. "I teach meditation, guided imagery and mindfulness to get patients to acknowledge the pain with out anger," she says.
Blessings and Lessons of a Cancer Diagnosis
In this heartwarming and inspiring essay, one of our patients - who has been living with terminal cancer - describes the life lessons she has learned throughout her journey. She describes the impact that meditation has has on her health, and courageously depicts cancer as a blessing.
07/20/2012: Mass General Magazine
Mass General's Wellness Center helps patients adopt healthier and happier lifestyles by treating the mind, body and spirit. The Benson-Henry Institute collaborates closely with the MGH Revere Wellness Center; this article discusses programs offered by both organizations.
07/19/2012: Caring Headlines
Mind Body Medicine: Empowering patients to help alleviate medical symptoms and conditions
In this article, Caring Headlines covers three of BHI's most popular programs: the 3RP (Relaxation Response Resiliency Program), The Cardiac Wellness Program, and the Mind Body Program for Women. The article also shares the stories of patients who have benefited from participating in these programs. **The article starts on page 10.**
Relax, It's Only A Vacation
Dr. Fricchione, Director of BHI, is interviewed by CNN regarding the psychological factors involved in relaxation. He explains the science behind why vacations are so important, and how to make the most out of yours.
06/29/2012: Fort Bliss Monitor
On A Mission to Relax
BHI, Harvard Medical School and the Samueli Institute are conducting a study at Fort Bliss. During a 6-week program, BHI will teach soldiers a variety of techniques, which include traditional meditation, deep breathing exercises and cognitive response skills.
06/20/2012: Prevention Magazine
Practicing What He Preaches
In this article, CNN Chief Medical Correspondent Sanjay Gupta, MD shares his 12 tips for reversing heart disease. In Tip #10, entitled "Stop Medicating, Start Meditating," he describes how Dr. Benson taught him to elicit the relaxation response, and reports on the benefits on his daily meditation practice.
06/12/2012: Be Healthy: A Banner Publication
Taking the First Step... Again and Again
Dr. Nicole Christian, a resident in Psychiatry at MGH, is interviewed by Be Healthy, a publication of the Bay State Banner. In this article, she talks about mind body medicine and its role in helping people work to change unhealthy behaviors, such as smoking, drinking and eating in excess.
05/18/2012: MGH News
Stress Awareness: How Parents Can Help Their Children with Stress
Marilyn Wilcher, Senior Director at BHI, writes about stress in children and teens, and gives an example of a simple Relaxation Response exercise that parents can do with their children.
04/26/2012: RESOLVE New England
A Mind Body Approach to Enhancing Resiliency
In honor of Infertility Awareness Week, Leslee Kagan, MS, FNP of BHI was asked to be a guest blogger. In this article, she talks about the benefits of stress reduction and resiliency training for women struggling with infertility.
04/09/2012: Harvard Gazette
Chill Therapy: Benson touts treatment potential of stress-control methods
On April 4th, Dr. Herbert Benson spoke about his most recent book, "Relaxation Revolution" at the Harvard School of Public Health. His lecture was a Dean's Distinguished Lecture/Book Presentation, moderated by HSPS Dean Julio Frenk.
04/03/2012: BioPsychoSocial Medicine
Viz Medicatrix Naturae: Does nature "minister to the mind"?
Eva Selhub, MD, Staff Physician at the BHI and Alan Logan, ND, a BHI CME Faculty member, have just published an article in the journal BioPsychoSocial Medicine. Read their abstract and provisional PDF by clicking on the link below.
Stress Management Can Be Taught Online
A small study from MGH researchers done in collaboration with BHI found that online virtual communities may be an effective way to train patients in meditation and other mind body techniques. "Our finding that teaching a mind body approach that includes the relaxation response – can be delivered via a virtual environment is important because these environments are are richer and more rewarding than simply using interactive web sites," says Daniel Hoch, MD, PhD, corresponding author of the report appearing in the open-access journal PLoS One.
03/26/2012: Habits of Health
Stress Reduction - The Relaxation Response
Dr. A's Habits of Health recently featured Dr. Benson's work. This article describes a step-by-step guide to eliciting the Relaxation Response.
Can Relaxation Save Our Lives and Billions in Healthcare Costs?
This short article details research conducted at the Benson-Henry Institute, and what impact it could have on healthcare spending.
02/23/2012: Partners.org Features
The Benson-Henry Institute at Mass General Helps Patients Reduce Stress
Partners HealthCare highlights the Benson-Henry Institute's clinical services and educational programs for physicians.
02/01/2012: UTNE Reader: The Best of Alternative Press
Meditation, Not Meds
This in-depth interview with Dr. Benson covers the psychological and physiological benefits of eliciting the relaxation response, as well as its potential impact on healthcare.
10/01/2011: MGH Caring Headlines
What You Should Know About Holistic Nursing at MGH
This article features Peg Baim, MS, NP, Clinical Director of Training at the Benson-Henry Institute, who teaches at the MGH Institute of Health Professions and was instrumental in creating a mind body medicine certificate program for nurses.
08/14/2011: Boston Globe
Worried about aging? Relax
Reducing stress is an effective way to ease ills of later life.
08/09/2011: The Mind Body Connector
Newsletter page link
We are pleased to share the first issue of The Mind Body Connector, a new resource to help you stay current with the latest news from the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine (BHI).
08/08/2011: The Colorado Springs Gazette
Winning the battle against PTSD, fighting a battle for legitimacy
Therapy gets results, but not funding. Colorado Springs Gazette quotes MGH physician Herbert Benson.
11/22/2010: Proto Magazine
Herbert Benson: The Mind’s Healing Power
A pioneer in meditation reflects on the past and future of research into the mind body connection.
09/13/2010: Boston Globe
Cycle of stress
Getting pregnant, having monster PMS - how the S factor may play a part
09/01/2010: Alternative Therapies in Health
Doctor of Nursing Practice - Integrative Health and Healing as a Challenge
This is a special issue on nursing, offered in partnership with Holistic Nursing Journal.
07/12/2010: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Mind-body medicine training works on hospital staff, too
Registered nurse Terry Lang at the Positive Health Clinic at Allegheny General Hospital has found a way to help some of them get past their needle phobia: the deep-breathing relaxation technique she and 13 other AGH doctors and staff members learned in recent training with the famed Benson-Henry Institute for Mind-Body Medicine at Massachusetts General Hospital.
01/17/2005: ABC News
PDF of Article
Despite the unavoidability of stress, there are ways that you can tune into your body and pick up its stress signals, such as problems sleeping, headaches and bossiness.
Program Teaches Students To Manage Stress
Some of the world's most gifted students come to Harvard to become doctors, lawyers and computer scientists. But, one class teaches how to manage stress.
06/01/2003: Scientific American Frontiers
Dr. Benson believes that relaxation not only feels good, but can help us "breakout" of destructive or negative thought patterns and open the door to different kinds of peak experiences.
05/30/2001: Psychology Today
The Science of Meditation
Meditation may help squash anxiety. The practice brings about dramatic effects in as little as a 10-minute session.
02/01/1999: Across the Board
How do you handle stress when neither fight nor flight are options?
The Department of Psychiatry Patient and Family Education Series presents a free educational program, "Caring for Yourself While Caring for Others: Mind Body Self-care for Caregivers" on Saturday, Sept. 15, 2012.
10/03/2011: Ann Webster speaking at "Mind/Body Medicine for Today’s Stressed World: Components, Techniques and Applications"
This workshop will define mind/body medicine, introduce the Relaxation Response, describe the role of stress in illness, and offer numerous simple self-care techniques essential for overall health, resiliency, and psychological wellbeing.
Ann Webster, PhD of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine speaks at "The Art of Living -- Life Beyond Cancer" conference at the Marriott Hotel, Quincy Massachusetts.
Through keynote presentations, professionally led workshops, skill building seminars, networking opportunities and panel discussions, this conference will address the many issues that cancer survivors confront.
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