Effects of Low-Dose Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR-ld) on Working Adults

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Abstract

Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) has produced behavioral, psychological, and physiological benefits, but these programs typically require a substantial time commitment from the participants. This study assessed the effects of a shortened (low-dose [ld]) work-site MBSR intervention (MBSR-ld) on indicators of stress in healthy working adults to determine if results similar to those obtained in traditional MBSR could be demonstrated. Participants were randomized into MBSR-ld and wait-list control groups. Self-reported perceived stress, sleep quality, and mindfulness were measured at the beginning and end of the 6-week intervention. Salivary cortisol was assessed weekly. Significant reductions in perceived stress (p = .0025) and increases in mindfulness (p = .0149) were obtained for only the MBSR-ld group (n = 22). Scores on the global measure of sleep improved for the MBSR-ld group (p = .0018) as well as for the control group (p = .0072; n = 20). Implications and future research are discussed.

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