The Neurobiology of Health Communication

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Abstract

This issue of Psychosomatic Medicine describes findings from an innovative study by Kang et al that used neuroimaging methods to quantify neural responses to health communications. Findings indicated that sedentary individuals who hold self-transcendent values show attenuated limbic threat responses to communications about the benefits of physical activity. Furthermore, participants who were instructed to articulate such values showed some evidence of additional blunting of the same neural response. In this editorial, we provide context for the interpretation of these findings within the existing research using the brain-as-predictor approach, and other recent trends within biobehavioral medicine involving the use of neuroscience methods in the service of health behavior change.

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