The Scientific Benefits of Mindfulness

How Mindfulness Helps Our Bodies AND Our Brains

There are so many reasons mindfulness and deep breathing is helpful for people of all ages. And science agrees on the benefits of mindfulness. Most importantly, mindfulness and deep breathing activates our vagus nerve, which helps us calm down, think more clearly, and heal. This short video explains the basics, and is a great one to share with the kids in your life!

Another of the benefits of mindfulness is that it helps our brains function better. It can boost our recall of information and instructions, calm us down when we’re afraid or angry, and fall asleep more quickly at night. It can even help with anxiety and depression!

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Below are a few resources that recount the science and subsequent benefits of mindfulness:

  • 9 Facts About the Vagus Nerve. This fascinating article from Mental Floss walks readers through all the amazing things the vagus nerve is responsible for — it does far more than just initiate our relaxation response.
  • Dacher Keltner on the Vagus Nerve. In this video, UC Berkeley psychologist and Faculty Director of the Greater Good Science Center shares his research on the vagus nerve, a key nexus of mind and body, and a biological building block of human compassion.
  • 9 Ways Deep Breathing Supercharges Your Body and Mind. Deep breathing affects almost every single system in our body. It not only helps us feel better, it also helps us heal!
  • How Mindfulness Practices are Changing an Inner City School. This Baltimore school has embraced the daily practice of mindfulness, and it’s transforming success rates and kids are taking more responsibility for their actions. The same could be true in your own home!

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Mindfulness practices take time, but the benefits begin immediately! These habits you’re building for yourself and the kids in your life will benefit you all for your entire life. We’d love to hear about your mindfulness practice and how it’s helping you. And if you’re a teacher using experiencing the benefits of mindfulness in the classroom, tell us your story!

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