On the potential of EEG and heart-rate biomarkers to inform about health benefits of mindfulness
Nora Hagopian and Klaus Linkenkaer-Hansen
Neuronal Oscillations & Cognition, Integrative Neurophysiology, CNCR, VU Amsterdam
Mindfulness and other meditation practices can enhance subjective well-being, and have acute and long-term effects on heart and brain dynamics. We are interested in understanding these effects within a framework of so-called “critical dynamics”. Criticality is a special form of complexity observed in dynamical systems balancing between order and disorder and has been linked to their versatility and resilience, i.e., a high capacity to bounce back from disruption, reflecting a positive adaptation to adversity. However, we lack an integrated understanding of resilience at the level of the heart, brain, and mind. In this talk, we review current evidence on the acute and long-term effects of meditation on heart and brain dynamics, and discuss what are the best objective markers of subjective well-being.