Tuesday, April 21, 2015


Meditation is as good as anti-depressants for tackling depression according to the results of an Oxford University study recently published online in the Lancet.

The researchers found that mindfulness-based cognitive therapy (MBCT) prevented as many people from sliding back into clinical depression as conventional antidepressant medication.

The study followed 492 severely depressed adults over a period of 2 years. Half of the participants received mindfulness training and the other half stayed on antidepressant drugs.

It was found that 44 per cent of the MBCT group slipped back into major depression compared with 47 per cent of the group taking antidepressant medication.

Whilst the study doesn’t show that MBCT works any better than maintenance antidepressant medication in reducing the rate of relapse in depression, the results suggest that mindfulness is an acceptable alternative for the millions of people with recurrent depression on repeat prescriptions.

Study: Kuyken, W et al. ‘Effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy compared with maintenance antidepressant treatment in the prevention of depressive relapse or recurrence (PREVENT): a randomised controlled trial.’ The Lancet. Published Online: 20 April 2015. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(14)62222-4

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