June 15, 2024

Albert Banerjee Headshot 2024

Dr. Albert Banerjee, NBHRF Research Chair in Community Health and Aging and Associate Professor in Gerontology at STU, led an eight-week Mind-Body Medicine (MBM) study demonstrating significant benefits in well-being. 


MBM is a transformative branch of healthcare focusing on self-regulation and resilience and is increasingly recognized as crucial for holistic well-being.  


The study was conducted through the Iris Center for Mindfulness, Peace, and Healing in Fredericton, as part of Dr. William Cook’s medical practice and was supported by the New Brunswick Department of Health. It incorporated techniques in mindfulness, breathwork, cognitive behavioural therapy, and kindness-compassion practice. 


Well-Being Benefits 


The study analyzed nearly 1,000 course completion surveys and conducted focus group interviews with 24 program participants. 


Participants reported improved personal and professional lives, including reduced physical pain, better sleep, and enhanced mental health, through improved anxiety management and resilience enhancing skills. Many were initially skeptical but found the program empowering, as they experienced the benefits first-hand. 


It is refreshing to study a program with clear benefits. It also highlights the importance of learning from centuries-old wisdom traditions. We are now gathering data that supports the profound benefits of self-discovery and self-work,” said Banerjee.   


Recommendations for Healthcare System  


Understanding the transformative benefits of mind-body medicine is crucial, not only for individuals seeking alternative approaches to health, but also for healthcare providers and policymakers.  


It’s a feather in the cap of what we have going on locally and quite frankly, could be a model of how these programs may be provided for the rest of the country,” said Banerjee.  


Banerjee suggests incorporating such programs as a routine part of public health promotion, offering tools for health and resilience.   

“Rather than waiting for people to fall ill, these programs provide people with the tools to foster health and better regulate their response to life’s many challenges through salutogenic ways of living and being,” he said.  


Integrating mind-body approaches into New Brunswick’s healthcare system could improve care quality, offer holistic solutions, and potentially reduce traditional healthcare reliance.  


As the state of healthcare access in NB evolves, studies like these play a pivotal role in shaping a more resilient and patient-centric healthcare system.  



For more information, contact Dr. Bill Cook at [email protected] 


Read the report available on the STU website.



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