Effects of low-dose mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR-ld) on working adults

Health Educ Behav. 2009 Jun;36(3):601-14. doi: 10.1177/1090198108317627. Epub 2008 May 9.


Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSR) has produced behavioral, psychological, and physiological benefits, but these programs typically require a substantial time commitment from the participants. This study assessed the effects of a shortened (low-dose [ld]) work-site MBSR intervention (MBSR-ld) on indicators of stress in healthy working adults to determine if results similar to those obtained in traditional MBSR could be demonstrated. Participants were randomized into MBSR-ld and wait-list control groups. Self-reported perceived stress, sleep quality, and mindfulness were measured at the beginning and end of the 6-week intervention. Salivary cortisol was assessed weekly. Significant reductions in perceived stress (p = .0025) and increases in mindfulness (p = .0149) were obtained for only the MBSR-ld group (n = 22). Scores on the global measure of sleep improved for the MBSR-ld group (p = .0018) as well as for the control group (p = .0072; n = 20). Implications and future research are discussed.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hydrocortisone / analysis
  • Male
  • Meditation / psychology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Occupational Exposure
  • Saliva / chemistry
  • Stress, Psychological / therapy*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Young Adult


  • Hydrocortisone