Title: Effects of Meditation and Music-Listening on Blood Biomarkers of Cellular Aging and Alzheimer’s Disease in Adults with Subjective Cognitive Decline: An Exploratory Randomized Clinical Trial.
Published November 2018
Innes, Kim E.; Selfe, Terry Kit; Brundage, Kathleen; Montgomery, Caitlin; Wen, Sijin; Kandati, Sahiti; Bowles, Hannah; Khalsa, Dharma Singh; Huysmans, Zenzi
Conclusion: Practice of simple mind-body therapies may alter plasma Aß levels, TL, and TA. Biomarker increases were associated with improvements in cognitive function, sleep, mood, and Quality Of Life, suggesting potential functional relationships.
Alzheimer’s & Dementia: The Journal of the Alzheimer’s Association
Title: Dietary changes and cognition over 2 years within a multidomain intervention trial—The Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability (FINGER)
Published November 2018
Jenni Lehtisalo, Esko Levälahti, Jaana Lindström, Tuomo Hänninen, Teemu Paajanen, Markku Peltonen, Riitta Antikainen, Tiina Laatikainen, Timo Strandberg, Hilkka Soininen, Jaakko Tuomilehto, Miia Kivipelto, Tiia Ngandu
Conclusion: We conclude that improvements in diet in old age appear beneficial especially for executive function. The clear protective effect of healthy baseline diet for the subsequent changes in cognition underlines the importance of healthy diet throughout life. Other studies clarifying the role of both long-term diet and dietary changes in older age would be of utmost importance.
Title: The Effect of a 2-Year Intervention Consisting of Diet, Physical Exercise, Cognitive Training, and Monitoring of Vascular Risk on Chronic Morbidity—the FINGER Randomized Controlled Trial.
Published April 2018
Alessandra Marengoni, MD, PhD, Laura Fratiglioni, MD, PhD, Riitta Antikainen, MD, PhD, Tiina Laatikainen, MD, PhD, Jenni Lehtisalo, MSc, Markku Peltonen, MD, PhD, Hilkka Soininen, MD, PhD, Timo Strandberg, MD, PhD, Jaakko Tuomilehto, MD, PhD, Miia Kivipelto, MD, PhD, Tiia Ngandu, MD, PhD
Conclusion: Findings from this randomized controlled trial suggest that a multidomain intervention could reduce the risk of developing new chronic diseases in older people.
Alzheimer’s and Dementia
Title: Multidomain lifestyle intervention benefits a large elderly population at risk for cognitive decline and dementia regardless of baseline characteristics: The FINGER trial
Published March 2018
Rosenberg A., Ngandu T., Rusanen M., Antikainen R., Bäckman L., Havulinna S., Hänninen T., Laatikainen T., Lehtisalo J., Levälahti E., Lindström J., Paajanen T., Peltonen M., Soininen H., Stigsdotter-Neely A., Strandberg T., Tuomilehto J., Solomon A., Kivipelto M.
Conclusion: The FINGER intervention was beneficial regardless of participants’ characteristics and can thus be implemented in a large elderly population at increased risk for dementia.
Title: Effect of the Apolipoprotein E Genotype on Cognitive Change During a Multidomain Lifestyle Intervention. A Subgroup Analysis of a Randomized Clinical Trial.
Published January 2018
Alina Solomon, MD, PhD; Heidi Turunen, BM; Tiia Ngandu, MD, PhD; Markku Peltonen, PhD; Esko Levälahti, MSc; Seppo Helisalmi, PhD; Riitta Antikainen, MD, PhD5; Lars Bäckman, PhD; Tuomo Hänninen, PhD; Antti Jula, MD, PhD; Tiina Laatikainen, MD, PhD; Jenni Lehtisalo, MSc; Jaana Lindström, PhD; Teemu Paajanen, MA, Psy; Satu Pajala, PhD; Anna Stigsdotter-Neely, PhD; Timo Strandberg, MD, PhD; Jaakko Tuomilehto, MD, PhD; Hilkka Soininen, MD, PhD; Miia Kivipelto, MD, PhD.
Conclusion: Healthy lifestyle changes may be beneficial for cognition in older at-risk individuals even in the presence of APOE-related genetic susceptibility to dementia. Whether such benefits are more pronounced in APOE e4 carriers compared with noncarriers should be further investigated. The findings also emphasize the importance of early prevention strategies that target multiple modifiable risk factors simultaneously.
Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Title: Baseline Telomere Length and Effects of a Multidomain Lifestyle Intervention on Cognition: The FINGER Randomized Controlled Trial.
Published 14 August 2017
Sindi S., Ngandu T., Hovatta I.,Kåreholt I., Antikainen R., Hänninen T., Levälahti E., Laatikainen T., Lindström J., Paajanen T., Peltonen M., Khalsa DS., Wolozin B., Strandberg T., Tuomilehto J., Soininen H., Kivipelto M., Solomon A., FINGER study group.
Conclusion: Baseline LTL modified the effects of a 2-year multidomain lifestyle intervention on changes in cognitive performance. The cognitive benefits of the FINGER intervention were more pronounced in people with shorter baseline LTL, particularly for executive functioning. Considering that short LTL has been associated with poor cognitive performance and dementia, it is very promising that the multidomain lifestyle intervention was especially beneficial among individuals with higher risk.
Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Title: Meditation and Music Improve Memory and Cognitive Function in Adults with Subjective Cognitive Decline: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial.
Published 3 February 2017
Innes, Kim E., Selfe, Terry Kita, Khalsa, Dharma Singh, Kandati, Sahitia.
Conclusion: Findings of this preliminary randomized controlled trial suggest practice of meditation or ML can significantly enhance both subjective memory function and objective cognitive performance in adults with SCD, and may offer promise for improving outcomes in this population.
Title: A Randomized Controlled Trial of Kundalini Yoga in Mild Cognitive Impairment
Published January 2017
Harris A. Eyre, Prabha Siddarth, Bianca Acevedo, Kathleen Van Dyk, Pattharee Paholpak, Linda Ercoli, Natalie St. Cyr, Hongyu Yang, Dharma S. Khalsa and Helen Lavretsky. International Psychogeriatrics
Conclusion: The Kundalini Yoga group showed short- and long-term improvements in executive functioning as compared to Memory Enhancement Training (MET), and broader effects on depressed mood and resilience. This observation should be con?rmed in future clinical trials of yoga intervention for treatment and prevention of cognitive decline.
Current Behavioral Neuroscience Reports
Title: The Neural Mechanisms of Meditative Practices: Novel Approaches for Healthy Aging.
Epub 18 October 2016
Acevedo, BP, Pospos, S, Lavretsky, H. Current Behavioral Neuroscience Reports. 2016;3(4):328-339. DOI: 10.1007/s40473-016-0098-x
Conclusion: This review suggests that mind-body practices can target different brain systems that are involved in the regulation of attention, emotional control, mood, and executive cognition that can be used to treat or prevent mood and cognitive disorders of aging, such as depression and caregiver stress, or serve as “brain fitness” exercise. Benefits may include improving brain functional connectivity in brain systems that generally degenerate with Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and other aging-related diseases.
Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience
Title: Neurochemical and Neuroanatomical Plasticity Following Memory Training and Yoga Interventions in Older Adults with Mild Cognitive Impairment
Published 21 November 2016
Hongyu Yang, Amber M. Leaver, Prabha Siddarth Pattharee Paholpak, Linda Ercoli, Natalie M. St. Cyr, Harris A. Eyre, Katherine L. Narr, Dharma S. Khalsa and Helen Lavretsky. Frontiers in Aging Neuroscience.
Conclusion: Memory training over 3 months is associated with decreased choline levels in bilateral hippocampus and increased gray-matter volume in dACC, suggesting that behavioral interventions like MET may ameliorate markers of brain aging. These effects are somewhat modest, and would benefit from independent validation in larger samples and perhaps over longer-duration interventions. However, these findings suggest that engaging in cognitive activities and mind-body practices may affect the brain in positive ways, and may be combined as part of a multi-faceted approach to encourage healthy aging.
Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Title: Changes in Neural Connectivity and Memory Following a Yoga Intervention for Older Adults: A Pilot Study
Published in May 2016
Eyre, Harris A., Acevedo, Bianca. Yang, Hongyu, Siddarth, Prabha, Van Dyk, Kathleen, Ercoli, Linda, Leaver, Amber M., Cyr, Natalie St., Narr, Katherine, Baune, Bernhard T., Khalsa, Dharma S., Lavretsky, Helen. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, vol. 52, no. 2, pp. 673-684, 2016
Conclusion: Yoga may be as effective as MET in improving functional connectivity in relation to verbal memory performance. These findings should be confirmed in larger prospective studies.
Complementary Therapies in Medicine
Title: A randomized controlled trial of two simple mind-body programs,
Kirtan Kriya meditation and music listening, for adults with subjective
cognitive decline: Feasibility and acceptability
Available online 5 March 2016
Kim E. Innes, Terry Kit Selfe, Dharma Singh Khalsa, Sahiti Kandati. Complementary Therapies in Medicine, 26 (2016) 98–107
Conclusion: Findings of this RCT of a beginner meditation practice and a simple ML program suggest that both programs were well accepted and the practices are feasible in adults with early memory loss.
Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Title: Effects of Meditation versus Music Listening on Perceived Stress, Mood, Sleep, and Quality of Life in Adults with Early Memory Loss: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial.
Published online 8 April 2016
Kim Innes, Terry Kit Selfe, Dharma Singh Khalsa, Sahitia Kandati, Journal: Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, vol. Preprint, no. Preprint, pp. 1-22, 2016
Conclusion: Findings suggest that practice of a simple meditation or ML program may improve stress, mood, well-being, sleep, and QOL in adults with SCD, with benefits sustained at 6 months and gains that were particularly pronounced in the KK group.
Alternative and Complementary Therapies
Title: Integrative Therapies Essential for Addressing the Alzheimer’s Crisis: Foundation Awards $200,000 Grant to the University of New Mexico’s Section of Integrative Medicine
Moderator:, Hart Jane. Contributors:, Khalsa Dharma Singh, Prasad Arti, and Knoefel Janice.
Published Online Ahead of Print: January 20, 2016
February 2016, 22(1): 33-36. doi:10.1089/act.2015.29040.kpk.
< style="color: 000000;"b>Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Title: Stress, Meditation, and Alzheimer’s Disease Prevention: Where the Evidence Stands
Dharma Singh Khalsa. Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease 48 (2015) 1-12 doi: 10.3233/JAD-142766
Published in July 2015
To read the entire article http://content.iospress.com/articles/journal-of-alzheimers-disease/jad142766
Conclusion: Research suggests that KK enhances memory and reduces AD risk by improving sleep, decreasing depression, increasing well-being, down regulating inflammatory genes, upregulating immune system genes, improving insulin and glucose metabolism, and increasing telomerase by 43%; the largest ever recorded.
Title: A 2 year multidomain intervention of diet, exercise, cognitive training, and vascular risk monitoring versus control to prevent cognitive decline in at-risk elderly people (FINGER): a randomised controlled trial
Tiia Ngandu, Jenni Lehtisalo, Alina Solomon, Miia Kivipelto, et al.
Published online at thelancet.com on March 12, 2015
Conclusion: Findings from this large, long-term, randomised controlled trial suggest that a multidomain intervention could improve or maintain cognitive functioning in at-risk elderly people from the general population.
Journal of Neuroengineering and Rehabilitation
Title: Interactive balance training integrating sensor-based visual feedback of movement performance: a pilot study in older adults
Michael Schwenk, Gurtej S Grewal, Bahareh Honarvar, Stefanie Schwenk, Jane Mohler, Dharma S Khalsa and Bijan Najafi. Journal of NeuroEngineering and Rehabilitation 2014, 11:164 doi:10.1186/1743-0003-11-164
Published: 13 December 2014
Conclusion: Results of this proof-of-concept study suggest that older adults at risk of falling can benefit from the balance training program. Study findings may help to inform future exercise interventions integrating wearable sensors for guided game-based training in home- and community environments. Future studies should evaluate the added value of the proposed sensor-based training paradigm compared to traditional balance training programs and commercial exergames.
Advances in Mind Body Medicine
Title: The Pillars of Alzheimer’s Prevention
Khalsa, DS, Gustafson, C.
Published Summer 2014
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience
Title: Effect of Meditation on Cognitive Functions in Context of Aging and Neurodegenerative Diseases
Rafal Marciniak, Katerina Sheardova, Pavla Cermáková, Daniel Hudecek, Rastislav Šumec and Jakub Hort
Frontiers in Behavioral Neuroscience. 2014
Published 27 January 2014
Conclusion: The results imply a positive effect especially on attention, memory, verbal fluency, and cognitive flexibility. Meditation can represent an appropriate non-pharmacological intervention aiming at the prevention of cognitive decline in the elderly.
Arizona Geriatrics Society Journal
Title: Kirtan Kriya Yoga Meditation: A New Dimension in Alzheimer’s Prevention
Arizona Geriatrics Society Journal. 2013; 18(2):12-16
Published October 2013
NIH Public Access, Author Manuscript
Title: Stress, Inflammation and Aging
Helen Lavretsky and Paul A. Newhouse.
Published September 1, 2013.
Title: Future directions in Alzheimer’s disease from risk factors to prevention.
Imtiaz B, Tolppanen AM, Kivipelto M, Soininen H. Biochem Pharmacol. 2014 Apr 15;88(4):661-70. doi: 10.1016/j.bcp.2014.01.003. Epub 2014 Jan 10.
Published January 2013
Alzheimer’s & Dementia
Title: The Finnish Geriatric Intervention Study to Prevent Cognitive Impairment and Disability (FINGER): Study design and progress.
Kivipelto M, Solomon A, Ahtiluoto S, Ngandu T, Lehtisalo J, et al. Alzheimers Dement. 2013 Jan 16. pii: S1552-5260(12)02523-X. doi: 10.1016/j.jalz.2012.09.012. [Epub ahead of print] Published in January 2013
Title: A Pilot Study On The Effects Of Meditation On Regional Brain Metabolism In Distressed Dementia Caregivers
Kelsey L Pomykala, Daniel HS Silverman, Cheri L Geist, Patricia Voege, Prabha Siddarth, Nora Nazarian,Natalie M St Cyr, Dharma S Khalsa & Helen Lavretsky Aging Health Aging Health, October 2012, Vol. 8, No. 5, Pages 509-516 , DOI 10.2217/ahe.12.46 (doi:10.2217/ahe.12.46)
Published in October 2012
Conclusion: Meditation practice in distressed caregivers resulted in different patterns of regional cerebral metabolism from relaxation. These pilot results should be replicated in a larger study.
Title: Yogic Meditation Reverses NF-?b And IRF-Related Transcriptome Dynamics In Leukocytes Of Family Dementia Caregivers In A Randomized Controlled Trial
Black DS, Cole SW, Irwin MR, Breen E, St Cyr NM, Nazarian N, Khalsa DS, Lavretsky H. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2012 Jul 13. [Epub ahead of print] Published in July 2012
Conclusion: A brief daily yogic meditation intervention may reverse the pattern of increased NF-?B-related transcription of pro-inflammatory cytokines and decreased IRF1-related transcription of innate antiviral response genes previously observed in healthy individuals confronting a significant life stressor.
International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Title: A Pilot Study of Yogic Meditation for Family Dementia Caregivers with Depressive Symptoms: Effects on Mental Health, Cognition, and Telomerase Activity
Lavretsky H, Epel ES, Siddarth P, Nazarian N, Cyr NS, Khalsa DS, Lin J, Blackburn E, Irwin MR. Int J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2013 Jan;28(1):57-65. doi: 10.1002/gps.3790. Epub 2012 Mar 11.
Published in March 2012
Conclusion: This pilot study found that brief daily meditation practices by family dementia caregivers can lead to improved mental and cognitive functioning and lower levels of depressive symptoms. This improvement is accompanied by an increase in telomerase activity suggesting improvement in stress-induced cellular aging. These results need to be confirmed in a larger sample.
Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine
Title: Effects of An 8-Week Meditation Program on Mood and Anxiety in Patients With Memory Loss
Moss AS, Wintering N, Roggenkamp H, Khalsa DS, Waldman MR, Monti D, Newberg AB. J Altern Complement Med. 2012 Jan;18(1):48-53. doi: 10.1089/acm.2011.0051.
Published in January 2012
Conclusion: An 8-week, 12 minute a day meditation program in patients with memory loss was associated with positive changes in mood, anxiety, and other neuropsychologic parameters, and these changes correlated with changes in CBF. A larger-scale study is needed to confirm these findings and better elucidate mechanisms of change.
Psychiatry Research: Neuroimaging
Title: Cerebral Blood Flow Changes Associated with Different Meditation Practices and Perceived Depth Of Meditation
Wang DJ, Rao H, Korczykowski M, Wintering N, Pluta J, Khalsa DS, Newberg AB. Psychiatry Res. 2011 Jan 30;191(1):60-7. doi: 10.1016/j.pscychresns.2010.09.011. Epub 2010 Dec 8.
Published in December 2010
Conclusion: This study revealed changes in the brain during two different meditation practices in the same individuals and that these changes correlated with the subjective experiences of the practitioners.
Consciousness and Cognition
Title: Cerebral Blood Flow Differences Between Long-Term Meditators and Non-Meditators
Newberg AB, Wintering N, Waldman MR, Amen D, Khalsa DS, Alavi A. Conscious Cogn. 2010 Dec;19(4):899-905. doi: 10.1016/j.concog.2010.05.003. Epub 2010 Jun 8.
Published in May 2010
Conclusion: The study was set to determine if there are differences in baseline brain function of experienced meditators compared to non-meditators. The observed changes associated with long-term meditation appear in structures that underlie the attention network and also those that relate to emotion and autonomic function.
Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease
Title: Meditation Effects on Cognitive Function and Cerebral Blood Flow in Subjects with Memory Loss: A Preliminary Study
Newberg AB, Wintering N, Khalsa DS, Roggenkamp H, Waldman MR. J Alzheimers Dis. 2010;20(2):517-26. doi: 10.3233/JAD-2010-1391.
Published in April 2010
Conclusion: This preliminary study determined if subjects with memory loss problems demonstrate changes in memory and cerebral blood flow (CBF) after a simple 8-week meditation program. The meditation program resulted in significant increases in baseline CBF ratios in the prefrontal, superior frontal, and superior parietal cortices. Scores on neuropsychological tests of verbal fluency, Trails B, and logical memory showed improvements after training.
Nuclear Medicine Communications
Title: Cerebral Blood Flow Changes During Chanting Meditation
Khalsa DS, Amen D, Hanks C, Money N, Newberg A. Nucl Med Commun. 2009 Dec;30(12):956-61. doi: 10.1097/MNM.0b013e32832fa26c.
Published in June 2009
Conclusion: The results offer evidence that this form of meditation practice is associated with changes in brain function in a way that is consistent with earlier studies of related types of meditation as well as with the positive clinical outcomes anecdotally reported by its users.
Journal of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine
Title: Integrated medicine and the prevention and reversal of memory loss.
Khalsa DS. Journal of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine
Published in November 1998
Conclusion: Findings suggest that memory loss is not an inevitable consequence of aging and that Alzheimer’s disease can be prevented and reversed using an integrated medical approach.
Journal of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine
Title: An Alternative Medical Program Is Effective in Patients with Cognitive Decline
Khalsa, DS. Journal of Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine
1997 Vol 3, No. 4, Page 94
Proceedings of the Interstate Postgraduate Medical Association of North America Assembly
Stress-related illness. Where the evidence stands
Khalsa, DS. Interstate Postgraduate Medical Association of North America
1985 Nov 1;78(6):217-21.
The Alzheimer’s Research and Prevention Foundation’s Dr. Khalsa has also contributed to numerous books on Alzheimer’s Disease. See a list on our Book Chapters page.