Mindfulness and health


Sir, – There are few matters more important than our mental health, and accurate information on it is crucial for good decision making. In describing “overwhelming research” on the benefits of “mindfulness in a mental health context”, a letter writer implies that the benefits of this approach are well-established and clear (Letters, July 13th). A large randomised study, the Prevent trial, published in the Lancet in 2015, found no benefit of mindfulness based cognitive therapy over conventional treatment in preventing recurrent depression. Also, both approaches had similar rates of adverse events and death. The Cochrane library, a reference source in evidence-based medicine, cites this as the major study on the topic. While your letter writer’s own experiences are to be celebrated, across the population this approach probably offers little, if anything, more than standard care. – Yours, etc,


Kinsale, Co Cork.