Thanks to my friend Mark Eddison, PhD for the title above. I have posted the original one from the Economist below but it’s terrible… IMO.

FYI the article (which is good) is about research that shows how the vagus nerve and high vagal tone is involved in a feedback loop that increases positive feelings (and this is increased in meditators).

Psychosomatic medicine: Think yourself well | The Economist


What particularly interested Dr Fredrickson and Dr Kok was recent work that showed something else about the vagal-tone index: people with high tone are better than those with low at stopping bad feelings getting overblown. They also show more positive emotions in general. This may provide the missing link between emotional well-being and physical health. In particular, the two researchers found, during a preliminary study they carried out in 2010, that the vagal-tone values of those who experience positive emotions over a period of time go up. This left them wondering whether positive emotions and vagal tone drive one another in a virtuous spiral. They therefore conducted an experiment on 65 of the university’s staff, to try to find out.Dr Fredrickson and Dr Kok discovered that vagal tone increased significantly in people who meditated, and hardly at all in those who did not. Among meditators, those who started the experiment with the highest vagal-tone scores reported the biggest increases in positive emotions. Meditators who started with particularly low scores showed virtually no such boost.

Read the whole article here: Psychosomatic medicine: Think yourself well | The Economist.