An exploration of the immune system’s role in mental health.
The evolution of psychotherapy in the 21st Century demands integration. Instead of choosing from the blizzard of modalities and schools of the past, therapists must move toward finding common denominators among them. Similarly, today’s psychotherapy necessitates the integration of the mind and body, not the past practice of compartmentalization of mental health and physical health.
This book contributes to the sea change in how we conceptualize mental health problems and their solutions. Mind-Brain-Gene describes the feedback loops between the multiple systems contributing to the emergence of the mind and the experience of the self. It explains how our mental operating networks “self”-organize, drawing from and modifying our memory systems to establish and maintain mental health.
Synthesizing research in psychoneuroimmunology and epigenetics with interpersonal neurobiology and research on integrated psychotherapeutic approaches, John Arden explores how insecure attachment, deprivation, child abuse, and trauma contribute to anxiety disorders and depression to produce epigenetic affects. To help people suffering from anxiety and depression, it is necessary to make sense of the multidirectional feedback loops between the stress systems and the dysregulation of the immune system that lead to those conditions.
Successful psychotherapy modifies the feedback loops among the self-maintenance systems. Through the orchestration of the mental operating networks, psychotherapy promotes the re-regulation of immune system functions, stress systems, nutrition, microbiome (gut bacteria), sleep, physical inactivity, affect regulation, and cognition. This book makes a strong case for healthcare and psychotherapy to be combined—together they can revolutionize the way we conceive of, and attain, optimal health in the 21st Century.
Reviews and Endorsements:
“Mind-Brain-Gene is a classic in the making, a tour de force that bridges mental and physical health in a fresh and compelling integration. Bringing together the latest advances in attachment theory, trauma, neuroscience, epigenetics, human development, and mind training, John Arden presents a powerful model of transformative psychotherapy. Detailed, while accessible and fascinating, this book will upgrade your operating system as a human being and also as a therapist. I simply couldn’t put it down. ” — Joan Borysenko, Ph.D., New York Times bestselling author of Minding the Body, Mending the Mind
“Kudos to John Arden for providing an integrative approach to the diverse fields of genetics, neuroscience and psychotherapy. This book is filled with scholarship, practical self-care clinical interventions and hope. It will challenge both the ways you view psychopathology and behavior change.” — Donald Meichenbaum, Ph.D., Research Director of the Melissa Institute for Violence Prevention, Miami
“This book provides a quantum leap into understanding how the interactions of brain, mind, and body, in an ever-changing environment, determine the meaning and quality of our existence. The inevitable results of contemplating this mind-altering synthesis is to live life more fully while positively affecting the lives of others. Everyone who cares about mental and physical health owes a huge debt of gratitude to John Arden for this brilliant contribution to the science of well-being.” — Harvey Milkman, PhD, Professor Emeritus, Metropolitan State University of Denver, author of Craving for Ecstasy and Natural Highs
“The discovery of interactions between the mind, brain and our genes is constantly being developed. It is critical for health professionals to have a complete overview of the current research within this field. John Arden’s book is an excellent source of scientific summaries and therapeutic implications. It leads towards the psychotherapy of the 21st Century.” — Anna Leybina, PhD, Moscow State University
“John Arden has cast a huge net, drawing in all that is fascinating and wonderful about being human. From neuroscience to genetics to psychoneuroimmunology, Arden builds a grand picture of who we are and who we can be. He shows how systemic dynamics create positive feedback loops to enhance and improve, but also the damaging effect of negative feedback. If you want to know more about the myriad of elements that make up our brain-body, then read this book!” — Richard Hill, Director, The Mindscience Institute, Managing Editor, The Neuropsychotherapist
“John Arden has very creatively in simple language represented the complex multi-directional causal relationships that explain the vast field of psychoneuroimmunology and epigentics along with cognitive dynamics that provide an integrated psychotherapy approach. the simple language of the book makes it easy to comprehend and apply the information in the field of therapy. Each student of health psychology and practitioners of psychotherapy must read this book to get this holistic perspective.” — Dr. Sanjeev Sahni, India
“The youth and adults today are stressed that affects their psychological health. John Arden's books explains very well the complex interconnections between body (neurological and immunology) and mind (psychological). The book is a must read for psychotherapists to understand the biological, psychological and social causal relationships that actually make an individual who he or she is.” — Dr. Mohita Junnarkar, India
The evolution of psychotherapy points toward integration, and this book leads the way. — Bill O’Hanlon, author of Do One Thing Different
This brilliant elaboration of affective neurobiology amalgamates state-of-the-art research on issues concerning the mind, the body, social interaction, and gene expression. It provides novel perspectives that can be used by people to revitalize their health and improve their lives. Clearly written. Easy to understand. — Jeffrey K. Zeig, PhD, Founder and Director of the Milton H. Erickson Foundation
About the Author:
John B. Arden, PhD, ABPP, is author of fourteen other books, most of which integrate neuroscience with psychotherapy. He lives in Santa Fe, New Mexico.