The physiological and psychological effects of compassion and anger

Author: Rein G//Atkinson M//McCraty R
Conference/Journal: Journal of Advancement in Medicine
Date published: 1995
Other: Volume ID: 8 , Issue ID: 2 , Pages: 87-105 , Word Count: 129

Salivary iga, heart rate and mood were measured in thirty individuals before and after experiencing care or anger. Two methods of inducing the emotional states were compared: self-induction and external induction via video tapes. Anger produced a significant increase in total mood disturbance and heart rate, but not in S-iga levels. Positive emotions, on the other hand, produced a significant increase in S-iga levels. Examining the effects over a six hour period we observed that anger, in contrast to care, produced a significant inhibition of S-iga from one to five hours after the emotional experience. Results indicate that self-induction of positive emotional states is more effective at stimulating S-iga levels than previously used external methods. Self-induction techniques may therefore be useful in minimizing the immunosuppressive effects of negative emotions.