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Home > Services > Nutrition Services > Classes & Coaching > Emotional Brain Training

Emotional Brain Training

What is Emotional Brain Training (EBT)?

Developed at the University of California, San Francisco’s School of Medicine, EBT is a mind-body intervention that addresses the stress response at the root of most health and wellness issues, including obesity. The program teaches individuals to manage stress and live a healthy lifestyle with techniques based in neuroscientific research. 

The Basic Concepts

EBT is based on four neuroscience concepts: 

  1. How we handle stress depends upon our "wiring" - how our brain has developed neural circuits or networks in response to experiences
  2. This wiring triggers brain states
  3. Brain states of stress become persistent, triggering stress-fueled tendencies and habits, like overeating 
  4. We can simplify our wiring and change our brain states and behaviors
EBT teaches you how to change your brain's automatic reactions, providing:
  • A systematic approach to changing neural networks that favor balance and joy instead of the effects of stress
  • An interruption in the chronic stress response, helping reduce depression and anxiety
  • Skills to improve issues with overeating, over-spending and other stress-related activities 
  • A framework for working with all three parts of your brain's wiring, from the initial impulse or emotion to thoughts and behavior

Getting Started with EBT


First, attend an orientation. We offer a monthly, in-person orientation.  During orientation you’ll learn one to two of the skills from the six-week series. We’ll also share a brief history of the method, information about how to build a joy circuit, usual pattern of a stress circuit,and ways to interrupt and redirect the stress circuit. This group experience will give you the opportunity to decide if this training is right for you, if now is the time and whether you’d prefer to do the training in a group or by yourself.

  • Advance registration is required.
  • The cost is $20 for a 1.25 hour introductory session.
  • You can reserve your spot by calling 434.243.4749. 

The Program

Decide if it is right for you and enroll in an EBT basics class.  for class availability and enrollment.

EBT Basics: Wired for Joy 

This short course meets for one and one-half hours for six weeks. During that time, you'll learn the basics of how to process stress and find a state of balance and well-being. Preventive nutrition and activity for brain fitness are targeted also. This popular short course gives participants a strong basic training in EBT. 


Class tuition: $234 

Workbook fee: $44

Intermediate or Advanced EBT  

If interested in continuing EBT training, you can choose to take the subsequent classes. These six progressive courses can help you acquire, practice and solidify EBT stress-management tools. 

Other Training Options

Individual Training

While we recommend EBT training in a group setting, with the support of a community and a coach, options for self-study or online coaching exist through the EBT Institute. 

EBT vs. Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR)

Many people who complete for the full EBT training have enjoyed and completed the MBSR training as well.

Both EBT and MBSR:

  • Build skills of stress resilience
  • Help you find present moment awareness
  • Are offered at UVA
While these modalities share similarities, their methods do differ. As a public health method, EBT focuses more on working with feelings and thinking to help people manage weight, stress and other stressors. MBSR incorporates mindfulness meditation practices. Find MBSR classes and resources

Sign Up for a Class

If you have questions or would like to register for an orientation session, call 434.243.4749 or

We accept cash, check and credit/debit card. Partial payments are also available.

Make an Appointment

Call us at 434.243.3675

or make an appointment online.