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Listen to Your Favorite Music to Prevent Heart Disease!

Posted Nov 21 2008 10:17am
Listening to music could be an alternative way to help people with hypertension lowers their blood pressure. This was the findings of a study by the University of Florence in Italy reported at the American Society of Hypertension meeting in New Orleans in May 2008. Although high blood pressure is a risk factor for heart disease, the study did not provide any evidence that linked directly with heart disease.

Recently, a research team at the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine, who was also involved in a 2005 study that noted the cardiovascular benefits of laughter, reported that listening to favorite music could actually help maintain a healthy heart.

Their findings were announced at the 2008 Scientific Sessions of the American Heart Association in New Orleans on November 11, 2008. The researchers claimed that they had shown for the first time the emotions aroused by music enjoyed by the listener could be beneficial to a healthy blood vessel function.

The study, which involved 10 healthy, non-smoking volunteers, had noted highly significant differences both before and after listening to joyful music as well as between joyful and anxious music.

In fact, they found that by allowing these volunteers to listen to music that gave them a sense of joy, their inner-lining tissues of blood vessels would expand, which aided blood flow to increase. Such response matched those found in the 2005 study of laughter.

In order to minimize desensitization of emotions felt by listening to their favorite music, participants were told not to listen to the pieces for a minimum of 2 weeks before the test. The reason behind this was that when they listened to the pieces they really enjoyed, they would get an extra boost of whatever emotion generated.

It was found that after listening to joyful music, the diameter of the average upper arm blood vessel was increased by 26 percent. On the other hand, the diameter was narrowed by 6 percent after listening to music that caused anxiety.

Furthermore, the study also noted that the physiological impact of music might also affect the activity of the ‘feel good’ brain chemicals known as ‘endorphins’.

It is hoped that the findings would inspire people to incorporate ‘listening to favorite music’ as a preventive strategy for heart disease prevention in their daily lives.
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