SUMMER SCIENCE FRIDAY: THE ARTICLE “MUSIC AND HEART HEALTH” by Julie Corliss for Harvard Health Publishing informs many of something we already know: music is a mood booster if we are listening to the specific genre we enjoy.
Listening to what we dislike is not. Being forced to endure canned elevator-music is almost a metaphor for torture these days; it’s a cliché employed by advertisements and shows to signal a “boring” mood or unemotional artificial environment.
Corliss’ short piece highlights the cardiovascular benefits of listening to music. Maybe you have heard or known of them and are in the process of tuning out right now or clicking to another screen. But stop for just a moment and focus on the list the Executive Editor of the Harvard Health Letter provided:
These are powerful effects! If a health drink promised to deliver them the lines of potential purchasers would extend around city blocks to buy it. Music is a much simpler therapy than a drug or tonic, with no real downside. Okay, it can be expensive to own listening devices and complicated to download music. However, most of us already own a mobile phone on which music can be played and downloads can be accomplished with the help of friends and family.
Each single selection is usually less than $1.50 to purchase. By comparison, a cup of brewed coffee bought outside of home is as expensive or more so. This excuse won’t stand up in a ‘court of healthy living’; there are ways to trim costs, avenues to obtain free music. I’m not qualified to enlighten anyone on this topic; it’s a struggle to manage my own small library, especially when faced with hardware or software changes that arise periodically. But it is worth any difficulty, given the cardiovascular benefits.
What if you don’t know the kind of music that speaks to you emotionally? Finding music that suits you and your heart is like finding a form of exercise that is enjoyable that will allow perseverance in a training plan. It is a matter of trial and error, listening to samples and asking people with similar tastes for advice. Movies and shows are sources of amazing music. Keep your ears tuned when you watch both big and little screens. Scan car radio stations when stuck in traffic. Check out free online radio and music streaming services like iHeartRadio, Spotify, and Pandora.
As confessed earlier, I’m a rookie in the entire area of music. Maybe that’s why this article attracted my attention. I suspect it could be a wise health move to include music in more daily activities, and Corliss’ piece may be the needed nudge to move forward.
Like the lyrics of the movie “Titanic” love theme promises, perhaps “my heart will go on and on” if I treat it to more music that is emotionally uplifting.
RUN & MOVE HAPPY!
BRIDGE TO PHYSICAL SELF
Running, walking, and fitness activities enable us to experience our physical selves in a world mostly accessed through use of fingers on a mobile device.
EARNED RUNS is edited and authored by me, runner and founder. I began participating in road races before 5Ks were common. I've been a dietitian, practiced and taught clinical pathology, and been involved with research that utilized pathology. I am fascinated with understanding the origins of disease as well as health.
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