Songs that make our hearts soar can make them stronger too, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday. They found that when people listened to their favorite music, their blood vessels dilated in much the same way as when laughing or taking blood medications.
“We have a pretty impressive effect,” said Dr. Michael Miller, director of preventive cardiology at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore.
“Blood vessel diameter improved,” he said in a telephone interview. “The vessel opened up pretty significantly. You can see the vessels opening up with other activities such as exercise.” A similar effect is seen with drugs such as statins and ACE inhibitors.
They spent half an hour listening to the recordings and half an hour listening to music they said made them feel anxious while the researchers did ultrasound tests designed to show blood vessel function.