Music for healthy heart

By  , Jagran Cityplus
Jan 20, 2013

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Music for healthy heartFamous playwright Shakespeare once said, "If music be the food of love; play on." Music touches our souls in strange ways. Listening to music does wonder to alleviate stress. Listen to the music that you feel comfortable. Sitting down and forcing yourself to listen to relaxation music that you don't like may create stress, not alleviate it. Music is a significant mood-changer and reliever of stress, working on many levels at once. Picture this, you are passing by an operation theatre and hear the sound of Indian raga droning from the operation theatre. As the theatre doors swung open, you see a smiling surgeon coming out after a strenuous surgery. You think there is something amiss. Take a chill pill! Music is the 'in' thing in new age hospitals.


Stress has today become one of the major contributing factors for cardiovascular diseases and other lifestyle diseases which are striking people at a very young age. Life today is entangled with continuous stress and anxiety. People are juggling so many roles and have no time to unwind and release their stress. When we hear music our nerves get into relaxing mode, everyday worries and concerns disappear and an inner journey begins. Researches over the years have revealed that 'Music' has a profound effect on our body and psyche. It has been found out that music can heal, relax the sore body, calm stressed muscles, improve athletic performance and now can also treat the troubled heart. It's becoming quite popular abroad for music to be played in operating rooms during surgery. While some doctors believe that it relieves their tension and relaxes them for the surgery, studies have shown that this practice can also benefit the patients. Blood pressure which normally rises during a surgical procedure can be minimized by listening to music. Recovery time for patients also gets reduced. 


A study that was conducted by University of Pavia and Oxford had found out that effects of slow rhythms and pauses could be helpful in preventing or treating heart disease and stroke. Scientists studied the breathing and circulation in 24 young men and women, before and while they listened to short excerpts of music. During the study, these men and women had their breathing rates, blood pressure and other heart and respiratory indexes monitored while they were listening to a variety of different types of music.


The patients listened to: raga (Indian classical music), Beethovens ninth symphony (slow classical), rap (the Red Hot Chili Peppers), Vivaldi (fast classical), techno (fast electronic dance music), and Anton Webern (slow 12 tone music). It was found that music with the faster tempo and more complex rhythms increased circulation in the volunteers whereas slower music had the opposite effect. The Indian raga prompted the greatest fall in heart rate. Just as the human body requires food to nurture itself, similar way music nurtures our soul, as we forget everything and concentrate on the sound.So let your heart sing…


Expert Dr. Atul Mathur (Director Interventional Cardiology)Escorts Heart Institute and Research Centre, New Delhi 

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