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Sweet Serenade: Music as Medicine

Music Heart Health Medicine

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A simple strategy–listening to music for 30 minutes a day–can lower post-heart attack anxiety and significantly reduce future cardiac risks, reports a new study from the University of Belgrade School of Medicine, in Serbia, presented at the American College of Cardiology Annual Scientific Session and World Congress of Cardiology. The researchers recruited 350 patients diagnosed with heart attacks and early post-infarction angina at a medical center. Half were randomly assigned to receive standard treatment while half were assigned to regular music sessions in addition to standard treatment. In a follow-up seven years later, the patients with music therapy on average had anxiety scores one-third lower than those on standard treatment and reported lower angina symptoms by about one-quarter. They also had an 18 percent reduction in the rate of heart failure; a 23 percent lower rate of subsequent heart attack; a 20 percent lower rate of needing coronary artery bypass graft surgery; and a 16 percent lower rate of cardiac death.
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Healthy Ways To Spend Time At Home
Global Brief: Natural Thinking Spending Time in Nature Increases Cognitive Performance
More of our time is spent indoors than ever before. One of the ways by which nature may improve cognitive function (i.e. the acquisition of and goal-oriented use of knowledge) is by improving memory formation and recall, specifically that of short-term or working memory, and goal-oriented or directed attention; the kind that requires focused effort. By comparing and contrasting 13 studies, a team of researchers has shed light on this complex interaction in research published in Frontiers in Psychology. The studies used the backwards digit span task, which requires participants to invert a series of numbers and repeat them back. All demonstrated significantly improved cognition in nature as compared to urban environments. The benefits of studies like this are two-fold: not only are we learning more about how the brain interacts with its environment, but also how to leverage this interaction to lead healthier, more productive and happier lives.
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