Science Confirms Listening to Live Music is an Amazing Stress Reducer

If you have been feeling a bit stressed out, science recommends that you try going out to a concert to make you feel better.

Researchers from the Centre for Performance Science, a partnership between the Royal College of Music and Imperial College London, have recently discovered that the stress hormone cortisol is reduced when a person is exposed to a live music performance, reported The Telegraph.

Cortisol is produced by the body when under stress. While beneficial in small doses as it improves alertness and well-being, highly elevated levels of it may lead to complications such as heart disease, diabetes, hypertension and impotence.

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The study tested the cortisol and cortisone levels in the saliva of 117 volunteers before and after seeing two live musical performances from composer Eric Whitacre.

The subjects were a mixed group composed of avid concert-goers, musicians and others who were not musically-inclined at all.

Results revealed that levels of the stress hormone were reduced across-the-board in the second samples.

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Previous laboratory-based tests done by the same group also found reductions in cortisol levels. This is, however, the first time such results were achieved in a live setting.

“This is the first preliminary evidence that attending a cultural event can have an impact on endocrine activity,” said lead researcher Daisy Fancourt.

She also noted that the results were universal across all demographics: age, musical experience, and familiarity with the music being played.

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Since the study was done at concerts with easy listening tunes, more research will be done to see if the results will be the same for other genres.

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