This could be just about the best scientific discovery ever: dance music could save your life.
Scientists have found that listening to just 50 minutes of uplifting dance music not only increases the levels of antibodies in your body, but it decreases your levels of stress hormones, which can weaken the immune system.
Volunteers who played a percussion instrument along with the music also benefited from the immune boost.
No word on the dudes that stood around in corners getting wasted and shoe gazing.
Nurse Techno Is Here To Give You Your Medicine
It gets even better, though. The researchers, from Sussex University and the Max Planck Institute in Leipzig, Germany, say their findings demonstrate how dance music could be used to help aid patients’ recovery while in hospital.
They found that playing music while a patient was under anesthetic during an operation helped to lower the levels of harmful stress hormones.
“We think the pleasant state that can be induced by music leads to special physiological changes which eventually lead to stress reduction or direct immune enhancement,” said Dr Ronny Enk, a neurocognition expert at the Max Planck Institute. “Stress reduction probably plays an important role, but the stress reducing effect seems to be different for various types of music.”
The researchers tested 300 people, asking them to listen to 50 minutes of happy, joyful dance music or to a random collection of tones (the stuff I usually listen to).
- People that listened to dance music had significantly lower levels of cortisol, the stress hormone, compared to a control group.
- After listening, the levels of the antibody immunoglobin A, the immune system’s first line of defense, were heightened.
“Listening to music in hospitals might show benefits for patients and may for example lead to shorter recovery times,” added Enk.
So next time you’re sick, remember that a dose of dance music could do your body some good.
Image: Simon Davison