If you spend too much time listening to music, well now you have a great excuse to keep up the habit. Regardless of your preferred genre, music has health benefits, and there’s lots of research out there to back this up. Here is an infographic highlighting some of the major health benefits you get when you turn on the music:

health benefits infographic
See full-size infographic here

1. Improves your brain

Studies have even shown that listening to music during a test allowed those taking the test to complete more questions in the time given.

Uplifting concertos from Vivaldi’€™s The Four Seasons can boost mental alertness, according to research from Northumbria University in the United Kingdom. When young adults were given a task that required intense concentration, they did better while listening to the bright €œ”Spring”€ concerto versus the slower and more somber “€œAutumn”€ one.

iStock/ Thinkstock
iStock/ Thinkstock

…The more years middle-aged and older adults spent playing musical instruments as children, the faster their brains responded to speech sounds during an experiment, according to a study in the Journal of Neuroscience. A slower response could be indicative of how ably adults interpret speech.

“€œBeing a millisecond faster may not seem like much, but the brain is very sensitive to timing. A millisecond compounded over millions of neurons can make a real difference in the lives of older adults,” Michael Kilgard, a University of Texas at Dallas brain researcher who was not involved in the study, commented in a press release. Via Reader’s Digest

2. Reduces stress

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Listening to music has been compared to taking a massage – they have the same effect on the body. Another interesting fact is that listening to mellow music has been found to help drivers calm down – a simple yet effective solution if you’re prone to road rage. And if you like to spoil yourself with live music, well you now have a good excuse since it’s more effective than recorded music at reducing anxiety.

Calming music can decrease blood pressure, steady the heart rate, and ease stress. Research has shown that music can reduce stress for patients undergoing surgeries and colonoscopies, for children undergoing medical procedures, and for patients with coronary heart disease. Via Huffington Post

3. Reduces pain

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Listening to music also reduces pain.

A growing amount of evidence also suggests that clinicians can use the power of music to help people recover from surgery and other medical procedures.

Studies have found that listening to music before surgery can reduce anxiety, and may also reduce the need for sedatives. Listening to music after surgery, and even during, may ease pain and the need for pain meds. Hospitals seem to be taking notice. Via CNN

For example, surgery patients at the Cleveland Clinic that listened to recorded music saw a four-time decrease in post-surgical pain. Music has also been shown to reduce the amount of anesthesia needed during operations. Via Huffington Post

4. Work out harder

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If you hit the gym sporadically and haven’t been able to become consistent about working out, maybe it’s because you keep forgetting to take your favorite music with you. Cueing up your favorite tunes while exercising encourages the production of nitric oxide, a gas helps with blood vessel dilation and enhances your flexibility.

Working out while listening to music will not only make you work harder, but you will feel less tired. This means you not only get to enjoy your workouts, but you’ll probably start seeing the results of your hard work faster. What more do you need to keep you going?

Maybe the fact that you eat less and enjoy your food more while listening to music!

5. Faster recovery

Listening to music also speeds up your recovery – whether after a workout session or if you’re recovering from an illness.

In her book The Power of Music, author Elena Mannes shares the story of a stroke patient who has lost the ability to speak. After struggling to re-learn normal speech patterns, the patient makes a breakthrough by singing her words rather than saying them. This approach is known as melodic intonation therapy and it engages the right side of the brain more than normal speech. As a result, this different section of the brain can stand in as a replacement for the normal language area and be used to communicate through song. Via Huffington Post

6. Stronger heart

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Music is good for your heart, so your chances of living longer increase. Additionally, the emotions that you experience while listening to music have a positive effect on your blood vessel function. You feel happier as a result of the music, which in turn increases your blood flow.

Music therapy has also been used successful in helping patients of, among other issues, heart problems. It is considered a holistic health approach because it incorporates a variety of physical and mental processes.

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Top 10 Amazing Proven Health Benefits of Music — TopTenzNet

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