Singing, especially in a choir, can improve our breathing and keep our heart in good health
January 06, 2019
Recent research asserts that singing every day reduces stress and helps you live longer. Furthermore, music can relieve pain, makes you work harder, and helps you to relax.
To quote Jimi Hendrix: "Music does not lie. If there is something to be changed in this world, then it can only happen through music."
One of the best ways to get the benefits from music is through singing. Research in this field has shown that singing can improve our health, increase happiness, and even lengthen our lives.
Singing is also good for the brain, and it releases endorphins the hormones that produce pleasure, simultaneously with oxytocin, the hormones that decrease stress and anxiety. Oxytocin also reduces feelings of depression and loneliness, making us feel more connected to the world, which is precisely why singing with other people makes us feel even better!
A study conducted by scientists at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden has shown that people who sing together become so connected that they end up having synchronized heartbeats.
Singing also requires a deep concentration on breathing, which acts on important muscle groups in the upper body and is, therefore, excellent for both lung and cardiovascular health.
Björn Vickhoff, the researcher who coordinated the study team, said: "Singing is a form of regular and controlled breathing, as the exhalation takes place while singing the lyrics of the song and the inspiration takes place between them. It gives you more or less the same effect as yoga breathing (pranayama). Singing helps you relax and there are indications that tell us that it provides a benefit to the heart. Therefore, one could argue that singing is better than doing yoga!"
Research has also shown that singing produces low levels of cortisol, which reduces stress and improves our immune system.
Finally, a joint study by Harvard and Yale universities in 2008 found that singing increases life expectancy.
So what are we waiting for? Let's start singing!