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6 Fun Ways to Help Your Heart

  • August 1, 2011
  • 5:01 pm
  • 4 of 7

Crank the tunes

Music is a perfect tool for loosening your arteries. Listening to 30 minutes a day of “rhythmically homogeneous” music (that is, anything with a steady beat), combined with breathing exercises, can lower your systolic blood pressure by more than 4 points after 3 months, according to a 2008 Italian study. Breathing in and out with an inhale/exhale ratio of 1 to 2 while listening to slow, steady music relaxes your vessels, says Randall Zusman, M.D., director of the hypertension division at the Massachusetts General Hospital heart center.

The key is to cue up the right type of music, says Michael Miller, M.D., who coauthored a different music study in 2008. That study found that when people relaxed and breathed steadily while listening to music they found pleasurable—whether it was Mozart or Maroon 5—the linings of their blood vessels dilated by 26 percent. Those who listened to music that made them anxious experienced a 6 percent narrowing of their blood vessels. It’s your emotional connection with the music that may be key to a lower BP, Dr. Miller says.

  • 4 of 7

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Rodale

Rodale.com is a new original source for daily news, information, and advice on personal and environmental health. Rodale.com focuses on “Where Health Meets Green” topics, providing daily news stories and breaking news along with easy-to-follow, high-impact tips and advice.

131 comments

+ add your own
4:08PM PDT on May 4, 2013

Thanks

1:15PM PDT on May 4, 2013

thanks

1:14PM PDT on May 4, 2013

thanks

7:05AM PDT on Apr 26, 2013

Lifestyle counts

6:25AM PDT on Oct 2, 2011

I will pass on the advice! Thank you!

6:23AM PDT on Oct 2, 2011

I will pass on the advice! Thank you!

9:54PM PDT on Sep 11, 2011

Thanks, I think I can fit in all of these!

11:27AM PDT on Aug 30, 2011

Thanks

11:51AM PDT on Aug 18, 2011

Thanks for the tips

4:06PM PDT on Aug 11, 2011

THANKS.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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Thanks for the article. I just wished I had a garden.

sounds good, thanks for sharing

Always nice to see things that "everybody knows" get some bona fide scientific backing... I just hop…

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