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Yoga Music before Bed to Prevent Heart Attacks

Yoga Music before Bed to Prevent Heart Attacks

Thursday, 30 August, 2018 - 05:30
A yoga studio in New York, August 7, 2009. Reuters
London - Asharq Al-Awsat
Listening to yoga music before bed could prevent deadly heart attacks, new research suggests. Hearing soothing, meditative tunes just before a person nods off increases their heart rate variability, the study found.

According to the Daily Mail newspaper, this is defined as the time between the organ's beats and indicates the heart's ability to change its pumping speed in response to danger or periods of relaxation.

Previous research suggests low heart rate variability raises a person's risk of suffering from a heart attack or stroke by up to 45 percent and makes people who have suffered such an event more likely to die.

Dr. Naresh Sen, from Sunil Memorial Superspeciality Hospital, Jaipur, India, said "science may have not always agreed, but Indians have long believed in the power of various therapies other than medicines as a mode of treatment for ailments,” adding that “Listening to soothing music before bedtime is a cheap and easy to implement therapy that cannot cause harm.”

The researchers played 149 healthy people, with an average age of 26, different sounds on three separate nights just before they went to bed. Some of the participants were played yoga music while others heard pop tunes with a steady beat. The remainder just sat in silence before going to sleep, the German News Agency reported.

In each session, the participants' heart rates were measured for five minutes before the music or silence started, 10 minutes during and five minutes after. Their anxiety levels and self-reported positive emotions were also noted. Results suggest listening to yoga music increases a person's heart rate variability. This variability reduces when pop music is played and does not change during silence.

Yoga music also lowers a person's anxiety levels while boosting their positivity. Both pop tunes and silence make people feel more anxious.

Although the findings are positive, Dr. Sen stresses music cannot replace medication, saying "this is a small study and more research is needed on the cardiovascular effects of music interventions offered by a trained music therapist.”

The results were presented at the European Society of Cardiology congress in Munich.

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