Brain health: practicing this activity would be beneficial throughout life

Brain health: practicing this activity would be beneficial throughout life

Do you spend hours listening to music on streaming platforms? Don’t feel guilty, this time is not wasted, quite the contrary. A new study reveals that practice and exposure to music may have beneficial effects on brain health, even in older people. Conclusions which reinforce the idea that the fourth art is a powerful ally for aging well, or better,.

There are many studies that focus on the most effective foods for preserving brain health, including fatty fish, spinach, certain spices, or even dark chocolate, but it seems that banal activities, all in all accessible to the larger numbers, also help improve cognitive performance. This is the case with music.

Music improves cognitive performance in seniors

Not content with softening morals, the fourth art would also be an ally of choice for improving certain cognitive functions, and especially improving brain health in the elderly. These are the conclusions of a new study carried out by researchers from the University of Exeter, in the United Kingdom, who were interested in the impact of playing an instrument, but also of singing, on health of the brains of people aged forty and over.

A number of studies have examined the effect of music on brain health. Our study (…) gave us a unique opportunity to explore the relationship between cognitive performance and music in a large cohort of older adults. Overall, we think music could be a way to harness the brain’s agility and resilience, known as cognitive reserve“, explains Professor Anne Corbett, specializing in dementia research at the University of Exeter, in a press release.

Solve complex tasks

This work is based on the PROTECT study, a vast online survey which has at this stage brought together data from more than 25,000 people aged 40 and over, for a decade. More than a thousand participants were included in this research into the effects of music on brain health. The scientists set out to evaluate the musical experience, through playing an instrument or singing in a choir, of the participants, as well as the results of cognitive tests. Published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, their conclusions show an improvement in memory and the ability to solve complex tasks with the practice of a musical instrument, and particularly the piano.

Music would therefore be beneficial for improving executive functions, but not only. Researchers also report better brain health with the practice of singing, although they qualify these results. “This (may) also be due to social factors related to membership in a choir or group“, we can read. Interestingly, if it has already been shown that practicing a musical instrument from childhood allows you to age well, this work highlights that continuing this activity at an advanced age ” is even more beneficial.

The benefits of musical activities for seniors

Although further research is needed to study this relationship, our findings indicate that promoting music education would be a valuable part of public health initiatives aimed at promoting a protective lifestyle for brain health, as does to encourage older adults to return to music at a later age. There is considerable evidence of the benefits of group musical activities for people with dementia, and this approach could be extended as part of a healthy aging program for older people to enable them to significantly reduce proactively address their risks and promote brain health“, recommends Professor Corbett.

Scientific studies have already shown that music has the power to soothe people with dementia, but that it can also intervene in other aspects of health. The fourth art could notably relieve pain, as Canadian researchers recently revealed, but also help stimulate memory on a daily basis.

The benefits of music on our brain

Slide: The benefits of music on our brain