If you’ve visited Smarter Stronger Better in the past you may have noticed we have a particular interest in how music can affect your health, particularly your emotional wellbeing.

The latest evidence to reach us on this subject suggests music may be good for your heart too.

Scientists discovered this by studying people who’d had heart attacks and were having chest pain soon afterwards. In medical terms this is called post-infarction angina.

But what the experts discovered was that those who listened to music for 30 minutes a day had far lower levels of anxiety and pain than others who didn’t listen to music.

If music can be good for your heart in such troublesome circumstances, then we like to think it could benefit healthy hearts too.

The researchers are from the University of Belgrade School of Medicine. They followed 350 people diagnosed with heart attack and early post-infarction angina in Serbia. Most of them were taking a cocktail of drugs including aspirin, blood thinners, beta blockers, nitrates, statins, calcium channel blockers, blood pressure medicines and a drug that treats angina called ranolazine. Half also listened to music for 30 minutes a day, while the other half simply had the standard treatment

After seven years the researchers concluded that music therapy was more effective than the standard treatment on its own. Not only did music help reduce anxiety, but it relieved pain as well as pain-related distress.

The study was presented at the American College of Cardiology’s Annual Scientific Session Together with World Congress of Cardiology

If you don’t listen to much music, now may be a good time to start.

Meanwhile if you’re a big music fan, you can find out what your musical choices say about your personality by taking a quick test at Musical Universe.

Read other stuff we’ve written about the music-health connection here.