When you're feeling stressed, sometimes all you want to do is stay home alone and watch Netflix. But it turns out that actually going out and seeing live music can lower your levels of cortisol, a hormone related to stress and anxiety.
A study published in February by researchers at the Centre for Performance Science at the Royal College of Music in London tested the cortisol and cortisone levels of 117 participants before and after seeing live classical music performances. They found that, "across the board," the study's participants showed lower levels of the "stress" hormones after seeing the performances, reports the Telegraph.
"This is the first preliminary evidence that attending a cultural event can have an impact on endocrine activity," the researchers explain in their paper. "It is of note that none of these biological changes were associated with age, musical experience or familiarity with the music being performed. This suggests there is a universal response to concert attendance among audience members."
But the research only focused on responses to seeing classical music live, and researchers caution that "more research will be needed to ascertain whether other genres of music elicit different effects or whether attending other types of cultural events has different endocrine impact." Basically, it's not clear yet whether a mosh pit has the same, stress-reducing effect as nodding through an hour of classical composition.