It’s not exactly a news flash: January is typically the coldest month in New York. Even if we are lucky enough not to be hit by snowstorms that immobilize the entire city, we still have to put up with crummy weather.
During these bleak winter months, various viruses and germs that lay dormant the rest of the year attack our bodies. Let’s put it this way: the holiday season may be over, but the flu season is in full swing. Whether we are struck by sneezes, sniffles, and nose blowing of a common cold or suffer from shivers, aches and fever, the winter bugs make us feel miserable.
What can you do to stay healthy when everyone around you is sick? Admittedly it’s not easy – after all, cold and flu are called contagious diseases for a reason. However, you can take some steps to bug-proof your body and make it more resistant to the pesky viruses around you.
Some of the preventive measures are just common sense: exercise, wash your hands often, drink lots of fluids, and eat right. An apple a day may not always keep the doctor away, but several pieces of fruit might: a vitamin-rich diet is an excellent immunity booster.
Also, as surprising as this may sound, going out for some fresh air (well bundled up, of course) is actually a good way to avoid contagion. That’s because viruses tend to live longer and spread more effectively when you are indoors with an infected person.
There is also another very effective way to strengthen your immune system – music! Although this statement may sound self-serving (after all, Hey Joe Guitar is a music school), we can assure you that it is based on science.
Researchers from several international universities have discovered that exposure to music may, in fact, help you fight off disease. How is this possible? It all comes down to how some of our body mechanisms react to the sound of music.
Here is how this works: listening to music for about 50 minutes a day increases the levels of antibodies, which neutralize bacteria and viruses. At the same time, scientists found that music lowers the levels of cortisol, one of the main stress hormones. Since stress weakens the immunity, it is logical that when less of it circulates in the body, we are less likely to get sick.
That’s the power of music, baby!
Your doctor may not make house calls, but our music teachers certainly do. And when they show up at your Manhattan, Brooklyn or Riverdale home or office, you can expect an immunity-bolstering experience.
Now, you might be wondering which musical instrument is best for your health. It all comes down to this: whatever instrument “speaks” to you is the one that has – figuratively speaking – your name on it. The sounds of the guitar, flute, saxophone, or any other instrument, really are healing!