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Can’t Get Laid? Listen To Some Music

Put another record on: It turns out that listening to music is just about as good as sex when it comes to making people happy. A new study from Canadian researchers at McGill University in Montreal found that the dopamine released while having sex is the same you get when listening to music. Researchers vetted 10 subjects to receive specialized brain scans to measure dopamine levels. They were then played their favorite music while dopamine levels were measured. Regardless of the genre of music — punk, classical or pop — subjects felt a dopamine high. The coolest thing: Dopamine responds to the pauses and pathways in different songs. So if you’re particularly familiar with a song or a sequence, your brain will anticipate it and produce dopamine ahead of it.

The music dopamine is particularly good news when it comes to figuring out how to treat depression and anxiety. “For reasons that we don’t entirely understand, somehow music was able to kick in with the same system,” said Robert Zatorre, lead researcher on the study. “And that gives it power that it might not otherwise have…Because it gives us pleasure, we can use it to our advantage to modulate our state of mind.” [Montreal Gazette]

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