ART FOR THE SOUL

It's no secret that art is a powerful tool to generate inspiration.  But now there is scientific proof it can do amazing things for your health.  Considering how many of us lead hectic, overly-sceduled work and family lives, the amount of people suffering from stress and anxiety is significant.  This is motivating more and more clinicians and university professors to research ways to improve mental health.  And it turns out the answer can be as simple as visiting your local museum or gallery.

 A recent study from Iulm University in Milan, Italy found that spending a few minutes gazing at a painting or sculpture can dramatically reduce stress.  In a similar study from the University of Westminster, participants who spent their lunchtime at a gallery had lower concentrations of cortisol, commonly known as the 'stress hormone'.  Neuroscientist Oshin Vartanian explains, "Areas of the brain involved in processing emotion and those that activate our pleasure and reward systems are also being engaged."  It's amazing to think that one can reap the neural benefit of increased connectivity in the brain and decreased levels of stress simultaneously.

Art's wonderful relationship with the brain makes a trip to the gallery Extra special.  So turn off the TV and pay a visit to Sorelle!