Researchers have found that people who go to live concerts, shows and museums can live longer than those who do not. Experts from University College London looked at the lifestyles of over 6,700 British people for 15 years. They examined how often the people went out and what kinds of events they attended. They found that over-50s who regularly went to concerts and shows were around 30 per cent less likely to die over the next 14 years. The researchers said the over-50s could extend their life by engaging with the "receptive arts". These include art galleries, concerts, museums, musicals, the opera and the theatre. In addition to living longer, concertgoers could also have more fun.
Lead researcher Dr Daisy Fancourt said money played a big role in whether or not people went to concerts and engaged with the arts. She wrote: "Over 40 per cent of people in the least wealthy group reported that they never accessed cultural activities." The UK Health Secretary Matt Hancock believes there could be a lot of truth in the research. He said arts and culture could improve things like mental health, ageing and loneliness. He recently announced plans for the UK's National Health Service to use the arts to improve people's wellbeing and health. The researchers said: "Overall, our results highlight the importance of continuing to explore new social factors that affect our health."