Engaging in artistic activities such as singing, dancing, and visiting museums could have a significant impact on the mental and physical health, said a European health agency on Monday.
The Copenhagen-based World Health Organization regional European office, reported that music and singing, for example, could improve attention and memory in people who suffer from dementia.
The findings are based on a study involving over 900 papers on the benefits of arts among children, adults, and older people.
Piroska Östlin, WHO regional interim director for Europe, said: "The examples cited in this report show ways in which the arts can tackle 'wicked' or complex health challenges such as diabetes, obesity and mental ill health."
The study also found that listening to music helps control blood glucose levels during the normal and hectic conditions in diabetic and non-diabetic people.
A WHO report had previously claimed that millions of people can be saved around the world with investments in healthy nutrition.
Dr. Naoko Yamamoto, WHO assistant director general, said: “Nutrition should be an indispensable cornerstone of healthcare.”
This could be achieved by providing pregnant women with the needed iron and folic acid supplements, along with promoting breastfeeding.
Yamamoto also stressed on the importance of raising awareness among the children and adults of the need to limit sugar and salt intake in order to reduce the risks of cardiovascular diseases and strokes.
The WHO warned that obese people are at a higher risk of diabetes, cardiovascular diseases and certain types of cancer such as breast, ovarian, prostate, liver, gallbladder, lung and colon cancers.