Before you download the next pop hit from iTunes, check whether it is hazardous to your health. A teen panel working with the Boston Public Health Commission has set up a “nutrition facts label” rating (like that seen on food items) for songs:
“Music, like food, can feed our brains and give us energy,” said Casey Corcoran, director of the Commission’s Start Strong Initiative. “But songs can affect our health and the health of our relationships.”
The tool, patterned after common food nutritional labels, invites consumers to become song lyric nutritionists by helping them identify relationship ingredients that make up a song. Using printed song lyrics as a guide, users can tally the number of healthy relationship themes, such as respect, equality, and trust, which are present in the song. And, like fattening calories, unhealthy relationship themes – possession, disrespect, and manipulation – are also counted. The number of times these themes are mentioned also factor into to the song’s total nutritional value. Corcoran recommends consuming lots of ‘healthy relationship’ ingredients for a balanced media diet.