Exercising has countless benefits for our physical health, but a new study has determined that the benefits go further than just our lungs or biceps - it is good for our mental health.
According to The Telegraph, working out just one hour each week can help in fighting off depression. A research published in The American Journal of Psychiatry studied the link between exercising and depression through a group of 33,000 adults.
Those participants who reported they were not exercising at all had a 44 percent chance of suffering from depression than the participants who exercised one to to hours per week. Moreover, the study also determined that a small amount of exercise could have prevented about 12 percent of the reported cases of depression.
"We've known for some time that exercise has a role to play in treating symptoms of depression, but this is the first time we have been able to quantify the preventative potential of physical activity in terms of reducing future levels of depression. These findings are exciting because they show that even relatively small amounts of exercise, from one hour per week, can deliver significant protection against depression,” author of the study Professor Samuel Harvey, says to The Telegraph.
The study led by the Australia-based Black Dog Institute, monitored exercise activity, anxiety and depression symptoms in 33,908 Norwegian adults over a span of 11 years. Additionally, the research team also accounted for variables that could impact the association between exercise and common mental illness, including socio-economic and demographic factors, substance use, body mass index, new onset physical illness and perceived social support.
“These results highlight the great potential to integrate exercise into individual mental health plans and broader public health campaigns.” says Professor Harvey.
Even just a one hour daily walk can improve your mental status, according to this study. So get on your feet and start moving, it is bound to make an impact.