Can an Active Lifestyle Provide Treatment for Depression?

Can an Active Lifestyle Provide Treatment for Depression?

A large portion of the population suffers from symptoms of depression. Feelings of fatigue and lethargy are all too common. While starting an exercise program might seem like the last thing you’d be in the mood for, exercise might turn out to be the perfect solution to improved mental health.

Exercise & Physical Activity Has a Positive Impact on Your Health

Regular physical activity has been proven to prevent and improve numerous health problems, including arthritis, diabetes, and high blood pressure. But research shows that the psychological and physical rewards of exercise can also work to improve mood and lessen anxiety and depression. Working out can take your mind off problems and stress-triggers, breaking the cycle of negative thoughts. Plus, strenuous activity releases feel-good endorphins, cannabis-like brain chemicals, and other natural brain chemicals that encourage a sense of well-being.

As you meet your fitness goals, you gain confidence and enjoy a feeling of success. You start to feel stronger and better about your appearance, and benefit from meeting and interacting with new people. As opposed to drugs, alcohol, or self-imposed solitude, exercise and physical activity are positive coping strategies.

What types of physical activity are best for you?

Physical activity can include anything that requires energy and works the muscles, including household tasks or leisure pursuits, such as going for a walk, pulling weeds, or painting the porch. Structured exercise is planned and executed to improve or maintain physical fitness. Try running, bicycling, lifting weights, playing tennis, kayaking, or anything that increases the heart rate and helps to enhance mood. Simply introducing small amounts of activity throughout the day can make a big difference.

Keep up with a regular exercise routine to help combat depression and anxiety symptoms.

Experiencing new forms of exercise can open up all sorts of new possibilities. Just a half an hour of exercise each day, for three to five days a week, can significantly lessen depression or anxiety symptoms. Even just ten to fifteen minutes of activity offers a positive impact. A more active lifestyle provides both mental and physical health benefits.

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