Can Physical Activity Help Manage Depression?

Exercise
Exercise (Photo: Harvard Health/ Twitter)

Are you one of the millions who suffer from depression? Maybe you want to always keep your body active, say experts.

Karmel Choi, the lead author of the research and an expert of the Psychiatric and Neurodevelopmental Genetics Unit in the MGH Center for Genomic Medicine, said, "Using genetic data, we found evidence that higher levels of physical activity may causally reduce the risk for depression."

The recent discovery that would surely help a lot of people suffering from emotional instability are considered as the researchers' new jewel, according to Bustle. That is because "knowing whether an associated factor actually causes an outcome is important because we want to invest in preventive strategies that really work."

The study, which was published in JAMA Psychiatry, debunked a very special relationship between exercise and depression. Researchers have finally found out how exercise can actually help in preventing and managing depression, which has been unclear for years now.

The researchers were able to discover this truth after studying more than 600,000 adults, which were enrolled in multiple genomic association studies. Throughout the research, the experts focused on the participant's depressive symptoms and emotional health history. Furthermore, their data from their fitness tracker measurements and self-reports are also taken into consideration.

By analyzing the data gathered, the study revealed that participants who always consider being active are less prone to depression, while those that are not, face higher risks.

Aside from exercising, experts say that other physical activities can also be very beneficial to people's emotional health, as reported by Times. These activities include walking, taking the stairs and even gardening.

The lead author further explained, "On average, doing more physical activity appears to protect against developing depression". The researcher also emphasized that any physical activity is "better than none". So it is indeed very crucial to make the most out of time by working on such activities. Even the most subtle activities, still matter and can still create a huge difference.

Experts claim that though they were able to discover such breakthrough, they are still unable to find out whether depression affects the person's desire to be active or not. Given this, they still have the urge to further continue the study.

Either way, researchers are still very happy for unveiling such discovery as it will become a very important step for people to understand their depression more.

Aside from that, knowing how physical activities can decrease the episodes of depression can already be a great way to help people suffering from it in managing their emotional state.

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