More Active = Less Depressed

Physical activity is good no matter what. But when depressed you can use it as a tool to fight through the depression.

More Active = Less Depressed Physical activity can reduce the risk of death, stroke and some cancers, and some studies suggest activity can also lower the risk for depressive symptoms. A new study in JAMA looked at the correlation. Snehal M. Pinto Pereira, Ph.D., of the University College London, England, and colleagues found that on average, more frequent physical activity was associated with fewer depressive symptoms for adults between the ages of 23 and 50 years, while a higher level of depressive symptoms was linked to less frequent physical activity. The authors examined whether depressive symptoms are concurrent with physical activity levels, as well as whether activity influences the level of symptoms and if the level of symptoms influences activity. More activity frequency predicted a lower number of depressive symptoms. Among those inactive at any age, increasing activity from 0 to 3 times per week five years later reduced the odds of depression by 19 percent. Higher levels of depressive symptoms were related to less frequent physical activity. Across all ages, those participants with depression were less active. For example, among 23 year old participants who were not depressed, their average increase in activity five years later was 0.63 times per week but 0.36 times per week for those with depression. The authors conclude that: ‰ÛÏFindings suggest that activity may alleviate depressive symptoms in the general population and, in turn, depressive symptoms in early adulthood may be a barrier to activity.‰Û To me it seems that you use activity to fight through the depression.