How To Prevent Depression
Study results from Massachusetts General Hospital have shown that people who spend several hours a week working out were less likely to be diagnosed with depression even when they are a high genetic risk for it. This finding comes from health data on nearly 8,000 patients who were followed after they filled out a survey about their lifestyle habits. The data gathered showed that individuals whose genetic risk for depression was high were more likely to be diagnosed with this illness over the next two years than their peers. But the study also revealed that higher levels of physical activity were protective, even for those participants with the highest genetic risk scores for depression. The exercises that proved to be the most protective included both high-intensity workouts such as aerobics, dance and working out on exercise machines, as well as yoga and stretching. Lead author Karmel Cho, Ph.D., of Massachusetts General Hospital and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health said the study showed that “on average, about 35 additional minutes of physical activity each day may help people to reduce their risk and protect against future depression episodes.”
Karmel W. Choi et al “Physical activity offsets genetic risk for incident depression assessed via electronic health records in a biobank cohort study.” Depression and Anxiety, November 5, 2019.
More from this week’s bulletin:
- A Cure For Anxiety?
- How Sleep Affects Women’s Bones
- A tasty way to serve beets: Roasted Beets In Agrodolce
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