Exercise helps reduce symptoms of depression
Jumping on that treadmill or bike is not only good for one’s health, but also can help significantly reduce depression, researchers at UT Southwestern Medical Center have found.
The first study to look at exercise alone in treating mild to moderate depression in adults aged 20 to 45 showed that depressive symptoms were reduced almost 50 percent in individuals who participated in 30-minute aerobic exercise sessions three to five times a week.
The results, published in the January issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, are comparable to results from studies in which patients with mild to moderate depression were treated with antidepressants or cognitive therapy, said Dr. Madhukar Trivedi, professor of psychiatry and director of UT Southwestern’s mood disorders research program. "The effect you find using aerobic exercise alone in treating clinical depression is similar to what you find with antidepressant medications," said Dr. Trivedi, a study author and holder of the Lydia Bryant Test Professorship in Psychiatric Research. "The key is the intensity of the exercise and continuing it for 30 to 35 minutes per day. It’s not for the faint of heart."
The study, conducted between July 1998 and October 2001, included 80 people randomly placed into five groups. Two groups participated in moderately intense aerobics consistent with public health recommendations; one of those groups exercised three days a week and the other five days. Another two groups participated in lower-intensity aerobics for three days and five days per week, and a fifth group did stretching flexibility exercises 15 to 20 minutes three days per week. Exercise programs included supervised instruction at the Cooper Institute in Dallas.
Individuals who participated in moderately intense aerobics, such as exercising on a treadmill or stationary bicycle – whether it was for three or five days per week – experienced a decline in depressive symptoms by an average of 47 percent after 12 weeks. Those in the low-intensity exercise groups showed a 30 percent reduction in symptoms, while those in the last group averaged a 29 percent decline. "Numerous effective treatments for depression are available, yet many people don’t seek treatment because of the negative social stigma still associated with the disease," Dr. Trivedi said. "Exercise may offer a viable treatment alternative, particularly as it can be recommended for most individuals."
Experts estimate that only 23 percent of individuals with clinical depression seek treatment for the mental illness and only 10 percent receive adequate treatment. Almost 19 million Americans are thought to suffer from depressive disorders.
Other researchers participating in the study were from the Cooper Institute and from Alberta Children’s Hospital in Calgary. The study was funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and by Technogym.
Donna Steph Hansard | EurekAlert!
The most recent press releases about innovation >>>
Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:
Our brains house extremely complex neuronal circuits, whose detailed structures are still largely unknown. This is especially true for the so-called cerebral cortex of mammals, where among other things vision, thoughts or spatial orientation are being computed. Here the rules by which nerve cells are connected to each other are only partly understood. A team of scientists around Moritz Helmstaedter at the Frankfiurt Max Planck Institute for Brain Research and Helene Schmidt (Humboldt University in Berlin) have now discovered a surprisingly precise nerve cell connectivity pattern in the part of the cerebral cortex that is responsible for orienting the individual animal or human in space.
The researchers report online in Nature (Schmidt et al., 2017. Axonal synapse sorting in medial entorhinal cortex, DOI: 10.1038/nature24005) that synapses in...
New technique promises tunable laser devices
Whispering gallery mode (WGM) resonators are used to make tiny micro-lasers, sensors, switches, routers and other devices. These tiny structures rely on a...
Using ultrafast flashes of laser and x-ray radiation, scientists at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics (Garching, Germany) took snapshots of the briefest electron motion inside a solid material to date. The electron motion lasted only 750 billionths of the billionth of a second before it fainted, setting a new record of human capability to capture ultrafast processes inside solids!
When x-rays shine onto solid materials or large molecules, an electron is pushed away from its original place near the nucleus of the atom, leaving a hole...
For the first time, physicists have successfully imaged spiral magnetic ordering in a multiferroic material. These materials are considered highly promising candidates for future data storage media. The researchers were able to prove their findings using unique quantum sensors that were developed at Basel University and that can analyze electromagnetic fields on the nanometer scale. The results – obtained by scientists from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics, the Swiss Nanoscience Institute, the University of Montpellier and several laboratories from University Paris-Saclay – were recently published in the journal Nature.
Multiferroics are materials that simultaneously react to electric and magnetic fields. These two properties are rarely found together, and their combined...
MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems Holding GmbH about commercial use of a multi-well tissue plate for automated and reliable tissue engineering & drug testing.
MBM ScienceBridge GmbH successfully negotiated a license agreement between University Medical Center Göttingen (UMG) and the biotech company Tissue Systems...