Trends 6 September, 2018 Maria Clara Restrepo E.
Although traditionally it was thought that the physical activity that best contributed to improving indicators of wellbeing were classic sports activities (such as aerobics or weightlifting routines), psychiatry researchers from Yale University have found that “All types of exercise were associated with improved mental health.” These types of physical exercise include activities such as walking, doing yoga, gardening or even cleaning your home.
According to the article’s authors, “All types of exercise were associated with improved mental health.” This improvement is greater, however, with “team sports, cycling, aerobic and gym exercise,” as the researchers indicate in their study published in The Lancet Psychiatry. Their study was based on surveys taken by over 1.2 million adults between the years 2011 and 2015.
One of the survey’s questions was, “Thinking about your mental health, which includes stress, depression, and problems with emotions, for how many days during the past 30 days was your mental health not good?” The results found that “People who exercised reported 1.5 fewer days of poor mental health each month compared to those who did not exercise,” the authors stated in a publication.
The relationship between exercise and lower levels of depression or stress “could go both ways — for example inactivity could be a symptom of and contributor to poor mental health, and being active could be a sign of or contribute to resilience,” the researchers state.