This Is How Many Hours Of Exercise You Need A Week To Protect Against Depression

A new study suggests just one hour a week of physical activity can help protect against depression, according to Psychology Today.

A study titled “Exercise and the Prevention of Depression: Results of the HUNT Cohort study,” revealed the surprisingly little amount of time required a week to dedicate to physical activity or fitness to help prevent future onsets of depression.

And the 60 minutes of exercise doesn’t need to be measured at a specific level of intensity either. Simply going for a walk or a swim is just as effective as those who enjoy high intensity workouts.

What’s even more uplifting about the findings of the study is age and gender play no role in determining who is a good candidiate for an hour of exercise a day.

All ages benefit from engaging in physical activity, both from a physical standpoint as well as a mental standpoint.

Perhaps the findings of the study aren’t that shocking because we already know that exercise releases endorphins. Endorphins are a chemical the brain releases during exercise that deliver a positive or happy feeling to the body.

Some research suggests when endorphins are released they help the body fight off feelings of depression and anxiety, according to Everyday Health.

What was shocking about the study’s results is the small amount of time needed to spend on physical activity to ultimately help protect one’s self from depression.

Anxiety disorders affect over 18 percent of Americans a year, and is the most common mental illness diagnosed. Roughly half of those diagnosed with anxiety are also diagnosed with depression, according to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.

Perhaps this study will help create new methods in treating and preventing depression in a more natural and drug-free way.