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What can exercise do for mental health?

1 in 4 Americans experience a diagnosable mental disorder at any given time. Depression and anxiety are most common.

The exact link between depression, anxiety and exercise hasn't been proven yet. But studies have shown the body and mind benefits of exercise can help boost your mood and ease anxiety.

How might it work?

  • Releasing chemicals in your brain that help you feel good
  • Reducing chemicals in your immune system that add to your depression
  • Making your body warmer which might help you feel calm
  • What do you need to do?

    You don't have to run for miles or pump weights for hours to experience the benefits of exercise. Even a quiet stroll around your yard or around the block can help.

    If you want the best results you should engage in more vigorous activities on a regular basis. But, experts caution that you should start slowly and consult your physician before you begin this kind of exercise.

    Many sources site exercise as a great way to ease the symptoms of depression or anxiety. But, never ignore your symptoms if they continue to interfere with your life despite regular, vigorous exercise.

    Don't be afraid to seek help from a physician or mental health provider. For more information about exercise and mental health click here.