TEAM SPORTS, CYCLING AND AEROBICS FOR 30-60 MINUTES EVERY OTHER DAY
Most of us would agree that working out makes us feel better and improves our mood, perhaps putting the feeling of being on a high down to an endorphin rush. But while levels of the body’s ‘homemade opiate’ do rise in the bloodstream during exercise, Martynoga points out that it’s unclear exactly how much gets into the brain.
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However, running and aerobic exercise also trigger increases of signalling molecules or chemicals in the brain called endocannabinoids, signals made by the brain that have somewhat similar effects to cannabis. ‘These aren’t produced in massive quantities that would give you a drug-like high, but it’s very clear they give you a sense of reward, make you feel better and dull the pain associated with intense exercise.
This might help explain why exercise is a good way for some people to overcome depression,’ says Martynoga. One review of several studies found that both aerobic and resistance exercise was moderately effective in treating depressive symptoms. Then there’s the recently published US study mentioned above, that showed 45 minutes of exercise every other day was effective in reducing the number of ‘bad days’ people experienced each month, and indicated that social exercise is
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