New study: Physical activity protects against depression

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Two man running, physical activity

Solid evidence supports a protective relationship between objective physical activity and the risk of major depression, according to findings from two sample mendelian randomization studies.

“The most convincing evidence to date that physical activity is associated with a reduced risk for depression comes from meta-analyses of prospective studies, which are high quality yet still limited by the breadth of behavioral, social and genetic confounders that cannot be fully ruled out in observational designs,” Karmel Choi, PhD, from the Center for Genomic Medicine, Massachusetts General Hospital.

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The investigators studied independent genetic variants of two physical activity phenotypes - self-reported and based on objective accelerometer - and major genome-wide association studies (GWAS) related to major depressive disorder as genetic instruments. They then combined mendelian randomization estimates from each genetic instrument. GWAS has included studies on physical depression among the UK Biobank and major depression among adults of the European lineage in the Psychiatric Genomics Consortium.

In total, the GWAS data is available for 611,583 adults. Mendelian randomization showed a protective causal relationship between MDD and physical activity based on accelerometer (OR = 0.74 for MDD per 1-SD increase in mean acceleration, 95% CI, 0.59-0.92).

However, the results did not show a statistically significant correlation between major depression and accelerometer-based physical activity (mean acceleration control over MDD = beta = aktivite0.08; 95% CI, depresyon0.47 to 0.32). There was no significant correlation between the physical activity reported by the researchers and the major depression (OR = 1.28; 95% CI, 0.57-3.37) or the physical activity reported by him (beta = 0.02; 95% CI, -0.008-0.05). ).

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In general, this study proves that the increase in physical activity is an effective prevention strategy for depression, according to researchers.

“Stronger evidence of causal relationships is of great importance because few modifiable factors for preventing depression are known,” Choi and colleagues wrote.

“If physical activity truly reduces risk for depression, it would be useful to promote physical activity not only in the population at large, where this can yield public health returns at the level of human productivity and reduced health care burden, but also for individuals at risk for developing new depression, such as adolescents or those facing depressogenic exposures, such as violence-exposed individuals or workers in high-stress environments,” they continued.

For clinical trials, the next step is to help people to monitor their mental health, as well as their efforts to exercise, and exercise efforts, as well as from Adam M. Chekroud, Yale Medical School, from the Department of Psychiatry. wrote in a related editorial.

“The data have told us — over and over — that exercise is a viable plan to minimize the burden of mental illness. The question is how we execute against this plan,” Chekroud wrote. – by Savannah Demko

Explanations: Choi reports no relevant financial disclosures. Please refer to the study for the relevant financial statements of all other authors. Chekroud reported that it achieved equality in Fitbit, Spring Care and UnitedHealthcare. He is a leading inventor of three patent applications for MDD treatment and reports to Fortress Biotech that he is a consultant for healthcare technology beginners.