We may make jokes about the British weather but there is no denying that it’s been fairly kind to us recently. Instead of the anticipated ‘April showers’ our old friend the sun has been making frequent appearances, giving us no excuse not to get outside and bask in the spring time warmth.
What’s more, recent studies have revealed that taking a brisk stroll in the great outdoors is an effective way of staving off depression.
The study in question was conducted in Portugal and involved 150 depressed patients who were asked to continue taking their present medication, but half of the group were also required to take 30 – 45 minute walks five days a week for 12 weeks.
The results of the study showed a 26 per cent remission rate among participants from the exercise group compared to a zero remission rate in the non exercise group.
Furthermore, an additional Brazilian study of 400 volunteers revealed that men with the highest recorded levels of physical activity were 68 per cent less likely to exhibit symptoms of depression and women had a 24 per cent lower risk.
With various figures and studies estimating that approximately one in ten Britain’s will experience depression at some point during their lives, the findings of these studies come as welcome news.
For further information about depression and how counselling may be able to help please visit our fact-sheet.