Studies Indicate That Yoga and Exercise Help With
Depression  
by Nancy Quinton
the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, there are in fact many research
studies that claim that those who adopt a regular exercise routine feel better and
experience reduction in symptoms of depression.

It is, however, important to do the right type of exercise. The most beneficial forms
of exercise for reducing depression are moderately challenging as opposed to very
light physical activity. These may include aerobic exercise that incorporates
strengthening elements. A yoga practice for example can be very useful alleviating
depression.

Many research studies validate the claim that yoga enhances emotional well being
and combats depression. For example research indicates that levels of cortisol (a
primary stress hormone) in the bloodstream are lowered following a yoga routine.
Also established research has found that yoga improves serotonin levels.

A study conducted in 2009 evaluated mood changes prior to and following yoga
therapy. The moods of 54 participants, prior to and following 2 weeks of yoga
therapy, were compared against one another. 64% of the study's participants
experienced a decrease in mood disturbance, while 53% where found to have
reduced their depression symptoms.

Amy Weintraub, a former depression sufferer herself, author of Yoga for Depression,
and founder of LifeForce Yoga explains, "When the mind is absorbed in a negative
spiral of thoughts, whether it is anxiety based or depression, the mind needs
something to focus on that takes it away from that negative spiral." Yoga for
depression, she explains, does precisely that.

Weintraub also recommends yogic breathing exercises as a remedy for depression.
These work by stimulating the vagus nerve, which is known to decrease symptoms
of depression. It was found that one breathing technique in particular was able to
bring about as great as a 73% reversal of major depression.

The body of research as well as expert advice supports yoga therapy as a way to
effectively reduce depression and increase emotional well being. Weintraub points out
that it is not the particular style of yoga that is essential. Find a class that feels right
to you. "Find a teacher," she advises, "which makes you feel, when you walk out the
door, like your life has changed in that moment. That you are fresh and alive."
Weintraub also warns people who are new to yoga not to change their medication.
Even though many people start seeing improvement right away, it is better to wait
for no less than 9 months of regular yoga practice before even thinking about
stopping your prescription anti-depressants.


About The Author

Nancy Quinton

Want to hear more about
? See how can naturally
alleviate your symptoms of depression.
Is reducing depression as simple as
adopting a regular exercise routine?
Many of us have heard that exercise
such as yoga, biking, or jogging can
improve mood. However, you may
be wondering if this is an opinion or if
there is solid scientific research
indicating that exercise can really help
people who are battling depression.

The reality is that there is a wealth of
compelling research that supports
exercise, including yoga as a modality
for helping treat depression. As
stated in the 2008 Summary of the
Physical Activity Guidelines put out by
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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The content on
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remedies and before making any drastic changes to your diet or exercise
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