Physical activity substantially lowers risk of depression: JAMA
Physical activity is positively associated with substantially lower risks of depression, according to a recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry. Depression is the leading cause of mental health-related disease burden and may be reduced by physical activity, but the dose-response relationship between activity and depression is uncertain. A study was conducted to systematically...
Physical activity is positively associated with substantially lower risks of depression, according to a recent study published in JAMA Psychiatry.
Depression is the leading cause of mental health-related disease burden and may be reduced by physical activity, but the dose-response relationship between activity and depression is uncertain.
A study was conducted to systematically review and meta-analyze the dose-response association between physical activity and incident depression from published prospective studies of adults.
They included prospective cohort studies reporting physical activity at 3 or more exposure levels and risk estimates for depression with 3000 or more adults and 3 years or longer of follow-up. Data extraction was completed independently by 2 extractors and cross-checked for errors. A 2-stage random-effects dose-response meta-analysis was used to synthesize data. Study-specific associations were estimated using generalized least-squares regression and the pooled association was estimated by combining the study-specific coefficients using restricted maximum likelihood. The outcome of interest was depression, including (1) presence of major depressive disorder indicated by self-report of physician diagnosis, registry data, or diagnostic interviews and (2) elevated depressive symptoms established using validated cutoffs for a depressive screening instrument.
The results of the study are:
- Fifteen studies comprising 191 130 participants and 2 110 588 person-years were included.
- An inverse curvilinear dose-response association between physical activity and depression was observed, with steeper association gradients at lower activity volumes; heterogeneity was large and significant (I2 = 74%; P < .001).
- Relative to adults not reporting any activity, those accumulating half the recommended volume of physical activity (4.4 marginal metabolic equivalent task hours per week [mMET-h/wk]) had an 18% (95% CI, 13%-23%) lower risk of depression.
- Adults accumulating the recommended volume of 8.8 mMET hours per week had 25% (95% CI, 18%-32%) lower risk with diminishing potential benefits and higher uncertainty observed beyond that exposure level. There were diminishing additional potential benefits and greater uncertainty at higher volumes of physical activity.
- Based on an estimate of exposure prevalences among included cohorts, if less active adults had achieved the current physical activity recommendations, 11.5% (95% CI, 7.7%-15.4%) of depression cases could have been prevented.
Thus, this systematic review and meta-analysis of associations between physical activity and depression suggest significant mental health benefits from being physically active, even at levels below the public health recommendations. Health practitioners should therefore encourage any increase in physical activity to improve mental health.
Association Between Physical Activity and Risk of Depression: A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis by Matthew Pearce, et al. published in the JAMA.
Matthew Pearce, Leandro Garcia, Ali Abbas, Tessa Strain, Felipe Barreto Schuch, Rajna Golubic, Paul Kelly, Saad Khan, Mrudula Utukuri, Yvonne Laird, PhD7,8; Alexander Mok, Andrea Smith, Marko Tainio, Søren Brage, James Woodcock, Association, Between, Physical Activity, Risk, Depression, JAMA, JAMA Psychiatry
Dr. Shravani Dali has completed her BDS from Pravara institute of medical sciences, loni. Following which she extensively worked in the healthcare sector for 2+ years. She has been actively involved in writing blogs in field of health and wellness. Currently she is pursuing her Masters of public health-health administration from Tata institute of social sciences. She can be contacted at email@example.com.