So today’s post is going to be a little different.
I came across a post on my Instagram, and I just felt like it was too important not to talk about. It was a quote, which read:
“Food is the most abused anti-anxiety drug. Exercise is the most under-utilized antidepressant.”
There’s a lot in these two sentences, so I’ll try to unpack it a bit.
When it comes to food, many of us eat based on our emotions instead of just physical hunger.
You know, you’re having a terrible day, but you open up the freezer and see a pint of your favorite ice cream? Or maybe you decide to treat yourself to some french fries. As you might guess, this bad habit can lead to significant weight gain.
(Stay tuned for a future article on emotional eating!)
As for the exercise part, I can personally tell you from experience that my mood is significantly better when I consistently exercise.
Sometimes people ask me why I exercise so much. I always tell them I do it for my sanity.
With all the stress that can come from pharmacy school, working, and other extra-curricular activities, the one thing that keeps me sane is exercising. I know that no matter what else is going on, I can put on my workout playlist and head to the gym; I always feel better afterwards.
“People may let me down, but the weights always stay the same.”
But on a serious note, exercising has been shown to have real benefits for mental health. A recent study even showed that weight training can increase brain function in older adults (1). There is also a plethora of research about the benefits of exercise for depression (2).
In the coming weeks, I will talk more about exercise.
But in the mean time, I want to get feedback from you guys! What has your experience been? Have you noticed any differences in your mood when you exercise?
Let me know in the comments!
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