Have you ever found that when you’re living an active lifestyle, your mood and temperment tend to be better than when you’re more sedentary? I know I tend to be in a better mood when I’m working out.
Now a new study has found that men who aren’t active are more likely to “feel hopeless”.
More active men seem to have a rosier outlook on life, new research from Finland shows.
Dr. Maarit Valtonen of Kuopio University Hospital and colleagues found that men who spent less than one hour a week doing moderate to vigorous leisure-time physical activity were 37 percent more likely to report feeling hopeless than men who logged at least 2.5 hours weekly.
The men who got at least 2.5 hours of moderate activity each week were significantly less likely to be hopeless than men who were active for an hour or less weekly, and this association remained even after the researchers adjusted for age, socioeconomic status, smoking, and other relevant factors. Vigorous physical activity had a particularly strong effect.
When the researchers adjusted for depression, the link between hopelessness and activity remained. But while low levels of fitness were also tied to greater likelihood of feeling hopeless, further analysis found depression was the responsible factor.
Many people, including those who aren’t depressed or otherwise mentally ill, feel hopeless, the researchers note. The current findings, they say, suggest that “hopelessness and depression are overlapping, but distinct entities.”
The findings also suggest that being active can help “ameliorate or protect against feelings of hopelessness” even if a person’s fitness levels don’t improve.
So once again, being physically active is shown to be good for your health – both physically and psychologically.
As for me? I’m still waiting for that study that says eating hamburgers and pizza – and being a couch potato are good for your health. I’m still waiting.