An estimated 1 out of 10 US adults suffers from depression and depression rates have roughly tripled over two decades. Depression can result in increased work absenteeism, short-term disability, and decreased productivity.
As reported in Psychology Today, for many people suffering from clinical depression, regular exercise has been shown to act as a mood elevator.
"There is a great deal of evidence that exercise not only improves mood and enhances well being but also is an effective intervention for depression" writes Michael W. Otto, Ph.D., is Professor of Psychology at Boston University. "That is, well-conducted clinical trials have repeatedly shown mood benefit from exercise in adults with clinical depression. Indeed, there is evidence that exercise provides benefits at levels similar to that found for antidepressant medication."
Walking is the cheapest and easiest way to get relief from depression. Walking increases endorphin production and neuron development, helping to reduce depression and anxiety. And it also aids in weight loss.
"Depression is an insidious disorder that harms our mood, our goals, and our relationships. Having another tool for intervening with depression is deeply important. Exercise is an intervention with particular broad reach. It is not only for those who are focused on keeping a mind-body balance; it is an important option to be considered as an addition to psychotherapy or medication treatment, as well as an option for anyone with mood challenges who is looking for help."
Read more about the effects of walking on depression here.