Depression can be a difficult illness to live with. It can rob of your hobbies and interests and make you feel lethargic and blasé. The things that you once loved may not have the same sizzle anymore.
But there's some good news: you can do things to make your depression easier! By exercising just a few times a week -- even if it's just a walk -- you could make your life exponentially easier.
If you're one of the 5350 million people worldwide living with depression, you need to take care of your body and mind.
Read on for reasons why you should make fitness and health a priority.
Poor Fitness and Health Can Make Depression Symptoms Worse
There are a few factors at play, here. First, we'll start with the physical aspects.
Exercise places an emphasis on breathing and the circulatory system. By exercising regularly, you'll strengthen your lungs and breathe deeper and better.
If you're not exercising on a regular basis (3 to 5 times a week is recommended), it's easy to pack on the pounds. And sometimes we don't even know it's happening.
You'll lose muscle tone and your bones will start to weaken. Worst of all, your self-esteem will suffer.
And if you're already suffering from depression, it can be hard to get yourself out of a sedentary cycle. As each day passes, it becomes harder and harder to get off the couch and onto the track.
You may start feeling bad about yourself, leading to a cycle of doubt and frustration. You owe it to yourself to get out and get some exercise.
Exercise Releases Endorphins
Surely we're not the first to tell you how exercising releases endorphins. You've likely heard about the oft-rumored Runner's High.
But do you know what exactly endorphins are and why you'd want them released in the first place?
Think of endorphins as our body's happiness chemical. They're chemicals released during certain actions (i.e., exercise) that provide us with that sought after sense of adrenaline.
They work within your brain to send signals from one neuron to another to send a sense of euphoria. If you suffer from depression, your brain may have a tough time making or receiving endorphins.
Even a half hour of exercise can be a tremendous help to your body and brain!
If you thinking walking or running may be too strenuous on your joints, why not try yoga? It's a relaxing way to clear your mind and increase flexibility.
Food for Thought
We've talked a lot about exercise, but your diet matters too. After all, a big part of fitness and health has to do with food.
While it's always tempting to go for that extra slice of cake, it'll do you more harm than good. It's time to start thinking about food as fuel instead of just something to eat when you're bored.
Think about what you eat on a regular basis. Do you think most of your meals and snacks are providing the right nutrients for your brain and body?
If not, you'll need to make a change.
Make sure you're getting the right vitamins and minerals. Eat at least three servings of fruits and vegetables a day, with plenty of protein thrown in.
It'll seem like a huge change at first, but your mood and energy levels will undoubtedly change.
Whether physical or mental, no one should live in pain. If you need help with stress relief, stop into one of our stores and see how our products can help you live a better life.