Depression: 35 extra minutes of exercise daily slashes risk

It is common knowledge that exercise is good for physical health, but a new study shows that it can also help curtail episodes of depression, even in those who have an increased genetic risk.

According to the researchers, who are from the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, the study is the first of its kind.

The paper, which appears in the journal Depression and Anxiety, shows that physical activity can positively affect the risk of depression — even when there is a higher genetic risk.

Lead author Karmel Choi, Ph.D., and her colleagues consulted genomic and electronic health record data from almost 8,000 participants in the Partners Biobank.

Over 2 years, Choi and team looked through millions of data points to find people who had diagnoses relating to depression.

Additionally, the researchers calculated a genetic risk score for each participant, which involved combining information across the person’s entire genome to come up with a score to demonstrate their genetic risk of developing depression.

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