A New Study finds Children who are Physically active suffer less from depression

Earlier studies have found that adults and young people who are physically active are less prone to depression. However, it was not studied in the case of children. Now the researchers from Norwegian Institute of science and technology (NIST) along with NTNU social research have carried out a study to know the correlation between physical activity and depression in children.


A New Study finds Children who are Physical activite suffer less from depression


Researchers examined under 800 children when they are six years old and conducted follow-up examination for them when they are eight or ten years old. They measured the physical activity of children with accelerometers that served as kind of pedometers. Researchers also interviewed the parents regarding children's mental health. They found that children who are physically active showed fewer symptoms of depression when they are examined after two years compared to the children who are less physically active. It seems physical activity plays a protective role against depression


Earlier studies in adults and young people found that sedentary lifestyles such as computer gaming and watching television area associated with depression. But the current study did not find any correlation between sedentary lifestyles and depression in children. According to Tonje Zahl, a Ph.D. candidate at NTNU children who are involved in rigorous physical activity not only benefits their physical health but it will act in a way to protects against depression. 

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Silje Steinsbekk, associate professor in NTNU's Department of Psychology opined that the study is important as it suggests to increase physical activity in children to ward off depression in the childhood itself rather than trying to control in adulthood. She further stresses the results of the study to be tested in randomized studies wherein the physical activity of children is increased to study its impact on depression compared to children with no physical activity. So the researchers suggest parents should indulge children in more physical activity rather than spending time watching television or on Gadgets.

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