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depression

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Exercise Lowers Depression in School Age Children

Increasing physical activity in grade school may reduce the incidence of depression.

Almost 800 children in Norway were assessed for moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) at ages 6, 8, and 10 years old. Researchers found those with higher levels of MVPA at 6 and 8 years old experienced fewer symptoms of depression 2 years later. Each hour of MVPA per day resulted in about 0.2 fewer depression symptoms, similar to the results obtained by psychosocial intervention programs.

PositiveTip: Encourage your schools to make certain each day includes time set aside for MVPA.

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A Lot of Depression Goes Untreated!

Two-thirds of U.S. adults who screen positive for depression go untreated.

When almost 50,000 adults completed detailed health questionnaires, 8% screened positive for depression. Only 29% of those who screened positive received any kind of treatment within the next year. Yet almost 80% of those with untreated depression had seen a medical profession with a year. 

PositiveTip: Depression is a treatable issue. If you think you may be depressed find help with an appropriate health care professional. 

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Exercise Benefits Depression

Physical activity improved the quality of life in depressed patients.

A carefully designed, randomized, controlled 12-week study of 106 adults with nonpsychotic major depression with limited response to medication found both high- and low-dose aerobic exercise resulted in significant improvements in psychosocial functioning and quality o

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Importance of Love and Connections

Health destroying habits are frequently used to numb the pain of depression.

Canadian researchers studied 222 survivors of heart attacks. Six months after the heart attack those who were depressed were 4 times more likely to be dead than those who weren't depressed. These findings were independent of cholesterol levels, blood pressure, weight and even smoking. 

PositiveTip: People who are lonely and depressed are much more likely to get sick and die prematurely compared to those with a strong sense of love, connection, and community.

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Teen Age Depression--the "Other" STD

Every day more than 27,000 youth in the U.S. become infected with a STD.

In the U.S. an estimated 20 million new infections of sexually transmitted diseases (STD) occur annually, half of which are shouldered by America's youth. The Centers for Disease Control acknowledge that abstinence is the surest way to prevent these diseases. Dr. Meg Meeker, a pediatrician, suggests teen depression is the "other" STD and urges parents to openly talk with their children about these issues.

PositiveTip: Parents, do not gloss over the dangers of teenage sex. Encourage abstinence instead.

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Don’t Ignore the Mental Battle with Cancer

Most cancer patients suffer with untreated depression.

A recent series of studies have found that cancer patients are 3-6 times more likely to be depressed but 75% aren't getting treatment for it. Depression can threaten a patient’s life if it sabotages their will to live and persevere through treatment. Researchers found that a nurse-led solution that integrated antidepressant drugs, physical activity and problem-solving therapy significantly reduced depression in cancer patients.

PositiveTip: Be sure to treat both body and mind if you, or a loved one, must battle cancer.

PositiveTip for

Don’t Ignore the Mental Battle with Cancer

Most cancer patients suffer with untreated depression.

A recent series of studies have found that cancer patients are 3-6 times more likely to be depressed but 75% aren't getting treatment for it. Depression can threaten a patient’s life if it sabotage’s their will to live and persevere through treatment. Researchers found that a nurse-led solution that integrated antidepressant drugs, physical activity and problem-solving therapy significantly reduced depression in cancer patients.

PositiveTip: Be sure to treat both body and mind if you, or a loved one, must battle cancer.

Press Article   Research Articles

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School Sports Improve Teens Mental Health

Playing team sports is associated with less depression and better self image in students.

Canadian researchers tracked the school sport participation and mental health of 853 students from grades 8-12. They found that after 5 years, those who were involved in teams sports at school had less depressive symptoms, lower perceived stress and a more positive self-image. Specific causes aren't clear, but researchers hypothesize it may be related to the social bonds fostered in playing together.

PositiveTip: Encourage your teen to join a school team sport they enjoy.

Press Release   Journal Article

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Depression Predictor of Alzheimers?

Brain tissue buildup associated with depression may predict Alzheimer's diagnosis later.

Alzheimer's is the most common form of dementia. There is little to be done for treatment so prevention is key. Researchers know that a buildup of the brain protein beta-amyloid is predictive of Alzheimer's. When comparing depressed and non-depressed patients amongst 371 people, researchers found that patients classified with severe depression had a 15% increase in beta-amyloid buildup.

PositiveTip: Invest in mental health for yourself and your loved ones. Social support, counseling and learning coping skills will improve your quality of life.

Press Release. Journal Article.

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Eat Well, Think Well

Your dietary choices may influence your risk of depression.

Depression is a common and serious mental disorder. A new 21-study meta-analysis of diet and depression found that eating a healthy diet (high fruit, vegetable and whole grain intake) lowered the risk of depression by 16% compared to the average. A"western diet" (high in refined grains, processed meat, snack foods high in sugar and saturated fat) raised the risk by 17%. A very interesting association, but not yet causal proof.

PositiveTip: Eat a healthy diet and get exercise--it could help reduce your risk of depression.