Could an implement of moderate exercise be the future to improving depression treatment?

by bmusc1 on March 14, 2014 - 12:40pm

The article “Moderate exercise improves depression parameters in treatment-resistant patients with major depressive disorder” describes what could be, a break through in the treatment of major depressive disorder (MDD).  In addition to the proven facts that exercise can improve cardiovascular health there are also reasons to believe that exercise can also improve ones psychological well being (p.1006).  The goal of the experiment performed was to find if a moderately intensive exercise program could be added to pharmacotherapy to treat MDD.  To test this theory, 150 individuals with treatment-resistant MDD were screened and 33 were chosen from the group. 11 people were prescribed to stay on their current medication plan while, the remaining 22 continued with their medication, but also added in aerobic exercises.  The aerobic exercises consisted of 30-45 min walks five days a week for 12 weeks. After the 12 weeks the data was collected adjustments were made, and the results proved that physical exercise of 30-45 minutes a day can improve in the treatment of pharmacology resistant patients with MDD (p.1010).

      I myself also strongly agree with the use of exercise to improve ones daily functioning abilities.  With exercise comes increased endorphins in the blood stream, and soon a better mood follows.  Almost as if you have tricked yourself into being happy!  I know that after my Crossfit workouts I am always in a better mood then I was when I went in.

This article is a great example of the “question” element to our Critical Thinking Guide text.  In the background portion of the article, the question is clearly stated by saying “This study assessed the impact on depression and functioning parameters of a moderate intensity exercise program, as in adjuvant to pharmacotherapy, in treatment-resistant MD patients”(p.1005).  As the article continued the question and goal of the research stayed consistent.  As the article broke into different segments such as the study design, participants, inclusion and exclusion criteria, study protocol ext. the question was being addressed and steps are taken to find an answer to the initial question.  The tasks performed throughout the study are also steps necessary to fulfill the questions needs to be answered.





Mota-Pereira, J., Silverio, J., Carvalho, S., Ribeiro, J., Fonte, D., & Ramos, J. (2011). Moderate exercise Improves depression parameters in treatment-resistant        patients with major depressive disorder. Journal Of Psychiatric Research, 45(8), 1005-1011. Doi:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2011.02.005


I actually had not heard about the combination on medication and exercise to improve depressive episodes. This is very interesting to learn and influenced me into researching more information about this. Daily exercise definitely will help a person with depression since the endorphins create a rush that simply makes anyone happier and calmer. However, I found out that people who have depression should most likely exercise in groups or with a partner since “strong social support” is one of the most important elements to recover from depression; this is why group therapy is often use for people suffering from depression. I guess one of the best ways to recover from depression is to combine medication with a group exercise with other people who have depression; this way group therapy and exercise could be combine in one.

The title of your article caught my attention immediately, because the content you wrote about is something I took a new interest in, as I recently wrote an article about this subject as well. I spoke about a man named Robert Whitaker who is pushing for drug-free treatment for mental illnesses and has done numerous studies that have shown success in patients suffering from the same illness you mentioned, Major Depressive Disorder (MDD). However, I think you could’ve gone deeper and included what the professionals performing the studies had to say about the results they recovered instead of only naming the basic facts that you found; it could’ve helped strengthen your point. To add to your article, here’s one that talks about a Canadian who fought an addiction with the help of physical activity as well, perhaps you’ll find it interesting: Overall, great article, great writing, and great content! Keep it up!

I found your article very interesting and I like that you bring us a new approach on depression. I also like the way you found of relating yourself to your article. Not so long ago, I did a resume of an article that may interest you: . It is about the Canadian Olympic athlete Clara Hughes that overcame depression especially through doing what she loves, sports. I think it’s a great example of how exercise can improve depression parameters and prove your point.

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