MIND MATTERS: How exercise affects mental wellbeing
SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Hold on a second if you’ve been thinking about selling that old treadmill. Many health experts say people who exercise regularly have better mental health, emotional wellbeing, and lower rates of mental illness. It also seems to help in treating some mental health conditions, like depression and anxiety.
KSLA spoke with three mental health specialists with Willis-Knighton, who all stress that mental and physical health play a role in maintaining a balanced life.
“Healthy mind, healthy body, but I also say healthy body, healthy mind, so when you feel good about yourself, you are aware of your mental health, you are in communication with your physician or counselor, you listen to them, you do the best you can do to have a purposeful life,” said Dr. Devanshi Jani, a psychiatrist.
Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner Chandra Walker-Target says when it comes to exercise, it’s important to just try to at least do what you’re capable of, like walking. Getting control of your weight and diet both affect your mental health.
“I suggest for my patients, you exercise, get into an exercise program. Most people think they have to be strenuously involved. Just getting out, doing a little walking every day, do what you’re capable of doing. Diet is also important. Kinda’ get control of your weight. Exercise is very, very important when it comes to mental health,” said Walker-Target.
Nurse Practitioner Kirsti Peavy, who deals with substance abuse addiction, says she suffers from anxiety and that having an accountability partner while working out helps her tremendously.
“I’m a very big believer in physical activity. I believe in exercise daily to deal with these issues. There’s research on top of research to show how physical activity is definitely key to keeping a healthy body and a healthy mind also,” said Peavy.
Dr. Jani says when it comes to mental health as a whole, awareness is key. And remember, you deserve the best out of your life. Find family and friends who support your mental and physical health wellness journey.
“Talk to your doctor, talk to your therapist so that the end of the day, you feel good about yourself,” Dr. Jani said.
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