As the name suggests, endocannabinoids are chemicals that, like cannabis in marijuana, alter and lighten moods. But the body produces endocannabinoids naturally. In other studies, endocannabinoid levels have been shown to increase after prolonged running and cycling, leading many scientists to conclude that endocannabinoids help to create runner’s high.
Posts Tagged ‘exercise’
A pedometer study shows Americans take fewer steps than people in other countries. One tidbit:
Being single was associated with taking more steps. Single people averaged 6,076 daily steps, compared to 4,793 steps for married people. Widowed participates moved the least, averaging 3,394 daily steps.
Another vote for getting up and moving around: Can Exercise Make Kids Smarter? (NYT)
M.R.I.’s provided a clearer picture of how it might work. They showed that fit children had significantly larger basal ganglia, a key part of the brain that aids in maintaining attention and “executive control,” or the ability to coordinate actions and thoughts crisply…
Just how music impacts the body during exercise…is only slowly being teased out by scientists. One study published last year found that basketball players prone to performing poorly under pressure during gameswere significantly better during high-pressure free-throw shooting if they first listened to catchy, upbeat music and lyrics (in this case, the Monty Python classic “Always Look on the Bright Side of Life”).
Yoga, meditation, pets, nature, and 15 other mood helpers.
Meditation Can Improve Brain Function (PsychCentral)
New study finds new connection between yoga and mood (ScienceDaily)
The Psychology of Nature (Wired)
For years, researchers have known that exercise can affect certain moods. Running, bike riding and other exercise programs have repeatedly been found to combat clinical depression. Similarly, a study from Germany published in April found that light-duty activity like walking or gardening made participants “happy,” in the estimation of the scientists. Even laboratory rats and mice respond emotionally to exercise; although their precise “moods” are hard to parse, their behavior indicates that exercise makes them more relaxed and confident. But what about anger, one of the more universal and, in its way, destructive moods? Can exercise influence how angry you become in certain situations?
Stand-outs this morning from around the web…
ScienceDaily: Combining sex and drugs reduces rock and roll
PsychCentral: Therapist Competency Important for Treatment Success
ScienceDaily: Antidepressants make shrimps see the light
NYT reports study about Activity and Mental Health in Women:
People who are physically active appear to be at lower risk for cognitive impairment late in life, and for women, a new study suggests, physical activity during the teenage years may provide the greatest benefit.
Is there anything running around the block won’t do? Exercise may be an effective and nonpharmacologic treatment option for alcohol dependence.
A new study of the relationship between alcohol intake and wheel-running in hamsters has found that exercise may provide an effective alternative for reducing alcohol intake in humans…