Five reasons why exercise is good for your mental health

Exercising releases endorphins. Picture: Freepik

Exercising releases endorphins. Picture: Freepik

Published Jun 12, 2024


Regular exercise has long been recommended for its physical health benefits, but did you know it also has a significant effect on your mental health?

In fact, numerous studies have shown that exercise can help improve mood, reduce anxiety and depression and even boost self-esteem.

Here are five reasons why exercise is good for your mental health.

Releases endorphins

When you exercise, your body releases chemicals called endorphins, which are known to reduce pain and induce feelings of euphoria.

These “feel-good” chemicals can help combat feelings of stress and anxiety, leaving you feeling happier and more relaxed.

Reduces cortisol levels

Cortisol is a hormone that is released in response to stress, and high levels of cortisol have been linked to anxiety and depression.

Exercise has been shown to reduce cortisol levels, helping to alleviate symptoms of stress and improve overall mental well-being.

Improves sleep

Regular exercise can help improve the quality of your sleep, which is essential for maintaining good mental health.

Regular exercise can help improve the quality of your sleep. Picture: Freepik

A lack of sleep can contribute to feelings of irritability, anxiety, and depression, so getting enough exercise can help you get the rest you need to feel your best.

Boosts self-esteem

Engaging in regular exercise can help boost your self-esteem and confidence.

As you set and achieve fitness goals, you’ll gain a sense of accomplishment and pride in your abilities, which can translate to improved self-image and overall mental well-being.

Provides a distraction

Exercise can serve as a healthy distraction from negative thoughts and worries.

Focusing on physical activity allows you to shift your attention away from stressors and instead concentrate on the present moment, promoting mindfulness and relaxation.

IOL Lifestyle