“While people usually know that physical activity is important for mood, we now have additional data showing that adequate sleep and less screen time is also critical to reduce depression,” he said in a university news release.
A person’s diet pattern may be partly responsible for exacerbating a depressed mood, according to the study. Surprisingly, more frequent alcohol consumption was associated with reduced frequency of depression in people with depression, according to the study. One reason may be that people with depression are self-medicating with alcohol to manage their moods.
“The results may inform public health policy by further highlighting the important relationship between people being encouraged and supported to engage in a range of health-promoting activities. In particular, maintaining optimal sleep and lessening screen time [which is often an issue in youth], while having adequate physical activity and good dietary quality, may reduce the symptoms of depression,” Sarris said.
The study was published Nov. 11 in the BMC Medicine journal.
Visit the Mayo Clinic’s website to learn more about depression.