smiling woman painting in an art class

How Staying Active Keeps You Happy

Regularly leaving the house to catch a movie, visit a museum, or see a play may reduce your chance of becoming depressed as you age.

Improving your health doesn’t always mean going to the gym or carefully planning your meals for the week. Sometimes, it means traveling out of the house for a little fun, according to a recent study published in the British Journal of Psychiatry.

The study, which examined data from the English Longitudinal Study of Aging, found that people older than age 50 who regularly attend movie screenings, performances, and exhibitions had a lower incidence of becoming depressed than those who do not. Of 2,000 people studied, those who went on these types of outings every few months had a 32% lower risk of depression. Those who went more frequently—every month or more—saw a 48% lower risk.

Perhaps most interesting is the fact that these benefits were seen regardless of whether people had much of a social life otherwise. Simply getting out and engaging in cultural activities can promote mental stimulation, physical activity, and social interaction—all of which can benefit your health.

So go ahead. Get out there and have some fun!

 If you’re feeling depressed or think you or a family member might benefit from behavioral health services, call 715.717.4272 or visit Prevea Behavioral Care.

You may also be interested in “3 Benefits of Thankfulness.”