We have a lot of unhappy people here in the United States. In fact, we are arguably the most unhappy society in the world. Hard to fathom considering we are one of the wealthiest societies in the world. Yet, according to globalresearch.org, we spent a whopping $11 billion on anti-depressants in 2014.
Every human being on the planet has gone through periods of unhappiness. It’s simply part of life. Personally speaking, I went through a bought of unhappiness several years back. You could even say I was depressed. My family was going through some tough times. My business was shuttered. We lost our home. We depleted our savings. I was short tempered and the smallest, most insignificant thing set me off.
Anyway, I remember being at my annual physical and my doctor and I discussed my situation at home. To “take the edge off," my doctor prescribed an antidepressant. I was on it for several months. It killed my metabolism, led to serious weight gain and I felt like a zombi most of the time. Ironically, what was intended to make me happy (or not depressed, I guess) made me unhappy. I was unhappy but I didn’t care that I was unhappy. Wrap your mind around that one! Granted, my wife and kids were happy because dad didn’t care about anything, so they could build a bonfire in the hallway and I honestly wouldn’t have given it much thought. I wasn’t myself. I was apathetic about pretty much anything and everything.
Needless to say, I stopped taking the medication, and I found another doctor. But, a funny thing happened. My new internist wanted to put me on a couple different medications! I didn’t realize happiness came in a pill bottle. I just had to find the right pill.
Certainly, there are those that are truly clinically depressed and medication is a necessity. However, I was not one of them. In my opinion, most people that are on antidepressants should not be.
My prescription for most people is simple — exercise regularly. Exercise is a proven way to affect your overall mood. When you exercise, your body feels more relaxed and calm. When you exercise, your brain releases endorphins, adrenaline, serotonin and dopamine. These chemicals all work together to make you feel good. I know exercise has helped me.
While exercise is not, on its own, a treatment for clinical depression; studies show that exercise can help improve mood temporarily in depressed individuals. In fact, for people with mild or moderate depression, 30 minutes of intense exercise can be as effective as medication for improving mood (Stibich, Mark, Ph.D., “Exercise and Improving Your Mood” about.com, December 30, 2014, http://longevity.about.com/od/lifelongfitness/a/exercise_mood.htm).
Exercise is good medicine. It can be the best medicine.
Now, here comes the hard sell; come to GUTS Training Center, we will sit down with you and discuss your situation. We’ll discuss a plan that is right for you. The best part is we won’t charge you for an office visit!