Association Between Physical Activity and Risk of Depression A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis
Barreto Schuh, F
American Medical Association
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Pearce, M., Garcia, L., Abbas, A., Strain, T., Barreto Schuh, F., Golubic, R., Kelly, P., et al. (2022). Association Between Physical Activity and Risk of Depression A Systematic Review and Meta-analysis. JAMA Psychiatry https://doi.org/10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2022.0609
Importance: Depression is the leading cause of mental health-related disease burden and may be reduced by physical activity but the dose-response relationship between activity and depression is uncertain. Objective: To systematically review and meta-analyse the dose-response association between physical activity and incident depression from published prospective studies of adults. Data Sources: PubMed, SCOPUS, Web of Science, PsycINFO, and the reference lists of systematic reviews retrieved by a systematic search up to 12/11/2020 with no language limits. Study Selection: We included prospective cohort studies reporting physical activity at ≥3 exposure levels and risk estimates for depression with ≥3000 adults and ≥3 years of follow-up. Data Extraction and Synthesis: Data extraction was completed independently by two extractors and cross-checked for errors. A two-stage random-effects dose-response meta-analysis was used to synthesise data. Study-specific associations were estimated using generalized least squares regression and the pooled association was estimated by combining the study-specific coefficients using restricted maximum likelihood. Main Outcomes and Measures: The outcome of interest was depression including: 1) presence of major depressive disorder indicated by self-report of physician diagnosis, registry data, or diagnostic interviews; 2) elevated depressive symptoms established using validated cut-offs for a depressive screening instrument. Results: Fifteen studies including 191,130 participants and 2,110,588 person-years were included. An inverse curvilinear dose-response association between physical activity and depression was observed, with steeper association gradients at lower activity volumes; heterogeneity was large and significant (I2=74%; P<.001). Adults accumulating half or fully meeting the physical activity recommendation, equivalent to 2.5 hrs/week moderate intensity activity, had 18% (95%CI 13 to 23%) and 25% (95%CI 18 to 32%) lower risks of depression, respectively. There were diminishing additional potential benefits and greater uncertainty at higher volumes of physical activity. If less active adults had achieved the current physical activity recommendations, 11.5% (95%CI 7.7 to 15.4%) of depression cases would have been prevented. Conclusions and Relevance: This dose-response meta-analysis of associations between physical activity and depression suggests significant mental health benefits of being physically active, even at levels below the public health recommendations. Health practitioners should therefore be encouraging any increase in physical activity to improve mental health.
Pearce, Strain, and Brage were supported by UK Medical Research Council (MC_UU_12015/3, MC_UU_00006/4). Pearce and Brage were supported by the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre Cambridge (IS-BRC-1215-20014). Pearce, Abbas, and Woodcock were supported by the European Research Council (ERC) under the Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation Programme (grant agreement 817754) (this material reflects only the author’s views, and the Commission is not liable for any use that may be made of the information contained therein). Garcia, Abbas, and Woodcock were supported by METAHIT, an MRC Methodology Panel project (MR/P02663X/1). Garcia, Abbas, and Woodcock were supported by the Centre for Diet and Activity Research (CEDAR), a UKCRC Public Health Research Centre of Excellence funded by the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK, Economic and Social Research Council, Medical Research Council, the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) and the Wellcome Trust (MR/K023187/1). Schuch was supported by the Coordenação de Aperfeiçoamento de Pessoal de Nível Superior in Brasil (CAPES, Finance Code 001). Golubic was supported by a Gates Cambridge Scholarship. Mok was supported by the National Science Scholarship from Singapore, A*STAR.
Medical Research Council (MR/K023187/1)
Medical Research Council (MR/P02663X/1)
Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust (CUH) (146281)
European Commission Horizon 2020 (H2020) ERC (817754)
External DOI: https://doi.org/10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2022.0609
This record's URL: https://www.repository.cam.ac.uk/handle/1810/336273
Attribution 4.0 International
Licence URL: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/