Higher BMI, More Chances of Depression in young girls, says study

Higher BMI, More Chances of Depression in young girls, says study

A recent study has revealed that fitness in young girls and the development of symptoms of depression in them are inversely related.

Lead researcher of the study was Camilo Ruggero who is an assistant professor of psychology at the University of North Texas. In this study, he has found link between depression and higher body mass index (BMI). BMI is a measurement used to assess if a person has a healthy weight for their height.

He also found out that middle school was the peak time when fitness levels drop off for most of the girls and their weight increase largely and so did their depression levels.

Ruggero said, "We don't know exactly why there is a link but it is probably a number of things. It might be better self-esteem, healthier weight or getting more positive reinforcements that go along with being active, and/or it could be more biological".

He also indicated towards the biological fact that certain proteins and hormones that are associated with less depression respond to increased exercise.

To conduct this research, Reggero measured the fitness of more than 400 North Texas sixth-graders based on how many shuttle runs they could complete within a specified amount of time. Along with this, he also recorded the personal assessment of these sixth-graders about their physical strength and endurance.

On Thursday, Ruggero presented the findings of his study at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association in Washington, D. C.

Dr. Andrew Adesman, the chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York, indicated that this study was not able to show that better fitness levels directly prevented depression.

Though both Adesman and Ruggero emphasized on the fact that fitness confers many advantages.

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