Research Impact: Generalised anxiety disorder is prevalent and costly, and common frontline treatments, such as antidepressants and cognitive behavioural therapy, have been shown to have negative side-effects and to be only moderately efficacious. Given the prevalence and individual and economic burden of anxiety disorders, strategies that facilitate the prevention of generalised anxiety disorder are urgently needed. The current study found that meeting World Health Organisation minimum physical activity guidelines is associated with 57% lower odds of developing generalized anxiety disorder, with stronger associations seen for increased doses of physical activity. This paper adds to the growing evidence of the protective benefits of physical activity for future mental health, including depression and suicidal ideation, and importantly highlights the protective effects of meeting physical activity guidelines.
McDowell CP, Dishman RK, Vancampfort D, Hallgren M, Stubbs B, MacDonncha C, Herring MP (2018) Physical Activity and Generalized Anxiety Disorder: Results from The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA). International Journal of Epidemiology doi: 10.1093/ije/dyy141 (IF:8.36; Q1: Public, Environmental & Occupational Health – SCIE)