Sunday, April 20, 2008

Do the dishes to stay healthy!

Here’s something interesting for all of you ladies who are tired of asking husbands to help in housework!
A new study conducted in Scotland and published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine (DOI: 10.1136/bjsm.2008.046243) says that doing just 20 minutes of housework every week is one of the best ways to get rid of depression. The better options being playing a game of tennis or any sport that involves loads of physical activity. In absence of that, there seems to be nothing better than helping in housework. Sounds unbelievable? But that is Mark Hammer and his colleagues at the University College, London, found out after surveying 20000 Scottish people.
The study was conducted as part of the Scottish Health Survey. This is conducted once every three to five years and is carried over two household visits. In the first visit, the participants provide details on their height, weight, physical activity, etc., while in the second visit their psychological stress is measured through the General Health Questionnaire (GHQ-12). The questionnaire has 12 questions which track levels of happiness, experience of depression and anxiety, and sleep disturbance in the previous month. This year’s study found 3200 participants suffering from depression and anxiety.
Hammer and his colleagues further analysed the results of this study and came to the conclusion that people who did at least 20 minutes of physical activity during a week, were the happiest. The easiest way to stay happy and get rid of depression (considering the fast pace at which we lead life), as Hammer found in the study, was to do domestic work! In fact, he concludes that 20 minutes of helping in mopping the floor or doing the dishes helped reduce depression and anxiety by 20%!
So the next time someone says ‘No’ to housework, tell him (or her!) that they should say Yes to stay healthy!

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