Study finds 10 minute-run benefits the mood

A team of researchers have found that 10 minutes of a running session can benefit pleasure levels and boosts brain function.
Representative Image (Image Credit: ANI)
Representative Image (Image Credit: ANI)


The study has been published in the 'Scientific Reports Journal'. As per Fox News, in a study, a team of scientists at the University of Tsukuba in Japan aimed to determine the acute effect of a single bout of running on mood, executive function and neural substrates in the prefrontal cortex. 
Twenty-six participants completed both a 10-minute running session on a treadmill at "the most popular running condition" and a resting control session in randomized order. 
The authors assessed executive function using Stroop interference time from the colour-word matching Stroop task and mood using the Two-Dimensional Mood Scale questionnaire before and after both sessions. 
Prefrontal hemodynamic changes - or blood flow changes - while performing the Stroop task were investigated using functional near-infrared spectroscopy. 
They concluded that running resulted in significant enhanced arousal and pleasure levels compared to the control and caused a significantly greater reduction of Stroop interference time and increase in oxygen-haemoglobin brain signals in bilateral prefrontal cortexes.
Additionally, the researchers found a "significant association" among pleasure level, Stroop interference reaction time and the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortexes - which they noted are "important brain loci" for mood regulation and inhibitory control.
"To our knowledge, an acute moderate-intensity running has the benefit of inducing a positive mood and enhancing executive function coinciding with cortical activation in the prefrontal subregions involved in inhibitory control and mood regulation," the authors said. 
"These results together with previous findings with pedalling imply the specificity of moderate running benefits promoting both cognition and pleasant mood," they added. 
They also noted that neural mechanisms for running-elicited cortical activation have remained unclear and that specific features of running may benefit brain activation by enhancing blood flow velocity in the middle cerebral artery.
Co-authors Chorphaka Damrongthai and professor Hideaki Soya told Medical News Today that they were "surprised" by the results. The publication noted that almost all previous studies had used pedalling instead of running. 
"Running may stimulate the prefrontal cortex more broadly to benefit mood and executive function than other forms of exercise that do not require as much coordination of weight-bearing activity, such as pedalling," the pair said in a statement. 
Medical News Today highlighted potential study limitations, including its small scale and that the mood scale is self-reported.

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