ScienceDaily: Exercise Helps Keep Your Psyche Fit:
"Washington - A new review of psychological research shows that exercise is an effective but underused treatment for mild to moderate depression. The review, published in the June issue of Professional Psychology: Research and Practice, a journal published by the American Psychological Association, also shows there is some evidence that regular exercise may help in the treatment of schizophrenia, alcohol dependence and as a singular treatment for some anxiety disorders and for people suffering from body image problems.
The authors reviewed studies since 1981 in which exercise was used as an intervention in treating individuals with the following clinically diagnosed psychiatric disorders: depression, anxiety, developmental disabilities, schizophrenia, psychosomatic disorders and substance abuse.
The review of research concludes that regular exercise is a viable, cost-effective treatment for mild to moderate depression and may be useful in the comprehensive treatment of more severe episodes of the disorder. Nonaerobic forms of exercise such as strength training are as effective as aerobic exercise in treating depression. The researchers also found that less strenuous forms of regular exercise, such as walking, may be sufficient to demonstrate significant treatment effects, however they note more research is needed to confirm this initial finding.
Other findings from the review include the following: Evidence that exercise is an effective short-term treatment for the reduction of disruptive behavior and for increasing work performance in some people with developmental disabilities"