Exercise and Happiness Not Linked: Study

Same gene set makes physically active most likely to be mentally fit
By Sam Biddle,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 17, 2008 8:06 AM CDT
Genetics, not environment, may ultimately be responsible for one's mental health, according to a recent study.   (Getty)
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(Newser) – Going for a run might not clear your head in quite the way thought, reports USA Today, and its supposed benefits on mental health may be misguided. Rather, Dutch researchers found that a single set of genes both determines one’s inclination toward exercise and happiness—making the most physically fit the most mentally fit as well.

The study tracked thousands of identical twins, and found that changes in physical activity had no correlation with improved or worsened mental health, contradicting years of conventional wisdom and contrary scientific studies. "I'm not saying exercise might not help someone's mood,” a psychologist in the study said,” but it also may not work at all.”