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Health

Exercise Can Stop Mood Swings

I feel like I can speak for most of us when I say that, at some point in your life, you’ve heard the words, “you really need to exercise more.” You may start questioning yourself. You think, “Have I gained weight?” or “Why would they say that?” 

People have told me to exercise for a pretty unexpected reason; it was because of my “moodiness.” When my mom told me to start working out because of my “constantly changing moods,” I was confused. I will openly admit that my mood swings were pretty bad. However, I had no idea that there was a correlation between really bad mood swings and exercising. I got online, did some research and I was extremely surprised at what I found. There is a direct correlation between moods and regular exercise. In every person’s body, there is a hormone called serotonin. Serotonin is released during physical exercise, and it makes you feel good. This is why serotonin’s nickname is the “feel good hormone.”  

I definitely had a serotonin imbalance during my mood swings. One minute, I would be completely engaged with my family, and then, five minutes after that, I would want to be alone and shut myself in my room. This wasn’t normal for me. This happened when I was around 15 years old, when puberty is making all of our bodies go haywire. What I failed to notice was that my moods significantly impacted my relationship with my mom and the other members of my family. Because my serotonin levels were way off, I was harming our relationship.

After I started to work out, I felt a lot better. My moods were not as polarized and I was generally happy for the entire day, with no sudden drops. This not only helped my relationship with my mom and family at home, but it positively impacted my overall outlook on life. I had no idea that simply working out every day would make me feel so much better, and more confident in my body at the same time. I paired working out everyday with healthy eating which meant that I completely knocked out processed food.  This processed food was concentrated with so many bad things and eating them made me feel even worse. There is a certain satisfaction when you get off the treadmill, probably dripping sweat, and you have an apple instead of something processed.

Thanks to my mom, who was so supportive during the process, we converted our household to an entirely healthy eating home. We cut out carbs and sugar, and focused more on vegetables and protein during the week.  I couldn’t have made this change without the help of my mom, who cooked healthy and fresh meals for my sister and I every night, even after coming home from a long and stressful day at work. 

What I learned from this experience was that moods can significantly impact your relationships with others. Even if they are a family member you live with and your relationship with them is a “given,” it is not healthy to make them suffer when you are constantly moody. It is a negative energy for everyone, and it may affect the rest of the household as well.

Working out and eating healthy is a great tool that can be simple and easy for everyone. It can be as short as 15 minutes a day, and it has an amazingly positive impact on your mind and your body. What is there to lose?

Michaela is a Childhood Education Major with Concentrations in Math and Spanish at Manhattan College. She will be continuing her studies in the Masters program at Manhattan, and earn a Masters Degree in Special Education. She was a member of Her Campus at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA and is now the Campus Correspondent and Senior Editor at Manhattan! She is beyond excited to be a Jasper and that she found her home at MC!   
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