In recent studies, exercise has been revealed to be a useful tool for people who are seeking to conquer their addictions.

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Why it matters: Riverside Recovery reported that exercising helps boost a person’s mood and reduces stress, improving your overall health.

The anti-stress hormone, seratonin, is released as a person increases their heart rate through exercising, which “improves your sense of well-being,” according to the Gateway Foundation.

A review of scientific studies, published in the journal Health Education & Behavior, reported that individuals who have an exercise routine that is regular and consistent have lowered their substance use or have quit using substances.

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Which exercises help in addiction recovery? The Washington Post reported that working out through weight training and jogging can help individuals who are struggling to overcome addictions to “cocaine, opioids, cannabis and alcohol.”

Swimming regularly has been linked to a decreased dependence on morphine dependence and consumption, according to a study published in the European Journal of Pharmacology.

Isaiah House Treatment Center reported that some other exercises that aid in addiction recovery are:

  • Hiking.
  • Walking.
  • Biking.
  • Yoga.
  • Dancing.
  • Group/team sports.
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What they’re saying: “Exercise is fantastic medicine for those struggling to recover from their addiction,” Jeremiah Weinstock, a psychology professor at St. Louis University, told The Washington Post.

The Health Education & Behavior review concluded, “Results affirm that exercise can be a helpful aspect of addiction treatment. Future researchers should investigate different exercise settings and explore exercise maintenance and the long-term outcomes following discharge from treatment facilities.”

Troy Jackson, a man who was once addicted to drugs and alcohol, told U.S. News and World Report that exercising through yoga “gave me rules to live by.”

Jackson continued, “I saw a vast improvement in my body and started to heal. Not only was it a buzz, but there was his altruism that I can share. There’s other ways of getting high. There’s other ways of enjoying life, and I found that on my mat.”