Exercise is medicine for the body and the brain. Studies have shown that aerobic and cardiorespiratory exercise increase white and gray matter in the brain, respectively. Gray matter is responsible for the majority of processing that occurs in the brain, while white matter is more involved in communication within the brain and between the brain and spinal cord—all of which are important for memory function.
So, how much movement do we need to maintain optimal mental health? One cross-sectional study published in the Lancet Psychiatry reveals the sweet spot for reaping all the mental wellness benefits: 30 to 60 minutes three to five times a week is all you need (of course, more movement is great!) to support mental well-being and improve your mood.