Housework makes you happy, according to the latest medical research.
A study for the British Journal of Sports Medicine has found that household chores such as scrubbing and vacuuming not only keep your house clean but can be good for your mental health too.
At least 20 minutes’ work that incurs breathlessness can help with depression, stress and anxiety. Doing the housework and walking regularly can cut symptoms by 20%, while taking part in sports at least once a week reduces the risk by a third.
Researchers say the harder the work and more often you do it the better the effect: light dusting does not count.
Such exercise could also delay ageing amongst the middle-aged and elderly.
The researchers say they do not know why exercise has such a beneficial result – and admit that people who have mental health problems may be less likely to exercise in the first place.