Wanna get high...just run

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New York, Mar 28 (UNI) Running can surely give you a high akin to mood-altering drugs, research said.

Researchers in Germany said the folk belief that running elicits a flood of endorphins associated with mood changes in the brain is true.

The more endorphins a runner's body pumps out, the greater the effect, the New York Times quoted them as saying.

Lead researcher Dr Henning Boecker of the University of Bonn said his team used PET scans combined with recently available chemicals that reveal endorphins in the brain to compare runners' brains before and after a long run.

They recruited 10 distance runners and told them they were studying opioid receptors in the brain, but studied the release of endorphins and the runner's high instead.

The athletes had a PET scan before and after a two-hour run. They also took a standard psychological test that indicated their mood before and after running.

The data showed that endorphins were produced during running and were attaching themselves to areas of the brain associated with emotions, in particular the limbic and prefrontal areas.

''The limbic and prefrontal areas are activated when people are involved in romantic love affairs or when you hear music that gives you a chill of euphoria,'' Dr Boecker said.

''You could really see the difference after two hours of running.

You could see it in their faces,'' he added.

UNI XC SKB PM1252

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