Eat Your Fruits and Veggies

People who eat more vegetables and fruits have significantly better mental health. Those who eat seven servings a day seem to do the best.

A recent study by scientists at the University of Warwick analyzed three different groups of British subjects, a total of 80,000 people. Mental health was measured by seven different instruments, and the relationship held up very well.

While it has long been known that eating a Mediterranean diet is associated with less depression, much of that was attributed to eating fish, a rich source of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). This study focused on fruits and vegetables.

The common factor here is inflammation. Our diets are too rich in corn-based products, fast foods that do not contain omega-3s and also don’t contain the anti-inflammatory properties of colorful fruits and vegetables. So both fish and veggies are very good for reducing inflammation.

Where can you read more about it? You can see the press release here: http://www2.warwick.ac.uk/newsandevents/pressreleases/7-a-day_for_happiness/

What about this inflammation issue in mental illness?

For many years, some psychiatrists have been thinking of depression as an inflammatory disease. A recent review of that evidence is here: http://jnnp.bmj.com/content/83/5/495.

If cortisol drops in depressed persons, they get better much quicker. The stress hormone is necessary for life, but cortisol is also dangerous. When it is too high, our bodies suffer, and when bodies suffer, minds suffer. See this article: http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/cme/content/article/10168/47266

While it has long been known that eating a Mediterranean diet is associated with less depression, much of that was attributed to eating fish, a rich source of omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). This study focused on fruits and vegetables.

Perhaps you’d like to read the actual fruits-and-veggies study. The study ‘Is Psychological Well-being Linked to the Consumption of Fruit and Vegetables?’ by David G. Blanchflower, Andrew J. Oswald, and Sarah Stewart-Brown is available here http://bit.ly/KenPopeHappinessWellbeingFruitsAndVeggies.

By |2016-11-26T09:18:09+00:00October 15th, 2012|Articles, Core Happiness Skills, Health, Psychotherapy|0 Comments

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