We all know that eating a balanced, healthy diet is excellent for our physical health, but a recent study discovered that it may also benefit our mental health.
More specifically, eating more fruit was linked to improved mental health in general and a decline in depressive symptoms.
More than 400 persons in the UK were polled by the Aston University research team regarding their diets, psychological health, and snacking habits.
The connection between food and mental health, which is poorly recognized compared to its effects on physical health, is now more understood because to their research.
After controlling for differences in ages, general health, and amount of activity, they discovered that persons who ate fruit as a snack had lower scores for depression and higher mental wellbeing than those who ate savory, sweet, and vegetable snacks.
The British Journal of Nutrition reported the findings.
The principal author of the study, Dr. Nicola-Jayne Tuck, stated that, overall, “it’s absolutely worth trying to get into the habit of reaching for the fruit bowl.” Despite the fact that the study cannot demonstrate that eating fruit directly enhanced the participants’ mental wellness.
Conversely, those who consumed more “nutrient-poor flavorful foods” had lower levels of mental health.
The study’s findings “may suggest that frequent snacking on nutrient-poor savoury foods may increase daily mental slip-ups, which in turn affects psychological wellness,” writes Nicola in her conclusion.
So why is choosing fruit over vegetables preferred? It’s not that veggies are bad for you; in fact, they are loaded with essential vitamins and minerals.
The way we eat them makes a difference.
Both fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidants, fiber, and vital micronutrients that support normal brain function, but these nutrients might be lost while cooking, according to Nicola.
As we are more likely to consume fruit raw, this may help to explain why it has a bigger impact on our mental health.