Increased comfort and life satisfaction through lots of fruits and vegetables
If you eat a lot of fruits and vegetables, not only do you do something good for your physical health, but you also increase mental well-being. This is the conclusion of a new study from the UK.
Health experts recommend daily eating at least five to ten servings of fruits and vegetables. This provides your body with the necessary vitamins and minerals to protect you from disease. Moreover, such foods can make us happy as Australian scientists have reported years ago. British scientists have reached similar conclusions in a new study.
Positive effect on well-being
It has been known for some time that our daily diet has a significant impact on our health.
For example, high consumption of fruits and vegetables can increase satisfaction and well-being, as British doctors said years ago.
English scientists have reached similar conclusions. According to their study published in the journal "Social Sciences and Medicine", eating more fruit and vegetables can improve well-being.
Changes in fruit and vegetable consumption
Researchers at the University of Leeds and the University of York have found in a long-term study that changes in fruit and vegetable consumption have an impact on mental well-being.
To reach their conclusions, researchers analyzed data from over 40,000 people in the UK.
Participants in the study had to report regularly on their eating habits as well as their mental status. They used a standard test to assess their feelings and concerns on a scale of 0 to 3.
The researchers also looked at alternative factors that could affect wellbeing, such as age, education, income, marital status, employment, lifestyle and health, and the consumption of other foods such as bread or dairy.
Already another part of the work daily
As the two universities report, the study has shown a positive correlation between the amount of fruit and vegetables consumed and the well-being of people.
In particular, the results show that consuming only one portion of fruit and vegetables per day can have a similar effect on mental well-being, such as eight additional days of walking per month.
"While further efforts are needed to prove the cause and effect, the results are clear: people who eat more fruit and vegetables have a higher level of well-being and satisfaction than those who eat less," says Dr. Kurt. Neel Ocean of the University of Leeds in his statement.
Promote better eating habits
"There seems to be evidence of the psychological benefits of fruit and vegetables," says Dr. Kurt. Peter Howley of the University of Leeds.
However, not only in the UK, much of the population still consumes less than the recommended five servings per day.
"Promoting better eating habits can not only be good for your physical health in the long run, but it can also improve mental well-being in the short term," says Dr. Kurt. Howley.
The research was based on previous work in Australia and New Zealand, which showed a link between nutrition and well-being. This could now be controlled on the basis of a much larger sample from the UK.
However, the German Federal Center for Nutrition (BZfE) states in the Communication that it should be considered that pure observational studies cannot prove causal relationships.
According to researchers, it is assumed that certain components of plant foods have a positive effect on the soul. For example, antioxidants and complex carbohydrate degradation products can affect the brain and increase mood.
However, it would also be possible that high intakes of unhealthy fruits and vegetables are consumed less frequently. (Ad)