German and Bangladeshi researchers recently published an article in the German academic journal Gesundheitswesen, showing a connection between diet and depression in women of child-bearing age.
The researchers studied the mental health and diet habits of roughly 2,600 young women from nearly 100 villages in rural Bangladesh. About 1 in 5 of the women had screened positive for major depression.
The bad news
The researchers discovered 3 areas in which dietary habits negatively affected mental health.
- Women for whom food insecurity was moderate to severe were double, or even triple, more likely to have depression.
- Having a diet where women ate the same small number of foods doubled the chance of depression.
- A chronic lack of energy was associated with a nearly 40% higher likelihood of having depression.
The good news
On a positive note, researchers found that when women ate foods from 5 nutrient groups, they we less likely to have depression. So, what were these 5 groups?
- Vitamin A-rich foods
- Vitamin C-rich foods
This is one more study in a growing body of research showing a connection between what we eat and our mental health.
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