British researchers recently published a study in the journal Scientific Reports exploring a connection between sugar intake and mental health in men.
The researchers analyzed data from the Whitehall Study II, which consisted of over 10,000 participants. The original study period was 1985–1988, with 11 follow-up phases between 1989 and 2013.
During part of the study and its subsequent follow-up phases, researchers recorded sugar intake through 15 items, including cakes, cookies, sugar in coffee and tea, and soft drinks.
Participants completed, as part of the study, the General Health Questionnaire and Center of Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale to determine mental health.
What the researchers discovered was that after 5 years, there seemed to be no associations for mental disorder incidents and sugar intake in women, but there seemed to be such an association in men.
In other words, the more sugar men ate, the more likely they were to also experience incidents of depression.
In addition, researchers found that sugar was as high as 2-3 times the recommended level. They suggest that policies promoting lower sugar consumption may support depression prevention.
This supports other studies finding a connection between sweet foods and mental health.
As we’ve been saying for over 20 years, nutrition affects mental health.
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