Move Over, Happy Meal®

Some diets reduce risk of depression, studies suggest.

By Matthew Kadey, MS, RD
Apr 18, 2019

Recent research shows how our dietary choices can help turn a frown upside down. In a systemic review of previous studies, researchers from University College London found evidence to suggest that adherence to certain healthy eating patterns—such as the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH), the Mediterranean diet, and an anti-inflammatory diet—is associated with a lower risk of depression, according to the journal Molecular Psychiatry. The reviewers deduced that the cocktail of nutrients and antioxidants in these whole food-focused eating styles likely works to improve brain function, thus reducing the person’s risk of becoming depressed.

In the European Journal of Nutrition, a separate review of research on more than 75,000 people found evidence that a diet with a lower glycemic index can ward off depression. Meals rich in whole grains, vegetables, lean protein and healthy fats naturally rank lower on the glycemic scale. On the flip side, consuming too many processed high-glycemic items like refined grains and soda can drive up blood sugar, which may endanger brain health.

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Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

1 Comment

  1. Avatar Colene Schlaepfer on August 1, 2020 at 11:03 pm

    Hi Dave:
    We are doing well. Took a walk this morning around the little lake behind Folsom High. I am walking well with no hip pain. My neighbor lets us use her pool and I do aerobics often there. Plus chair yoga once a week. And your exercises when the mood strikes me.
    We are both healthy and staying home–groceries online. Our backyard is our new living room. We have 2 tables about 10 feet apart and “have company” there pretty often–family and friends. Helps keep the spirits up. I finished my novel and am taking on some other writing and teaching a zoom class. How are you doing? I like the newsletter. Good idea!

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