Eating fruits and vegetables is an essential part of a healthy diet, but increasing your intake can boost your emotional well-being in a couple of weeks.
It is not news that eating fruits and vegetables is an essential part of a healthy diet, but its benefits are not limited to physical health. New research shows that increased fruit and vegetable consumption could improve psychological well-being in as little as two weeks.
In a study carried out by the team of Dr. Tammlin Conner from the Department of Psychology at the University of Otago in New Zealand, it was observed that those adults who took extra fruits and vegetables for 14 days experienced an increase in motivation and vitality.
Eating more fruits and vegetables improves mental health
According to WHO, adults should consume at least 2 pieces of fruit - or two cups, if it is small fruits such as strawberries, cherries, blueberries ... - and about two or three cups of vegetables daily. These foods can help reduce your risk of obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and even some types of cancer.
But, in addition, in recent years studies have begun to appear that relate the consumption of fruit to mental health, as pointed out in this study published in 2014. In this new study, which we are talking about today, Dr. Conner will try go a little deeper into the subject.
Eating fruits and vegetables increases motivation and vitality
Researchers recruited 171 students between the ages of 18 and 25 for the study who were separated into three groups and observed for two weeks.
One group continued their usual diet, another group personally served themselves two extra servings of fruits and vegetables (carrots, kiwi, apples, and oranges) daily, and the third group were provided vouchers for those extra servings for free and were they sent text messages reminding them to eat more fruits and vegetables.
At the beginning and end of the study, participants underwent psychological evaluations to determine their mood, vitality, motivation, possible symptoms of anxiety or depression, and other indicators of mental health and well-being.
The researchers found that the subjects in the second group, that is, the students who had personally increased the servings of fruits and vegetables on the menu for two weeks were the most consistent and, in addition, showed an increase in vitality and motivation. In the other two groups there were hardly any changes.
But it doesn't take your slump away
Where no improvement was observed was in symptoms of anxiety and / or depression in any of the groups. According to the authors, this is because to determine this it would be necessary to extend the study in time to know the longer-term effects.
The ketogenic or keto diet, which involves eating low carbs, moderate protein and high fats, is widely popular for aiding quick weight loss. However, a new study has found that there may be better ways to shed kilos and cut back on your calorie intake. A study published in Nature Medicine analysed both keto diet and, plant-based low-fat diet, to see which one is more effective for fat loss. Led by Kevin Hall, a scientist at National Institutes of Health, the study was conducted on a small group of 20 people, where half of them were asked to follow the keto diet, and the other half were asked to follow a high-carb, low-fat, plant-based diet.