Eating Fruits And Veggies Each Day Can Keep Stress Away
Who doesn’t want to feel zen? There’s nothing like the feeling of inner peace and tranquility. And there’s good news for you: increasing your intake of fruits and vegetables reduces your stress, according to a new study.
The research published by The British Medical Journal Open found that consuming three to four servings of vegetables each day led to a 12 percent lower risk of experiencing stress compared to just eating one or two servings. Eating five to seven servings cut the risk of stress by 14 percent compared to eating zero to four servings.
The findings were especially true for women, who were likely to experience reduced stress by 23 percent from consuming five to seven servings of fruits and veggies compared to counterparts who only consumed zero to one serving.
The study’s sample size was 60,000 Australians above the age of 45. Researchers leveraged a 10-item questionnaire looking at whether participants were experiencing anxiety or depression to assess their stress levels. They were also asked to give short answers to questions on their daily intake of fruits and vegetables.
Dr. Melody Ding of the University of Sydney’s School of Public Health said, “This study shows that moderate daily fruit and vegetable consumption is associated with lower rates of psychological stress.” She added, “It also reveals that moderate daily vegetable intake alone is linked to a lower incidence of psychological stress. Moderate fruit intake alone appears to confer no significant benefit on people’s psychological stress.”
This isn’t the first study to detect mental health benefits from consuming extra fruits and vegetables. A recent study conducted at the University of Otago in New Zealand found that giving young adults high-quality fruits and veggies or a voucher for them, “resulted in improvements to their psychological well-being over a 2-week period.”
Moreover, another study published in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health found that adults who ate seven or more servings of produce a day had a 42 percent lower risk of death. (And there are plenty of other foods that help to increase your longevity, according to science!).