Mar 012013

Your diet can influence your mental health and risk of depression. Chronic illnesses such as clinical depression are rising at a fast rate due to poor diet and lifestyle.

A study following more than 12 000 volunteers over a course of six years determined that those individuals with the highest consumption of trans and saturated fats from fast food had a 48% increased risk of depression.

Polyunsaturated fats from fish and fish oil, as well as monounsaturated fats including extra virgin olive oil lower the risk of depression. The director of the SUN Project, Miguel Angel Martinez-Gonzalez commented “we discovered that these types of healthier fats, together with olive oil, are associated with a lower risk of suffering depression.”

The team conducting the study found that polyunsaturated fats from fish and fish oil as well as monounsaturated fats including extra virgin olive oil influenced the occurrence of depression.

The study concludes that the incidence of depression is escalating at a much greater rate in the western developed countries of Northern Europe and America due to a diet highly concentrated in processed foods known to be laden with trans and saturated fats. Southern European countries that traditionally follow a Mediterranean-style diet including plenty of fish and olive oil have a much lower occurrence of depression.

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