People who regularly consume fish, fruit and vegetables reduce their chances of suffering from depression, according to scientists at London’s University College. They looked at the diets of nearly 3500 British civil servants and discovered a “protective effect” in those who ate a healthy diet, compared with participants whose diet included processed meats, sweetened desserts, fried foods, refined cereals and high-fat dairy products.
The researchers hasten to point out that a bad diet doesn’t necessarily cause depression. But healthy eating seems to help stave off the condition.
They speculate that the benefits may derive from three sources: antioxidants in fruits and vegetables, thought to protect the cells from damage; folic acid in leafy greens, which protects brain tissue; and omega-3 fatty acids in fish, which can help to prevent heart disease like metabolic syndrome (syndrome x) and cognitive decline such as Alzheimer’s Disease.