Fruit, vegetable intake associated with mental wellbeing: study
Vegetables are sold at a market. (AP Photo/Matt Rourke)
Published Wednesday, September 24, 2014 11:03AM EDT
Eating five servings of fruits and vegetables per day was associated with better mental wellbeing in a recent study at the University of Warwick in the U.K.
In the study, researchers worked with data from over 14,000 participants in the Health Survey for England.
Thirty three and a half per cent of those with high mental wellbeing reported eating five servings a day. Of this group, only 6.8 per cent ate less than one portion.
Of the rest of participants with high mental wellbeing, 31.4 per cent ate three to four servings of fruits and vegetables per day and 28.4 ate one to two.
Of the participants, 44 per cent were male and 56 per cent were female, implying that the association applies equally to both genders.
All involved were over 16 years of age and their mental wellbeing was assessed using the Warwick-Edinburgh Mental Wellbeing Scale (WEMWBS). About 15 per cent of participants were categorized as having "high" mental wellbeing and another 15 per cent were in the "low" category.
The remaining 16 to 84 per cent fell somewhere in the middle, according to the study, which was published in the British Medical Journal.
In 2012, the same research team found that wellbeing peaked at seven portions per day of fruits and vegetables. This study was published in the journal Social Indicators Research.