Many people know that eating fresh fruit and veggies each day is good for your physical health. It turns out eating plenty of them may also make you happier.
In one British study , about 14,000 adults answered questions about what they ate and their mood. Those who reported feeling down in the dumps said they ate fewer than 3 servings of produce each day. Those who ate 5 servings or more of fruits and veggies had the brightest moods. In another study , adults who ate a fruit- and veggie-rich Mediterranean diet had more positive feelings and fewer bad emotions.
You may not be able to travel around the Mediterranean Sea, but you can eat like those who live in that part of the world. They often live long and healthy lives, without working at it. Research shows they don’t have cancer as often, or as much heart disease .
Far from being a fad, the Mediterranean diet is a basic way of eating, often backed by doctors. It was ranked No. 1 by a panel of health experts in the 2019 U.S. “U.S. News & World Report: Best Diet Rankings .”
It has easy steps:
Happy You're Eating Healthy You may get a feel-good boost of knowing you're eating healthy. You know that fruits and veggies form the cornerstone of a healthy diet, so you should feel proud of yourself for placing them on your plate.
Healthy compounds in produce also can help your brain function the right way, improving your mental health. Star nutrients include:
Some studies also suggest that antioxidants in fruits and vegetables, including vitamins C and E, may help fight a process in your body that starts cell damage. The jury is still out, but it's likely antioxidants in fruits and vegetables may help keep your mood intact and protect against depression. Talk to your doctor if you're feeling depressed and ask if changes in your diet might help.
Which to Choose? The amount of fruits and veggies you should eat each day can differ with your age and health. Talk with your doctor or nutritionist about what is right for you.
Then make your own mood-boosting shopping list. Try these picks. They're easy to find, low-cost and can be added to meals simply.
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Last Updated 10012018Y0096_WEB_OK_CONNECT19_C