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Vegging Out Beats Depression


Eur J Nutr 2021 Mar 29.  doi: 10.1007/s00394-021-02532-0

Study Summary

Study of Australian men and women (n = 4105) aged > 25 years had dietary intake assessed by Food Frequency Questionnaire at baseline, then at 5 and 12 years with depressive symptoms assessed at 12 years.  

At 12 years, those who at a median of 317 g/day of fruits and vegetables/day (an apple weighs about 80 grams, a cup of lettuce about 100 grams) had  an odds ratio for depressive symptoms of OR: 0.80; 95% CI: 0.69, 0.95) compared to those in the lowest fruit and vegetable intake (median 223 g/day).

Colorful fruits and vegetables:  yellow/orange/red and leafy green vegetables drove this association.


Higher vegetable diversity (4–6 different vegetables/day) was associated with a 24–42% lower odds of having depressive symptoms when compared to < 3 different vegetables/day.

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Contributed by Frank J. Domino, MD, July 21, 2021