Ease Depression With a Mediterranean Diet
BY HIV Plus Editors
December 15 2009 1:00 AM ET
Individuals who follow the Mediterranean dietary pattern -- rich in vegetables, fruits, nuts, whole grains, and fish -- appear less likely to develop depression, according to a report published in the journal Archives of General Psychiatry.
The specific mechanisms by which a better adherence to the Mediterranean dietary pattern could help to prevent the occurrence of depression are not well-known, the authors write. Components of the diet may improve blood vessel function, fight inflammation, reduce risk for heart disease, and repair oxygen-related cell damage, all of which may decrease the chances of developing depression.
"However, the role of the overall dietary pattern may be more important than the effect of single components," the authors write. "It is plausible that the synergistic combination in the overall Mediterranean dietary pattern may exert a fair degree of protection against depression."