Depression Improved with Simple Diet Changes

A version of what's known as the "Mediterranean diet" may help depressed patients, according to new research published in the journal BMC Medicine and reported by Sumathi Reddy in the WSJ.  Patients who ate this simple diet, partially including fish, beans, whole grains, and green vegetables, experienced improvements in their mood within the 12 week study.  It included "...67 people diagnosed and already being treated for a major depressive disorder."

While definitely encouraging, the article also cautioned "...that the study provides no evidence that diet changes could replace traditional treatments for depression; but it could be beneficial as an add-on treatment."

According to Interim Healthcare, the following dietary recommendations, considered a modified version of the Mediterranean diet, were given to the treatment group:

  • fruits
  • vegetables
  • legumes
  • lean red meats
  • eggs
  • chicken
  • low-fat and unsweetened dairy products
  • whole grains
  • raw and unsalted nuts
  • olive oil
  • fish

A 2015 mental health statistic from Healthline states that "...350 million people worldwide suffer from depression. It is a leading cause of disability..." so it certainly warrants continued study. As a result, most health insurance carriers offer free education on balanced diets and health nutrition.