Lower odds of anxiety found with more produce
If we made a list of the health benefits of fruits and vegetables, it’s safe to say – it would be much longer than the infamously long CVS receipt – and that’s saying a lot! From living longer and supporting the fight against chronic diseases to helping achieve and maintain a healthy weight, all forms of fruits and vegetables offer consistently positive nutrition benefits, but a new study suggests our produce friends can also help with anxiety.
In reviewing almost 27,000 participants, Canadian researchers identified a significant inverse relationship between a low daily intake of fruits and vegetables and high levels of anxiety. Published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, low intake was less than 3 servings a day and had a 24% higher risk of being diagnosed with anxiety! They also noted that participants who ate pastries were more likely to have anxiety. Researchers think this either reflects a response to feeling anxious AKA “comfort eating”, or alternatively, that the high fat foods cause inflammation in the gut, resulting in uneasy feelings.
Our #1 tip to increasing how many fruits and vegetables you eat each day is to have a variety on hand. (And if fridge space is at a premium - this list has you covered). Get your 7-10 servings a day with us!
- Hardy fruits and veg keep well at room temperature – think bananas, oranges, apples, sweet potatoes, squash and onions
- Dried fruits without added sugar such as raisins, prunes, mango or pineapple pieces
- Canned items in 100% fruit juice are an awesome pantry staple that make for a quick snack or meal when paired with cottage cheese. Don’t forget your unsweetened applesauce, pumpkin puree and other veggies!
- Frozen items are a prep-free and waste-free way to add nutrition to soups or pastas.
- Don’t forget nuts and legumes such as walnuts, lentils, chickpeas that have also been shown to reduce inflammation and provide essential vitamins and minerals!
Looking for even more ways to fit fruits and vegetables into your family’s diet? Join Dole on social media for fun and engaging recipes, nutritional education, free digital printables and more!
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Published April 2020