Everyone has heard this – fruits and vegetables are essential for a healthy lifestyle. It’s not revolutionary that consuming fruits and vegetables benefit the body, but researchers have proved that they also boost psychological well being. With the right diet, results can be seen in as low as two weeks.
According to a study lead by Dr. Tamlin Conner from New Zealand’s University of Otago, adults with a regular consumption of fruits and vegetables for fourteen consecutive days showed enhanced energy and motivation.
The study included 171 students who were further divided into three groups. The students enrolled were mostly between the ages of 18 and 25. Each group was given a different eating pattern. Group A’s eating cycle wasn’t changed, Group B was given daily reminders to eat fruits and vegetables, and Group C was personally given two extra portions of fruits and vegetables.
All three groups were psychologically evaluated at the start and end of the experiment to test their mood level, anxiety, depression, motivation and energy levels. At the end of the experiment, Group C had improved psychological well being while the other two groups showed no change or improvement.
This was the first study of its kind that showed positive results over a short period of time. While many may argue that fresh fruits and vegetables can only be beneficial longterm for children or just for the physical wellness of an adult, this study proves otherwise. A regular intake of fruits and vegetables can flourish the energy and motivation of young adults.
To improve mental health, these are the things that need to be considered.
How Much Is Enough?
The Agricultural Department of the United States of America believes it is important for adults to consume 2 cups of vegetables and fruits daily. Another benefit to adding these two cups, is it will lessen the risk of heart disease, obesity etc.
Does Quality Matter?
Individuals need to be aware of the type of produce they consume. Benefits were only seen with fresh fruits and vegetables versus canned or frozen. Fruits such as grapefruit, kiwi, oranges, carrots, and apples are best for consumption.
Small, but Powerful
This initial and small scale study has given researchers enough data to start carrying it out on a larger scale. If there’s any indication it’s that, if done correctly, the consumption of fruits and vegetables can improve the mental health of consumers.