Researchers in Iran have discovered a link between women who suffer from the disease and their diet.
The study looked at 360 women between the ages of 20-49-years old, who attended different health centres. They were quizzed on the food they had consumed over the past 24 hours and asked to fill in a questionnaire that classed them into three groups: normal mood, mild/moderate or severe depression.
The women were then given individual Dietary Diversity Scores (DDS) based on their eating habits. The researchers found that a one-unit increase in the participant’s DDS led to a 38 per cent reduction in their risk of severe depression.
In short: the more variation in what they ate, the less severe their symptoms.
While these findings are promising, the study’s authors note that more research on this topic is needed. Because they weren’t able to take into account the dietary patterns over a longer time-frame, it couldn’t be established whether the lack of variety was a cause of the disease, or merely a consequence.
Still, it’s important to note that a balanced diet is key in maintaining both a healthy mind and body. After all, as Hippocrates said, “Let food be thy medicine.”