An article has come out recently which states:
“Raw fruit and vegetables provide better mental health outcomes”
You can read the whole article, published on ScienceDaily, HERE
When I first read it, I thought I was going to see a link between eating more fruits and vegetables and an improvement in mental health.
I wouldn’t have been surprised by this.
I believe that what we eat has a big impact on how we think and how we feel. I also think that our system is very sensitive and if we eat the wrong things we could quite easily go a little out of balance.
Now this is all speculation, but from some of my experiences, I can see why this could be the case.
Anecdotally, many raw fooders have experienced mental health benefits.
Experiences I have heard of have included:
- a happier mood in general and feeling of emotional poise
- a reduction in the symptoms of brain related issues like epilepsy
- a reduction in the symptoms of schizophrenia
- a reduction in the symptoms of depression
One such testimonial comes from Victoria Everett, who talks about how her diet helped her cure the symptoms of depression and schizophrenia.
Is it as easy as just eating more fruit?
No, not always, but it can be a step on the right direction more many.
What this study is actually saying is that there is a difference between eating raw fruits and vegetables and canned or cooked fruits or vegetables.
This summary states:
Researchers have discovered raw fruit and vegetables may be better for your mental health than cooked, canned and processed fruit and vegetables.
The lead researcher states:
“Our research has highlighted that the consumption of fruit and vegetables in their ‘unmodified’ state is more strongly associated with better mental health compared to cooked/canned/processed fruit and vegetables,”
So why would cooking have this effect?
For many decades, raw food leaders have been laughed at for suggesting that cooking not only damages the food and reduces nutrients but may be harmful to us.
But the lead researcher explains it like this:
Dr Conner believes this could be because the cooking and processing of fruit and vegetables has the potential to diminish nutrient levels.
“This likely limits the delivery of nutrients that are essential for optimal emotional functioning.”
So don’t let anyone tell you that there is no difference between raw food and cooked food. Clearly, raw food is superior even to cooked or processed fruits or vegetables.
Finally, the research states:
“Controlling for the covariates, raw fruit and vegetable consumption predicted lower levels of mental illness symptomology, such as depression, and improved levels of psychological wellbeing including positive mood, life satisfaction and flourishing. These mental health benefits were significantly reduced for cooked, canned, and processed fruits and vegetables”
I’m quite surprised that there is a SIGNIFICANT reduction. I don’t know about you, but this inspires me to stick to the raw fruits and vegetables and avoid the fruit in a can, pasteurised and dried fruits.
What Were The Top 10 Raw Foods Related To Better Mental Health?
The top 10 raw foods related to better mental health were:
- dark leafy greens such as spinach,
- citrus fruits,
- fresh berries,
Should You Focus On Those 10?
It’s likely that if these fruits (and notice it is MOSTLY fruits) have a benefit, it is likely that all fruits will have an impact. So find your favourite fruits and vegetables and eat more of them. Just make sure they are RAW.