Eating fruits and vegetables can help curb potential anxiety disorders, according to a new study.
Researchers from the University of Toronto recently released a new study, published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, finding that adults who consume low amounts of fruit and vegetable can increase the likelihood of being diagnosed with anxiety disorder.
Additionally, researchers noted that higher body fat counts can also increase the likelihood of an anxiety disorder.
“For those who consumed less than 3 sources of fruits and vegetables daily, there was at least at 24% higher odds of anxiety disorder diagnosis,” said Karen Davison, the study’s lead author, in a press release. “Increased body fat may be linked to greater inflammation. Emerging research suggests that some anxiety disorders can be linked to inflammation.
Jose Mora-Almanza, an intern with Mitacs Globalink, noted that when total body fat levels were beyond 36%, it increased the chances of anxiety disorder by more than 70%.
The study recorded data from nearly 27,000 men and women between ages 45 and 85. The study noted that certain factors did play a role in who is more prone toward anxiety with gender, income, martial standing, existing health issues, and immigration statues all facotring in.
Karen Kobayahsi, a co-author of the study from the University of Victoria, said that the study found that women are more prone to anxiety disorders than men, which is similar to previous research. One in 15 men suffer anxiety, while one in nine women do as well, according to a press release.
Single individuals had a higher likelihood of anxiety disorders compared to those who are living with a parenter. Income also played a role as one in five with household incomes below $20,000 yearly had trouble with anxiety, which researchers said was more than double compared to people who made more money.
“We were not surprised to find that those in poverty had such a high prevalence of anxiety disorders; struggling to afford basics such as food and housing causes relentless stress and is inherently anxiety inducing,” said Hongmei Tong, an assistant professor of social work at MacEwan University in Edmonton.
Researchers noted one important limitation with the study was that respondents self-reported their medical diagnosis.