For the first time scientists have shown that, in women at least, the consumption of a poor quality diet, high in junk foods, increases the risk for depression and anxiety.
The findings suggest that making healthy dietary choices such as regularly consuming fresh fruits and vegetables and eating whole grains, nuts and seeds, and oily fish, while limiting processed and junk foods, may help to prevent mood disorders.
The scope of the study did not allow the researchers to determine whether women already suffering from depression and/or anxiety may benefit from switching to a healthier diet but plans for a study that will answer this question are being prepared and funding sought. Previous research has suggested that individual nutrients obtained in adequate amounts through consumption of a healthy and balanced diet (e.g. omega-3 fatty acids from oily fish) might be beneficial in the treatment of mood disorders.