Mediterranean Diet Beats the Blues

Study finds diet cuts risk of depression by nearly a third
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 6, 2009 8:05 AM CDT
The Mediterranean diet features a high intake of legumes, fruit and nuts, cereals, vegetables and fish, and moderate alcohol consumption.   (Shutter Stock)
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(Newser) – The Mediterranean diet has been shown to cut the risk of cancer and heart disease and researchers now say it can help prevent depression as well. Spanish researchers followed 10,000 subjects for nearly 5 years and found that, even when personality traits and other factors were taken into account, those who followed a diet high in fish, vegetables, legumes and olive oil and light on red meat were 30% less likely to suffer depression.

That's a "large reduction in the risk and this could be very important considering the large burden of disease represented by depression," one researcher told the BBC. "We know how important the Mediterranean diet is in reducing cardiovascular risk factors, and the same inflammatory proteins are also raised in patients with depression."