Let Food Be Your Medicine

Young Adults and Mental Illness

There have been so many articles in papers and magazines on mental illness this year with so many reasons cited for its cause but up until recently I haven’t seen any mention of diet. I only need to pop into town when it’s break time or home time for our local school and I see not just one but dozens of children laden with soft drinks, sweets and crisps. I see Mums in cafes feeding toddlers biscuits and cake and so many in supermarkets with trolleys that are overflowing without containing any real food. It’s not a shock to me that mental health problems amongst teenagers are rising.

But at last I’ve seen a report on a link between diet and mental health from a paper published by Macquarie University in Australia. ” Modifying diet to reduce processed food intake and increase consumption of fruit, vegetables, fish and olive oil improved depression symptoms in young adults” It gave evidence that it was the food that was improving people’s mood, rather than people turning to junk food because they were depressed.

It’s only a small study but hopefully a start. At the same time another study found that many toddlers taste burghers before broccoli and crisps before cabbage so we have a long way to go. It’s not rocket science, just common sense but hopefully the tide is turning.