Vegetarian diets are associated with healthy mood states: a cross-sectional study in Seventh Day Adventist adults


The physical health status of vegetarians has been extensively reported, but there is limited research regarding the mental health status of vegetarians, particularly with regard to mood. Vegetarian diets exclude fish, the major dietary source of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), critical regulators of brain cell structure and function.

Omnivorous diets low in EPA and DHA are linked to impaired mood states in observational and experimental studies.

Methods: We examined associations between mood state and polyunsaturated fatty acid intake as a result of adherence to a vegetarian or omnivorous diet in a cross-sectional study of 138 healthy Seventh Day Adventist men and women residing in the Southwest. Participants completed a quantitative food frequency questionnaire, Depression Anxiety Stress Scale (DASS), and Profile of Mood States (POMS) questionnaires.

Results: Vegetarians (VEG:n=60) reported significantly less negative emotion than omnivores (OMN:n=78) as measured by both mean total DASS and POMS scores (8.32+/-0.88 vs 17.51+/-1.88, p=.000 and 0.10+/-1.99 vs 15.33+/-3.10, p=.007, respectively).

VEG reported significantly lower mean intakes of EPA (p<.001), DHA (p<.001), as well as the omega-6 fatty acid, arachidonic acid (AA; p<.001), and reported higher mean intakes of shorter-chain alpha-linolenic acid (p<.001) and linoleic acid (p<.001) than OMN. Mean total DASS and POMS scores were positively related to mean intakes of EPA (p<0.05), DHA (p<0.05), and AA (p<0.05), and inversely related to intakes of ALA (p<0.05), and LA (p<0.05), indicating that participants with low intakes of EPA, DHA, and AA and high intakes of ALA and LA had better mood.

Conclusions: The vegetarian diet profile does not appear to adversely affect mood despite low intake of long-chain omega-3 fatty acids.

Author: Bonnie BeezholdCarol JohnstonDeanna Daigle
Credits/Source: Nutrition Journal 2010, 9:26



Published on: 2010-06-01



News Provider: 7thSpace Interactive / EUPB Press Office

Copyright by the authors listed above - made available via BioMedCentral (Open Access). Please make sure to read our disclaimer prior to contacting 7thSpace Interactive. To contact our editors, visit our online helpdesk. If you wish submit your own press release, click here.

Social Bookmarking
RETWEET This! | Digg this! | Post to del.icio.us | Post to Furl | Add to Netscape | Add to Yahoo! | Rojo



Comments

There are no comments available. Be the first to write a comment.


You need to enable Javascript to post a comment.


Custom Search

Username
Password










© 2014 7thSpace Interactive
All Rights Reserved - About | Disclaimer | Helpdesk