Katie's Diary

Mood Food

18th March 2015

At ubu we are always looking for new ways to encourage and enable the people we work with to feel healthy, happy and strong.

ubu has been a pioneer in promoting ways to increase wellbeing through exercise, finding inspiring activities to improve quality of life for the people we serve and enabling people to make the best dietary choices to achieve all-round wellness.

Recent research by the University of South Australia suggests that a traditional Mediterranean style diet may not only improve our physical health but also benefits the quality of our mental well-being too.

Healthy food researchers at the university have discovered that this kind of diet may also improve the life quality of people with depression. They found that the people in their study, a group of 82 adults with depression, who followed a Mediterranean diet, were happier and reported an improved quality of life than those who did not.  

At ubu we think this is a significant finding worth looking into. We know that a Mediterranean-style diet is high in beneficial omega 3 fatty acids. It consists of eating a high proportion of vegetables, pulses, fruit, nuts, seeds and olives in most meals. Add extra virgin olive oil as the main dietary fat with fish for protein and the researchers think you have an almost perfect diet. Alongside this, they recommend keeping a low consumption of processed food, sweets and red meat.

The lead researcher, Natalie Parletta, says that “Emerging evidence now suggests that a Mediterranean style diet may be beneficial for improving depression and mental health. Omega 3 fatty acids are highly concentrated in the brain and…they may play a role in improving mental health and stability.”

“There is a high overlap between heart disease and depression – and these are leading causes of morbidity and mortality worldwide. If we can show that diet and nutrition can improve mental health this has wide reaching implications for empowering people to improve their quality of life…” Dr Parletta says.

ubu is committed to ensuring that the people we work with have the very best information available to them when they are making healthy eating plans and choices about the best diet for themselves. It is important that we all have the opportunity to make informed choices. 

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