A 2012 study of 80,000 people found that happiness and strong mental health is higher for those who consume daily portions of fruit and vegetables. They found that well-being peaks at seven portions of fruit and vegetables a day, at 2.8 ounces per serving. Researchers used seven different measures of well-being, and purposely made the sample size very large so that they could account for demographic, social, and economic variables. Even after doing so, the results still showed that those who consume more fruits and vegetables are happier.
Almost every single fruit and vegetable on earth offers some sort of health benefit (and most offer multiple benefits). However, until now little has been done to determine whether there is a relationship between fruits and vegetables with mental health. Because it is difficult to discern between the mental health of those who eat lots of fruits and vegetables, and those who live an overall healthy lifestyle that includes eating fruits and vegetables, it is important that the relationship between diets and mental health continue to be explored.
In the meantime, keep eating those fruits and veggies — the secret to happiness might just be in your kitchen right now. Here are 10 quick tips to eating your fruits and veggies. And if you can’t get your kids to eat their fruits and veggies, try juicing them!