Your diet may put you at risk for depression, according to a new study. The study also found that depression was more likely in middle-aged and older women who were immigrants to Canada compared to women born in Canada.
"It has been found that lower intake of fruits and vegetables has been linked to depression in both men and women, immigrants and those born in Canada," said Dr. Karen Davison, president of the Quantum University Health Sciences program at Quantum University. Surrey, BC, who led the study. "Men were more likely to experience depression if they consumed higher levels of fat or lower levels of omega-3 eggs. For all participants, lower grip strength and high nutritional risk were associated with depression.
Fruit and vegetable consumption was protective against depression in our study, which was also found in previous studies. For this connection there may be liability against inflammatory and antioxidant components in fruits and vegetables. "
Different minerals and vitamins (eg magnesium, zinc, selenium) present in fruits and vegetables can lower plasma concentrations of C-reactive protein in the plasma, a marker of low levels of depression-associated inflammation.
We were interested in learning that omega-3-unsaturated fats are inversely related to depression in men. Future research is needed to investigate pathways, but it is plausible that an increased concentration of omega-3 fatty acids in the diet will affect the fluidity of the central nervous system's cell membranes and phospholipid composition, which may alter the structure and function of the body and affect serotonin and dopamine neurotransmission. "
Yu Lung, co-author and doctoral student at the Faculty of Social Work at Factor-Inventas University of Toronto (FIFSW)
Depression was linked to chronic pain and at least one chronic health condition for both men and women, the study found. "This finding highlights the importance of health care workers being aware of the mind-body relationship in the hope that alleviating chronic pain can facilitate better mental health," said co-author Dr. Hongmei Tong, assistant professor of social work at McEwan University. in Edmonton.
"In addition to dietary intake, it is important to consider the impacts of early life, including immigration status, education and income, as these are also key to the mental health of older Canadians," co-author Chen (Lamson) Lynn, a candidate for doctor at FIFSW.
For female immigrants, the study also found that depression was more likely in middle-aged and older women than in Canadian-born women.
The links between immigrant status and depression can be attributed to many factors. "Among women, but not men, immigrant status was associated with depression," said senior author Professor Esme Fuller-Thomson of HIFSV and director of the Institute of Lifestyle and Aging. "Older female immigrants in this study may have reported depression as a result of the significant stress associated with moving to a new country, such as insufficient income, overcoming language barriers, facing discrimination, adapting to different cultures, reduced social support networks, and their education and work experience to be unrecognized. "
"Surprisingly, male immigrants, who face many of the same problems with settlement, did not have a higher level of depression than their Canadian-born peers," said co-author Dr Karen Kobayashi, Associate Professor of Research Studies and Graduate Studies at social sciences professor at the Department of Sociology and research associate at the Institute of Aging and Lifelong Health at the University of Victoria. "Although we did not have data to find out why there was a gender difference, it may be that in these older couples it was the husband who initiated the immigration process and the wives may not have much choice as to whether or not they want to leave their homeland." .
The study was based on an analysis of the Canadian Longitudinal Study on Aging Data and included a sample of 27,122 men and women aged 45-85, of whom 4,739 were immigrants. The article was published this month at BMI Psychiatry.
"The findings of the study can help to define programs and policies that can help immigrants transition into Canadian culture positively," Dr Davison added. "In addition, this investigation helps emphasize the need to take into account programming and nutrition policies relevant to all Canadians."
Davison, KM, et al. (2019) Depression in middle and older adolescence: the role of immigration, diet and other determinants of health in the Canadian Longitudinal Study of Aging. BMI Psychiatry. doi.org/10.1186/s12888-019-2309-y.