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Is Fish the Answer to Reducing Depression?

New research shows that people who incorporate fish into their diet are less likely to be depressed. Men saw that after eating more fish, the mental illness was reduced by 20 percent, while women saw a 16 percent decrease. The omega-3 fatty acids in the food seem to alter the structure of brain membranes as researchers hypothesize.

Affecting an estimated 350 million people, depression has become a major contributing factor to bad health. Traditionally, being cautious of what is going into our body has been a good prevention method. Although the correlation between fish and the reduction of depression is still yet to be confirmed, the protein, vitamins and minerals in fish are found to help with depression in adjusting the activity of neurotransmitters, dopamine and serotonin.

"Many studies have investigated the associations between food consumption and depression risk," told Professor Dongfeng Zhang of the Medical College of Qingdao University to the Daily Mail. "Furthermore, a meta-analysis published recently indicated that a healthy dietary pattern, characterized by a high intake of fruits, vegetables, fish and whole grains, was significantly associated with a reduced risk of depression. However, it is not yet clear which component of the dietary pattern would be responsible for the protective effect."

The study, which was published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health, analyzed all research regarding the relationship between fish consumption and depression over 13 years. The n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids in fish may be important factors in the function of the brain and nerve cells associated to depression.

Although the exact science behind this correlation still further study, new information on minimizing depression is definitely something to take into consideration.

Photography by: Flickr: Creative Commons/ Luciano Ramo

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