Fruits and veggies aren’t just good for your heart — they’re good for your smile, too. New research shows that eating fruits and veggies can actually boost happiness levels.
Researchers at the University of Warwick, England, and the University of Queensland, Australia, followed 12,385 randomly selected subjects via food diaries and psychological tests. They were observed in 2007, 2009 and 2013, and the results showed that participants felt better for every extra daily portion of fruits and veggies, whether tinned, frozen, dried or fresh — up to eight portions per day.
Amazingly, “people who changed from almost no fruits and veggies to eight portions of fruit and veg a day would experience an increase in life satisfaction equivalent to moving from unemployment to employment,” the study reads. That’s a huge leap in happiness!
“The fruits and vegetables do not have to be prepared in any special way,” Warwick researcher Andrew Oswald told the New York Daily News. “However, French fries will not count,” he adds.
The mood-boosting effect isn’t immediate, researchers suggest, but kicks in within two years — all the more reason to get started and try veg eating now.
Eating meat, on the other hand, is likely to have quite the opposite effect. A new paper by JAMA Internal Medicine links eating red meat to a higher risk of death. The research also showed that replacing animal protein with plant protein led to a decreased risk of death.
Other studies have linked meat, dairy and egg consumption to heart disease (the number one killer in the U.S., but preventable with a plant-based diet), type two diabetes, and many types of cancer — and even found that a meat-heavy diet is as bad as smoking.
The science is clear: eat more produce = feel better. And with all the animals you’ll leave off your plate, you won’t be the only one smiling. Visit TryVeg.com to get started today.