High Mediterranean Diet Adherence Tied to Fewer Anxiety, Stress Symptoms

No such association seen for depression symptoms in older adults
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FRIDAY, May 24, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Adherence to a Mediterranean diet (MedDiet) is inversely associated with the severity of anxiety and stress symptoms in older adults, according to a study recently published in Nutrients.

Lisa Allcock, from the University of the Sunshine Coast in Sippy Downs, Australia, and colleagues examined associations between adherence to a MedDiet and severity of depression, anxiety, and stress symptoms in 294 older adults (aged 60 years and older).

The researchers found that adherence to a MedDiet was inversely associated with the severity of anxiety symptoms (β = −0.118), independent of age, gender, body mass index (BMI), physical activity, sleep, cognitive risk, and ability to perform activities of daily living. There was also an inverse association observed between MedDiet adherence and symptoms of stress (β = −0.151), independent of age, gender, BMI, physical activity, and sleep. However, there was no association seen between MedDiet adherence and depressive symptoms.

"Globally, we're facing an unprecedented aging population, yet despite this longevity, many people continue to struggle with their health and well-being," coauthor Evangeline Mantzioris, Ph.D., of the University of South Australia in Adelaide, said in a statement. "In this study, we showed that when older people adhered to a Mediterranean diet, their symptoms of stress and anxiety declined. It's a big tick for the Mediterranean diet -- through a relatively easy lifestyle change, people can markedly improve their stress and anxiety levels."

Abstract/Full Text

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