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Tidbit Alert!

Tidbits are bite-sized morsels of wisdom meant to whet the appetite and with any luck kick start a shift in mindset↓

Berries are potent in their antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Berries include fiber, vitamin C, and phytochemical plant pigments such as anthocyanins and ellagic acid, which may be responsible for their health benefits. Research shows a correlation between higher intake of berries and decreased risk for heart disease, Alzheimer's disease, and diabetes (Harvard Health, 2021). Multiple studies validated the health advantages of berries, which include boosting an individual's mood, enhancing brain function, and reducing the risk of developing depression (Rutgers, 2017).

Poor diet is responsible for more deaths globally than tobacco, high blood pressure, or any other health risk (IHME, 2019). The Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME) is an independent global health research center at the University of Washington.

The past several decades have seen an overrepresentation in the manufacturing, sales and intake of ultra-processed foods for many food systems globally, with future projections showing a continued upward trend. The precautionary principle to address ultra-processed food consumption (as well as production and distribution) in new official dietary guidelines developed by governmental and international health organizations is being called for and increasingly adopted. This recommendation is supported by the growing body of evidence showing ultra-processed food consumption contributes to suboptimal mental as well as physical health and mortality (Lane et al., 2022).


The systemic and meta-analysis review by Lane et al (2022) suggests bidirectional associations exist between the intake of ultra-processed food and adverse mental health. The strongest evidence was derived from meta-analyses largely consisting of cross-sectional studies that modelled ultra-processed food consumption as the exposure variable and symptoms of the common mental disorders, depression and anxiety, as the outcome. These meta-analyses demonstrated direct associations, both when depressive and anxiety symptoms were assessed together as well as separately.

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