Eating white bread, rice ups depression risk in women
NEW YORK: Consuming foods rich in refined carbohydrates, such as white bread and white rice, may cause mood changes, fatigue and other symptoms of depression in postmenopausal women, a new study has warned. According to researchers, a diet high in refined carbohydrates may lead to an increased risk for new-onset depression in postmenopausal women.
The study by James Gangwisch and colleagues in the department of psychiatry at Columbia University Medical Centre (CUMC) looked at the dietary glycemic index, glycemic load, types of carbohydrates consumed, and depression in data from more than 70,000 postmenopausal women who participated in the US National Institutes of Health’s Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study between 1994 and 1998. Scientists said that while carbohydrates consumption normally increases blood sugar levels, eating highly refined carbohydrates, such as white bread, rice and junk food, triggers a hormonal response that affects the glycemic index.
This then exacerbates changes in a woman’s mood and triggers fatigue as well as other depression symptoms.
Greater consumption of dietary fibre, whole grains, vegetables and non-juice fruits was associated with decreased risk, researchers said. This suggests that dietary interventions could serve as treatments and preventive measures for depression.
Further study is needed to examine the potential of this novel option for treatment and prevention, and to see if similar results are found in the broader population. The study was published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.