Fiber is a typically recommended component of a healthy diet because it can be good for health in a lot of ways, from managing weight to reduction in the risk of heart disease, diabetes, and some cancers. The current study shows that it could be associated with a reduced depression risk, particularly in women who are premenopausal.1✅ JOURNAL REFERENCE
Depression is a serious and common mental health issue that can affect an individual's ability to perform day to day activities and is also a suicide risk factor. It's estimated that over 264 million individuals around the world experience depression, with numbers growing every year. Depression is a lot more common in women, with several theories as to why this is so. Hormone level changes in women who are perimenopausal have been associated with depression.
Due to the prevalence and serious implications of depression, many studies have been carried out to consider treatment options beyond antidepressant usage. Lifestyle interventions, such as exercise, diet, and mindfulness, could help in reducing depression risk. Researchers wanted to specifically look into the connection between consumption of dietary fiber and depression in women by menopause status in this study that involved over 5,800 women of a variety of ages.
Prior research has already indicated that fiber benefits mental health, but this study categorized the association in postmenopausal and premenopausal women. A wider range of ages were also included and women who had had surgical, as well as natural, menopause were also involved.
An inverse association was established between consumption of dietary-fiber and depression in premenopausal women after other variables were adjusted for, with no significant difference reported in postmenopausal women. Studies have indicated that depletion of estrogen may play a part in the reason why postmenopausal women aren’t benefitting as much from an increased consumption of dietary fiber, because gut microorganism balance in postmenopausal and premenopausal women is affected by estrogen.
The depression and dietary fiber connection may be partly attributed to gut-brain interactions, since it's theorized that gut-microbiota composition changes might impact neurotransmission. Fiber improves the diversity and richness of gut microbiota.
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