Per a new study, the likelihood of developing depression is higher for people who are following a vegan or vegetarian diet. The study also states that eating meat can help improve our mental health.
Can Meat Help Improve Our Mental Health? Study Says So
It’s no secret that while the coronavirus carries a deadly disease that can threaten our lives, the circumstances that we chose to box ourselves into in order to help stop its spread have also lead to another serious problem: damage to our mental health.
This is because while the quarantine and social distancing are necessary and effective measures in helping “flatten the curve,” prolonged self-isolation and lockdown can be very damaging to our psyche, in addition to the fear and anxiety that we may feel.
As such, steps to take care of our mental health are encouraged, such as meditation, healthy eating and connecting through social media. And now a new study states that eating meat can also help improve our mental stability.
Meat For Mental Health
The study reportedly looked at 18 past studies that examined the relationship between eating meat and mental health, and came to the conclusion that avoiding meat may be a ‘behavioral marker’ indicating people already with poor mental health. Nevertheless, the study states this claim needs more research.
“Those who avoided meat consumption had significantly higher rates or risk of depression, anxiety, and/or self-harm behaviors. Our study does not support avoiding meat consumption for overall psychological health benefits,” the researchers noted.
Not only that, but it also states that vegans and vegetarians have poorer mental health in general and are more likely to contemplate suicide.
“While the risks and benefits of vegan and vegetarian diets have been debated for centuries, our results show that meat eaters have better psychological health,” Dr. Edward Archer, one of the study authors, said.
“In general, if you want to avoid increased risk of depression, anxiety and self-harm behavior then do eat meat. If you’re vegan or vegetarian for ethical reasons, then please personally invest extra in strategies to protect your mental health,” Aseem Malhotra, a NHS consultant cardiologist, said.