Women love comfort food whenever they feel lonely, sad or the weather is a bit cold. Any excuse to curl up on your couch with a big bowl of pasta or hot noodles in your hands, or even a generous slice of cake would do.
You know it is not good for you and it certainly does not help you stay fit, but you think that it is good for your emotional health.
A new study aims to demolish that theory, saying that refined carbohydrates actually contribute to a higher risk of suffering from depression, contrary to popular belief.
Nutritionists had warned us before that refined carbs are not only damaging to our waistline but they also make us feel tired and lethargic. Moreover, they spike up our blood sugar levels, which is never good news.
The study was conducted by James Gangwisch and his team of researchers at the department of psychiatry of Columbia University Medical Centre. They focused on the glycemic index of about 70,000 post-menopausal women who took part in the US National Institutes of Health’s Women’s Health Initiative Observational Study from 1994 to 1998.
The women were surveyed in relation to the food they ate, their lifestyle and their mental health. The results revealed that the higher these women’s glycemic index (GI) was, the higher their risk of becoming depressed was as well.
Refined carbohydrates escalates the blood sugar in our body in a much faster and abrupt way than normal carbohydrates do. This was linked to mood switch, constant fatigue, lack of energy to do various things and other signs of depression.
Even if the study is observational and further research needs to be carried out o see if similar results could be recorded with a larger sample that would include people from other categories, the authors of the paper published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition strongly recommend that we limit the consumption of refined carbohydrates regardless of our age and gender.
Thus, we can easily replace white bread and bagels with whole-meal bread and cereal, we can substitute cakes with fruit and try to include more vegetables in our diet.
Image Source: goodhousekeeping