Food for mental health; food nourishes the body and mind, so could an effective way to manage depression be found in the kitchen?

A healthy diet is a common feature linked to a positive mental outlook, but the problem with most of the observational research validating this link is that it is hard to tease out which comes first.

In one of the first studies of its kind, a 12-week randomised-controlled trial set out is to explicitly seek to answer the question: if I improve my diet, will my mental health improve? People in the study all presented with depression with the type of diet used based on a Mediterranean-style eating pattern. The results suggest that improving one’s diet may be a useful and accessible strategy for addressing depression as part of a larger treatment plan.

In this podcast, details of the study, dietary intervention and implications for translating the work into practice are covered.

This episode is supported by an education grant from Nestlé Health Science.


Jacka et al. A randomised controlled trial of dietary improvement for adults with major depression (the ‘SMILES’ trial). BMC Medicine 2017;15:23

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