Good sleep, exercise, raw fruits and veggies — ScienceDaily

j

by Sil Pancho

}

10.17.2021


Getting good quality sleep, exercising, and eating more raw fruits and vegetables predicts better mental health and well-being in young adults, a University of Otago study has found.

The study, published in Frontiers in Psychology, surveyed more than 1100 young adults from New Zealand and the United States about their sleep, physical activity, diet, and mental health.

Lead author Shay-Ruby Wickham, who completed the study as part of her Master of Science, says the research team found sleep quality, rather than sleep quantity, was the strongest predictor of mental health and well-being.

“This is surprising because sleep recommendations predominantly focus on quantity rather than quality. While we did see that both too little sleep — less than eight hours — and too much sleep — more than 12 hours — were associated with higher depressive symptoms and lower well-being, sleep quality significantly outranked sleep quantity in predicting mental health and well-being.

“This suggests that sleep quality should be promoted alongside sleep quantity as tools for improving mental health and well-being within young adults,” Ms Wickham says.

Along with quality sleep, exercising, and eating more raw fruits and vegetables — in that order — were three modifiable behaviours which correlated with better mental health and well-being in young adults.

Depressive symptoms were lowest for young adults who slept 9.7 hours per night, and feelings of well-being were highest for those who slept 8 hours per night.

Well-being was highest for young adults who ate 4.8 servings of raw fruit and vegetables per day; those who ate less than two servings, and also more than eight servings, reported lower feelings of well-being.

“Sleep, physical activity, and a healthy diet can be thought of as three pillars of health, which could contribute to promoting optimal well-being among young adults, a population where the prevalence of mental disorders is high and well-being is suboptimal,” Ms Wickham says.

Senior author, Associate Professor Tamlin Conner, of the Department of Psychology, says most prior research examines these health behaviours in isolation of each other.

“We showed that they are all important for predicting which young adults are flourishing versus suffering.”

She also stressed the study’s findings were correlations only.

“We didn’t manipulate sleep, activity, or diet to test their changes on mental health and well-being. Other research has done that and has found positive benefits. Our research suggests that a ‘whole health’ intervention prioritising sleep, exercise, and fruit and vegetable intake together, could be the next logical step in this research,” she says.

Story Source:

Materials provided by University of Otago. Note: Content may be edited for style and length.



Source link

HalfwayFoods.com is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Follow us on Social Media

Featured Articles

Comments

0 Comments

Related Articles

Corn Salsa Recipe – Peas and Crayons

Corn Salsa Recipe – Peas and Crayons

Quick, easy, and totally delicious, this corn salsa recipe is ready to rock your socks! Feel free to use fresh, frozen, or canned corn for this awesome appetizer. The amount of this salsa that I can (and will) devour in a sitting is out of control. Now that...

Chicken Fried Rice – Cook Republic

Chicken Fried Rice – Cook Republic

Everybody loves the smoky Chicken Fried Rice from their favourite Chinese restaurant. Now you can easily make it at home with my easy, fool-proof, authentic, restaurant-style recipe. Ready in just 20 minutes, absolutely delicious and the perfect weeknight...

Moroccan Butternut Squash Stew with Chickpeas

Moroccan Butternut Squash Stew with Chickpeas

Published: Apr 29, 2024 · by Nicole · Updated: Apr 29, 2024 · This post may contain affiliate links. This Moroccan Butternut Squash Stew is packed with tender butternut squash, protein-packed chickpeas, and Moroccan-inspired spices. It's a little bit savory, a...