Scientists say that the refusal of meat makes people depressed. Vegetarians are outraged
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Research has shown a connection between diet and depression, but green dieters refuse to believe it.
For decades, scientists have studied the relationship between diet and health, both physical and mental. In a new study, scientists have concluded that giving up meat can lead to the fact that a person becomes more prone to depression. But not everyone is ready to accept such results, writes the Daily Mail.
In a new study, a team of scientists from the Federal University of Rio Grande do Sul looked at the eating habits of more than 14,000 middle-aged people, ranging from 35 to 74 people. The Brazilians were asked to fill out special questionnaires and then meet with psychiatrists.
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It should be noted that recently in Brazil, which is famous for its “meat diet”, an increase in the popularity of vegetarianism is recorded. However, it still remains small – out of 14,000 people surveyed, only less than a hundred said they had given up meat. During conversations with psychiatrists, subjects were asked to describe their depressive experiences, as well as the feelings they experienced at these moments.
Later, scientists took into account lifestyle factors, including smoking, body weight, physical activity and use alcohol and compared them with the number of depressive experiences. The results showed that vegetarians are slightly more than twice as likely to experience negative episodes as meat eaters.
However, not everyone agrees with these conclusions. For example, Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center nutritionist Mary Mosquera-Cochran says the results don't represent the entire group of vegetarians. According to the nutritionist, such a study may apply, for example, only to Brazilians. She also noted that although the relationship between diet and depression scores has indeed been found, the reasons for this relationship are still unknown.
Chris Bryant, a psychologist from the University of Bath, also entered the discussion. According to him, a higher level of depressive states in vegetarians can be observed due to watching videos with footage of animal cruelty. The psychologist believes that most vegetarians have given up meat due to animal cruelty and have probably watched several documentaries about it. As a result, feelings of depression can arise from the fact that “most people prefer to look the other way” and not notice the problem.