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Study: Going Veg Boosts Mood

A new study shows that transitioning from an omnivorous to a vegetarian diet can reduce stress.

New research published in the health periodical Nutrition Journal suggests that vegetarians may enjoy sunnier moods than their omnivorous counterparts. The study examined 39 omnivores, who were assigned either a meat-heavy, fish-moderate, or completely vegetarian diet, and surveyed after two weeks. Researchers found that omnivores reported experiencing more negative moods—such as anxiety, stress, and depression—than vegetarians, possibly due to meat’s higher content of arachidonic acid, a component found to create brain changes that impact disposition. Overall, mood scores for vegetarians saw notable improvement after the trial period. The study concludes that “restricting meat, fish, and poultry improved some domains of short-term mood state in modern omnivores.”

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