Study finds eating pickles may reduce anxiety
Whether you're a fan of pickles themselves or other pickled foods, recent research shows that fermented foods have some serious mental health benefits.
A recent William & Mary study shows that young adults who eat fermented foods are less likely to experience social anxiety. The findings came from researching the dietary habits of 700 college students, and they will be published in the August issue of Psychiatry Research.
The benefits from the probiotics in fermented foods seem to have the greatest effect on people who are at genetic risk for social anxiety disorder that is measured by neuroticism.
William & Mary Psychology Professor Matthew Hilimire said:
The main finding was that the students who consumed more fermented foods had reduced social anxiety, but it's important to note that those effects were qualified by an interaction that involved neuroticism. The study made it very clear that the relationship and correlation was strongest amongst people that were high in neuroticism.
"It is likely that the probiotics in the fermented foods are favorably changing the environment in the gut, and changes in the gut in turn influence social anxiety. I think that it is absolutely fascinating that the microorganisms in your gut can influence your mind."
So maybe it's true: You really are what you eat. What do you think? Tell us in the comments below!
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