Research reveals that kiwifruit offers surprising mood-boosting effect

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kiwifruit-boosts-mood(NaturalHealth365)  When was the last time you enjoyed a kiwifruit?  You might glance at the fuzzy brown fruit when walking through the produce section of your local grocery store only to take a pass.  If the prospect of peeling and slicing kiwifruit is a natural deterrent, rest assured you are not alone.  Though kiwi has pesky brown skin that resembles fuzz, it can be eaten whole after thoroughly washing.

A recent study published in the British Journal of Nutrition shows that eating at least one kiwifruit daily is in your best interest.  The data reveals kiwifruit improves mood, especially during those dark and depressing winter months when the sun rarely shines.

Boost your mood and vitality this winter with sliced kiwifruit

The kiwi study was conducted by University of Otago researchers based in New Zealand.  The write-up details how kiwifruit improves energy, mood, and well-being.  Kiwi boosts mood in merely four days.  The fruit is high in vitamin C, which will help to improve your vitality and mood while combating depression.

In addition to kiwi, the researchers also analyzed the time it took for vitamin C supplements to improve mood.  The analysis lasted a total of two months.  The study authors divided 155 adult participants into three groups:

  • One group consumed two kiwifruits per day
  • Another group took a daily vitamin C supplement
  • The third group received a daily placebo

The participants relayed the details about their well-being through surveys taken on smartphones.  Those who consumed two kiwifruits per day quickly enjoyed improvements in both mood and vitality.  In less than half a week’s time, kiwi-eaters felt significantly better.  However, the height of the mood boost was experienced at the two-week mark.

Is kiwifruit more impactful than vitamin C supplements?

There is plenty of debate about whether eating kiwifruit or taking vitamin C supplements is better.  In general, dietitians and nutritionists agree vitamins are better absorbed when consumed in food form than liquids or supplement tablets.  The results of the latest kiwi study echo this belief.

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Of course, this would be worth noting, if you’re severely deficient in vitamin C, supplementation is always a good thing to consider to correct nutritional deficiencies.  Now, back to the study.

The study results show kiwifruit has a more pronounced impact on mood and vitality than vitamin C tablets.  Though vitamin C tablets made a positive impact on mood, it was not as significant as that of kiwifruit.  The group that ingested vitamin C supplements reported improved mood up until the 12th day of the study.

The benefits of vitamin C are attributable to its ability to synthesize neurotransmitters and peptide hormones to catalyze the enzymes necessary for a positive mood and normal brain functionality.

Let’s address the “why” of kiwifruit’s superiority to vitamin C.  The combination of kiwi’s vitamin C and additional nutrients amounts to a whole greater than the sum of its parts for a potent mental health improvement.  In addition to vitamin C, kiwi contains compounds such as vitamin B9 (folate), potassium, and dietary fiber.

Health experts tend to agree that dietary fiber likely contributes to gut health.  A healthy gut microbiome is linked to enhanced mental health and mood.  Potassium is also linked to higher levels of vigor and less depression.  Moreover, kiwi’s phytonutrients, such as carotenoids and flavonoids, are tied to lower levels of oxidative stress that play a role in mental health and mood.

Also worth noting, the greatest improvement in mood and vitality was measured in those who had low vitamin C base levels at the beginning of the study.  We would also be remiss to overlook that those in the study’s vitamin C and placebo groups were 50% Asian.  Those in the kiwifruit group were 30% Asian, meaning there might be a racial component at play here, as it is known that Asians tend to have lower vitamin C levels than other races.

Other creative ways to boost your mood in the winter months

Tasty slices of sweet kiwifruit aren’t the only way to enhance your mood during the doldrums of winter.  Consider adding a light box to your desk to brighten your mornings when there is minimal or no sun peeking through the clouds.  Also referred to as SAD (seasonal affective disorder), these lights lift the spirit by mimicking the sun’s light, fooling the brain into thinking it is spring or summer.  In response, the brain releases serotonin, which makes you feel content.

If the sun is shining, take a work break to eat lunch outside and enjoy a walk.  Exercise at least three times a week during the winter.  Eat a variety of organic, whole foods every single day.  Be mindful of your social connections by trying to interact with people in person instead of resorting to screen-based interactions.  All of this will enhance your mood.

Sources for this article include:

Cambridge.org
Studyfinds.org


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