Severe Weather Alert:

All of Central Florida under a tornado watch until 7:00 pm




Sct Thunderstorms
H 85° L 55°
  • cloudy-day
    Current Conditions
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 85° L 55°
  • partly-cloudy-tstorms-day
    Sct Thunderstorms. H 85° L 55°
  • clear-night
    Clear. H 70° L 48°

The latest newscast

00:00 | 00:00


The latest traffic report

00:00 | 00:00


The latest forecast

00:00 | 00:00

What is the DASH diet? Heart-healthy diet may also reduce risk of depression

What is the DASH diet? Heart-healthy diet may also reduce risk of depression

What is the DASH diet? Heart-healthy diet may also reduce risk of depression
Photo Credit: Stephen Chernin/Getty Images
A grocer arranges mangoes in the produce section at Whole Foods January 13, 2005 in New York City. (Photo by Stephen Chernin/Getty Images)

What is the DASH diet? Heart-healthy diet may also reduce risk of depression

People who eat fruits, vegetables and whole grains may experience lower rates of depression over time.

>> Read more trending news

That’s according to new preliminary research published Sunday in the journal American Academy of Neurology, for which scientists examined 964 participants with an average age of 81 for symptoms of depression.

Participants in the study were monitored for symptoms and asked to fill out questionnaires about their eating habits, including how their habits lined up with the traditional Western diet, Mediterranean diet and the DASH diet.

>> On 5 signs you should ask your doctor about depression

The DASH diet (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) is a plan developed to lower blood pressure without medication. The research involved in its development was sponsored by the National Institutes of Health.

According to, the lifestyle meal plan is rich in fruits, vegetables, low fat or nonfat dairy, whole grains, lean meats, fish, poultry, nuts and beans.

>> Related: People with depression are more likely to use certain words — here’s how they express themselves

With a high concentration of key nutrients, such as potassium, magnesium and calcium, the diet has been shown to help lower blood pressure, as well as lower the risk of heart disease, bad cholesterol, heart failure, body weight, diabetes, kidney stones and some kinds of cancer.

Now, researchers say the diet can help reduce risk of depression.

"Depression is common in older adults and more frequent in people with memory problems, vascular risk factors such as high blood pressure or high cholesterol, or people who have had a stroke," study author Laurel Cherian said in a news release. "Making a lifestyle change such as changing your diet is often preferred over taking medications, so we wanted to see if diet could be an effective way to reduce the risk of depression." 

>> On What you need to know before starting the keto diet

The participants involved in the study were divided into three groups based on how closely they adhered to the three types of diets. Researchers found those in the two groups that followed the DASH diet most closely were less likely to develop depression than people in the group that did not follow the diet closely.

The people who adhered to the DASH diet most closely were 11 percent less likely to become depressed over time compared to the lowest group, the study found. 

On the other hand, the participants who closely followed a Western diet, which is high in saturated fats and red meats and low in fruits and vegetables, were more likely to develop depression. 

>> Related: Why more US teens are suffering from severe anxiety than ever before — and how parents can help

But Cherian noted that the research shows only an association and does not prove that DASH diets lead to a reduced risk of depression.

"Future studies are now needed to confirm these results and to determine the best nutritional components of the DASH diet to prevent depression later in life and to best help people keep their brains healthy," Cherian said.

>> On Want to try the Mediterranean diet? Study finds it works only for rich people

Cherian and her team will present the research at the American Academy of Neurology's 70th annual meeting in Los Angeles in April.

According to the World Health Organization, more than 300 million people of all ages suffer from depression, and it’s the leading cause of disability worldwide.

Additionally, approximately 800,000 people die of suicide each year — that’s one person every 40 seconds. From 1999 to 2014, the suicide rate in the U.S. rose by 24 percent. Furthermore, according to recent data released Thursday by Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, suicide rates among 15- to 19-year-old girls doubled from 2007 to 2015, reaching a 40-year high.


What is the DASH diet? Heart-healthy diet may also reduce risk of depression

Read More

There are no comments yet. Be the first to post your thoughts. or Register.

The Latest Headlines You Need To Know

  • A package destined for Austin exploded early Tuesday at a FedEx ground delivery facility in Schertz, northeast of San Antonio, according to federal authorities. San Antonio Police Chief William McManus told the Austin American-Statesman that a second suspicious package was found at the facility and taken by authorities for further investigation. >> READ MORE: Photos: Austin police investigate explosions | For investigators, a race to decode hidden message in Austin bombings | Map shows location of 4 Austin bombs | Austin explosions: 2 men hurt in fourth blast this month | Officials increase reward to $115,000 for information on Austin bombings | Man held in SXSW threat ruled out as bomb suspect, police say | Austin package explosions: 3 blasts appear connected, claim 2 lives, police say | The Roots' SXSW show canceled after bomb threat; man arrested | Austin package bombings: Friends remember victims Draylen Mason, Anthony House | MORE
  • Two parents from Lakawanna County, Pennsylvania, have been arrested after police said that the they left their two children home alone while the mother traveled to Florida. The investigation started when police were alerted to a case of children who had been left alone for weeks. When they visited the home, they found a 10- and 11-year-old alone, in a home that had food, boxes, pills and trash on the floor, WNEP reported. >> Read more trending news  Police said that Nicole Sciortino told them that she was not far away, but then admitted that she was in Florida. She then told the authorities that the children’s father Vincent Licciardello was watching the children.  >>Read: Police: Florida couple left child living alone in trailer for months He told police he dropped them off at Sciortino’s home on March 5 and he would stop by over the following days to give the children food, WNEP reported. Sciortino told police that she didn’t know that it was against the law to leave the children home alone. Both she and Licciardello were arrested, charged with endangering the welfare of children and are free on $10,000 unsecured bail. The children are staying with friends of the family, placed there by children and youth services, WNEP reported.
  • United Airlines is suspending its PetSafe pet cargo program while it reviews the program.  The suspension comes after a series of pet-related incidents, including one death, on the airline. >> Read more trending news  The Chicago Tribune reported that United will honor reservations that have already been confirmed for the service, which books pets in the cargo section of the plane. “We are conducting a thorough and systematic review of our program for pets that travel in the cargo compartment to make improvements that will ensure the best possible experience for our customers and their pets,” United spokeswoman Maggie Schmerin said in a statement to the Chicago Tribune. According to The Wall Street Journal, the airline will stop taking reservations for the program until May 1. Related: Dog dies on United Airlines flight after being placed in overhead bin Spokesman Charlie Hobart told Bloomberg that part of the review of the program includes the airline considering which pets to accept. Bloomberg reported that United had previously been willing to transport dogs with an increased likelihood of in-flight death or injury, such as brachycephalic, of snub-nosed dogs. On March 12, a French bulldog puppy died on a flight from Houston to New York when its owners said a United flight attendant insisted the pet be stored in an overhead bin. United issued a statement saying it took “full responsibility” for the death. “This was a tragic accident that should have never occurred, as pets should never be placed in the overhead bin,” United said in a statement March 13. “We assume full responsibility for this tragedy and express our deepest condolences to the family and are committed to supporting them. We are thoroughly investigating what occurred to prevent this from ever happening again.” Related: ‘She took him out and he was dead:’ Owners of dog that died in United overhead bin speak out On Tuesday, a German shepherd named Irgo was mistakenly flown to Japan in place of a Great Dane. Irgo was supposed to go to Kansas, where his family was moving from Oregon. The dog was reunited with his family Thursday. Related: Dog mistakenly sent on United plane to Japan reunites with family in Kansas On Friday, the airline mistakenly had a pet boarded on a flight from Newark, New Jersey, to St. Louis. Flight 3996 was diverted to Akron, Ohio, when the error was realized, according to airline spokeswoman Maggie Schmerin. The animal was “safely delivered to its owner.” Compensation aas given to passengers on the diverted flight. According to data from the Department of Transportation, United Airlines had the highest rate of airline reports on incidents involving loss, injury or death of animals during air transportation in 2017.
  • A student who opened fire on a classmate at Maryland’s Great Mills High School died Tuesday morning after injuring two people, St. Mary’s County Sheriff Tim Cameron said at a news conference. >> READ MORE: Do video games lead to violence seen in Parkland, other mass shootings? |  How to cope with fears, sadness after a mass shooting | How to talk to your child about traumatic events like school shooting | What to do if you are in an 'active shooter' situation | MORE
  • The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission is looking into a video posted on Snapchat that appears to show an alligator being dragged behind an ATV. WESH reports that the man driving the ATV dragged the tied-up alligator because it was blocking traffic, but investigators say he should’ve called FWC or 911. An FWC officer and a trapper were expected to go out to the man’s home in Mims Monday night to recover the animal. We’ve contacted FWC for an update and to find out if the man will be facing any charges. (Facebook)