If there’s one concept health researchers have come to agree on it’s this: What you eat matters. Although they don’t always agree on what constitutes a healthy diet, medical experts have long understood that while certain foods can help to improve your physical well-being, others have the opposite effect.

Now, a new collection of evidence clearly demonstrates that what you eat also affects your mental health. A review article published in the journal European Neuropsychopharmacology details the emerging evidence on how our diets affect our moods and mental well-being.

It makes sense, the researchers write, because “the composition, structure, and function of the brain are dependent on the availability of appropriate nutrients.” People with specific mental health conditions—including epilepsy, depression, and anxiety—may need to alter their diets in different ways.

 

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