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Food security is vital to prevent mental illness

Harold Mandel's picture

Researchers have found that your mental health can be affected by food insecurity.


Although it seems as if there should be enough food on the planet to feed everyone there are nevertheless hundreds of millions of people worldwide who are worried about getting enough food to eat daily. Having to live with the stressors of concerns about where your next meal may come from is not good for your mental health.

There are often discussions about the association between stress and mental illness Yet there is often a lack of attention paid to the need for food security in a tragically misguided mental health system which is in need of a green alternative.

Your mental health can be affected by food insecurity

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It has been reported by MedicalXpress that your mental health can be affected by food insecurity. There are about 795 million people across the world who are victims of food insecurity. Researchers have said food insecurity can have an affect the health of people which goes beyond its impact on nutrition. It has been found in a new study that there is an association between poorer mental health and specific psychosocial stressors with food insecurity worldwide.

There is a stress response generally seen with food insecurity

It has been estimated that almost 30% of people across the world suffer from a common mental disorder such as anxiety, depression, and somatic disorders during the course of their lifetimes. There is a stress response generally seen with food insecurity which may be linked to anxiety and depression. Also when pushed to get foods in ways which are not socially acceptable negative feelings that are associated with depression may be set off. And sensitivities about apparent socioeconomic disparities associated with food insecurity within both households and communities can have an influence on overall mental well-being.

Andrew D. Jones, PhD, who is associated with the Department of Nutritional Sciences, School of Public Health, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan, found that there is a dose-response relationship between food insecurity and poorer mental health. This observed trend has suggested a causal relationship exists between food insecurity and mental health status. Increasing levels of food insecurity may intensify psychosocial stressors which underlie mental health.

This study has been published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. Resesarchers had an objective of determining the association which may exist between food insecurity of individuals with mental health status across the world. There seems to be a clear association worldwide between food insecurity and poorer mental health. A good preventive strategy for mental illness would be to invest in ways to lessen food insecurity for people worldwide.