Feeling down and depressed? Eating furry fruits like kiwi can improve your vitality and mood within four days, claims a study. Co-author Professor Tamlin Conner, from the Department of Psychology at the University of Otago in New Zealand, said the findings provide a practical and accessible way to support people’s emotional well-being.
“It’s great for people to know that small changes to their diet, such as adding kiwifruit, can make a difference in how they feel every day.” Vitamin C intake is associated with improved mood, vitality, well-being and lower depression, while vitamin C deficiency is associated with higher depression and cognitive impairment.
However, Conner said, limited research has evaluated how quickly mood improves after introducing vitamin C supplements or whole food sources. Researchers aimed to fill that gap with an 8-week dietary intervention in 155 adults with low vitamin C.
Participants took a vitamin C supplement, a placebo, or two kiwifruits daily. They then reported their vitality, mood, development, sleep quality, sleep quantity and physical activity using smartphone surveys.
The results, published in The British Journal of Nutrition, showed that kiwi fruit supplementation improved vitality and mood within four days, peaking around days 14-16 and improving from day 14 onwards. Vitamin C, on the other hand, improved mood up to day 12. ..
“Understanding the nuances of when and how these effects occur on a day-to-day basis contributes to our knowledge of the potential benefits of vitamin C-rich foods and supplements on mental health,” said lead author Dr Ben Fletcher from the University.
“It helps us see how what we eat can have a relatively quick effect on how we feel. Our participants had relatively good mental health at the start so there was little room for improvement, but still reported benefit from the kiwifruit or vitamin C intervention,” he said. .
He added that, although vitamin C tablets showed some improvement, the study underscores the potential synergistic effects of eating whole foods like kiwi fruit. “We encourage a holistic approach to nutrition and wellness, including a variety of nutrient-dense foods in your diet.”