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Study Claims Meat-eaters Have Better Mental Health Than Vegetarians

(Photo courtesy: AFP Relaxnews/ Helios8/ IStock.com)

(Photo courtesy: AFP Relaxnews/ Helios8/ IStock.com)

The scientists at the University of Alabama reviewed 18 studies with more than 160,000 people to examine the relationship between meat-eaters and their mental condition.

A group of US-based researchers claims in a new study that meat consumers are less likely to be depressed when compared with vegetarians and vegans.

The scientists at the University of Alabama reviewed 18 studies with more than 160,000 people to examine the relationship between meat-eaters and their mental condition.

According to MailOnline, the report of the study concluded that people with a plant-based diet were twice as likely to take prescription drugs for mental illness in their lifetime compared to those who consume meat.

The reading, titled ‘Meat and Mental Health: A systematic review of meat abstention and depression, anxiety and related phenomena’, found one in three vegetarians suffer from depression or anxiety or self-harm. The scientists also mentioned, “Our study does not support avoiding meat consumption for overall psychological health benefits.”

Dr Edward Archer, an author from the University of Alabama, said, “While the risks and benefits of vegan and vegetarian diets have been debated for centuries, our results show that meat eaters have better psychological health.”

He also explained that mental health should be taken into consideration while evaluating the benefits and risks of particular dietary patterns.

To further resonate with the findings of the study, an NHS Consultant Cardiologist put out a statement on Twitter.

“In general, if you want to avoid increased risk of depression, anxiety and self-harm behaviour then do eat meat. If you're vegan or vegetarian for ethical reasons, then please personally invest extra in strategies to protect your mental health,” Aseem Malhotra wrote on the micro-blogging site.

first published:May 01, 2020, 19:51 IST