Lluís Serra Majem and Almudena Sánchez Villegas, researchers from University Institute of Biomedical and Health Research of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (ULPGC), participate in an extensive research study in which they have evaluated the relationship between diet and the depressive symptoms of the Mediterranean population with metabolic syndrome.
The study has been developed by 50 Spanish researchers from Granada, Pamplona, Valencia, Barcelona, Madrid, Vitoria, Palma de Mallorca, Córdoba, Málaga, Seville, León, Elche and Castellón, who publish a research work in the prestigious international magazine Cambridge University Press.
This study, in which José Luis Hernández Fleta, from the Psychiatry Service of the Dr. Negrín Hospital and associate professor at the ULPGC, is also participating, is a cross-sectional evaluation and a two-year follow-up carried out within the study called Predimed Plus.
The study has been developed by 50 Spanish researchers from Granada, Pamplona, Valencia, Barcelona, Madrid, Vitoria, Palma de Mallorca, Córdoba, Malaga, Seville, León, Elche and Castellón
The researchers note that depression is on the rise worldwide, specifically in older adults, and that unhealthy dietary patterns may partly explain this phenomenon.
The Spanish Predimed-Plus study assesses whether a high-quality eating pattern can lead to changes in depressive symptoms after 2 years of follow-up.
6612 participants in the cross-sectional analysis and 5523 participants in the prospective analysis were evaluated. A high quality energy-adjusted dietary score (PDQS) was assessed using a validated food frequency questionnaire (FFQ). The cross-sectional association between PDQS and the prevalence of depression, presence of depressive symptoms and changes was evaluated using multivariate regression models (logistic and linear models and mixed linear effects models).
Participants with a healthy diet showed a significantly lower probability of depression prevalence compared to participants in the lowest PDQS quartile. A statistically significant association was found between PDQS and changes in depressive symptoms after a 2-year follow-up. A higher PDQS was cross-linked with a lower depressive state.
However, the researchers indicate that the possibility of reverse causality does not arise in this study. They consider that more prospective research is required to determine the association between PDQS and changes in depressive symptoms over time.