Time to put down the Big Mac, sir.

Fast food mental health

We’ve all been there, right? After a night of drinks with our mates, it is the most tempting thing in the world to get a greasy fast food meal to cap the evening off properly. When we’re in this state of mind it’s almost irresistible. Fast food has some magical tonic when we’ve had a bit too much to drink that nutritious food is unable to satisfy. When the next morning comes around, when our bodies are having a difficult enough time suffering from dehydration from all the booze, it’s another thing to tax our digestive system with mystery meat and deep-fried food.

Yes, the hangover is probably making you feel like death, but is it possible those 21 nuggets you ate at 3 AM are also contributing to your low mood?

After a study was published last week in the Nutritional Neuroscience journal, it’s sure to give you pause next time the McDonald French fries are wafting and you feel tempted. As first reported in the Guardian, the study found that young adults aged between 18 and 29 who ate fast food at least three times a week experienced higher levels of “mental distress,” such as anxiety or depression, than those who didn’t.

According to the study, not only were fast foods with saturated fat a contributor to mental distress, but a lack of meat also contributed to low moods. 18-29 year-olds that consumed meat fewer than three times per week were allegedly experiencing worse mental health.

*fends off angry vegan readers*

This isn’t the first time eating has been linked to your mental wellbeing. A major study conducted by Spanish scientists earlier this year found a link between what you eat and depression, while baking has been associated with improving your mood. Even simply tasting food can affect our mood – research from anosmia charity Fifth Sense discovered that 43 percent of people suffering from loss of smell or taste experienced depression as a result.

So, especially this time of year with many holiday parties happening, try to resist the temptation that is late night fast food. You’re next morning self will thank you for it.

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