Consumption of ultraprocessed foods (UPF’s), especially artificially sweetened beverages and artificial sweeteners, may be associated with a higher risk of depression.

Researchers are exploring diet as a cause of depression, or at least a factor in its development. A recent study of ultraprocessed foods, such as sugary snacks and ready-to-eat meals, found a statistically significant association between depression and the ingestion of ultraprocessed foods, specifically artificial sweeteners and artificially sweetened drinks. In a large cohort study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, women who ingested these ultraprocessed foods were more likely to suffer from depression. They were also more likely to be sedentary, overweight, and have chronic diseases such as diabetes. But even when possible confounders were adjusted for, the association between diet and depression remained significant. 

At CalPsychiatry, our physicians know how to treat you as a whole person. Depression is a complicated condition and likely does not have the same cause in all people. Hormonal, environmental, and biological factors are known contributors, but the cause of depression in some may not be the cause in others. Our team of doctors are ready to help. Call or book your free consultation today.


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