Can produce help people find meaning in their life?
Can fresh produce help your staff and shoppers feel more curious, creative and engaged, so we can all live more meaningful and purposeful lives? Research published in the British Journal of Health and Psychology found a correlation between fruit and vegetable consumption and well being; specifically the characteristics mentioned above. The concept is eudemonic well being and encompasses more than just leading a happy life. Psychologists define eudemonic well being to include purpose, meaning, and engagement that lead to a more fulfilling and happier life.
The study, conducted in New Zealand, featured 405 university students, who kept a daily food and mood diary for 13 consecutive days. Each day, they recorded the number of servings they had of various foods and also also filled out a daily questionnaire intended to measure creativity, curiosity, and psychological flourishing.
Researchers found that those who ate more fruits and vegetables reported higher average levels of curiosity, creativity, and positive emotions, as well as engagement, meaning and purpose.
This is not news to SupermarketGuru as we’ve seen studies that looked at diets rich in whole foods and a lower risk and occurrence of depression. A previous study, published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, found that people consuming a healthier diet were less likely to report symptoms of depression; and on the other hand, those who reported a higher intake of processed foods were more likely to experience depression.
While many studies have looked at the connection between isolated nutrients and foods on depression, few have looked at the relationship between overall diet and mood. Take advantage of nutrient dense winter produce like cabbage, brussels sprouts, beets, winter squash, raddichio, pomegranate, citrus, dark leafy greens and much more depending on your store’s location.
Does your store regularly sample produce? If not, make sure that the seasonal picks are available for sampling, maybe even create a sample station where your produce manager or dietitian can talk to shoppers about the benefits of each item. Let your shoppers have a nice treat while helping to boost their well being and creativity at the same time!