Skipping Breakfast Increases Risk Of Depression

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Skipping breakfast raises the risk of depression by up to 43 per cent, a new study claims.

Researchers believe the body reacts to a lack of food by releasing the stress hormones adrenalin – linked to irritation and anxiety – and cortisol, which inhibits ‘feelgood’ brain chemical serotonin.

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The South Korean study looked at more than 200,000 people and found that the one in six who missed breakfast five times a week were most affected, with the effect worsening with age.

Researcher Professor Sang Ah Lee said: ‘To prevent depression, practical, affordable interventions need to be developed. Encouraging people to eat breakfast could be one prevention strategy.’

UK experts back the findings. Dietician Dr Sarah Schenker said: ‘Hunger pangs are a strong message sent by the body to refuel and running on empty will cause a stress response.
‘The important thing is to take on something nutritious in the first few hours after waking.’

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