A recent investigation that was published in The Journal of Gerontology: Medical Sciences uncovered a connection between depressive symptoms, dietary habits, and the maturation of frailty in older people.
It is estimated that 10-15 percent of older persons are affected by frailty, which is described as an identifiable state of heightened vulnerability arising from a loss in function across many physiological systems. Frailty often co-occurs with other health disorders, such as depression. It is widely believed that diet has a significant role in the development of frailty.
It is one of the first investigations to attempt to determine the influence of depression on dietary inflammatory response as well as frailty. Earlier studies have shown a connection between an inflammatory diet and the risk of developing frailty. This diet includes artificial trans fats, refined carbs, and saturated fats.
The purpose of this research was to discover whether or not people who experience symptoms of depression are more likely to acquire frailty as a consequence of the inflammation caused by their diet.
Dietary inflammation is associated with increased risk of frailty. Those with depressive symptoms may be at higher risk of frailty onset since they typically have higher levels of inflammation. The study objective was to determine the association between a pro-inflammatory diet and frailty onset in those with and without clinically relevant depressive symptoms.
The data for the research came from a previous investigation called the Framingham Heart Study Offspring cohort. At the beginning of the study, 1,701 individuals who were not frail reported their diet and any depressed symptoms they were experiencing. These patients were then tracked for about 11 years before their frailty status was reevaluated.
According to the findings of the research, a relationship between an inflammatory diet and an elevated risk of frailty was discovered, and this association seemed to be slightly higher among those who also had depressive symptoms.
The researchers have a hypothesis that, given that people who experience depressive symptoms normally have greater levels of inflammation, the fact that dietary inflammation is added on top of that speeds up the process of developing frailty.
According to the findings of this research, the presence of depressive symptoms may make the process of developing frailty due to eating an inflammatory diet much more difficult. This shows that adopting a diet rich in anti-inflammatory substances (such as fiber and plant-based molecules known as flavonoids, for example) may help reduce the development of frailty.