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Nutrients. 2017 Feb 20;9(2). pii: E158. doi: 10.3390/nu9020158.

Effects of Acute Blueberry Flavonoids on Mood in Children and Young Adults.

Author information

1
School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Whiteknights, Reading RG6 7BE, UK. sundus.khalid@pgr.reading.ac.uk.
2
School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Whiteknights, Reading RG6 7BE, UK. k.l.barfoot@pgr.reading.ac.uk.
3
School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Whiteknights, Reading RG6 7BE, UK. gabrielle.may@pgr.reading.ac.uk.
4
School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Whiteknights, Reading RG6 7BE, UK. daniel.lamport@reading.ac.uk.
5
School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Whiteknights, Reading RG6 7BE, UK. s.a.reynolds@reading.ac.uk.
6
School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences, University of Reading, Earley Gate, Whiteknights, Reading RG6 7BE, UK. claire.williams@reading.ac.uk.

Abstract

Epidemiological evidence suggests that consumption of flavonoids (usually via fruits and vegetables) is associated with decreased risk of developing depression. One plausible explanation for this association is the well-documented beneficial effects of flavonoids on executive function (EF). Impaired EF is linked to cognitive processes (e.g., rumination) that maintain depression and low mood; therefore, improved EF may reduce depressionogenic cognitive processes and improve mood. Study 1: 21 young adults (18-21 years old) consumed a flavonoid-rich blueberry drink and a matched placebo in a counterbalanced cross-over design. Study 2: 50 children (7-10 years old) were randomly assigned to a flavonoid-rich blueberry drink or a matched placebo. In both studies, participants and researchers were blind to the experimental condition, and mood was assessed using the Positive and Negative Affect Schedule before and 2 h after consumption of the drinks. In both studies, the blueberry intervention increased positive affect (significant drink by session interaction) but had no effect on negative affect. This observed effect of flavonoids on positive affect in two independent samples is of potential practical value in improving public health. If the effect of flavonoids on positive affect is replicated, further investigation will be needed to identify the mechanisms that link flavonoid interventions with improved positive mood.

KEYWORDS:

affect; blueberries; children; cognition; depression; dysphoria; flavonoid; mood; young adults

PMID:
28230732
PMCID:
PMC5331589
DOI:
10.3390/nu9020158
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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