What you eat can increase curiosity & creativity?
WHAT THEY’RE SAYING
A diet rich in fruits and vegetables is correlated with higher levels of well-being, demonstrated by increased curiosity and creativity, which are related to greater happiness and life satisfaction.
WHAT WE KNOW
We’re all very much aware that eating fruits and vegetables benefits our health. Years of research have established that eating lots of fruits and veggies provides many physical benefits. Psychological benefits, such as higher levels of happiness and reduced rates of disease and depression, have also been linked to fruit and vegetables. Recent research has focused on the role of fruits and vegetables and eudaemonic well-being – a feeling of engagement, meaning, and purpose in life (as opposed to just feeling good — or bad — and satisfied.)
Eudaemonic well-being is demonstrated by curiosity and creativity. Curiosity is seeking out new skills, learning new things, and becoming actively absorbed in an experience. Curiosity is related to eudaemonic well-being because it enables people to spend time engaging in activities that cultivate self-determination, purpose, and meaning in life. The expression of artistic or musical skills and the ability to create novel ideas demonstrate creativity. Often, creativity is the byproduct of eudaemonic conditions.
HOW WE KNOW THIS
Fruits and vegetables are rich in vitamins and minerals that promote eudaemonic well-being. Vitamin C is an important factor in the production of dopamine, the neurotransmitter that underlies motivation and promotes engagement. B vitamins influence feelings of vitality and engagement. Finally, antioxidants such as vitamins E and C help reduce bodily inflammation, which may help prevent depression.
A recent study by the University of Otago in New Zealand recruited 400 young adults ages 17-25 to determine the association between fruits and veggies and well-being. Over the course of 13 days, participants reported their consumption levels of fruit, vegetables, sweets, and chips, as well as well-being, curiosity, and creativity.*
Researchers discovered that people who recorded higher fruits and vegetable intake reported higher average well-being, curiosity, and creativity compared to those who ate fewer fruits and vegetables. However, fruit and veggie consumption did not lead to next-day well-being, demonstrating the importance of eating a healthy, balanced diet on a day-to-day basis.
You feel the best when you’re consistently in a place that enables you to experience the zest of life. Everything seems brighter, helping to feel your best and accomplish more throughout your day. When you’re satisfied and content with your life, those around you benefit too! Do yourself (and others) a favor – eat more fruits and vegetables!
Ideas on How to Include More Fruits & Veggies in Your Diet
Dietary Guidelines for Americans
Fill Half Your Plate with Fruits & Veggies
10 Reasons to Eat More Fruits and Vegetables
Eating Fruits and Veggies On the Go Guide
Healthy Meal Planning & Shopping for Fruits and Vegetables
Eat Produce In Season
Quick Guide to Getting More Fruits and Vegetables
*Conner, T. S., K.L. Brookie, A.C. Richardson, et al (2014). “On carrots and curiosity: Eating fruit and vegetables is associated with greater flourishing in daily life.” British Journal of Health Psychology
. doi: 10.1111/bjhp.12113. View Abstract