Kiwi Improves Blood Sugar, Mood

Kiwi isn’t a fruit most of us reach for. It’s in the grocery store. But most of us still view it as exotic or at least out-of-the-ordinary. If it’s not in your regular rotation, you probably give it a miss in the store. There’s no point in spending money on something you aren’t sure you’ll enjoy!  

But kiwi is a wonderful fruit, and we encourage you to try it. It’s excellent for your health and can benefit your blood sugar. Additionally, a new study has found it can boost your mood.

Vitamin C is well known for enhancing mood and well-being. An eight-week study used adults with low levels of vitamin C. They were given a vitamin C supplement, a placebo or two kiwis daily. In just four days, people eating the fruit showed significant improvements in mood. The benefit peaked after two weeks. The supplement also aided people but nowhere near as quickly or as effectively. In addition to vitamin C, kiwi contains fiber, folate and other helpful compounds.    

It’s great for people to know that small changes in their diet, like adding kiwi, could make a difference in how they feel every day,” said co-author Professor Tamlin Conner of the Univ. of Otago. “The use of intensive smartphone surveys offers a real-time understanding of the day-to-day changes in mood-related outcomes.”

Kiwis have three times more vitamin C than oranges. While the group taking the supplement were given 250 milligrams a day, the supplement contained just the vitamin.

Supplements can play a significant role in health. And they can fill gaps that aren’t met by nutrition alone. However, for a single-ingredient supplement, this study shows it might be best to opt for a food source instead as it is paired with other benefits.

It’s also important to note that the people in the study weren’t struggling with mental health. This study does not recommend kiwi or vitamin C supplements instead of medication or mental health help. But it does appear to act as an additional boost. It’s essential to speak to your doctor about any mental health issues you are struggling with. Instead, it underscores how what we eat impacts us overall.  

This helps us see that what we eat can have a relatively fast impact on how we feel,” said lead author Dr. Ben Fletcher. “Our participants had relatively good mental health to begin with so had little room for improvement, but still reported the benefits of kiwifruit or vitamin C interventions.”

Banner image: Ashish Vyas via Unsplash

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