19:20 17 March 2017
Amino acids, tryptophan and tyrosine found in blueberries can compensate for protein surge that takes place after women give birth. This protein surge cuts the level of ‘feel good hormones in the brain that causes so-called baby blues.
The study, which was participated by 41 women and conducted by scientists at the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH) in Toronto, found that women who took blueberry supplements suffered no drop in mood five days after giving birth, when post-natal blues peak. Meanwhile, those who did not take the supplements had a significant increase in their depression test scores.
Lead author Dr Jeffrey Meyer said: ‘We believe this is the first study to show such a strong, beneficial effect of an intervention in reducing the baby blues at a time when post-partum sadness peaks.
‘Post-partum blues are common and usually resolve 10 days after giving birth, but when they are intense, the risk of post-partum depression increases four-fold.’
The latest study, which was published in journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, comes just weeks after blueberries were found to improve brain power in older people.