Fitness Tips: August 21, 2014

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Healthy Lifestyle Tip: Eat Your Greens: It makes you more optimistic
People who eat plenty of fruit and vegetables tend to be more optimistic about the future, new research suggests. Scientists have discovered that optimistic people have higher levels of plant compounds called carotenoids – found in orange produce and green, leafy vegetables – in their blood.

'Individuals with greater optimism tended to have greater levels of carotenoids such as beta-carotene,' said Julia Boehm, lead investigator, Harvard School of Public Health. One theory is that antioxidants might have a de-stressing effect. They found that people who ate two or fewer servings of fruits and vegetables a day were significantly less optimistic than people who ate three or more servings a day.

The scientists added that the relationship between optimism and carotenoid levels was only partially explained by the fact that more optimistic people tended to engage in healthier behaviors such as eating fruits and vegetables, and avoiding cigarette smoking.