Or Maybe Vice Versa
According to Dartmouth University researchers, people who eat healthy amounts of fruits and vegetables are notably happier than those who skip veggies, and personal feelings of well being and life satisfaction increase with each serving of produce consumed per day. The study, which analyzed the diets of 80,000 people, found that those who ate eight or more servings per day rated themselves an average 1/4 point happier, on a scale of one to ten, than those eating essentially none, although the increased happiness seems to level off with further servings. Happiness has been found to be linked with some biological characteristics, such as a lower pulse rate, but whether produce contributes to positive feelings or happy people simply eat more fruit and veggies has yet to be researched.
Heat Boosts Flavor, Sweetness
The severe drought that has devastated a number of U.S. crops has one small silver lining: tastier fruits and vegetables. The extraordinary and prolonged high temperatures speed up the maturing process of those produce items that are able to ride out the drought, resulting in intensified flavors in items from asparagus to zucchini. Photosynthesis is accelerated, which increases sucrose and other sugar content, making for singularly sweet peaches, cantaloupes, beets and watermelons. Capsaicin levels are ginned up, resulting in hotter and spicier chili and other peppers. Increased sulfur gives garlic and onions added bite. Unfortunately, the cost of this flavor enhancement to the agriculture industry, and possibly taxpayers, may exceed $10 billion.