Study links pesticide use and depression in farmers

Jan 8, 2015


Organic farming may be just as healthy for the farmers who practices it as it is to their consumers reports the Center for Rural Affairs.

Researchers at the National Institute of Health recently completed a 20 year study on the connection between pesticides and depression in farmers.

Dr. Freya Kamel is the study’s lead researcher.  Kamel says there’s a significant correlation between depression and the use of some pesticides.  Organochloride insecticides and fumigants increase a farmer’s risk of depression by 80 to 90 percent.

The results of the study can’t be explained away by the stress of farming life. 

Farmers participating in the study were also less likely to seek treatment for depression than the national population.  Researchers say that makes the results for those using the pesticides in question even more dramatic.