Diet affects mental health: Brain Health
The Journal of Brain Research aims to disseminate knowledge and promote discussion through the publication of peer-reviewed, high quality research papers on all topics related to Neuroscience.
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research is finding that a nutritious diet isn't just good for the body; it's great for the brain, too. The knowledge is giving rise to a concept called "nutritional (or food) psychiatry."
But diet is potentially the most powerful intervention we have. By helping people shape their diets, we can improve their mental health and decrease their risk of psychiatric disorders."
"the risk of depression increases about 80% when you compare teens with the lowest-quality diet, or what we call the Western diet, to those who eat a higher-quality, whole-foods diet. The risk of attention-deficit disorder (ADD) doubles. A very large body of evidence now exists that suggests diet is as important to mental health as it is to physical health.
There is increasing evidence of a link between a poor diet and the worsening of mood disorders, including anxiety and depression. However, many common beliefs about the health effects of certain foods are not supported by solid evidence”.
The researchers found that there are some areas where this link between diet and mental health is firmly established, such as the ability of a high fat and low carbohydrate diet (a ketogenic diet) to help children with epilepsy, and the effect of vitamin B12 deficiency on fatigue, poor memory, and depression.
They also found that there is good evidence that a Mediterranean diet, rich in vegetables and olive oil, shows mental health benefits, such as giving some protection against depression and anxiety. However, for many foods or supplements, the evidence is inconclusive, as for example with the use of vitamin D supplements, or with foods believed to be associated with ADHD or autism.
“The interface between gut and the brain on the one side and diet and mental health on the other side is one of the most debated issues in biological psychiatry at the moment, and is an exciting development which has gained momentum in the last decade. Many high-quality findings (mainly from animal studies) have been published in top notch journals in recent years, but this contrasts with the comparative shortage of hard evidence on how nutrition and mental health are connected in humans.
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All the manuscripts published by Journal of Brain Research are available freely online immediately after publication without any subscription charges or registration.
Journal of Brain Research