Diet Quality and Nutrition Are Key Determinants of Mental Health; These Factors Should Now Be Embraced As Crucial by Psychiatric Community

Evidence is rapidly growing showing vital relationships between both diet quality and potential nutritional deficiencies and mental health, a new international collaboration led by the University of Melbourne and Deakin University, also in Melbourne, has revealed. In an article published online in The Lancet Psychiatry ton January 29, 2015, leading academics state that, as with a range of medical conditions, psychiatry and public health should now recognize and embrace diet and nutrition as key determinants of mental health. Lead author, Dr. Jerome Sarris (image) from the University of Melbourne and a member of the International Society for Nutritional Psychiatry Research (ISNPR), said psychiatry is at a critical stage, with the current medically-focused model having achieved only modest benefits in addressing the global burden of poor mental health. "While the determinants of mental health are complex, the emerging and compelling evidence for nutrition as a key factor in the high prevalence and incidence of mental disorders suggests that nutrition is as important to psychiatry as it is to cardiology, endocrinology, and gastroenterology," Dr. Sarris said. "In the last few years, significant links have been established between nutritional quality and mental health. Scientifically, rigorous studies have made important contributions to our understanding of the role of nutrition in mental health," he said. Findings of the review in The Lancet Psychology revealed that, in addition to dietary improvement, evidence now supports the contention that nutrient-based prescription has the potential to assist in the management of mental disorders at the individual and population level.
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