It is exciting to bring to your attention the recent finding regarding the role of nutritional supplements in mental health. Mental health describes the emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It influences the way people perceive, think, feel, act or react especially in handling stress, relating with other people, and making decisions. If your state of mental health is negatively impacted, mental illnesses such as depression, anxiety, anorexia, substance abuse, and attention-deficit /hyperactivity disorder ADHD may result. The good news is that there is hope for recovery in mental illness.
Prevalence of mental disorder
The World Health Organisation reported that one out of four people in the world suffers from one form of mental illness at some point in their lifetime. Mental disorders rank among the leading causes of ill-health and disability globally due to the large proportion of world population suffering from various conditions of mental health (about 450 million people). In the U.S alone, nearly one out of 25 adults are affected by a serious mental illness. It is sad to know that the illnesess substantially affect the major activities and well-being of the people.
Healthy eating is beneficial to good mood; there is a strong relationship between adequate diet and mental health. Beyond what we already know, it will be of great value for you to know which nutrients are particularly of benefit in the management of certain mental disorders. Recent research has provided a clear outline on the value of specific nutrient supplement in the management of different mental disorders. The researchers investigated the benefits and safety of different nutritional supplements for mental illnesses on a larger scale. They used gold standard in research to examine 33 studies involving nearly 11000 people suffering from mental illnesses. The illnesses include stress, depression, anxiety disorders, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.
Findings of the research
- Nutritional supplements impart a beneficial effect when used to support conventional treatment. Most of the nutritional supplements assessed did not meaningfully improve mental health. However, certain supplements are effective as an additional treatment for some mental disorders.
- The nutritional supplements assessed were considered safe on the condition that the recommended dosages and instructions were adhered to. The researchers did not observe any serious adverse effects or contraindications.
- Omega-3 supplements; the polyunsaturated fatty acid showed a beneficial effect for depression when used as a support to conventional treatment. There was a reduction in the symptoms of depression beyond what antidepressants alone would achieve.
- The researchers reported that Omega-3 supplements have small benefits in the management of attention-deficit / hypersensitivity disorder.
- The use of amino acid cysteine supplement as an adjunct to conventional treatment of mood disorders and schizophrenia imparts some beneficial effect. N-acetyl cysteine (NAC), as a nutritional supplement, has powerful antioxidant properties. As a result, it is used as a scavenger of free radicals. NAC is often recommended as a prospective treatment option for different disorders which results from the production of free oxygen radicals.
- The use of folate supplements may be effective as an addition to conventional treatments for major depression and schizophrenia.
- The use of vitamins such as vitamin E, C, or D and minerals including zinc and magnesium appeared to show no beneficial effect in the management of any mental disorder.
Call to Action
The role of nutrition in mental health is becoming increasingly recognized. It is necessary that you use evidence-based approaches in managing mental illness. This way you can help yourself and or help many people who are suffering from the illness.
As research endeavor around this subject continues, we are committed to bringing you the findings on this platform. Particularly, researchers will want to investigate better approaches as well as specific individuals who might benefit the most from the use of nutritional supplements in the management of certain mental disorders.
As suggested, you may not use nutritional supplements as a stand-alone therapy in the management of mental illness. However, as an adjunct to conventional treatment, nutritional supplements provide additional beneficial effects. As a result, your use of nutritional supplement adds a living hope for recovery in mental illness. Whenever you are considering the use of nutritional supplements, it is of great importance to engage credible sources. Forever living products has been a reliable source of credible nutritional supplements and has supported millions around the world for over 40 years.
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