Mood Food – fish oil shown to stablize a person’s mood – Brief Article
Fish-filled aquariums can be soothing, and now research shows that fish can even more profoundly affect outlook: Fish oil’s omega-3 fatty acids may improve mood and mental health.
In a recent study published in the Archives of General Psychiatry, Andrew L. Stoll, M.D., a Harvard Medical School psychiatry professor, studied 30 bipolar disorder patients to determine whether eating fish oil or olive oil in conjunction with regular medication stabilized the patients’ moods. After four months, patients eating fish oil showed a significantly longer period of remission from the disorder than those eating olive oil. And in a related study, 30 schizophrenic patients hospitalized for relapse were given fish oil as their sole treatment for 12 weeks. The oil decreased one-third of the patients’ symptoms enough that they postponed taking antipsychotic drugs until the trial was concluded. Conducted by physicians at Oxford’s Cochrane Schizophrenia Group, the study was reviewed recently in the Cochrane Database System Review.
Though they’re unsure exactly how fish oil improves mood, researchers speculate that fatty acids like docosahexaenoic acid (DHA)–which aids in neural development–may help modulate overactive communication channels in the brain.
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