Study: Eating fish might help your mood

By R. Ryan S Patel DO, FAPA OSU-CCS PsychiatristFish option 2

There are increasing number of studies showing that the things we eat can have an impact on our insomnia, anxiety, irritability, energy level, etc.
A recent study looked at fish intake and odds of developing depression.

What did the study involve?
This was a review of 26 studies, involving 150,000 adults; one of the largest studies of its kind.

What did the results show?
After adjusting for many variables, those who ate the most fish had a 17% lower risk of depression than those who did not.

How much fish was eaten by those who had the most benefit?
• The exact amount of fish intake is not clearly established.
• Some people think that the amount that’s beneficial may also be dependent on what else you are eating (vegetables, high quality protein, good fats, whole grain) and what you are not eating (think junk foods, processed grains, etc).

What are some caveats?
• Reduced depression risk was statistically significant only in European countries.
• Omega 3’s might help by impacting serotonin and dopamine transmission in the brain (2–4); since these are important transmitters involved in depression.
• Quality nutrients like protein vitamins and minerals might also help with depression (5-6).

What’s the bottom line?
For some people, fish intake and eating nutritious foods (instead of heavily processed foods) might improve how you feel by improving brain and body functioning, hormones, etc.
How are your eating habits? Are you feeling lousy? Are you eating lousy? Ready to feel better?

What are some campus resources to improve nutrition?
Nutrition coaching with student wellness
Nutritionist at Wilce Student Health center
Nutritionist at the Wexner medical center
• Nutrition books
• Take a nutrition class

Disclaimer: This article is intended to be informative only. It is advised that you check with your own physician/mental health provider before implementing any changes. With this article, the author is not rendering medical advice, nor diagnosing, prescribing, or treating any condition, or injury; and therefore claims no responsibility to any person or entity for any liability, loss, or injury caused directly or indirectly as a result of the use, application, or interpretation of the material presented.

1. Fang Li, Xiaoqin Liu, Dongfeng Zhang. Fish consumption and risk of depression: a meta-analysis. J Epidemiol Community Health 2015;0:1–6. doi:10.1136/jech-2015-206278.
2. Delion S, Chalon S, Herault J, et al. Chronic dietary alpha-linolenic acid deficiency alters dopaminergic and serotoninergic neurotransmission in rats. J Nutr 1994;124:2466–76.
3. Zimmer L, Delpal S, Guilloteau D, et al. Chronic n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid deficiency alters dopamine vesicle density in the rat frontal cortex. Neurosci Lett 2000;284:25–8.
4. Su KP. Biological mechanism of antidepressant effect of omega-3 fatty acids: how does fish oil act as a ‘mind-body interface’? Neurosignals 2009; 17:144–52.
5. Kim JM, Stewart R, Kim SW, et al. Predictive value of folate, vitamin B12 and homocysteine levels in late-life depression. Br J Psychiatry 2008;192:268–74.
6. Skarupski KA, Tangney C, Li H, et al. Longitudinal association of vitamin B-6, folate, and vitamin B-12 with depressive symptoms among older adults over time. Am J Clin Nutr 2010;92:330–5.