Ketogenic Diets Show Promise for Bipolar Disorder and Schizophrenia Treatment, Stanford Study Finds



A recent study led by researchers at Stanford University suggests that ketogenic diets may offer benefits for individuals with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia, shedding light on the potential role of diet in managing serious mental illnesses.

The findings, published in Psychiatry Research, highlight the positive impact of a ketogenic regime on both psychiatric outcomes and metabolic syndromes commonly associated with these conditions.

Unlike traditional diets, ketogenic diets are characterized by high fat, moderate protein, and very low carbohydrate intake. The study, led by Dr. Shebani Sethi, a clinical associate professor of psychiatry and director of Stanford’s metabolic psychiatry clinical program, is the first to investigate the effects of ketogenic diets on bipolar disorder since 1965 and the first to explore its impact on schizophrenia.

Study To Understand The Importance of Ketogenic Diets

The trial involved 16 adults diagnosed with bipolar disorder and five adults diagnosed with schizophrenia, all of whom were experiencing metabolic abnormalities such as obesity or insulin resistance in addition to their psychiatric symptoms.

Over a period of four months, participants followed a ketogenic diet, with 10% of their calories coming from carbohydrates, 30% from protein, and 60% from fat.

The results were promising, with nearly 80% of participants showing clinically meaningful improvements in symptoms as measured by the Clinical Global Impressions Scale.

Participants reported enhancements in mood, energy levels, sleep quality, and overall quality of life. Moreover, those who adhered closely to the diet experienced significant metabolic improvements, including weight loss and reductions in body mass index (BMI) and visceral fat.

The study’s findings are particularly significant given the challenges associated with treating mental illnesses like bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. Many individuals with these conditions experience metabolic side effects from antipsychotic medications, including weight gain and insulin resistance.

The ketogenic diet may offer a promising alternative or adjunctive treatment approach, addressing both psychiatric symptoms and metabolic abnormalities simultaneously.

While the precise mechanisms underlying the beneficial effects of ketogenic diets on mental health are not fully understood, researchers speculate that the diet’s impact on neurotransmitter function and metabolic stability may play a role.

By stabilizing blood glucose and insulin levels, ketogenic diets may help regulate neurotransmitter activity in the brain, thereby reducing symptoms of mania and psychosis associated with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

However, experts caution against viewing ketogenic diets as a standalone treatment for mental illness and emphasize the importance of comprehensive care that includes medication, therapy, and lifestyle interventions.

Further research is needed to elucidate the long-term effects and optimal implementation of ketogenic diets in the management of bipolar disorder and schizophrenia.

Overall, the study underscores the potential of dietary interventions in improving mental health outcomes and highlights the need for personalized approaches to treatment that address both psychiatric and metabolic factors. By integrating dietary interventions into mental health care, clinicians may be able to offer more effective and holistic treatments for individuals with serious mental illnesses.

As research in this area continues to evolve, it is hoped that ketogenic diets and other dietary interventions will become valuable tools in the broader effort to improve mental health outcomes and enhance the well-being of individuals living with bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, and other psychiatric conditions.

— Share —

— About the Author —

Leave a Reply

Up Next

New Research Suggests Video Gaming Boosts Recovery from Work Stress

In a surprising turn of events, recent research published in Applied Psychology challenges the conventional wisdom surrounding video gaming, suggesting that it may actually aid in recovery from work-related stress.

The study, conducted by researchers from Istanbul Medipol University and Erasmus University Rotterdam, sheds light on the potential positive outcomes associated with gaming, particularly when coupled with a harmonious passion for the activity.

Despite previous studies often highlighting the negative repercussions of gaming, an increasing body of evidence indicates its potential to improve mood and facilitate relaxation after a long day at work. To delve deeper into this phenomenon, the researchers sought to explore the impact of gaming on employees’ recovery from work stress.

Recruiting partic

Up Next

New Study Suggests Link Between Cat Ownership and Schizophrenia Risk

In a recent study published by researchers from the Queensland Centre for Mental Health Research, an intriguing association has been identified between cat ownership and an increased risk of schizophrenia-related disorders.

The study, which analyzed 17 research papers spanning over four decades and involving 11 countries, sheds light on a potential connection that has long intrigued scientists.

The notion that cat ownership might influence the risk of schizophrenia-related disorders dates back to a 1995 study, which suggested a correlation between exposure to the parasite Toxoplasma gondii, commonly found in cats, and the development of these disorders. However, subsequent research has yielded mixed results, with some studies supporting this hypothesis while others do not.

Up Next

Beware: Overconsumption of Vitamins and Minerals Can Have Serious Health Consequences

Recent findings suggest that while vitamins and minerals are essential for maintaining good health, excessive intake of certain nutrients can lead to adverse effects on the body. Medical experts caution against the overconsumption of vitamins and minerals, emphasizing the potential dangers associated with their misuse.

Dr. Wendolyn Gozansky, a geriatrician and chief quality officer with Kaiser Permanente, highlights the importance of distinguishing between water-soluble and fat-soluble vitamins.

While water-soluble vitamins, such as vitamin C and B vitamins, are easily eliminated from the body, fat-soluble vitamins, like vitamins A and D, can accumulate and cause toxicity if taken in excess.

Overconsumption of Vitamins Can

Up Next

Impact Of Air Pollution: Understand How It Is Linked to Deteriorating Mental Health

In a significant revelation, the Delhi government has informed the National Green Tribunal (NGT) that exposure to air pollution is closely associated with worsening mental health conditions among residents of the national capital. The admission comes amidst growing concerns over the hazardous air quality levels that have plagued Delhi for years

The disclosure was made during a hearing before the NGT, where the Delhi government presented findings linking air pollution to a range of mental health issues. This revelation underscores the urgent need for comprehensive measures to address the dual crisis of air pollution and its impact on public health.

Impact Of Air Pollution On Mental Health

Delhi, one of the most polluted cities globally, g

Up Next

10 Crucial Facts About Peanut Allergies Every Parent Should Know

In a recent report by Fox News, Dr. Rani Maskatia, a pediatric and adult allergist and immunologist in California, shared essential insights into peanut allergies that every parent should be aware of.

As more than six million individuals in the U.S. contend with peanut allergies, including approximately 1.6 million children and teens, understanding the nuances of this condition is paramount.

Peanut Allergies And Facts You Must Know About

Peanut Allergy Origins:Peanut allergies stem from an immune system reaction to proteins found in peanuts, prompting various symptoms across different bodily systems.

Rising Prevalence:The prev

Up Next

Understanding Spring Asthenia: Navigating Seasonal Changes in Mood and Energy

As the days grow longer and warmer, many anticipate the arrival of spring with a sense of joy and vitality. However, for some individuals, the transition to a new season may bring unexpected challenges in the form of low energy and mood disturbances. Known as spring asthenia or springtime lethargy, this phenomenon is not medically recognized as a diagnosable condition but is familiar to many who experience it.

Concept of Spring Asthenia

While the concept of spring asthenia lacks formal medical recognition, its effects are widely acknowledged among individuals who find themselves grappling with a dip in energy and mood as the seasons change.

Although these changes are typically temporary and manageable, it’s essential to recognize when they may be ind

Up Next

Role Of Genetic Testing in Predicting Parkinson’s Disease Risk: A Comprehensive Overview

Parkinson’s disease (PD) presents a complex challenge in the realm of neurological conditions, characterized by progressive motor impairment.

While its diagnosis traditionally hinges on meticulous history-taking and examination, the underlying causative factors involve an intricate interplay of genetic testing and environmental influences.

Recent insights from Dr. Richa Singh, a Consultant Neurologist at Ruby Hall Clinic in Pune, shed light on the emerging role of genetic testing in identifying mutations associated with PD.

However, it’s imperative to grasp that possessing a genetic predisposition doesn’t necessarily equate to developing PD. Conversely, the absence of genetic markers doesn’t guarantee immunity to the disease. Hence, genetic testing isn’t standard practice due to its limited capacity to