- Scientific studies show: a vitamin is particularly important in the fight against depression.
- There are differences between the different age groups.
More and more people in Germany suffer from the widespread depressive illness. The number of people affected is also increasing around the world. However, some vitamins can counteract the disease. The B vitamins in particular are essential for the body. This is demonstrated by numerous studies, including the study of vitamin B at the “Victoria University” of Melbourne, Australia. In this study it was possible to demonstrate a direct effect of an insufficient number of vitamins and the consequent risk of suffering from severe mental illness. According to this, there is a connection between a vitamin deficiency and depression.
Background: B vitamins are necessary for the proper functioning and production of human cells, the so-called “methylation cycle” and the repair and maintenance of cellular components in the body. Therefore, cell regeneration, for which vitamins (in particular vitamin B) are responsible, plays a decisive role in the inhibition of neurotransmitters. If this doesn’t work, i.e. there is a monoamine oxidase dysfunction, this can be responsible for a number of psychiatric and neurological disorders, including depression.
Depression: According to researchers, vitamins can help
Depression is the fourth most common disease in the world today. Australian researchers assume that depression will be the second leading cause of death and disability over the next 20 years.
Depression usually manifests itself in several symptoms. These include, for example:
- the inability to function efficiently in the workplace and at home
- the feeling of being overwhelmed
- feeling unhappy
- a feeling of worthlessness
- physical manifestations such as insomnia, fatigue, headache and muscle aches
Point your finger for a possible interaction
A first hint of a possible interaction: a clinical study. 110 patients with severe depression were examined as part of an eight-week therapy with fluoxetine in combination with folic acid and vitamin B12.
The result left little room for interpretation. The researchers found that patients with depression have lower folate levels than patients with other psychiatric disorders. A low concentration of folate is therefore accompanied by a weaker effect of antidepressants.
However, the researchers warn that the role of B vitamins in mental health and other areas of health is still not clearly understood. “So far, there is little evidence of vitamin B’s role in depression. Vitamin B12 has been shown to be associated with depression, with higher concentrations of vitamin B12 leading to better treatment outcomes,” says Seren Haf Roberts in a study. which was published in the “Oxford Academy”.
Vitamin B of the Depression Killer? This is the actual situation
He goes on to say, “It has been shown that a higher dietary intake of folate, but not other B vitamins, is associated with a lower frequency of depressive symptoms in men.” Also, according to the researchers, low folate and low vitamin B12 absorption have an influence on depressive symptoms in women. Severe vitamin B12 deficiency increases the risk of severe depression in older women. Researchers therefore suspect that the elderly population in particular could benefit from increased vitamin B intake, as they have increasingly been able to detect disorders that reduce their intake of folate, vitamin B12 and vitamin B6.
The specialist in general psychiatry and addiction psychiatry, Dr. Daniel Hall-Flavin. “Older people, vegetarians, and people with digestive disorders like celiac disease or Crohn’s disease may have a hard time getting enough B12,” he explains, adding that several factors are responsible for a vitamin B deficiency. “Sometimes a vitamin B12. occurs for unknown reasons Deficiency. If a deficiency is suspected, your doctor may order a blood test to check your levels of B12 or other vitamins. “
The research team led by Seren Haf Roberts concludes: “The study provides compelling evidence for the protective effect of dietary intake and dietary supplements against depression. It also shows that vitamin B6 intake through dietary supplements, but not through the diet also helps can have a protective effect. “Daniel Hall-Flavin warns:” With all the euphoria, it should be borne in mind that more research is needed. Furthermore, no dietary supplement can replace proven depression treatments such as antidepressants and psychological counseling. “
So this means: It may make sense to use dietary supplements, especially for older people. The researchers were able to identify the greatest deficits in this population group. In younger people, however, the mode of action has not yet been proven beyond doubt.