- Study shows: Vitamin B is important in combating depression
- For certain age groups, taking supplements is more important than others
More and more people around the world are suffering from depression. Certain vitamins can counteract the disease. B vitamins in particular are indispensable for the organism. This is proven by a number of studies, including the investigation of Vitamin B at Victoria University in Melbourne, Australia. In this study, a direct effect of too few vitamins and the resulting risk of suffering from serious mental illnesses could be demonstrated. According to this, there is a connection between a vitamin deficiency and depression.
Background: B vitamins are necessary for the proper function and production of human cells, the so-called “methylation cycle” and the repair and maintenance of the body’s own cell components. Cell regeneration, for which vitamins (especially vitamin B) are responsible, therefore plays a decisive role in the inhibition of neurotransmitters. If this does not work, i.e. there is a dysfunction of monoamine oxidase, this can be responsible for a number of psychiatric and neurological disorders – including depression.
Vitamins against the common disease depression
Depression is now the fourth most common disease worldwide. Australian researchers assume that in the next 20 years depression will be the second leading cause of death and disability.
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
- to feel miserable
- a feeling of worthlessness
- physical manifestations such as insomnia, fatigue, headache and muscle pain
Pointing the finger for possible interaction
A first hint for a possible interaction: A clinical study. 110 patients with severe depression were examined for fluoxetine in conjunction with folic acid and vitamin B12 as part of an eight-week therapy.
The result left little room for interpretation. The researchers found that patients with depression have lower levels of folate than patients with other psychiatric disorders. A low folate concentration therefore also means that antidepressants have a weaker effect.
Nonetheless, the researchers cite that the role of B vitamins in mental health and other health areas is not yet clearly understood. “So far, there is little evidence of the role of vitamin B in depression. It has been shown that vitamin B12 is associated with depression, with higher concentrations of vitamin B12 leading to better treatment outcomes,” said Seren Haf Roberts in a study that was published in the “Oxford Academy”.
Depression Killer Vitamin B? Such is the factual situation
It goes on to say: “It has been shown that a higher dietary intake of folate, but not of other B vitamins, is associated with a lower frequency of depressive symptoms in men.” In addition, according to the researchers, a low folate status 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. The researchers therefore suspect that the elderly population in particular could benefit from increased vitamin B intake, as they were increasingly able to identify disorders that reduce folate, vitamin B12 and vitamin B6 intake.
He also shares similar thoughts Specialist in general psychiatry and addiction psychiatry, Dr. Daniel Hall-Flavin. “Older adults, vegetarians and people with digestive disorders such as celiac disease or Crohn’s disease can have difficulties getting enough B12,” he explains, adding that different 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 the levels of B12 or other vitamins. “
The research team led by Seren Haf Roberts concludes: “The study provides convincing evidence for the protective effect of dietary intake and nutritional supplements of vitamin B12 against depression. It also shows that the intake of vitamin B6 through dietary supplements, but not through diet, also helps can have a protective effect. ” Daniel Hall-Flavin warns: “With all the euphoria, one should keep in mind that further research is required. In addition, no nutritional supplement can replace proven depression treatments such as antidepressants and psychological counseling. “
So that means: It can 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.