Diets Deficient in Omega-3 and Depression

Omega-3 fatty acid deficiency has been suggested as a factor in numerous disorders. In a study of mice given a diet low in omega-3 fatty acids, researchers revealed that lower levels of omega-3 fatty acids had a negative consequence on emotional behaviors and synaptic functions.

In developing nations, diets have been deficient in essential fatty acids from the start of the 20th century. The ratio between dietary omega-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids and omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids increased consistently throughout the 20th century. These are “essential” fatty acids since the body can’t synthesize them. The fatty acids must therefore be provided by way of food and their dietary balance is important to maintain optimum brain functions.

via Diets Deficient in Omega-3 and Depression.

Study Shows Tai Chi Effective Depression Treatment in the Elderly

When researchers combined a weekly tai chi exercise class with a standard depression treatment for a group of depressed elderly adults, they found greater improvement in the level of depression — along with improved quality of life, better memory and cognition, and more overall energy — than among a different group in which the standard depression treatment was paired with a weekly health education class.

“This is the first study to demonstrate the benefits of tai chi in the management of late-life depression, and we were encouraged by the results,” said first author Dr. Helen Lavretsky. “We know that nearly two-thirds of elderly patients who seek depression treatment fail to achieve relief with a prescribed medication.”

via Study Shows Tai Chi Effective Depression Treatment in the Elderly.