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Saturday, May 28, 2016

New 'Brain Food' Scale Flags Best Nutrients for Depression

                                                                  

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UPDATED May 27, 2016 // ATLANTA ― Scientists have developed a new evidence-based scale that rates animal- and plant-based foods that improve depressive symptoms.
Research on this scale and on foods that help nourish the brain was presented here at a standing-room-only session during the American Psychiatric Association (APA) 2016 Annual Meeting.
There is increasing evidence regarding the crucial role that diet plays in brain health, particularly in the areas of depression and dementia, said Drew Ramsey, MD, assistant clinical professor of psychiatry, Columbia University, New York City, who was one of the session speakers.
"The data are very clear that there's a powerful prevention signal when we help our patients eat better," Dr Ramsey told Medscape Medical News.
Plant foods are high on Dr Ramsey's brain food scale. To develop this nutrient profiling system, he and his colleagues assessed the literature and compiled a list of what they call brain essential nutrients (BEN) that affect the treatment and prevention of depression.
Key nutrients include long-chain omega 3 fatty acids, magnesium, calcium, fiber, and vitamins B1, B9, B12, D, and E.
They then gathered nutritional data for top food sources of BEN from the Agricultural Research Service Nutrient Data Laboratory and used a formula to calculate the Brain Food Scale score.
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