A diet favoured by body-builders could help treat schizophrenia.
The research is based on a study of mice, who were fed a so-called ‘ketogenic’ diet.
The diet is high in fat but low in carbohydrates.
Dr Zoltan Sarnyai, who led the study, said:
“Most of a person’s energy would come from fat.
So the diet would consist of butter, cheese, salmon, etc.
Initially it would be used in addition to medication in an in-patient setting where the patient’s diet could be controlled.”
In the research, the mice displayed fewer animal behaviours related to schizophrenia, compared with a control group.
Dr Sarnyai said the diet may also help combat side-effects of drugs used to treat schizophrenia:
“It’s another advantage that it works against the weight gain, cardiovascular issues and type-two diabetes we see as common side-effects of drugs given to control schizophrenia.”
The study was published in the journal Schizophrenia Research.(Kraeuter et al., 2015)
Mental illness image from Shutterstock