Category : Diet

Does Diet Impact Bipolar Disorder?

Reach OutA new study about diet and Bipolar Disorder concluded that sugar and caffeine impact Bipolar Disorder negatively and can make episodes more frequent and worse. The study suggests that people with Bipolar Disorder exclude caffeine from their diet, maintain a low sugar and well balanced diet, take Omega 3, Magnesium, and Vitamin B. The study was conducted by Evanne Constantine and Wesley Freeman-Smith of Lewisham Counselling and Counsellor Associates in the UK. They advocate that those who treat Bipolar Disorder patients focus on diet as well as medications and other treatment methods.

I’ve been reading about diet and modifying mine based on suggestions from my psychiatrist (pdoc), general physician, and a renowned heart surgeon who goes into great depth in his book, Dr. Grundy’s Diet Evolution about how many of the foods we consider good for us turn into sugar too quickly when they enter our system. My pdoc says that he recommends a diet with a focus on healthy proteins and vegetables. In the Bipolar Handbook by West Burgess, M.D., Ph.D.  says that “It is his impression that a diet high in protein and low in starch will not worsen Bipolar Disorder and may help it”.  I’m seeing a convergence of opinion on what constitutes a healthy diet with the main difference being disagreement about the amount of grains to include in the diet.

Did you know that the supposedly healthy oatmeal that you eat to lower your cholesterol turns into sugar immediately when you consume it? It turns into a huge sugar blast. I was shocked. Many of the fruits that we love also are packed with sugars that tell our bodies to according to Steven Gundry, M.D., F.A.C.S, F.A.C.C. to “store fat for the winter.” With many of us trying to do all we can to stay stable and maintain a healthy weight, we don’t need our genes fighting us every inch of the way.

My diet experiment is just beginning. I’ve been eating a moderately high protein diet and including all the salad and green vegetables I can consume. It may be a placebo effect but I feel good (no not manic). 😉 

I’ll keep you posted. If you’ve found foods that either help or hurt your illness, please share.

Dr. Grundy’s Diet Evolution, 2008, Steven R. Gundry, M.D., F.A.C.S., F.A.C.C., Three Rivers Press, Crown Publishing.

The Bipolar Handbook, 2006, Wes Burgess, M.D., Ph.D., Avery – Penguin Group (USA) Inc.