A high-fat diet may cause changes in brain that lead to anxiety and depression, a new study has warned.
French researchers in experiments with mice found that increased body weight and high blood sugar as a result of consuming a high-fat diet may cause anxiety and depressive symptoms and measurable changes in the brain.
The beneficial effects of an antidepressant were blunted in mice fed a high-fat diet, researchers found.
“When treating depression, in general there is no predictor of treatment resistance,” said Dr Bruno Guiard, from the University of Paris-Sud and senior author of the study.
“So if we consider metabolic disorders as a putative treatment resistance predictor, this should encourage psychiatrists to put in place a personalised treatment with antidepressant drugs that do not further destabilise metabolism,” he said.
The study found that taking mice off a high-fat diet completely reversed the animals’ metabolic impairments and lessened their anxious symptoms.
“This finding reinforces the idea that the normalisation of metabolic parameters may give a better chance of achieving remission, particularly in depressed patients with type 2 diabetes,” said Guiard.
The study was published in the British Journal of Pharmacology.