PSYCHODIETETICS: Food As the Key to Emotional Health by

PSYCHODIETETICS: Food As the Key to Emotional Health

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The authors suggest an off-putting name for a new approach to mental health. Now that we have the environmental and genetic theories, they say, let us examine the nutritional as an additional possibility. Nutrition is not a panacea or a replacement for the other therapies, but it may help in treating alcoholism, schizophrenia, sexual inadequacy, hyperactivity, and senility, not to talk of other unclassifiable emotional aberrations too numerous to mention. The authors are decidedly for the B vitamins (especially niacin) and against sugar. Unfortunately their book is filled with simplistic quizzes (""Have you been feeling unhappy and depressed?""; True or false: ""people's faces seem to change in size as I watch them"") which imply the possibility of mental (hence, maybe nutritional) disorders, and sensationalistic chapter headings (""Are you going to Crack Up?""). But before dismissing these ideas, one must consider that the authors are probably right in claiming that many Americans suffer from hypoglycemia (too much sugar -- candy, soft drinks, ice cream, etc.); studies have established that B vitamins have a positive effect on alcoholics; refined flour (even when ""enriched""), food additives, etc., are clearly detrimental; and the diet they call for -- eggs, cheese, milk (cholesterol is not a problem when other nutrients, especially lecithin, are present), meat, seafood, poultry, fruit, vegetables, and whole-grain breads and cereals -- is exemplary. The authors may have something; one hopes that other researchers will pursue the subject and write a better book about it.

Pub Date: Nov. 15th, 1974
Publisher: Stein & Day