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Magnesium (Mg2+) has received considerable attention with regards to its potential role in the pathophysiology of the mood disorders, but the available evidence seems inconclusive.
To review and quantitatively summarise the human literature on Mg2+ intake and Mg2+ blood levels in the mood disorders and the effects of Mg2+ supplements on mood.
Systematic review and meta-analyses.
Adherence to a Mg2+-rich diet was negatively associated with depression in cross-sectional (odds ratio = 0.66) but not in prospective studies. Mg2+ levels in bodily fluids were on average higher in patients with a mood disorder (Hedge's g = 0.19), but only in patients treated with antidepressants and/or mood stabilisers. There was no evident association between Mg2+ levels and symptom severity. Mg2+ supplementation was associated with a decline in depressive symptoms in uncontrolled (g = −1.60) but not in placebo-controlled trials (g = −0.21).
Our results provide little evidence for the involvement of Mg2+ in the mood disorders.
Our aim was to evaluate the relationship between adherence to different Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet indices and the risk of depression.
In a prospective study we assessed 14051 participants of a dynamic (permanently ongoing recruitment) prospective cohort (the Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra (SUN) Project), initially free of depression. At baseline, a validated FFQ was used to assess adherence to four previously proposed DASH indices (Dixon, Mellen, Fung and Günther). To define the outcome we applied two definitions of depression: a less conservative definition including only self-reported physician-diagnosed depression (410 incident cases) and a more conservative definition that required both clinical diagnosis of depression and use of antidepressants (113 incident cases). Cox regression and restricted cubic splines analyses were performed.
After a median follow-up period of 8 years, the multiple-adjusted model showed an inverse association with the Fung DASH score (hazard ratio (HR)=0·76; 95 % CI 0·61, 0·94) when we used the less conservative definition of depression, and also under the more conservative definition (HR=0·63; 95 % CI 0·41, 0·95). We observed a weak inverse association with the Mellen DASH score, but no statistically significant association was found for the other definitions. The restricted cubic splines analyses suggested that these associations were non-linear (U-shaped).
Moderate adherence to the DASH diet as operationalized by Fung and Mellen was related to lower depression risk. Since these associations were non-linear, additional prospective studies are required before the results can be generalized and clinical recommendations can be given.
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