Are fish oils an effective therapy in mental illness — an analysis of the data
Article first published online: 24 DEC 2001
Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Volume 102, Issue 1, pages 3–11, July 2000
How to Cite
Maidment, I. D. (2000), Are fish oils an effective therapy in mental illness — an analysis of the data. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 102: 3–11. doi: 10.1034/j.1600-0447.2000.102001003.x
- Issue published online: 24 DEC 2001
- Article first published online: 24 DEC 2001
- Accepted for publication January 21, 2000
- Cited By
- bipolar disorder;
- fatty acids;
- fish oils;
Objective: To review the literature regarding the use of fish oils in the treatment of psychiatric illness.
Method: A Medline search was conducted in September 1999.
Results: Five papers have investigated omega-3 fatty acids levels in depression. One study used omega-3 fatty acids as an adjunctive therapy in bipolar disorder. Four studies used fatty acids as an adjunctive therapy in schizophrenia.
Conclusion: There is a great deal of current research in this field. While omega-3 fatty acids levels may be lowered in depression, there are no data suggesting that omega-3 fatty acids are effective. One paper indicates that omega-3 fatty acids are effective in bipolar disorders. The data on schizophrenia are conflicting. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids have proved effective. Most of the evidence suggests that the main effect is an improvement in negative symptoms. One recent study showed that omega-3 fatty acids had no effect on negative symptoms.