Nutrition: Low Sugar Low Fat / Gluten Free Diet
Nutrition can play a huge role in improving mental health. If your brain is getting the nutrients that it needs, cognition and other mental processing tends to be enhanced. Most studies show that diets high in sugar and saturated fat tend to worsen symptoms and long-term prognosis among individuals with schizophrenia. It is hypothesized that high levels of sugar and saturated fat cause the brain to produce less BDNF . BDNF aids in the formation of neural connections and increases are considered beneficial for brain functioning.
Other nutritional research has shown that there may be a link between schizophrenia and celiac disease or gluten-intolerance. There have been small findings that show genetic gluten intolerance have a three-fold risk of developing schizophrenia. Although not many people end up with gluten allergies, it is hypothesized that a gluten and/or wheat free diet could be a beneficial at reducing both the symptoms and severity of schizophrenia.
How Is Schizophrenia Diagnosed
Schizophrenia is often diagnosed in a persons late teens through early 30s. Males tend to show signs of the disease a little earlier than females. Someone with schizophrenia may show some early signs of schizophrenia, such as cognitive troubles or difficulties with social interactions, years before a diagnosis is made.
While the symptoms of schizophrenia can sometimes be quite obvious and life-changing, diagnosing schizophrenia can often be difficult. The use of certain mind-altering drugs, such as LSD, can produce schizophrenia-like symptoms, for example.
Even more challenging is that many people with schizophrenia dont believe they have it or any other mental disorder. This not only means many people never get diagnosed in the first place, but that those who do begin treatment often stop taking medications or attending therapy because they insist they dont need it.
Diagnosing schizophrenia relies largely on the observation of symptoms over a period of months, while eliminating other potential causes of such symptoms such as a brain tumor, a diagnosis of bipolar disorder, or other separate mental disorder.
To be formally diagnosed with schizophrenia, a person must have at least two of the following symptoms, and they must persist regularly:
- disorganized or catatonic behavior
- negative symptoms
Schizophrenia is sometimes divided into characterized by the presence and intensity of certain symptoms. The phases include:
New Research Suggests Ketogenic Diet May Play A Role In Treating Schizophrenia
Schizophrenia is usually a chronic, devastating disorder that causes tremendous suffering. It can ruin lives. Even with the best treatments available, symptoms and suffering often continue. An article that two colleagues and I just published April 6, 2019 in the medical journal Schizophrenia Research describes two patients with longstanding schizophrenia who experienced complete remission of symptoms with the ketogenic diet, a well-established, evidence-based treatment for epilepsy. Of particular interest in our research, both patients were able to stop antipsychotic medications and have remained in remission for years now. Though more evidence is certainly needed, this is extraordinarily hopeful news for those with this disorder and for the mental health professionals treating them.
The Prevalence Of Schizophrenia: How Common Is The Disease
Approximately 100,000 young people in the United States experience an episode of psychosis each year, according to the National Alliance on Mental Illness . Psychosis is a break with reality that can involve paranoia, hearing voices, or having other hallucinations or delusional thoughts.
Not everyone who experiences psychosis has a mental illness. Psychosis is a symptom, not a disease: It is characteristic of schizophrenia, but psychosis can also be caused by other psychiatric disorders, substances, and a variety of medical conditions.
My Recovery From Schizophrenia
My name is Jesse, and my story begins at the age of twelve. During this time in my life I had searched for new friends and opportunities in the world around me.
It was a late evening when a neighborhood teenager, and some of our friends gathered around to smoke, what he called a joint. And, he assured me that I would feel better than Ive ever felt before, as we passed around a joint of marijuana. After that, I was hooked.
During the next three years of my life, I had been a regular marijuana smoker. And, my brother would always have a new type of weed to bring home and share. And, on some occasions, Id have a batch that tasted funny or didnt make me feel right. I had remembered putting my head down a lot in the 9th grade. It was not normal for me. I began to feel as though I could perceive others with a new somewhat psychic ability. I began to feel as though I could understand others in a more advanced way through body language and behavior. However, it was also during this time, at the age of fifteen, that I began to feel much more anxious and depressed. I told my mother that I think I need some antidepressants or something, because I dont feel right or normal. My mother tried St. Johns Wort which did not work at all. However, my mother eventually took me to a psychotherapist who told my mother that I had schizotypal personality disorder, which may later develop into schizophrenia.
- February 18, 2021
How Does It Feel About Dealing With Schizophrenia
Have you ever wondered how it feels like forgetting and remembering thoughts non-stop while dealing with other imaginative imagery, not able to cope with reality and imagination at the same time? Yes, one can only think of only one word, and that is Crazy.Schizophrenia patients have to deal with these situations at all times, no matter the place, task, or time. Their mind is such a terrible state that they talk to themselves, having conversations. They cant interpret whats real and whats a dream, which ends up in a disaster they dont even intend to make.
Patients of this mental illness dont even know whats wrong with them until they consult a specialist. Some of the prominent symptoms of schizophrenia are hallucinations and delusions. The patient can hear voices in his head and see images that do not exist. They start believing in concepts that dont make sense to ordinary people. Their smelling sense gets weird, and they doubt their meals too. They can have an eerie feeling of something crawling on their skin.
There several other symptoms that go in detail for schizophrenia patients, but we need to move on towards our main topics, and that is how to deal with schizophrenia naturally. Lets look at some solutions fortis mental illness in further detail.
Promising Signs But Proceed With Caution
Scott Krakower, DO, an assistant unit chief in the psychiatry department at Zucker Hillside Hospital in Glen Oaks, New York, sees promise in this new agent to improve quality of life and function for patients.
The current drugs arent always effective, he says. Some patients have no response, partial response, or weight gain or restlessness so its always good to have more options, provided they are safe.
Research has shown that people with schizophrenia often have trouble sticking to their treatment plan. The Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness study found that 74 percent of patients had discontinued medication within 18 months due to insufficient efficacy, intolerable side effects, or for other reasons.
If there are more agents out there that are better tolerated and there isnt weight gain, there may be more compliance, says Dr. Krakower. And that is something we are aiming for in patients with schizophrenia.
Despite the positive indications so far, Krakower also warns that the true effectiveness of the drug can only be gauged once its being used by a broader population.
Whenever any new medication comes out on the market, we have to be very cautious there is a possibility the agent wont work out, he says. Patients should still be considering all the options out there for schizophrenia and they should speak to their practitioner to decide on what is the best medication.
How To Help Manage Symptoms
1. Dietary Alterations
Like all conditions, schizophrenia onset is affected, in part, by what a person eats. There is evidence, for instance, that celiac disease may be a precipitating factor for the illness. Having excessive free radical damage and not enough antioxidants circulating is also connected to a higher risk of schizophrenia.
Another dietary risk factor for symptoms of schizophrenia is poor metabolism of essential fatty acids . Two fatty acids, arachidonic acid and DHA, are much lower in patients suffering from schizophrenia and may be increased by some antipsychotics, one possible reason these drugs decrease symptoms.
However, a diet for schizophrenia mirroring what we already know about treating food as medicine will be beneficial for maintaining lower weights and overall health but it may not help to treat the condition.
For example, a 1999 clinical trial observed participants with schizophrenia eating and supplementing their diet based on food sensitivities and nutrient deficiencies. After five months, patients had improved the blood levels of their nutrients, but no direct symptoms of schizophrenia.
There are some impressive case studies that suggest keto might be a revolutionary natural treatment for schizophrenia. Among the most popular are cases of two women and one man with schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder who experienced a drastic reduction in all symptoms of schizophrenia while following the diet. 30063-4/abstract” rel=”nofollow”>35, , )
Acute And Maintenance Phases Of Schizophrenia
In schizophrenia, there are two phases of antipsychotic treatment:
may need to stay in the hospital.
Sometimes, a doctor will prescribe rapid tranquilization. They give the person a fast acting medication that relaxes them to ensure that they do not harm themselves or others.
The person does not stay in the hospital but uses antipsychotic drugs to help prevent further episodes. Stopping the medication can lead to relapses.
Psychotherapy can also help
Apart from schizophrenia, various other disorders and factors can cause psychosis. The different types include:
- Schizoaffective disorder: This disorder is similar to schizophrenia but includes periods of mood disturbances.
- Brief psychotic disorder: Symptoms occur in response to a stressful life event, last less than a month, and do not return.
- Delusional disorder: The person has a strong belief in something irrational and often bizarre with no factual basis.
- Bipolar psychosis: Some people with bipolar disorder experience psychosis, either during a very high or very low mood.
- Severe depression: Also known as major depressive disorder with psychotic features.
- Postpartum psychosis: This type of psychosis can present after giving birth.
- Substance-induced psychosis: The of alcohol, some recreational drugs, and certain prescription drugs can cause this.
Psychosis can also result from other disorders, such as:
Should Someone Try This Diet On Their Own
If you have schizophrenia or any serious disorder and are considering using the ketogenic diet as a treatment, I strongly recommend that you consult with a healthcare professional before trying this diet. Why? Because mental illnesses are serious disorders and sometimes dangerous. The medical version of the ketogenic diet has risks and side effects. You should have accurate information, help, and medical supervision to implement treatments in a safe and effective way. All of the patients described in all of these studies were treated by physicians while attempting the ketogenic diet.
DISCLAIMER: Nothing in this article is intended as medical advice. Anyone contemplating the ketogenic diet as a treatment for illness of any kind is urged to seek medical help from a competent medical provider trained in treatment of the underlying condition as well as the ketogenic diet therapy before initiating the ketogenic diet. The ketogenic diet induces significant metabolic changes which can impact medication metabolism, among other things. Individuals seeking treatment of any illness using the ketogenic diet will likely require additional support especially during the initial adaptation phase, and thereafter for the duration of treatment which can take years depending on a variety of factors. No doctor-patient relationship is created by this article, or by any responses to comments posted in this forum by Chris Palmer, M.D.
Omega 3 Fatty Acids Essential Natural Remedies For Schizophrenia
Omega 3 fatty acids as a natural treatment for schizophrenia can also help in managing the symptoms. Inflammation is linked with various mental illnesses, including schizophrenia, and omega 3 fatty acids are known for being very effective in reducing inflammation. Studies show that people who take omega 3 fatty acids are less likely to develop the disorder.
Another advantage of omega 3 fatty acids is that it can improve heart health. Schizophrenic people possess a higher chance of metabolic syndrome, which increases the risk of heart diseases, and as such, omega 3 fatty acids can be very beneficial in managing the disorder. It doesnt cause any side effects, but you must talk to your doctor first for the most appropriate dosage.
More Evidence Of The Ketogenic Diet For Schizophrenia
While inspiring, these two case reports aren’t the first of their kind. They join a growing body of evidence supporting the use of the ketogenic diet in the treatment of schizophrenia.
Schizophrenia in 1965
In 1965, ten women hospitalized with schizophrenia who were already receiving medications and electroconvulsive were also placed on the ketogenic diet for a month. The researchers reported that their symptoms improved after two weeks on the diet, but then returned back to their baseline level of symptoms after the diet was stopped.
Schizoaffective disorder in 2017
In 2017, I reported two other cases of schizoaffective disorder improving significantly on the ketogenic diet. Schizoaffective disorder is a diagnosis that includes both a mix of schizophrenia and a mood disorder, often bipolar disorder. One man and one woman, both in their 30s, had suffered treatment-resistant schizoaffective disorder for years. On the diet, their symptoms were greatly improved, and they both lost significant amounts of weight. Off the diet, their symptoms returned.
Schizophrenia in Ecuador
Schizophrenia in mice
In 2015, researchers conducted a study of the effects of the ketogenic diet in a mouse model of schizophrenia. Studies exactly like this are used in the development of new antipsychotic medications. The ketogenic diet was found to normalize the mouse behaviors associated with schizophrenia, indicating an antipsychotic effect.
Psychosis Treatment Program Options
Psychosis is a condition that describes a situation where someone has lost touch with reality in one of several ways. This could include having delusions or hallucinations. People having an episode of psychosis may have false beliefs, or they might see, hear or feel things that are not there. Early intervention may prevent someone from hurting themselves or others and could stop a psychosis-related condition from worsening. If you or someone you know has developed symptoms of psychosis, you must seek help as soon as possible.
Prospects Are Not As Hopeless As Previously Thought According To The Researcher Behind The Study
Until recently, medical professionals believed that only a minority of patients could recover from schizophrenia. But now, new Norwegian research suggests that more than half of the study participants are doing well.
After four years of treatment, 55 per cent of the young people were partially or fully recovered, and fully ten per cent of those who are fully recovered no longer use medication.
“Having such a high proportion be well-functioning shows that schizophrenic patients have a greater potential to get well than previous research has shown,” says Professor Anne-Kari Torgalsbøen at the University of Oslos Department of Psychology.
She believes too much pessimism has been associated with this diagnosis.
“The results of this study give hope not only to patients and their relatives, but also provide inspiration for everyone who treats young people with psychotic disorders,” she says.
Hallucinations and delusions
Torgalsbøen specializes in clinical psychology and is following close to 30 young adults for ten years. This study shows how the participants are doing after four years, and was recently published in the European Psychiatry journal.
All the study participants were recruited within five months of being hospitalized or starting outpatient treatment for first-episode mental disorders.
The study required the first episode of psychosis to be on the schizophrenia spectrum, she says.
Prejudices are an additional burden
Close follow-up using several treatment methods
Can Schizophrenia Be Cured Naturally Without Medication
Cure is a very strong word when it comes to a serious illness like schizophrenia. Most experts would agree that nobody has been cured of the disease, but many people have learned to successfully manage symptoms even without an antipsychotic medication. Where we need to be careful is when people start utilizing practices that they think will cure their condition that have no scientific basis.
Many people with the condition believe that there is some miracle cure for the condition that involves non-pharmaceutical intervention. Other fake spiritual leaders promise that the individual just needs to work on their karma or spiritual life and subconscious mind to overcome schizophrenia. The truth is that although these practices may give the individual with the condition some hope, the hope is rooted in lies.
Schizophrenia should be managed with proper psychiatric intervention and care. Ignoring a professionals recommendation for the treatment of this disease is akin to someone starting a vegetarian diet in hopes that it will cure them of diabetes. It may help reduce some symptoms, but is not treating the root of the problem brain chemistry. If you are going to attempt to treat your schizophrenia naturally, it is recommended that you work with a professional psychologist and study the research on various natural treatment options.
Treating Schizophrenia With Medication
It can be easy to assume that any medication is a cure for an illness, but this isnt always true. With schizophrenia the medications used to treat it help to manage symptoms, but they do not cure the condition. Even though they do not provide a cure, they have an important role to play and help many people with schizophrenia get relief. Therapy alone is not enough to treat .
The medications used for schizophrenia are called antipsychotic drugs. These drugs are thought to work by acting on the neurotransmitter in the brain known as dopamine. They help relieve symptoms but can also cause side effects. The goal of using antipsychotics to treat schizophrenia is to use the lowest dose possible or the smallest combination of drugs that manage symptoms. Some patients may have to try more than one medication, or a combination of drugs, before settling on treatment that gets results with the fewest side effects.
Antipsychotics include first and second generation medications. The first generation drugs generally cause more side effects, but they are also less expensive. Second generation antipsychotics are generally preferred, as they come with less risk of serious side effects. Examples of second generation antipsychotics used to treat schizophrenia are:
Vitamins B6 B12 Popular Natural Remedies For Schizophrenia
You can also incorporate vitamin B as part of your schizophrenia natural treatment plan. Some research shows that niacin can aid with delusions and paranoia, which can be very beneficial for schizophrenia patients. Particularly if you are suffering from schizophrenia and has a low deficiency of vitamin B, incorporating vitamin B can show drastic results.
A study conducted on schizophrenia patients shows that a combination of psychotic medications and vitamin b can prove to be very beneficial. Some common sources of vitamin B include nuts, eggs, and meat.
Can Schizoaffective Disorder Go Away On Its Own
Unfortunately, those who are diagnosed with the disorder must seek early intervention and comprehensive treatment to deal with their diagnosis. Schizoaffective disorder will not go away on its own, but the prognosis is much better than other psychotic disorders.
The treatment options are effective at minimizing the symptoms someone will experience. The critical foundation for a positive recovery is through sustained clinical treatment, which commonly includes medicine as well as psychotherapy.
Recovery success will vary from one person to another, and its not possible to predict someones rehabilitation success. While some can manage their symptoms with treatment and return to a somewhat ordinary course of life, others can manage their symptoms but will not return to a standard lifestyle. Others, however, will continue to struggle to manage symptoms, even with support and treatment.
The earlier someone gets treatment for schizoaffective disorder, the better chance they will have of minimizing psychological damage. Early intervention, however, will help avoid distress and fallout from the problematic combination of psychotic and mood symptoms.
Get Enough Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid Epa From Fish
There is evidence that people with schizophrenia dont metabolize polyunsaturated fatty acids properly. One study found that people who were treated with a polyunsaturated fatty acid called eicosapentaenoic acid for a period of 3 months experienced a greater improvement than those on a placebo. In fact, research has also indicated that it can even reduce the need for antipsychotic drugs in some people. EPA is naturally present in fish such as salmon, herring, sardines as well as fish oils.
Who Gets Schizophrenia
Although not as prevalent as other well-known mental disorders, schizophrenia continues to be a pressing mental health issue nonetheless.
Of all the 23 million patients reported globally, the incidence of schizophrenia appeared to be higher among males than females . However, on closer inspection, it was found that this was largely due to the fact that the problem begins to show earlier in men than women.
Thus, even though schizophrenia is equally common in both genders, the onset differs to a certain degree. Men are prone to develop this condition in their late teens or early 20s whereas women may exhibit initial symptoms in their 20s or early 30s. The sooner the symptoms appear, the more severe the course of illness is likely to be.
Thus, teens and young adults together form the highest-risk demographic for schizophrenia. Very rarely though, children above the age of 5 can exhibit schizophrenic symptoms as well. Conversely, once a person is past 45, he/she is unlikely to develop this condition at all.
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Symptoms Associated With Schizophrenia
Schizophrenia can have long-standing implications for your emotional, cognitive, and behavioral well-being. As most cases of schizophrenia begin during the teenage years, which itself is a transitional phase characterized by emotional, intellectual, and behavioral changes along with erratic mood swings, these symptoms are often lost in the confusion or dismissed as teenage tantrums.
The symptoms associated with schizophrenia do not present uniformly among all patients. In some cases, you might get a clear inkling that all is not well due to conspicuous symptoms, whereas others may only reveal schizophrenic traits when they start expressing their thoughts.
Besides variations in the type of symptoms, the way they manifest also differs from person to person. In addition, the symptoms can be exacerbated by stress and lack of coping skills.
The symptoms of schizophrenia are broadly classified into the following categories depending upon their inherent nature:
Symptoms can become worse without proper treatment and can be more difficult to treat with a patient that is not compliant with treatment.
Some of the common symptoms include:
Whats The Outlook For An Individual With Schizophrenia
The challenges facing people with schizophrenia are plentiful and often severe. But with proper treatment, some of the more severe symptoms, such as hallucinations and delusions, may be made more manageable.
Lifelong treatment is necessary and medication needs may change through the years. Dosages may have to be adjusted and certain medications may need to be changed, added, or subtracted, depending on how the individual responds.
A study in the journal Revista Colombiana de Psiquiatria suggests that about one in seven people with schizophrenia can achieve functional recovery. With no cure in sight, that means the majority of people with schizophrenia will have to deal with symptoms for the rest of their lives.
Schizophrenia should be considered a treatable disease, though the effectiveness of treatment can vary dramatically from one person to the next. Access to proper healthcare is essential, as is commitment to a treatment regimen.
Individuals who are reluctant or unable to take their medications regularly and follow through on other components of their treatment may need a family member or health aide to assist them. The severity of schizophrenia also varies, so expectations of symptom management and quality of life need to be tempered based on the nature of the individuals condition.