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Of Junk Food, Violence & Omega-3: New Studies Demonstrate Food-Mood Connection

Posted Dec 18 2008 8:12pm

You simply must read this fabulous article in The Guardian, "Omega-3, junk food and the link between violence and what we eat: Researchers with British and US offenders suggest nutritional deficiencies may play a key role in aggressive behavior."

The wonderfully researched piece by journalist Felicity Lawrence provides a thorough and easy-to-read update about how what you eat could be partly to blame for violence. It also puts forth the notion that I explore in my upcoming book SUGAR SHOCK! -- that eating more wholesome foods, increasing omega-3 and eating less junk food could cut back on criminal behavior.

Just listen to Lawrences's eloquent explanation:

"...the new research calls into question the very basis of criminal justice and the notion of culpability. It suggests that individuals may not always be responsible for their aggression."

Then, in discussing two studies, she says that they show "that violent behaviour may be attributable at least in part to nutritional deficiencies." Right on!

Later, The Guardian's' Lawrence observes:

"Although no one is suggesting that poor diet alone can account for complex social problems, the former chief inspector of prisons Lord Ramsbotham says that he is now `absolutely convinced that there is a direct link between diet and antisocial behaviour, both that bad diet causes bad behaviour and that good diet prevents it.'

"The Dutch government is currently conducting a large trial to see if nutritional supplements have the same effect on its prison population. And this week, new claims were made that fish oil had improved behaviour and reduced aggression among children with some of the most severe behavioural difficulties in the UK."

Darn, that's so cool that the British and Dutch prison authorities are so open to this. Even more exciting for me as an American is that the U.S. government's National Institutes for Health, near Washington, D.C. is at the forefront of this research with a study that is investigating the effects of omega-3 fatty acid supplements on the brain.

In fact, as Lawrence puts it, the "results emerging from this study are at the cutting edge of the debate on crime and punishment."

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