Vegetarian Diet and Mental Disorders

Vegetarian Buffet

Vegetarian Buffet (Link is to public domain source)

A fascinating article over on PubMed from last week showed a remarkable correlation between lack of meat in the diet and mental disorders.

Aside from my own inclination to classify vegetarianism and/or veganism to be a priori evidence of a mental disorder, this “study” was very interesting on two very different levels.

One one level, it is an enormous surprise that a “study” like this would ever see the light of day, much less get published on PubMed. It’s just not Politically Correct. You gotta wonder how the authors of that paper plan to stay employed after publishing something like that. (“Would you like fries with that, sir?”)

But, on a whole different level, there is the last statement in the conclusion:

However, there was no evidence for a causal role of vegetarian diet in the etiology of mental disorders.

If this had been a “study” on carbohydrate restriction using, say, the Atkins-bashing special rat chow from Purina with the name “5TJP” (The “Atkins-Type Diet for Rodents“), or “5TJQ” (The “High-Fat Ketogenic Diet for Rodents“) where the fat consists of soybean oil, corn oil, and Crisco (check the ingredient labels carefully), you would not have seen any such disclaimer.

But, maybe they are essentially correct. Maybe bizarre, unnatural, and suboptimal diets just tend to attract people with mental disorders.

About Mr. N=1

I am co-owner of, along with my wife, Georgene (Mrs N=1). Read more about me on Howard's about page.
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One Response to Vegetarian Diet and Mental Disorders

  1. Cassie says:

    That study on being a vego is really good but not something I am surprised with. I am scared to think of what more damage we are going to do to our bodies now that being vego is becoming more popular.

    I believe a lot of my problems with IBS stem from me being vego so long.

    My name is Cassie Bond and I live in Australia and I have a blog I would like to link to yours and have you link to mine?
    I am so happy that you are blogging about the fantastic results you are having with your health using the Low Carb, High Fat diet.

    I believe we can all benefit by linking with each other and getting our information out to as many people as we can. My passion is to help people to get well and I’ve been studying diet for most of my life.

    This is my link if you would like to link to me: I have already added a link to your blog so hopefully you’ll be getting some more traffic.

    My blog is my take on the low carb, high fat diet called the Alkaline Paleo diet. It is about my journey and all that I have learnt to heal myself of IBS and helping others to heal as well.

    I am organising an Alkaline Paleo retreat in Umbria, Italy next year( which I believe will be very exciting. I am in Italy at the moment and most people can’t believe I can eat well here on this diet but I can and do! If you are interested in this retreat or know people who might be please let me know and I will send you the details when I have them. It would be wonderful to compare notes over an Umbrian sunset.

    If you haven’t replied within the next two weeks I shall take it that you are not interesting in linking to my blog and will take your link down.

    Kindest Thoughts

    Howard says:
    Thank you for your comment. I have added you to my blogroll.

    I did not consider the “study” to be very good. I generally quit reading a study when I encounter the work “observational,” but the conclusion of this one was unusual enough for me to check it out. While I’m not surprised to see a correlation between mental disorders and a vegetarian diet, I am surprised that such a study could get published in a mainstream “medical” journal.

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