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Low intake of B-vitamins is associated with poor adolescent mental health and behaviour
METHODS: This is a cross-sectional analysis of the West Australian Pregnancy Cohort (Raine) Study. The 17-year follow-up included collection of a food frequency questionnaire allowing B-vitamin intake calculation. Mental health was assessed using the Youth Self Report (YSR) which measures total, internalising (withdrawn/depressed) and externalising (aggressive/delinquent) behaviour scores. Multiple linear regression was used to analyse associations between B-vitamins and mental health with adjustment for relevant confounders (n=709).
RESULTS: Lower intake of vitamins B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, and folate was associated with higher externalising behaviour scores (p ≤ 0.05). Reduced intake of vitamin B6 and folate was associated with higher internalising behaviour scores (p ≤ 0.05).
CONCLUSIONS: Poor nutrition may contribute to the pathogenesis of mental health problems in adolescence. The role of B-vitamins requires further investigation in randomised controlled trials.
Publication titlePreventive Medicine
Department/SchoolMenzies Institute for Medical Research
PublisherAcademic Press Inc Elsevier Science
Place of publication525 B St, Ste 1900, San Diego, USA, Ca, 92101-4495