Home Psychology Mental Health and Nutrition

Mental Health and Nutrition

From womb to world: The role of micronutrients in shaping infant development

happy baby
Dr Siobhan Campbell Siobhan is a recent PhD graduate from Te Puna Toiora (Mental Health and Nutrition Research Lab) based at the University of Canterbury. She is particularly interested in the impact of nutritional intervention on maternal mental health and infant development. Alongside her studies in nutritional psychology, Siobhan is completing additional studies in clinical psychology, working as an intern...

Micronutrients as a Treatment for Antenatal Depression: Results from “NUTRIMUM”, an RCT using vitamins and minerals to treat depressive symptoms during pregnancy

AI generated illustration of pregnant woman surrounded by vtitamins and nutrition
Dr Hayley Bradley   Researchers from Te Puna Toiora (Mental Health and Nutrition Research Lab) have published a new study investigating whether broad-spectrum micronutrients (vitamins and minerals) can improve symptoms of depression during pregnancy. Antenatal depression affects between 15-21% of pregnant women worldwide (1) and increases the risk pregnancy, birth, and neonatal complications as well as postnatal depression (2-4). It has...

Micronutrients absorbed in the mouth reduce irritability and anger but not stress in university students

Image of fruit and vegetables
Written by: Nurina Katta Long-term stress can increase the risk of all kinds of adverse physical and mental health conditions, such as strokes, cardiovascular disease, emotional distress, anxiety, and depression. In addition, stress can lead to poorer lifestyle choices, including smoking, drinking, and overeating1-6. There are high rates of stress among university students7; however, only a small number of students receive...

Translating science to the real world: Nutrition as a front-line form of treatment after a traumatic event

Disasters, both natural (e.g., earthquakes, floods) and human-made (e.g., terrorism, civil strife), affect communities worldwide, often causing immense disruption and suffering, and lasting psychological injuries. Living and working in Christchurch, Aotearoa New Zealand has meant we have had our fair share of traumas, but then also the opportunity to study the effect of nutrients on our resilience. For example, on February...

Gut gardening to improve mental health

The human gut is home to trillions of microorganisms, and research is finding that this microbiome has important impacts on our health and wellbeing. However, what do you do when you feel that your gut microbiome needs a boost? It is possible to change your microbiome, for both better and worse? University of Canterbury MSc Psychology student Jessica Heaton outlines interesting ways to improve our gut microbiome's bacterial diversity, and how this can impact our physical and mental health.

Fish oil supplements in New Zealand

Are NZ fish oil supplements safe, true to label and can they provide a health benefit? I recently co-authored an article in the New Zealand Medical Journal looking at whether omega-3 fatty acids contained in 10 fish oil supplements sold in NZ are true to label, accurate with health claims and safe to consume. Overall, although likely to be safe...

Exploring the microbiome and its relationship with infant health

For the past several years, through the NUTRIMUM study, Te Puna Toiora | UC’s Mental Health and Nutrition Research group has been investigating the effect that micronutrient supplementation, and maternal depression and anxiety can have on infant development. One of the aspects of interest in this research has been the collection of microbiome samples from mothers and infants, in...

Traumatic Brain Injuries and Nutrition

Not just a knock on the head A Traumatic Brain Injury (TBI) is caused by a trauma to the head that can cause damage to the brain. Data shows that the majority of TBIs are received from car accidents and falls. This makes children highly vulnerable. TBIs can be hard to diagnose. It is not uncommon for people to brush...

Kai and mental well-being

This Te Wiki o Te Reo Māori | Māori Language Week 2019, Taryn Hale showcases the importance of traditional kai in Te Whare Tapa Whā, the Māori wellbeing model.

Depression and anxiety: exploring micronutrient interventions

Wellbeing and the media You would likely notice an increase in a variety of wellbeing interventions in the media recently. Some of these are called complementary and alternative medicines. These approaches are often popular as add-ons to conventional medications or as alternatives to seeking medical intervention. Complementary and alternative medicines are increasing in popularity as more people look for additional...
Skip to toolbar