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Only Vitamin D was found to treat post-partum depression - Meta-analysis April 2023

Dietary interventions for perinatal depression and anxiety: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials

Am J Clin Nutr. 2023 Apr 3;S0002-9165(23)46315-0. doi: 10.1016/j.ajcnut.2023.03.025 PDF is behind a paywall
Zoe Tsai 1, Nirmay Shah 2, Umair Tahir 2, Neda Mortaji 3, Sawayra Owais 4, Maude Perreault 5, Ryan J Van Lieshout 3

Background: Dietary interventions are a widely available intervention for depression and anxiety among pregnant and/or postpartum (i.e., perinatal) persons but their effectiveness is not well known.

Objective: We performed a systematic review and meta-analysis to assess the effectiveness of dietary interventions for the treatment of perinatal depression and/or anxiety.

Design: We searched Medline, EMBASE, PsycINFO, CINAHL, and Web of Science from their inception to November 2, 2022. Studies were included if they were available in English and examined the effectiveness of a dietary intervention for perinatal depression and/or anxiety in a randomized controlled trial.

Results: Our search identified 4,246 articles, 36 of which were included and 28 were eligible for meta-analysis. Random effects meta-analyses were performed.

  • Polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs) were not found to improve symptoms of perinatal depression compared to control conditions (SMD -0.11; 95% CI -0.26 to 0.04). These results did not change when examined during pregnancy or the postpartum period separately, nor did they vary according to fatty acid ratio.
  • Elemental metals (iron, zinc, and magnesium) were also not found to be superior to placebo (SMD, -0.42; 95% CI, -1.05 to 0.21), though,
  • vitamin D yielded a small to medium effect size improvements (SMD, -0.52; 95% CI, -0.84 to -0.20) in postpartum depression.
  • Iron may help in those with confirmed iron deficiency. Narrative synthesis was performed for studies ineligible for meta-analyses.

Conclusions: Despite their widespread popularity, PUFAs and elemental metals do not appear to effectively reduce perinatal depression. Vitamin D taken in doses of 1800 to 3500 International Units (IU) per day may have some promise. Additional high-quality, large-scale randomized controlled trials (RCTs) are needed to determine the true effectiveness of dietary interventions on perinatal depression and/or anxiety.

VitaminDWiki - 21 studies in both categories Pregnancy and Depression

This list is automatically updated

FDA announced fast-acting Zurzuvae pill for postpartum depression - Aug 2023

Washington Post

  • "The FDA warned that the drug’s side effects can include drowsiness, dizziness, fatigue, diarrhea, urinary tract infection and nasopharyngitis (the common cold)."
  • A persion "cautioned that Zurzuvae is not a “magic pill” for broadly solving postpartum depression."

To be fast acting, Vitamin D needs to start with a loading dose (otherwise it takes many months)

Millions of people have all successfully use Vitamin D loading doses.
There are an extremely wide variety of loading dose protocols, all of which work
50,000 IU of vitamin D daily for a week is one example
Hundreds of studies are compared at Overview Loading of vitamin D

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