VGBC2023 | How the foods you eat affect your mental well-being

The exciting new fields of metabolic and nutritional psychiatry seek to empower patients to reduce or eliminate the need for psychiatric medications by changing how they eat. But which changes are most worth making, and why? Nutrition headlines and dietary guidelines are confusing and constantly changing. Social media and marketing messages about superfoods, supplements, plant-based diets, ketogenic diets, and Mediterranean diets for brain health seem to conflict, often paralyzing the public with indecision. What are we to believe? Which strategies have the greatest potential for addressing our growing global mental health crisis?

Patients and practitioners alike need common sense, scientifically sound, and actionable information about how to improve their mental health with better nutrition. It is time to clearly define what a brain-healthy diet should be: a diet that nourishes, energizes, and protects the brain for a lifetime of excellent mental health.

Georgia Ede will share findings from the study she co-authored about the ketogenic diet for mental illness (conducted in France), as well as general information about how brain metabolism works and which foods support (and work against) the brain’s ability to access energy.

Dr. Georgia Ede

Dr. Georgia Ede is a Harvard-trained psychiatrist specializing in nutritional and metabolic psychiatry. Her two decades of clinical experience include twelve years at Smith College and Harvard University Health Services, where she was the first to offer nutrition-based therapies as an adjunct or alternative to psychiatric medication. In 2020, Dr. Ede developed the first CME-accredited clinician training program in ketogenic diets for mental health, In 2022, she co-authored the first inpatient study of the ketogenic diet for serious mental illness and was named a recipient of the Baszucki Brain Research Fund’s first annual Metabolic Mind Award.

Dr. Ede speaks internationally about nutrition science, nutrition policy reform, and dietary approaches to psychiatric conditions, and she writes about food and the brain for Psychology Today and for her own website DiagnosisDiet. Her forthcoming book Change Your Diet, Change Your Mind will be published in January 2024,  including in the UK and Commonwealth markets.