Potential link between dietary intake of fatty acids and behavior


Arnold, L. E., Kleykamk, D., Votolato, N.A., Gibson, R.A., Horrocks, L. J. Child. Adolesc. Psychopharmacol. 4/3:171.


This paper provides a review of the biochemistry and physiology of EFAs and eicosanoids with particular emphasis upon their role in the function of the nervous system and in particular, their role in behavior. D6D deficiency has been hypothesized to be one cause of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). An earlier study by these researchers in which correlations between serum lipids and behavior were explored, is reviewed in this paper. The pilot study consisted of a double blind crossover comparison of GLA (320 mg) amphetamine, and placebo in 18 boys (ages 6 to 12) with ADHD. GLA supplementation continued for one month. The results indicated that higher scores for behavioral problems were significantly correlated with lower serum GLA levels, but not with serum levels of LA or DGLA.  These preliminary findings suggested to the researchers that fatty acid intake and/or metabolism may influence behavior in ADHD and could modulate the effects of psychopharmacological treatment. The researchers suggested further study specifically to examine a possible effect of altered fatty acid metabolism on psychiatric disorders.