New research has found that low levels of iron and vitamin B12 in young boys are associated with behavior problems when they get to middle school.
Scientific research not only shows that micronutrient deficiency is associated with behavioral problems, but also that nutritional supplementation improves behavior. In an impressive demonstration of this, a study published by researchers at California State University in 2000 found that school children given a daily supplement containing just 50 per cent of the RDA for a period of 4 months had lower rates of threats and fighting, vandalism, being disrespectful, disorderly conduct, defiance, obscenities, refusal to work or serve, endangering others, and other offences.
The underlying idea behind this area of research is essentially a simple one, namely, that the brain needs to be nourished, just like all other organs of the body, and that it is therefore vital to consider the brain’s nutritional needs as a key factor in changing behavior.
As is now becoming increasingly clear, the old saying that ‘we are what we eat’ applies just as much to our mental health and behavior as it does to our physical health.