Tryptophan, depresson connection

I have come across articles that : diabetics may be more likely to experience depression. We face challenges and demands that non diabetics do not experience. BG swings can cause mood swings. So that’s understandable.

I have reduced my total carbohydrate intake because it’s easier to manage my BG on a reduced carbohydrate diet. I wonder if there is a connection between reduced carbohydrate and lowered tryptophan and susequently lower mood. I think that I always feel better having more carbs (chocolates, croissants, :slight_smile: , but managing the huge BG swings drive me nuts. Therefore, I try to avoid high carb meals.

Any thoughts?

1 Like

There is evidence that eating more carbs reduces depression in some individuals, so that isn’t a crazy idea. Whether or not those on a low carb diet have a higher risk of depression has only been proven in rats. So please, for the sake of the depressed pet rats, feed them a normal carb diet. As for humans, it doesn’t look like it has been studied well enough, but the number of junk science articles taking the rat trial = human conclusion is crazy. I guess big food has been paying for some misinformation.

1 Like

I don’t take any depression medication currently but I definitely notice after an afternoon of running too high or maybe a couple days in a row of being higher than normal - I feel super emotional - mainly sad, depressed, whatever. And I also notice when I spike and start lowering to something more normal - I can very quickly feel “happier”. I think in the years prior to this T1D diagnosis things were not working correctly as I would have something sugary or high carb (I don’t eat that way anymore) and just feel emotionally (and physically) yucky. Now it’s just more pronounced.
My mom had T1D and was on several depression/anxiety medications. We always assumed it was because of the divorce and “depression/anxiety running in the family”. I don’t think that was the case - she didn’t manage her numbers well and it showed up emotionally and seemed to compound. I wish I would have understood that better back in the day and prior to my T1D dx so I could have helped her.



I came across that article referencing rats too, LOL.

I think my Dad was similar in that in those days, his doctor did not prescribe glucometers (it was in the 1970’s) and his BG managemnt was poor. My first glucometer in 1990 was the huge colorimetric one. Place a large droplet of blood and check the color for the BG. My Dad’s BG control was poor. Several times, he would be too low and eat lifesavers candy. He seemed to have become more depressed as the doctor continued to increase his insulin dosage. The doctor never counseled him on pre bolusing, managing his carb intake. My dad loved his carbs: toast, rice, zeppoles, buns of all types…etc. I think it’s possible that the glucose swings was the cause of the swings.

1 Like