Is Obesity in Young People With Psychosis a Foregone Conclusion? Markedly Excessive Energy Intake Is Evident Soon After Antipsychotic Initiation.

Publication Type:
Journal Article
Front Psychiatry, 2018, 9 pp. 725 - ?
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Introduction: Antipsychotic medication (APM) initiation is associated with rapid and substantial weight-gain and high rates of obesity. Obesity leads to premature onset of cardiometabolic diseases and contributes to the 15-20 year shortfall in life expectancy in those experiencing severe mental illness. Dietary energy intake excess is critical to weight management but is yet to be quantified in youth with first episode psychosis (FEP) receiving APM. This study aimed to describe the degree of energy overconsumption and the food sources contributing to this in youth with FEP. Materials and Methods: People aged 15-30 years with FEP receiving APM completed diet histories through qualified dietitians to assess energy imbalance and food sources. Outcome measures were: (i) energy balance; and (ii) intake of core and discretionary foods. Results: Participants (n = 93) were aged 15-29 years (mean = 21.4 ± 2.9 years) and exposed to APMs for a median for 8 months (Interquartile Range (IQR) 11 months). Energy balance was exceeded by 26%, by a median 1,837 kJ per day (IQR 5,365 kJ). APM polypharmacy and olanzapine were linked to larger excesses in dietary energy intake. The greatest contributors to energy intake were refined grain foods (33%) and discretionary foods (31%). Conclusion: Young people with FEP receiving APMs appear to have markedly excessive energy consumption, likely contributing to rapid weight-gain, and thereby seeding future poor physical health. Larger, prospective studies are needed to gain a greater understanding of dietary intake, and its effects on health, in people with FEP.
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