Patrick Holford is a well-known author, researcher, and advocate for nutrition and mental health. As the founder and CEO of UK charity Food for the Brain, he is at the forefront of promoting brain health through better nutrition. Since the 1970s, Holford has been raising awareness about declining IQ scores worldwide, attributing this trend to diets high in complex carbs and sugar. He advocates for a diet high in fats and essential vitamins and minerals to reverse this decline.
Holford emphasizes the urgent need to address mental health problems, which are now rated as the number one most expensive and pressing health issue by government reports. He points to the increase in depression, autism, ADHD, and dementia as evidence of this alarming trend. According to studies, there has been about a 7% decrease in IQ per generation since the 1970s, indicating a significant problem that needs to be addressed.
The prevalence of mental health issues among children is a major concern for Holford. He notes that in some parts of the UK, 50% of women are on antidepressants, highlighting the scale of the issue. Despite these challenges, Holford remains determined to bring attention to this issue through Food for the Brain and make as much noise as possible.
To support its mission, Food for the Brain uses at-home blood spot tests and digital cognitive health questionnaires to assess the nutrition and cognition status of thousands of participants. By providing nutrition advice and building a substantial databank, the charity aims to catalyze a widespread shift in perceptions around mental and cognitive health. For further details on this mission, you can listen to a podcast with NutraIngredients Europe Editor Nikki Hancocks available online.