Lithium in moderation

Many people have been told, “You will need to take lithium tablets for the rest of your life.”

It is a strange thing for psychiatrists to be saying when first prescribing this mineral. We know that for something like half the people who take lithium as prescribed it just does not do what it is supposed to do.

Could it be that lithium simply works in a similar way to all the other essential minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, copper, zinc, selenium, with supplements only improving our health if we happened to be suffering a deficiency?

From a nutritionist’s point of view this makes perfect sense. If you have enough of a mineral and you are given more than you will feel worse. Most likely you will become more anxious or depressed. If you really are not getting enough dietary lithium then a lithium supplement will most likely help you to feel less depressed and anxious.

Here is an article I wrote about lithium being a mineral that most people can get from a balanced diet: Lithium for everyone

As always I need to stress that if you have taken lithium tablets then it can be extremely dangerous to suddenly stop taking the tablets. The correct way to come off lithium medication is to first talk to your doctor about ‘titrating down’ very slowly with appropriate monitoring. Would anyone like me to post details of how I reduced my lithium intake when I became concerned about side-effects?