October 1973

Severe Psychotic Disturbances Following Crash Diet Weight Loss

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Psychiatry, Hebrew University Medical School, and Talbieh Hospital, Jerusalem.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1973;29(4):559-562. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1973.04200040099016

Ten patients whose weight ranged between 50 to 106 kg and who showed severe mental disturbances after rapid self-induced weight reduction, so severe as to necessitate hospitalization of all but one, are reviewed. It is suggested that this weight reduction may have been antecedent to the mental symptoms.

The psychopathological phenomena following starvation, hunger, and a "crash" reducing diet require further study. From what is already known, one can caution that great care should be taken in the prescribing of diets, especially to patients with an unstable personality structure.