Butter = Antidepressant?

On the Shangri-La Diet forums, babyhopes wrote:

At 10 am, I NCd [nose-clipped] a cup of milk, coffee and 2 small spoons of butter (I really like the anti-depressant effects of butter so I am making it part of my breakfast every day)

I noticed something similar the first time I ate a lot of butter (about 60 g). It was at lunch. A few hours later I felt a pleasant warm feeling in my head. The butter was the only unusual thing I had eaten.

When I googled “butter antidepressant” the first result was this blog — I wrote about this three years ago. Well, here is new evidence.

9 Responses to “Butter = Antidepressant?”

  1. q Says:

    i found the same kind of thing when i started doing sld with butter (i’m not depressed but it improved my mood) but the effect didn’t last more than a week for me.

  2. dearieme Says:

    Good Grief, what sort of breakfast doesn’t automatically include butter? With what does he normally separate the toast and the marmalade?

  3. Brian Says:

    Well, the normal American diet includes only margarine or other butter substitutes. I’d imagine that most Americans no longer know what butter tastes like or why food at certain restaurants tastes so much better than what is prepared at home.

  4. in praise of dearieme Says:


    You are everywhere!
    I’ve been seeing your comments for years on the blogs I have found most interesting at various stages; CiF, Chris Dillow, CynicusEconomicus, Marginal Revolution (or is it Money Illusion?) and FOFOA (?)

    When you’re ready to give up the toast (gluten) and marmalade (sugar) maybe you should start putting grass-fed butter in your morning coffee

  5. dearieme Says:

    Good God almighty!

    Thank you for that appalling insight, Brian.

    Maybe General de Gaulle was right.

  6. derp Says:

    I wonder if lard has the same effect.

  7. john Says:

    I often notice a delayed positive effect of high amounts of tallow or butter. If I eat a lot, I actually get sort of queasy, but hours later I feel good. During exercise, my face and extremities become warm, and I can handle much more volume (my recovery during high fat eating is improved as well–weightlifting and ballet), from both an increase in motivation and decrease in fatigue.

  8. shtove Says:

    @in praise of dearieme

    I’ve followed some of those blogs too. And they often refer to groupthink. Aagh!

  9. dearieme Says:

    “you should start putting grass-fed butter in your morning coffee”: thank you for the suggestion, but when I want a morning treat I add double cream to my coffee.

    Seth: I have used both (butter and cream) many times in my morning tea. Cream is better but butter is adequate.