The effect of dietary supplementation on aggressive behaviour in australian adult male prisoners: A feasibility and pilot study for a randomised, double blind placebo controlled trial

Colin H. Cortie, Mitchell K. Byrne, Carole Collier, Natalie Parletta, Donna Crawford, Pia C. Winberg, David Webster, Karen Chapman, Gayle Thomas, Jean Dally, Marijka Batterham, Anne Marie Martin, Luke Grant, Barbara J. Meyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

This study aimed to assess the feasibility of conducting a nutrition trial in adult male prisoners. Adult male prisoners were recruited for a 16-week randomised control trial comparing the effect of ingestion of omega-3 long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 LCPUFA) and multivitamin supplements versus placebo on aggressive behaviour. The baseline and post-intervention assessments from the participant blood samples were the erythrocyte n-3 LCPUFA levels as well as measures of aggressive behaviour determined through institutional records of misconduct (IRM), the Inmate Behaviour Observation Scale (IBOS), and questionnaires. A total of 136 adult male prisoners consented to the study with a retention rate of 60%, and 93% of blood samples were successfully collected. The IRM and IBOS scores were collected for 100% of participants, whilst 82–97% of participants completed the questionnaires. From the baseline data, the Odds Ratio shows that prisoners are 4.3 times more likely to have an IBOS >2 if they are below the 6% cut off on the omega-3 index. Both groups improved across all outcome measures and, at the current sample size, no significant differences were seen between them. A power calculation suggests a total sample size of 600 participants is required to detect the effects of this dietary supplementation, and that this supplementation study is feasible in a Correctional Centre. Important criteria for the exclusion and consideration of logistics and compliance are presented.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2617
Pages (from-to)1-15
Number of pages15
JournalNutrients
Volume12
Issue number9
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2020
Externally publishedYes

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