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Suicide rates are much lower in areas where lithium is in the drinking water

A jaw-dropping new study in the British Journal of Psychiatry shows that regions with higher natural levels of lithium in drinking water have lower suicide rates.

Yep, lithium is in drinking water. Much of the world’s population is on lithium. Really.

You probably know lithium as the medication widely used to treat mood disorders, helping with mania and depression, and decreasing impulsivity, aggression, violence, and substance abuse. It is in most rocks—it’s on the periodic table!—and makes its way into drinking water in trace levels. (Fun fact: Lithium figures prominently in the big bang theory. It is truly elemental.)

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