Welcome to Episode 008, Wellness Speaks about Nutrition in ADHD.
ADHD is a diagnosis we are likely all familiar with, and it’s a disorder that has had a staggering increase in the amount of children diagnosed over the last decade.
- In 2013, 1 in 8 males (that’s 12 percent) ages 3-17 had been diagnosed ADHD. Boys are three times more likely to be diagnosed than girls.
- And Between 1997 and 2012, there was a 75% increase in the number of children diagnosed with ADHD
- Among children aged 3-4, the rate of ADHD diagnosis more than doubled in that same time frame. A child must display 4 or more symptoms for more than 6 months, the symptoms can’t be attributed to another DX like bipolar or ODD or Autism, and the symptoms must interfere or reduce the quality of social, academic, or occupational functioning...but let’s look at just a few of the qualifying symptoms. Keep in mind we are even evaluating these for 3 and 4 year olds.
- “Often fidgets with or taps hands or feet, or squirms in seat
- Often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly
- Often has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or activities- i think this is way too open ended- we expect entirely too much of an attention span out of kids
- Is often “on the go”
- Often blurts out answers before a question has been completed
- Often has difficulty waiting their turn
- Is often forgetful in daily activities
- Children below the poverty line are 30% more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than children living above the poverty line.
The peak age for diagnosis is between 8 and 10 years old. ADHD is not an acute diagnosis, but rather a chronic one, which requires ongoing management for the child to function optimally in both school, social, and home settings. The medications used to treat ADHD often have unwanted side effects such as decreased appetite, insomnia/thrashing in sleep, stomachaches, headaches, anxiety, depression, delayed growth, rebound (irritability when medication wears off), and tics. These side effects can often lead to more problems than ADHD symptoms do, and many parents look for an alternate route to assist their child in learning to manage their ADHD.
Nutrient depletion is an often overlooked side effect of many medications, and ADHD meds are certainly not excluded from inducing nutrient depletion. Some common nutrients depleted from medications such as Ritalin and Adderall are:
- Calcium/Magnesium ratio significantly lower after 3 weeks of treatment with Ritalin/Adderall
- “the decrease in the ratio may be relevant to side effects and treatment resistance associated with stimulant use.”
- Significantly depletes dopamine and causes cell death in olfactory bulb
- Olfactory bulb is part of the limbic system and is involved in motivation, emotions and memory
- May be related to the depressive symptoms associated with amphetamine withdrawal
Nutrients Discussed in Podcast:
Magnesium is a macro-mineral, meaning it’s needed in large quantities (calcium, sodium, and potassium are also macrominerals). It’s also an essential mineral, meaning it must be consumed because the body cannot produce it. Magnesium regulates over 300 biochemical reactions in the body.
ADHD is an inflammatory condition and it has been shown that Vitamin D aids in activating the anti-inflammatory pathways within our body, while also inhibiting pro-inflammatory cells. Raising Vitamin D3 to a serum level of 50-70 nanograms per mililiter is ideal in inflammatory conditions.
Reports and research shows that there appears to be better cognition, focus, and eye contact in ADHD as vitamin D levels are normalized.
Iron deficiency can interfere with memory, concentration, behavior, and both physical and mental performance.
Several studies have shown that eating just an 80% organic diet actually decreased the amount of pesticide residue found in urine by 90%, after only a week!
ADHD Alternatives by Aviva Romm
Green tea also contains theanine, which can be calming. Supplements combinations, such as CentraFx or RelaxMax, containing magnesium, myo-inositol, taurine, GABA, and L-theanine have been shown to alleviate symptoms such as restlessness, hyperactivity, lack of impulse control, anxiety, depression, and aggression. This particular combination of supplements helps to reduce the amount of excitatory.
Thanks for joining us!
What have you found to be extremely effective in relieving behavioral /ADHD symptoms with your child? Leave us comments or head over to instagram and find us at wellness speaks podcast. We will have links to the articles and research we mentioned in our show notes. Also, if you feel so inclined, rate and review our podcast which will help us be found more easily and let this information be heard. Join us Friday for another MINISODE. Have a great week!
We want to express that we are not doctors and this podcast is for informational purposes only. Nothing in this podcast is meant to diagnose or treat and we advise you seek the advice of your practitioner before making in changes to your child’s medication or supplement regimen.
Integrative Medicine. Rakel, David. 2012. Ps 43-53
Vitamin D and inflammatory diseases. Kai Yin and Devendra K Agrawal. J Inflamm Res. 2014; 7: 69–87. Published online 2014 May 29. doi: 10.2147/JIR.S63898. Accessed 3/24/17. Available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4070857/.
Methylenetetrahydrofolate Reductase Gene Polymorphisms in Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Cem Gokcen, Nadir Kocak, and Ahmet Pekgor. Int J Med Sci. 2011; 8(7): 523–528. Published online 2011 Aug 30. Accessed 3/24/17. Available at https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3167178/.
Drug-Induced Nutrient Depletion Handbook, by Ross Pelton, R.PH., PH.D; James B. LaValle, R.Ph., N.D.; and Ernest B. Hawkins, R.Ph., M.S. (Lexi-Comp, 2001]
Atianjoh, Fidelis E. et al. 'Amphetamine Causes Dopamine Depletion And Cell Death In The Mouse Olfactory Bulb'. European Journal of Pharmacology 589.1-3 (2008): 94-97. Web. 2 Dec. 2015.
Johnson, Richard J., Mark S. Gold, David R. Johnson, and Takuji Ishimoto. “Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: Is It Time to Reappraise the Role of Sugar Consumption?” Postgraduate Medicine 123.5 (2011): 39-49.
Blaylock, Russell L. Excitotoxins. Santa Fe, N.M.: Health Press, 1998. Print.