For ADHD Dietary Supplements, there are several categories of drugs used for the treatment. Natural Medicines for the treatment of it are: Stimulants, Non-Stimulants, Essential Fatty Acid (EFA) Supplements, Flavonoids, Vitamins, Minerals, Amino Acids and Miscellaneous.
Some research has supported caffeine, the ADHD Dietary Supplement alone by itself for moderate improvement of ADHD; however, the effectiveness of high-doses of caffeine, above 600 mg per day in children is up for debate. At a dose of 300mg a day, caffeine was discovered to be no better than placebo or a sugar pill in children.
Of important note is, when caffeine is used along with methylphenidate or dextroamphetamine it doesn't work synergistically.
Side effects such as insomnia are more prominent in children than in adults. Overall, research suggests that caffeine is not to be recommended for ADHD/ADD.
DMAA or dimethylamylamine, is another stimulant being used for ADHD, once found in products uses as a pre-workout supplement for bodybuilders and fitness athlete; however, DMAA is no longer legal and products once containing have been reformulated with something else such as Octopamine HCL.
ADDTabz the product that was marketed as an alternative to the popular prescription drug adderall is now made with Octopamine HCL instead of DMAA. DMAA was causing cardiovascular problems including elevated blood pressure, shortness of breath, tightening of the chest and heart attacks. It is suggested that the public stay away from all products containing DMAA. DMAA has also been banned in several countries including Canada.
Antidepressants have had a role in the treatment of ADD/ADHD but are not known to be as effective as the stimulants.
The most popular natural antidepressant is St. John's wort. It is believed to affect neurotransmission levels of important neurotransmitters: serotonin, norepinephrine and dopamine; however, there is no report of St. John's wort's effectiveness for ADD/ADHD. In addition, St. John's wort is a tricky herbal to use because it interacts with many prescription drugs negatively.
Another treatment for depression and apparently osteoarthritis is known as SAMe (S-adenosyl-L-methionine). It increases dopamine and norepinephrine levels while modulating serotonin.
Preliminary research points out that it may be effective for concentration, restlessness, impulsivity and self-control but only in adults with ADD/ADHD, not in children. Until more research or studies arise with this dietary supplement, it is not recommended for adults or children with ADD/ADHD.
Anxiolytics or calming herbals are not commonly used in patients with ADD/ADHD but are being used by patients incorrectly for their sedative and calming effects with the intent of combating hyperactivity.
Kava, lemon balm and valerian are being used for anxiety, restlessness and sleep problems. There is no evidence for their use in ADHD/ADD and so they are not recommended. Kava is also possibly unsafe in children and adults with ADHD/ADD.
There are some calming herbal teas that are being used for ADHD/ADD. These calming herbals are chamomile, passionflower or hops. They may have a mild sedative or calming effect but there is no concrete evidence for their use for the treatment of ADHD/ADD symptoms.
There are several agents that work on the brain or centrally that have been tried for ADHD/ADD.
People are turning to ginkgo for their ADHD. It is believed to work by increasing cerebral blood flow. Preliminary research suggests that a special combination product containing ginkgo plus American ginseng (AD-FX, Afexa Life Sciences) may improve some ADHD/ADD symptoms in children.
Another specific ginkgo extract (Ginko-TD, Tolidaru, Iran) has been evaluated for ADHD/ADD. This Ginkgo-TD shows that 80-120mg daily for 6 weeks is not as effective as methylphenidate 20-30mg/day in children aged 6-14 years with newly diagnosed ADHD/ADD.
In 8% of children taking this extract, there was an improvement of at least 40% in teacher/parent ADHD/ADD rating scale, compared to a 64% improvement in those taking methylphenidate. The main difference being that methylphenidate is prescription and Ginkgo-TD isn't.
It isn't recommended to use Ginkgo for ADHD/ADD because there isn't enough evidence regarding long-term benefits and most importantly the safety of Ginkgo.
Phosphatidylserine increases quite a few neurotransmitters in the brain. Phosphatidylserine has been used for ADHD because there is a belief that ADHD/ADD is due to decreased neurotransmitter levels; however, it too is not recommended for ADHD/ADD because it hasn't been closely studied in people with ADHD/ADD.
Inositol may increase serotonin activity in the brain and have a similar affect to antidepressants but preliminary research doesn't support its use in children with ADHD/ADD.
Dimethylaminoethanol was marketed in the 1980s as a prescription drug know as "Deaner." If was indicated for ADD/ADHD, however after the FDA wanted proof if its safety and efficacy it was withdrawn from the market. It is now available as a dietary supplement.
Dimethylaminoethanol is associated with adverse effects including overstimulation, increased blood pressure, insomnia and others. It is not recommended for ADD/ADHD due to the lack of reliable research supporting its use.
Melatonin is used for jet lag and insomnia. Preliminary research states it may be useful to treat insomnia in children with ADHD/ADD. Long-term safety of melatonin use in children is unclear. Melatonin use is not recommended for ADD/ADHD.
Oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs) are antioxidants extracted from grape seed or the bark of the French maritime pine (pycnogenol). It may have beneficial effects on ADHD/ADD because it is theorized to prevent oxidative damage to the brain.
Anecdotal reports have seen some usefulness in children. Preliminary support shows that it doesn't help adults with ADHD/ADD. It is not to be used for ADD/ADHD because there is no reliable evidence about its long-term safety and effectiveness in children.
It is not uncommon for parents to use different dietary remarks and vitamins alone or in combo with prescription medications for ADHD. There is a theory that ADHD/ADD is linked to a nutritional deficiency. There is no known special diet for those with ADHD/ADD.
Essential Fatty acids (EFAs) are needed because the body can't produce them, they are Omega-3 and Omega-6. Both EFAs, Omega-3 and Omega-6 have been discovered to be lower in children with ADHD/ADD than in children without ADHD/ADD. There is speculation that supplementing EFAs may help a child with ADHD/ADD. To order an Essential Fatty Acid Complex see here.
Fish oil supplements may help some children with ADHD. Preliminary research shows that using fish oil enhances cognitive abilities and behavior in children aged 8-12 with ADHD/ADD. Further taking a dietary supplement specifically with fish oils 400mg and evening primose oil 100mg (Eye Q, Novasel) six capsules daily improves not only cognitive assertion but also impulsive behavior, inattentiveness and hyperactivity in children aged 7-12 with ADHD. Unlike previously mentioned supplements, it may be worth while to consider dietary fish oil intake in some patients with ADHD/ADD.
Evening Primose oil contains omega-6 fatty acid gamma linolenic acid which has been tried for ADHD/ADD. It is not effective when used by itself for this means. To order fish oil click here. To order evening primose oil click here.
DHA or Docosahexaenoic acid is an omega-3 fatty acid that has been tried for ADD/ADHD. Low levels of DHA have been associated with ADD/ADHD in children. Taking 345 mg DHA or 3.6 grams per week does not seem to improve symptoms of ADHD/ADD. Some preliminary research suggests that DHA might improve social relationships and restlessness in children with ADHD/ADD.
Flaxseed oil contains the omega-3 fatty acid known as alpha-linolenic acid. Preliminary evidence suggests that a combo of flaxseed oil, 200 mg plus vitamin C, 25 mg twice daily may improve impulsivity, attention, self-control and restlessness in some children with ADHD/ADD. More evidence is needed before this can be recommended for ADHD/ADD.
There is no concrete evidence to suggest that borage seed oil (omega-6) is effective for ADHD/ADD.
Supporters of vitamin and mineral treatment for ADHD/ADD suggest that those diagnosed with ADHD/ADD take the recommended dietary allowances (RDA) of them, take megadoses of multivitamins and minerals and take megadoses of individual vitamins or minerals. There is no proof that megadoses of multivitamins or minerals improves or helps ADHD/ADD. If parents are worried about their child's vitamin status they should take a pediatric multivitamin.
Trials with combinations of high doses of vitamins such as vitamin C, pyridoxine, niacinamide and pantothenic acid suggest that there is no effect on ADHD/ADD. These are not recommended for the treatment of ADHD/ADD.
Some older research supported the use of pyridoxine (Vitamin B6) for the improvement of behavior in children with ADHD/ADD; however, larger studies using current criteria are needed before Vitamin B6 or other B-vitamins can be used for ADHD/ADD treatment.
Some people have used high-doses of vitamin C for ADHD/ADD, but there is no evidence that is works. Patients should not utilize pyridoxine or vitamin C for ADHD/ADD. Low doses of vitamin C, 25 mg in combo with flaxseed oil twice daily may improve some measures of attention, impulsivity, restlessness and self control in children with ADHD/ADD but more evidence is required before this combination can be recommended.
Iron is needed for the synthesis of neurotransmitters. Some very preliminary research says that it may improve ADHD/ADD symptoms in nonanemic boys; however it is still too soon to recommend iron supplementation.
Zinc is involved with a lot including neural metabolism. Children with ADHD/ADD have lower levels of zinc than children without ADHD/ADD. Preliminary clinical research states that low levels of zinc might result in a poor response to stimulant therapy. In addition, clinical research states that taking zinc in combination with conventional treatment might modestly improve symptoms of impulsivity, hyperactivity and impaired socialization in some children with ADHD/ADD. Zinc supplements aren't recommended for ADHD/ADD but might be worth trying if a deficiency is suspected. Click here to buy zinc.
Magnesium levels seem to be lower in children with ADHD/ADD. Researchers know that neurotransmitters require magnesium to function properly but currently there isn't enough evidence to recommend magnesium.
There is no convincing evidence that vitamins or minerals in doses above the recommended daily allowance will help people with ADHD/ADD.
L-carnitine has been promoted for ADHD/ADD treatment. It is needed for fatty acid metabolism. Very preliminary research states that it might decrease hyperactive behavior but it is too soon to make a recommendation.
Tryptophan an amino acid and a precursor to serotonin is used for depression. It has been tried for ADHD/ADD with no luck. Other amino acids such as glutamine, taurine, glycine, dimethylglycine or the neurotransmitter gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) do not have reliable evidence to support their use in the treatment of ADHD/ADD.
Tyrosine and phenylalanine have also been used for ADHD/ADD but are not recommended due to development of quick tolerance and lack of efficacy.
Use of tryptophan and dimethylglycine should absolutely not be used for the treatment of ADHD/ADD due to a link to an immune disorder, eosinophilia myalgia syndrome.
Blue-green algae contains vitamins, minerals and protein and has been supported for its use in the treatment of ADHD/ADD; however there is no reliable clinical research for its use. In addition, it can also be contamined with microbes, heavy metals, radioactive divalent and trivalent metal ions, or a toxic species of blue-green algae, Microcystis aeruginosa. These species produce toxins that are very bad for children. Avoid blue-green algae supplements.
Other miscellaneous herbs used for ADHD/ADD are echinacea, siberian gingseng and brahmi. There is no evidence to support their effectiveness in the treatment of ADHD/ADD.
There are been many "cures" promoted for ADHD Dietary Supplements treatment that even claim to have been tested in clinical trials but these really have not been tested in a scientifically sound clinical trial. Beware.
There are several categories of ADHD Dietary Supplements for Natural Remedies. There are some ADHD Dietary Supplements that show promise such as fish oil, zinc, iron, pyridoxine, and ginkgo plus American Gingseg. The evidence supporting these for long-term safety and efficacy is lacking.
The ADHD Dietary Supplements, Melatonin, kava, and blue-green algae should absolutely be avoided because they are known to have risks.
In addition the ADHD Dietary Supplements, Tryptophan and Dimethylamylamine are likely unsafe or possibly unsafe, avoid.
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