Did you know that around 6.1 million kids in the US have ADHD?
That makes up 9% of the total population of little ones in the country, which is a huge amount! With no clear cause for ADHD, either, it can feel like fighting a losing battle when trying to help those with it.
But, the good news is that it isn't. Just because you might not know why your child has ADHD doesn't mean you can't do anything about it. In fact, there are lots of remedies for ADHD out there that can help.
Check out some of the different natural treatments for ADHD in this guide.
What Is ADHD?
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder that's most common in children. However, there also plenty of adults with ADHD, and not every child grows out of it. It's characterized by difficulty paying attention, impulsive behaviors, and being incredibly active.
The problem with ADHD is that it can start to affect lots of aspects of life. For kids, this mainly revolves around struggling to pay attention at school and creating difficulty with friends. For adults, it can lead to trouble at work, mental health problems like anxiety, and difficulty holding down relationships.
We've already mentioned that what causes ADHD remains somewhat of a mystery, but there are plenty of ways to treat it. If you want to supplement prescribed medication, or perhaps avoid it altogether, here are natural remedies that can help.
Zinc and Magnesium
Both zinc and magnesium are brilliant for reducing the symptoms of ADHD, both in children and adults. Zinc is known for helping to regulate dopamine, a neurotransmitter that has a large part to play in attention and happiness. It can also make methylphenidate (a common prescription drug for ADHD) more effective by making the brain respond better to dopamine.
Magnesium works in a similar way. It's a vital building block for the neurotransmitters that help us pay attention, so taking more of it could help you or your child to sit still and concentrate better. This is important as better focus and attention means improved ADHD symptoms.
You can find both zinc and magnesium in our easily absorbed, liquid ADHD Mineral Support Formula.
A healthy diet full of vitamin B6 is crucial to normal brain function. B6 helps our brains in a huge number of ways, including controlling the production and use of:
It's actually one of the most effective ways to treat ADHD, making it a must-try! In one study, two months of taking B6 help to reduce hyperactivity and aggression, and improve focus at school. When the B6 treatment was stopped, these symptoms increased again.
If you want to give B6 a go, take a look at our ADHD Vitamin Support Formula which contains a less active form of B6 perfect for those just starting to take the supplement.
Reduce Sugar Intake
It's no secret that sugar is bad for the body, but did you know that too much can also increase symptoms in adults and children with ADHD? For someone without ADHD, sugar can lead to a decrease in focus and an increase in hyperactivity, so just imagine its effects on someone with ADHD! Try to reduce your sugar intake, particularly in products where it's added (like cookies, cakes, and sweets) rather than where it's naturally occurring (like fruits and vegetables).
Reducing sugar might not get symptoms under control, but it can stop it from making them worse. Give a low-sugar diet a go and see what happens!
Increase Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Omega-3 is vital for brain function, and as the body can't produce this on its own it's essential your diet is full of it! While evidence of its role in helping those with ADHD is inconclusive, there have been a few studies that show that it might - and for most people, that's good enough to give it a shot. Sources of omega-3 include:
- Seeds and nuts (like walnuts and flaxseeds)
You can also get omega-3 supplements, the most common of which is fish oil. But, if you're veggie or vegan, you can find omega-3 supplements to suit your diet, too!
Exercise is one of the most effective treatments for all sorts of neurological problems and mental health issues. It's somewhat of a miracle treatment! In terms of ADHD, exercise can help to improve brain function and increase levels of serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine, all of which can help increase focus and concentration.
Yoga has been shown to be particularly effective at treating ADHD, helping to stimulate the chemicals mentioned above while also improving important focus skills. It's a form of exercise that's all about being still and calm, which might be tricky at first but will soon become second nature - even to those with ADHD.
If you're not a fan of yoga, don't worry! Any other form of exercise will do, particularly those that get your heart rate up. A simple 10-15 minute job a few times a week could be just what your brain needs to help it focus.
Sometimes, you need a little more help than improving your diet or taking a supplement. This is where behavioral therapy comes in. It's a therapeutic discipline strategy that helps children to learn new, healthy ways of behaving by rewarding them for good actions. It may sound simple, but the American Psychological Association actually recommend it as the first treatment option in kids diagnosed with ADHD, so it shouldn't be dismissed!
Try Out These Natural Remedies For ADHD
A lot of treatment revolves around trial and error, so give as many natural remedies for ADHD a go as you can. While the first few might do nothing, the fourth treatment option could change you or your little one's life completely! It's worth persevering, especially if it means that you can reduce the amount of prescribed medication you have to use.
For more ADHD support products, check out our full range at Brain Child Nutritionals today