Natural ADHD AlternativesDecember 4, 2014 Written by JP [Font too small?]
A stunning new survey sponsored by the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids reports that 20% of all college students and roughly 15% of non-student young adults abuse stimulant medications. The legal drugs in question, intended to treat ADHD, include best sellers such as Adderall, Ritalin and Vyvanse. The most commonly cited reasons for the noted abuse include a desire to enhance academic or work performance and to stave off normal feelings of nighttime sleepiness. What’s even more disturbing is that 28% of the young adults surveyed, aged 18 to 25, misrepresented the severity of their ADHD symptoms in order to attain higher dosages of these conditionally dangerous drugs. In addition, the practice of selling and/or sharing said medications with family, fellow students and friends is quite common.
In recent months, several studies have found positive results with natural, non-stimulating remedies which may provide a safer alternative for those living with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. In the dietary supplement arena, Bacopa monnieri (225 mg/day of a standardized extract), Ginkgo biloba (240 mg daily of a patented extract) and Korean red ginseng (1 gram, twice-daily) have been proven beneficial in scientific trials mostly involving adolescents and children. However, I see no reason why similar results wouldn’t apply to older subjects as well. A review appearing in the June 2014 issue of the Nordic Journal of Psychiatry examined 52 studies and determined that non-allergenic (“elimination”) diets and menus rich in fish and fish oil are “promising dietary interventions for a reduction in ADHD symptoms”. Lastly, acupuncture, mindfulness meditation and Tai Chi have recently been found to improve academic scores, emotion dysregulation and inattention in adults and children diagnosed with ADHD. In my opinion, all of these natural therapies and others should be considered prior to resorting to the use of powerful stimulants with addictive potential.
Note: Please check out the “Comments & Updates” section of this blog – at the bottom of the page. You can find the latest research about this topic there!
To learn more about the studies referenced in today’s column, please click on the following links:
Study 1 - ADHD Stimulant Drug Abuse Common Among Young Adults: Survey … (link)
Study 2 - Open-Label Study to Elucidate the Effects of Standardized Bacopa … (link)
Study 3 - Ginkgo Biloba Extract EGb 761® in Children with ADHD … (link)
Study 4 - Effects of Korean Red Ginseng Extract on Behavior in Children … (link)
Study 5 – Diet in the Treatment of ADHD in Children – A Systematic Review … (link)
Study 6 - Dietary Patterns in Children with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity … (link)
Study 7 - Omega-3 Fatty Acid & ADHD: Blood Level Analysis & Meta-Analytic … (link)
Study 8 – Effect of Supplementation with Long-Chain ω-3 Polyunsaturated … (link)
Study 9 - Does Acupuncture Have a Positive Effect on School Success … (link)
Study 10 - A Pilot Trial of Mindfulness Meditation Training for ADHD in … (link)
Tai Chi May Improve Certain ADHD Symptoms
Source: Front Hum Neurosci. 2014 Jan 27;8:13. (Link)
Tags: ADHD, Ginkgo Biloba, Ginseng
Posted in Alternative Therapies, Food and Drink, Nutritional Supplements