Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common childhood disorder characterised by persistent and developmentally inappropriate levels of overactivity, inattention and impulsiveness.
This condition can actually persist into adulthood. ADHD is the most common psychiatric disorder in youth and this condition is on the rise. It is also known that this condition is more prevalent amongst males.
The disorder not only interferes with the learning ability of a child, but also creates a great deal of stress in the family.
Behaviour is affected in ADHD is due to imbalances of the neurotransmitters dopamine and noradrenalin affecting the executive functions of the prefrontal cortex of the brain – the area of the brain involved in planning complex cognitive behaviours, personal expression, decision making and moderating social behaviour. Patients may have either too little of too much of these neurotransmitters, have defective receptor function and / or methylation defects on dopamine receptors that ultimately compromises the fluidity of neuronal membranes and neuronal synchronisation during attention demanding tasks.
Some of the methods we utilise that might assist are as follows:
Provide natural medicines to support healthy cognition, memory, learning and concentration. While there are many herbs and supplements we utilise, I hesitate to mention these so that parents do not try and self-determine strategies and supplements as these need expert guidance.
Herbs and supplements are also used that may assist gut healing and anti-inflammatory herbs with nutrients, such as glutamine, cysteine and zinc, to support gastrointestinal, liver and heavy metal detoxification in children.
You may ask why I am giving this example again of gut health relationship for this disorder.
While this is not the only reason, there are several lines of evidence support a disturbance in the gut / brain / immune (GBI) axis. The gut / brain axis is particularly affected as toxicity and food constituents have been identified as drivers of brain dysfunction in ADHD. Therefore this is one of the methods we utilise to assist.
While this is a vast subject, I hope that this simple explanation of how me may assist helps parents to understand some of our principles.
Here are some measures you can consider relating to diet.
Exclude food additives, flavours, preservatives and colours from the diet.
Avoid coffee and cola drinks especially, but all soft drinks.
Avoid sugary foods.
Reduce carbohydrate and increase protein foods (amino acids are related to healthier neurotransmitter production).
Put an emphasis on green vegetables and nuts that are also rich in Magnesium.