Gifts of ADD

November 7, 2013

People used to think ADD was a childhood issue. We know now that a large percentage of adults who had ADD as kids will continue to deal with it to greater and lesser degrees. On my cable TV show, I did a segment on Adult ADD which I’ve been told has been very helpful to many people with ADD and for their families.

Having works with hundreds of folks with AD/HD in the past 30 years, I know that ADD is not a one-size fits all label. And, in addition to difficulties posed by having AD/HD, let’s keep in mind that many of our greatest minds, successful CEO’s and entrepreneurs, artists and others have ADD. Einstein, DaVinci and many other talented inventors, writers, artists, CEOs, athletes had ADD. A good coach helps the person find their strengths and talents.

To watch this show, just click: http://www.chelmsfordtv.org/index.phpoption=com_content&view=article&id=70&Itemid=314

 

Fish Oil- Omega 3’s- and AD/HD

February 20, 2012

Many people with AD/HD benefit from taking omega-3 fish oil. There are many brands, including some specialized ones that your doctor may recommend because he or she wants you to have the right EPA/DHA dosage for brain health vs. heart health.

Just read an interesting piece in Consumer Reports ShopSmart magazine, January 2012 issue. If you are taking, or thinking of taking, a more standard omega-3, this could be helpful for you.

They tested for:
Do they show the listed amount of omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA?
Do they properly disintegrate, show sign of spoilage, or contain contaminants such as lead, mercury, dioxins, or PCBs?

Even brands they recommend contained detectable levels of most contaminants, even though many claim they’re free of them. Consumer’s still recommends them because they don’t exceed USP and other regulatory limits.

Check with your physician before taking fish-oil supplements because they can interfere with some medications. Dr. Cerulli generally suggests high grade fish oil for her AD/HD patients. She tailors the dosage to at least 2,000mg combined EPA+DHA for adults and 1,000mg for children. Some patients need to increase in order to target specific clinical symptoms such as depression. Talk with her if you are taking omega 3 or have questions about your dosage.

Jay and I have taken other more expensive ones to get the EPA/DHA ratio we were looking for…

Here are the 9 that passed all their tests listed in order of price based on cost of taking 1000 milligrams of EPA and DHA daily-the dose they say is recommended for heart health. Check with your doctor to tailor this for you.

1. Spring Valley Omega 3 Walmart
2. Finest Natural Walgreens
3. Walgreens Omega 3 Concentrate
4. Barlean’s Organic
5. Nature Made 1200 mg
6. Vitamin Shoppe Meg 3
7. Carlson Super omega3 gems
8. Norweigian Gold Ultimate Fish Oil’s Critical Omega
9. Nature’s Way

NO
1. Kirkland Signature Omega 3 Costco
2. Nordic Naturals Ultimate Omega
3. CVS Natural
4. GNC Triple Strength
5. Nature’s Bounty Odorless
6. Sundown Naturals

I hope this is helpful for you.

Best to you,

Szifra

P.S. The article suggests keeping them in the freezer or eat with meals for reduced fish burps…

CAM for ADHD

July 27, 2010

I recently saw an interesting statistic reporting more than 50% of parents use complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) to treat their children’s ADHD. Many parents of ADHD children and adults with ADHD opt to combine conventional treatments, such as stimulant medication, with CAM while others prefer to use nonpharmacological therapies alone. Although most nonpharmacological interventions have limited data to support their benefit, 80% of patients who use natural products consider these to be their primary treatment modality. Yet few disclose this information to their treating physician. If you are using any alternative therapies I would urge you to discuss these with your doctor. The goal is to promote optimal integrative treatment and avoid any potential pitfalls.

Given the frequent use of CAM, I thought it would be helpful to review the common nonpharmacological treatment options for ADHD. Currently the most popular nonconventional ADHD therapies are as follows: dietary changes, herbal supplements, trace elements/vitamins, neurofeedback, essential fatty acids (EFA’s), and yoga/massage for ADHD.

In my experience complimentary and alternative treatments can be safely and effectively integrated with conventional approaches to treating ADHD. Despite the limited data, nonpharmacological treatments have indeed shown some benefits. For example in one research study using dietary changes to treat ADHD, 75% of children showed improvement in their symptoms when food colorings and additives were removed from their diet. Another study showed children and adolescents with low blood levels of ferritin (the storage form of iron in the body) experienced higher rates of ADHD-type symptoms, which improved with taking 80 mg per day of iron. More specifically the kids hyperactive and impulsive symptoms improved with the iron supplementation, but their inattentive symptoms did not.

In a separate small study, ADHD children practicing yoga demonstrated improvements in their symptoms over time compared to the group of ADHD children who did conventional exercise. In support of the argument for combined treatment, children who continued to take simulant medication simultaneously while practicing yoga showed the greatest benefit.

In summary, an integrative care approach – combining conventional with nonconventional therapies – may offer the best potential outcomes for those with ADHD. I encourage patients to talk with their doctors about all treatment options. It is important to inform your treatment providers of any and all interventions you are utilizing (or wish to utilize) so that safe and appropriate care can be implemented and the greatest benefit received.

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