Try these strategies for managing Attention Deficit Disorder:
- Address any dietary concerns and food triggers, such as dairy or gluten intolerance.
- Increase fruit and vegetable intake while decreasing the sugar and processed foods available around the house.
- Supplements to consider for most children include a quality children’s multivitamin and fish oils. A good multivitamin contains only natural ingredients, meaning no artificial sweeteners or dyes. Fish oils provide the omega-3 fatty acids essential for health, DHA and EPA (docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid). The fatty acid DHA is acknowledged as food for the brain, and shows promise as a beneficial nutrient for ADHD patients [Source: Singh, Sorgi, Richardson]. Use a high-quality fish oil brand that ensures there are no heavy metals to avoid toxicity. Dosage for fish oil should be determined by the DHA content. The amount of DHA will be listed on the label. Refer to the listings below regarding dosing for children.
- Ages 1-3: 200 mg of DHA
- Ages 4-6: 200-400 mg of DHA
- Ages 6-10: 300-500 mg of DHA
- Ages 10-12: 400-600 mg of DHA
- Ages 12 and up: 600 mg or higher of DHA
These doses are a guideline. Consult with a physician if adjustments are needed based on weight, symptoms and response to treatment.
- Singh, M. (2005). Essential fatty acids, DHA and human brain. Indian J Pediatr, 72(3): 239-42.
- Sorgi, PJ. (2007). Effects of an open-label pilot study with high-dose EPA/DHA concentrates on plasma phospholipids and behavior in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Nutr J, 6: 16.
- Richardson, AJ. (2006). Omega-3 fatty acids in ADHD and related neurodevelopmental disorders. Int Rev Psychiatry, 18(2): 155-72.