Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD is a condition characterized by inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. While both children and adults can have the condition, the symptoms always begins in childhood.
In children, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder affects about ten percent of school-age children, according to Kid’s Health. The publication also mentioned that boys are about three times more likely than girls to have the condition; however, associated factors with regard to gender have no clarity at this point and further studies may be necessary.
According to National Institute of Mental Health (NIH), Attention Deficit Hypersensistivity Disorder has three subtypes: predominantly inattentive, predominantly hyperactve-impulsive, and combine hyperactive-impulsive and inattentive.
Predominantly hyperactie-impulsive ADHD is featured by fewer than six symptos of inattention and the symptoms may still be seen to a certain extent. The predominantly inattentive ADHD type had majority of symptoms in the inattention category and less than six symptoms of hyperactivity-impulsivity. In combined hyperactive-impuslive and inattentive type, six or more symptoms of inattention, along with six or more symptoms of hyperactivity-impulsiviy can be seen. In fact, this type of ADHD is the most common among children.
Symptoms of inattention include easily distracted, difficulty focusing on one thing, boredom with a task after just a few minutes, difficulty focusing attention on organizing or accomplishing a task, trouble completing and submitting homework or projects, losing things, not listening when spoken to, daydreaming, becoming easily confused, difficulty processing information quickly and accurately, and struggling to follow instructions.
For hypersensitivity, the symptoms include fidgetting and squirming in their seats, non-stop talking, dashing around, touching or playing with anything and everything in sight, being constantly in motion, having trouble doing quiet tasks, and having trouble sitting during dinner, school, and story time.
Children who have symptoms of impulsivity include interrupting conversations or others’ activities, difficulty waiting for the things they want, being very impatient, and blurting out inppropriate comments, showing their emotions without restraint, and acting without thinking for consequences.
According to Additude Mag, diet and nutrition can place a pivotal difference in the lives of children and adults who have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. As per the publication, dietary changes improve the symptoms of hyperactivity, concentration, and impulsivity, along with calming the behavior of the individual.
Stopping blood sugar spikes is one of the primary goal of nutrition for children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. This can be done by consuming excellent protein food sources, such as lean beef, poultry, pork, fish, soy, eggs, nuts, beans, and low-fat dairy products. According to Addittude Mag, brains use the protein in foods to make neurotransmitters, chemicals released by brain cells to interact with each other. In addition, protein can also prevent escalation in blood sugar, thus, preventing hyperactivity. Therefore, it is important to consume protein in meals to aid the body produce neurotransmitters that awaken the brain.
There is no exact scientific evidence that Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is associated to diet or nutritional problems; however, children and adults affected with the condition can have a diet called ADHD diet.
Aside from high-protein diet, the nutrition for people with ADHD should include fewer simple carbohydrates and more complex carbohydrates., according to Web MD. This means that one has to refrain from eating too much candy, sugar, honey, corn syrup, white rice, potatoes, and products made from white flour. Foods like vegetables, fruits, tangerines, oranges, pears, apples, graefruit, and kiwi, should be consumed, especially in the evening, to promoe sleep. In addition, foods like salmon, tuna, herring, sardines, mackerel, and cold-water white fish can be included in the diet, since they are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids.
Aside from high-protein, high-complex carbohydrates, and low simple carbohydrate diet, vitamins and supplements like zinc and fish oil can aid in the management of ADHD; however, it may be necessary to consult one’s doctor.