February 2, 2017, by Briana McDonald (UtopiaSilver.com) If you have a child or a loved one who suffers with ADD and ADHD, you know how heartbreaking it is to watch them struggle through life. They can be aggressive, fidgety, and impulsive, easily irritated, lack restraint and can have difficulty accomplishing goals, holding down jobs and finishing projects. Dr. Norman Shealy once stated, “Every known illness is associated with a mineral deficiency.” That includes ADD/ADHD in my opinion! So after being tired of seeing my loved ones suffer and knowing in my heart nature had an answer, I sought out proper recourses to understand healing ADD and ADHD naturally, without the use of pharmaceutical medicines that create a cascade of other issues.
Digging deeper into the mystery of this disorder, this is what I’ve understood to be most helpful for healing ADD/ADHD naturally. You can find the book and the research most of this information came from in the sources at the bottom of the article.
Nutrition Based Therapeutic Approach
To understand how to treat this condition from a nutritional perspective we have to understand the body chemistry of a child or adult with the condition. Profiles taken by hair trace mineral analysis (hTMA) from children with ADD/ADHD have higher levels of sodium and potassium rather than calcium and magnesium, and the ratio of sodium to potassium (Na/K) is ‘inverted,’ i.e. it is below the ideal ratio of 2.4/1. The more the ratio inverts, the more likely that ADHD symptoms will be observed in the child or adult.
The inverted ratio explains why behavioral medicines such as Ritalin have a calming effect on hyperactive children when it is a stimulating medicine. Ritalin does in fact have a stimulating effect on children but it is neuroendocrine and biochemical, not behavioral. “More specifically, its stimulating effect is on the adrenal glands and the retention of sodium in the tissues relative to potassium. It is critical for normal cellular functioning that sodium and potassium be in balance for the optimal operation of the Na/K pump at the cellular level. It is also critical for efficient neurotransmissions that there be a proper balance between sodium and potassium (Na and K) for neuronal conductance.” 3.
The data on these children suggest that Ritalin works to temporarily normalize the sodium and potassium levels in the tissues by the medications stimulating effect on weak adrenal glands. However, this effect is only temporary, and once the medication wears off the ratio goes back to an unbalanced state starting at square 1. “Prolonged use of these behavioral medicines usually will result in the loss of magnesium and zinc from cell and tissue storage so that a chronic magnesium deficiency is induced in many children taking these stimulant medicines. The zinc deficiency that also occurs will stunt growth in general and, as recent research as shown, will also stunt brain growth.”
Why Magnesium is so important
Your body requires both calcium and magnesium for the muscles and tissues (even cells) to contract and relax. Calcium is required for muscle contraction, and magnesium is required for the muscles to relax. Without enough magnesium, calcium can collect in the soft tissues and causes one type of arthritis. It’s essential that you have a diet with a healthy balance of both calcium and magnesium, as it is with all things in nature, balance is necessary. If there isn’t enough magnesium in your cells, every part of your being can feel “on edge” and in a state of frenzy which can enhance the symptoms associated with ADD/ADHD such as; mood swings, panic attacks, irritability, and inability to focus. If you have a child that has been on Ritalin for long periods of time or know someone close to you who has, you have more than likely been witness to the drastic mood changes, irritability, anxiety attacks and often times muscle spasm/tremors from lack of magnesium in the body.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that about 60% of adults in the United States do not consume the estimated average requirement of magnesium. What they don’t tell us is that this 60% is based on minimum daily estimates set by the Department of Agriculture are set terribly low, so actually the number is much higher. Magnesium deficiency is often misdiagnosed because it does not show up in blood tests – only 1% of the body’s magnesium is stored in the blood. Dr. Norman Shealy’s also stated, “Magnesium is the most critical mineral required for electrical stability of every cell in the body. A magnesium deficiency may be responsible for more diseases than any other nutrient.” This is a powerful statement and must be recognized as such when healing from a number of ailments.
Where to Start
If a normal balance of sodium to potassium can be maintained for longer periods of time, the hyperactive behaviors would be calmed for much longer periods of time. Here’s where to start.
- Calcium and copper supplements should be integrated to lower the tissue potassium level and balance the sodium level.
- Magnesium supplements should be implemented as well, also consider buying some Epsom Salt at your local grocery store for bath/foot soaks at least 20 min a few times a week.
- Vitamin C can be very beneficial in large doses, at least 3 times a day at 1,000mg per dose for an adult and 500mg for a child.
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids should be included in the diet as the brain needs good fats to properly function.
- The body works synergistically so do all of these in combination for optimal results.
- A Hair and Mineral Analysis will tell you exactly what’s going on with your child/loved one and you will have a better idea of what you need more of/less of.
(Hair Trace Mineral Analysis’s taken from children with ADD/ADHD show a very consistent pattern of low levels of calcium and magnesium and higher levels of sodium and potassium.) 3.
- Kyolic EPA from Wakunaga- take as directed; provides essential fatty acids and helps to maintain eye and brain function. Restores proper fatty acid balance.
- Gamma-Amino-butryic acid (GABA)- 750mg daily; calms the body in the same way as some tranquilizers, without side effects or danger of addiction.
- Multivitamin & Mineral Complex– take as directed; all nutrients are needed for equilibrium within the body. Use a liquid form for best absorption.
- Pycnogenol or Grape Seed Extract- take as directed on label; powerful antioxidants offering cellular protection for the body and brain.
- Quercetin – take as directed; prevents allergies from aggravating symptoms.
- S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe) – take as directed on label; aids in relieving stress and depression. Caution: do not use if you have bipolar mood disorder or take prescription antidepressants. Do not give to children under 12.
Traditional healing remedies from plants and herbs have been utilized throughout the centuries. Herbs do more than add flavor and color to your food; their healing and restorative powers are astonishing. Herbs can also help with alleviating symptoms of ADD/ADHD. Keep in mind if you are giving herbs to children to adjust the dosage for age as recommended by the manufacturer.
- Bacopin from Sabinsa Corporation, an extract of the Ayurvedic herb bacopa (Bacopa Monniera) is a good memory enhancer
- Ginkgo biloba is helpful for brain function and concentration (do not use if you have a bleeding disorder or are scheduled for surgery or a dental procedure)
- Ginseng or mullein oil may be helpful for memory (do not use if you have high blood pressure, are pregnant or nursing)
- Valerian Root extract has been used for this disorder with dramatic results and no side effects. Mix the alcohol-free extract in juice (as directed on product label) and drink mixture 2-3 times per day
- Other herbs that may be beneficial for hyperactivity include catnip, chamomile, gotu kola, hops, kava, lemon balm, licorice, lobelia, oats, passionflower, skullcap, St. Johns Wort, Thyme, and wood betony.
The role of toxic metals in children with ADD/ADHD should be noted. It is common to see large amounts of lead, cadmium, mercury, aluminum, and copper in the hTMA profiles of children and adults with this disorder. The presence of metals in the body will greatly affect the ratio of sodium/potassium by placing additional stress on the body and on the adrenal glands. Consider doing a vaccine Detox if you, your loved one, or child has received vaccines, you can access the protocol by clicking here.
For children, IntraKid by Drucker Labs is a gentle Detox and contains more than 215 essential ingredients derived from whole food sources such as fruits, vegetables and herbs. There is also a product on the market called Pedia Calm by Olympian Labs that is known to help with healthy brain development and aid in mental acuity and focus.
Don’t Lose Hope
Parents of children with ADD or ADHD often have a very difficult time dealing with the behavior problems of their children. These parents deserve a lot of credit but it is important to remember that children deserve a lot of credit too. When things seem to be getting out of control, it can be helpful to remember that a child with ADD or ADHD is dealing with a physiological disability. Although they desire to please and want to be good, their minds can go in and out of overload without their control and because of this, they often feel confused and ashamed, and they can eventually develop low self esteem. When problems arise, it is important to explain to them what they did wrong, and why it was wrong in a calm, one-on-one fashion whenever possible. These children need a great deal of love, support, and encouragement from everyone around them, but from most of all, their parents.
Healing ADD and ADHD naturally may seem out of reach at times, but we owe it to our children and loved ones to give nature a chance. Always remember that with love and devotion, all things are possible.
- Balch, Phyllis A. Prescription for Nutritional Healing Fifth Edition. New York: Avery 1930-2004
Categories: Briana McDonald