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 Natural Supplements for ADD

With so many natural supplements for ADD on the market, it is difficult at first glance to select the best product. How do you to know which natural supplements for ADD are quality and which are not?

The best way to judge natural supplements for ADD is to read the ingredients. If the formula contains ingredients proven to help reduce the symptoms of ADD, it is safe to assume that the product will provide benefit.

To help you in your search for a quality supplement, read this list of nutrients and herbs proven effective for Attention Deficit Disorder. Note that the nutrients listed are proven effective based on published studies, not thought to be effective.

Key Ingredients in Natural Supplements for ADD

A zinc deficiency often mimics symptoms of ADHD. Studies also suggest the ADHD population may have a higher prevalence of zinc deficiency. A 1996 study found that ADHD children had low zinc levels that were only two-thirds that of the non-ADHD population. A 2005 study showed zinc as a beneficial treatment for many children with ADHD. In this study, subjects taking zinc showed significant improvements in hyperactivity, impulsivity and socialization scores.

Zinc is integral to the production of serotonin, and low serotonin is linked to a wide range of behavior problems. Additionally, zinc is needed for the production of melatonin, which helps regulate dopamine function. ADD has been strongly linked to low dopamine levels.

A 1997 study of 116 children with ADHD found that 95% were deficient in magnesium. In a 1988 study, 75 magnesium-deficient children with ADHD were assigned to receive either magnesium supplements with their standard treatment or just standard treatment. The group of children who received magnesium showed significant improvements in behavior. The behavior of those who received only standard therapy actually worsened.

The trace mineral magnesium is important for every organ in the body and is required for hundreds of different body function. Most importantly, magnesium activates enzymes, contributes to energy production and helps regulate a number of nutrients in the body. In addition to ADD, migraines, asthma and allergies have all been linked to a magnesium deficiency.

DHA and other Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
DHA is essential for the proper brain growth and development, and is the most abundant fatty acid in the brain. A 1994 Purdue University study found that boys diagnosed with ADHD had lower levels of the omega-3 essential fatty acid DHA. Although the Purdue study specifically looked at DHA, all Omega-3 essential fatty acids provide powerful brain benefits.

Essential fatty acids support and promote the building of neural pathways needed for learning and sustained attention. Essential fatty acids are especially needed in those who are easily distracted and find it difficult to sustain and direct attention. Quality natural supplements for ADD will contain Omega-3 fatty acids.

Amino Acids
Amino acids, the building blocks of protein in the body, quite literally feed the brain. Amino acids promote the production of various neurotransmitters and enzymes critically needed in the brain for communication between brain cells, smooth and balanced cognition and fluid transition from thought to disciplined action. The following amino acids are found especially beneficial as natural supplements for ADD.

DMAE, dimethylaminoethanol, is shown to be a real brain booster. DMAE is exceptionally beneficial in helping to eliminate brain toxins and increase the brain's potential to make neurotransmitters. DMAE also helps with mood elevation, improved memory and learning. DMAE is shown to relieve disruptive behavior, hyperactivity, impulsiveness and inattention as effectively as Ritalin.

5-HTP, 5-Hydroxy L-Tryptophan, is a compound synthesized in the body from the amino acid Tryptophan. 5-HTP is more active than Tryptophan and is the immediate precursor to serotonin, a brain neurotransmitter responsible for natural feelings of well being. 5-HTP is also commonly used as a natural remedy for depression, fear and anxiety.

GABA, gamma-amino butyric acid, is the anti-anxiety amino acid. GABA is an inhibitory neurotransmitter produced in the brain and found throughout the central nervous system and is widely referred to as the "body’s natural tranquilizer." As a neurotransmitter, GABA helps keep stress-related nerve impulses under control.

Glutamine, the third most abundant amino acid in the blood and brain, is rapidly gaining a reputation as an important therapeutic amino acid. In addition to GABA, glutamine is also shown to be vital for energy and the smooth running of brain functions. Glutamine is found in the memory center of the brain, in cranial nerves and many other areas of the brain. Glutamine is an inhibitory neurotransmitter and is the precursor for GABA. Glutamine also provides an alternative fuel source for the brain when blood sugar levels are low.

Taurine is the second-most important inhibitory transmitter in the brain. Taurine contains anti-convulsant and anti-anxiety properties and its inhibitory action in the brain equals that of GABA and glycine.

Tyrosine is the amino acid and inhibitory neurotransmitter that often helps overcome depression and anxiety. Children given tyrosine supplements in a 1980 study demonstrated a marked improvement in mental performance and mood stability. Because of its role in assisting the body to cope physiologically with stress, Tyrosine deserves to be called the stress amino acid. During periods of stress the brain requires additional tyrosine. Tyrosine also aids children, young teens and adults, with recurrent depression and mood disorders.

Glycine calms aggression in children and adults. When combined with GABA and glutamine, glycine influences brain function by slowing down anxiety-related messages.

B6 is needed by the body to help metabolize amino acids. Natural supplements for ADD that contain amino acids should also contain Vitamin B6. In addition to helping metabolize the beneficial amino acids, B6 also provides direct benefit for people with ADD and ADHD. B6 increases seritonin levels in the brain and improves energy production in the body. B6 is also shown to enhance cognitive performance.

Ginko Biloba is one of the better known natural supplements for ADD. Ginko Biloba increases neurotransmitter levels and also improves blood flow to the brain. These two actions, in turn, aid the brain's ability to focus. Ginko Biloba also enhances memory.

Gotu Kola heightens mental function, improves memory and enhances learning capabilities. This popular herb also helps keep blood vessels strong and assists in producing neurotransmitters. Many natural supplements for ADD contain gotu kola.

Not all natural supplements for ADD will contain every single ingredient listed here. When comparing formulas, select the product that contains the most ingredients and you will be assured that you have a quality product.

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Disclaimer: The information provided to you in this website has been compiled from numerous journals, research papers and studies for the sole purpose of offering consumers and professionals like you, information about ADD ADHD, natural treatment and ATTEND. None of the information herein should be construed as a claim for cure, prevention or treatment of any condition. The statements in this website have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.

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