Posted By Dr. Axe On September 22, 2011 @ 1:38 am In ADD/ADHD |
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) Attention Deficient Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficient Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is on the increase in children in the U.S. The number of children between the ages of five and seventeen that have been reported by their parents to have ADHD or ADD has increased from 7 to 9 percent over a decade ending in 2009. What this means is that a whopping 5 million children have been diagnosed with either ADD or the hyperactive form called ADHD according to the 2010 U.S Census data.
The drug Adderall® is the new drug of choice prescribed to children and adults that have been diagnosed with attention deficient disorders. Lawrence Diller M.D, Author; Clinical Faculty, UCSF, states that one out of six 11-year-old white boys, with medical insurance, currently take a stimulant drug for ADD or ADHD at least during the school week. “What I do know is that we are the only society currently managing our underperforming and misbehaving children with drugs to this degree”, says Dr. Diller.
Dr. Robert Mendelssohn author of, How to Raise a Healthy Child…In Spite of Your Doctor had once noted: “No one has ever been able to demonstrate that drugs such as Cylert and Ritalin® (Adderall®) improve the academic performance of the children who take them…. The pupil is drugged to make life easier for his teacher, not to make it better and more productive for the child.”
Does hyperactivity in our children and the inability to focus really mean we need to give them dangerous drugs that could bring on scary side effects? Adderall® has dangerous side effects parents should be aware of before giving it to their children. As parents we should do everything in our power to keep our children off these addicting medications and give them something their body really needs, like a wholesome diet?
Not only does diet play a big role in the emotional and physical health of our children but so does the amount of sleep a child receives each night. Did you know that children and teens that do not get 8 to 10 hours of sleep each night will show the same symptoms of ADD and ADHD?
Most children today are only lacking in vital minerals that encourage the body to thrive and grow strong and be fit and healthy into adulthood. Before we rush down to fill that prescription let’s take a look at some of the side effects of taking Adderall and other drugs like it.
Negative Side Effects of Adderall
- Weight loss and the inability to gain weight
- Constant thirst
- Difficulty sleeping
- Chronic headaches and or migraines
- High blood pressure
- Emotional instability and mood swings
- Emotional stress
- Nausea and vomiting
- Dizziness and fainting
- Weakness and tiredness
- Spiked heart rate
- Higher risk of infections (breaks down immunity)
- Chest pains
- Slowing of growth in children
- Depression 
- Suicidal thoughts
Adderall is just as addicting as any recreational drug found on the streets today. It is being abused by some college students and adults to get high and to help them lose weight. Adderall is a psycho-stimulant that makes people think they are more aware; they think it gives them more energy; and they think they are able to focus better, but overtime the body needs more and more of the drug to adjust to this need to feel good. It has been shown that anyone who uses the drug for long periods of time may experience serious withdrawals unless the dosage of Adderall is increased. This is when serious addiction sets in. Eventually, Adderall breaks down the body’s immune system, and then the more serious side effects begin to exist such as seizures, heart attacks, high blood pressure, stroke, and in some cases death.
Do you really want your children taking this drug? The body does not lack drugs such as Adderall, it lacks nutrients! Nutrients that help children and adults with attention deficiencies and hyperactivity. The truth is, virtually anyone who does not get adequate sleep, adequate diet, and adequate exercise will exhibit symptoms of ADD or ADHD!
What is the Criterion for Diagnosing ADD/ADHD?
What’s real scary about the over prescribed drug Adderall is researchers have reported that many of these children may not meet the criteria for actually having ADD or ADHD. Could your child be targeted with having ADD or ADHD but really only lack certain nutrients, adequate sleep and general physical fitness?
There is not a diagnostic tool or brain scan or DNA test that reveals if a child has ADD/ADHD. Many of the children that are diagnosed with this condition are simply disruptive, inattentive, and hyperactive and some have the inability to focus for long periods of time. Inattention and hyperactive-impulsive behavior are two of the most common symptoms associated with ADHD children.
A 1994 study at Purdue University found that boys diagnosed with ADHD had lower levels of the omega-3 essential fatty acid DHA (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition). Another study in 1997 found that 95 percent of ADHD children tested were deficient in magnesium (Magnesium Research 10, 1997). A 1996 study found that ADHD children had zinc levels that were only 2/3 the level of those without ADHD (Biological Psychiatry 40, 1996).
Natural Health Alternatives for Healing Children with ADD/ADHD
Research has shown there are alternatives to taking dangerous drugs to calm and focus children with ADD. Prescribed medications only camouflage the real problem?The real problem is inadequate amounts of minerals in the body.
We simply need to take our focus off the drugs and on what the child is eating and not eating—we need to take an in depth look at our child’s diet. Did you know that a tablespoon of Black Strap molasses has as much calcium as a glass of milk and would supply your child with the daily iron his or her body needs? And did you know that cola drinks deplete the body of important minerals, such as magnesium, calcium and zinc, which all three actually supply the body with more focus, attention and calmness?
Research has shown (see tables below) that the very same symptoms evident in children with ADD/ADHD are also nutritionally deficient in zinc, magnesium, calcium and iron.
Assessment of Magnesium Levels in Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Kozielec T, Starobrat-Hermelin B
Magnes Res 1997 Jun;10(2):143-8
The aim of this work was to estimate magnesium contents in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, (ADHD). The investigations comprised 116 children (94 boys and 20 girls), aged 9-12 years, with recognized ADHD. Magnesium levels have been determined in blood serum, red blood cells and in hair with the aid of atomic absorption spectroscopy.Magnesium deficiency was found in 95 per cent of those examined, most frequently in hair (77.6 per cent), in red blood cells (58.6 per cent) and in blood serum (33.6 per cent) of children with ADHD.
The conclusion from the investigations is that magnesium deficiency in children with ADHD occurs more frequently than in healthy children. Analysis of the material indicated a correlation between increasing levels of magnesium and freedom from distractibility.
The Effect of Deficiency of Selected Bioelements on Hyperactivity in Children with Certain Specified Mental Disorders
Ann Acad Med Stetin 1998;44:297-314
In this study of 116 ADHD children, the investigator found significant deficiencies of magnesium, copper, zinc, calcium, and iron (in blood and hair). Of 75 children with documented magnesium deficiency, 50 were placed on a magnesium supplement for 6 months, while the remaining 25 continued with conventional therapy, without additional magnesium. At the end of this study all 75 children were again evaluated for mineral levels.
The post-test findings revealed higher levels of magnesium, zinc, and calcium and respectively essential decrease in hyperactivity in the group of children treated with magnesium. At the same time, however, among the children given standard treatment without magnesium, hyperactivity had intensified.
The study concludes that there is a need for magnesium supplementation in ADHD, and that taken together with conventional modes of treatment provides opportunities to extend benefits to “children of the risk” who might otherwise fail to respond.
Foods High In Magnesium:
Pumpkin seeds, spinach, swiss chard, salmon, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds, halibut, tuna, black beans, and navy beans, and blackstrap molasses, dried figs, artichokes, buckwheat, oat bran, almonds, cashews, brazil nuts, navy beans, white beans, and cornmeal.
Foods High In Omega-3:
Omega 3’s found in sardines in oil, fresh salmon and canned salmon with the bones, blackstrap molasses, broccoli, turnip greens, kale, corn bread, corn tortilla, rhubarb, almonds, sesame seeds, white beans, baked beans, brussel sprouts. (Hint: Sesame seeds and almonds can be ground down from whole form to make sesame and almond milk; both of which have more calcium per glass than cow’s pasteurized milk). Additionally, you can use sesame milk and or almond milk in place of cow’s milk in your recipes.
Foods High In Iron:
Black strap molasses, cooked beans and lentils, pumpkin seeds, pork liver, clams, oysters, beef liver, shrimp, sardines, turkey, salmon, tuna, egg yolks, raisins, prunes, and dates.
Foods High In Zinc:
Oysters, beef liver, lima beans, chick peas, split peas, raw cashews, raw pecans, parmesan cheese, ginger root, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, calves liver, shell fish, shrimp, and venison.
Parents can get creative with the nutritious foods above, and if at all possible make sure they are organic and fresh. Always steam vegetables and eat as many raw fruits and veggies as possible. See how many healthful recipes you can come up with that use the foods above and give your child the head start he or she needs to have a healthy and strong body.
In 1996 the World Health Organization warned that Ritalin over-use had reached dangerous proportions. And that was over 15 years ago! And still here we are today, with the help of the FDA still doing the same thing! Today the over-used and over-abused drug for ADD and ADHD is Adderall. We can simply choose not to become involved in this drug-pushing agenda and say no to dangerous drugs and yes to proper diet, exercise, and adequate amounts of sleep. We’re the parents!
Source: http://adderallsideeffects.org/ , huffingtonpost.com