Are You An ADD Adult?

June 8, 2010

Adult ADD

I have to confess an interest in this subject as I certainly am subject to Attention deficit disorder (ADD) but in my case without the hyperactivity. ADD or ADHD doesn’t just affect children, though they certainly seem to be increasingly prone to it, but roughly 4 % of adults certainly have some of the symptoms. So far no one knows what causes it, or makes someone more vulnerable to it, though there is increasing evidence that it might have a biological basis, but whatever the cause it helps to know how to deal with it.

With the pressure we are all under, and as we get older, we are subject to lapses of memory, distraction and sheer overload. The official diagnosis of ADHD includes the three major symptoms of inattentiveness, hyperactivity and impulsiveness and you can have any or all of these symptoms. When trying to learn, complete a project or get on with people these traits can get in the way – however on the positive side ADHD often goes alongside creativity and thinking outside the box.

If you are not sure whether you are in this category there is a simple, quick test at the appallingly named Psych Central, but don’t let that put you off. The website is and I have to confess that out of 100 I got 92. If I was competitive I would say ‘beat that!’ but not sure that is going to help – why do you think I wrote a book on procrastination!

Natural Help:

If your ADHD seriously impacts your life then you may need professional help, but there are some simple steps to take first to give you some support.

1 You need to keep your brain healthy and functioning well and to do that it needs a good supply of the Omega-3 fatty acids. You can get these through your diet from oily fish, whole foods, flaxseeds and walnuts.

2 A high protein, low carbohydrate works for most ADHD sufferers, except for those whose problem is being over focused, they need carbohydrates far more than protein.

3 Your brain needs dopamine to stay focused and able to concentrate and the best way to do it is through regular exercise. Anything you like as long as you enjoy it enough to maintain it.

4 Back to the previous item, and yet another benefit of mindfulness meditation is that it has been shown to ‘centre’ and stabilise that chattering mind that often goes with ADHD.

In the US there is much talk about the Feingold diet which is claimed to help not just ADHD but many other disorders as well and if you want to check it out go to but there are some simple rules you can implement straight away – but remember no diet or regime suits everyone so experiment and see if it works for you:.

ADHD sufferers do best when their sugar levels are even so cut out sugar in all forms as that will make your insulin levels rise and fall, causing mood changes and irritability. If you do have lots of sugar you are likely to crash, become spacey, confused and unable to pay attention. Eating little and often works best, and don’t eat three hours before bed. Try to have protein with most meals and limit fruit juices because of their high sugar content so eat fruit instead.

WARNING: If you are on any ADHD medicine then give up caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol as they dehydrate the body and affect your mood. Alcohol mixed with ADHD medications can be life threatening and both caffeine and tobacco decrease the blood flow to the brain and makes the condition worse. Citric acid can interfere with some ADHD medications so limit your intake of oranges, tangerines and grapefruit as well as their juices.


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