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Foods & ADHD: Is there a link?

Foods & adhd: is there a link?

By Raafia Muhammad, MD, MPH

While no significant data links ADHD with patient diets, there have been many indications that different types of food and vitamins may help ease ADHD symptoms.

Although there is no magic diet or food to treat ADHD, a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle has been shown to help mitigate symptoms of ADHD. Consuming a diet low in glycemic index (GI) is important in maintaining steady glycemic control and energy. Foods high in GI release glucose rapidly, and this can increase  hyperactivity, impulsivity and inattentiveness.

Protein-rich foods – like lean beef, poultry, fish, eggs, beans and nuts – can build neurotransmitters, helping  relieve ADHD symptoms. Recommend to patients a healthy intake of zinc, iron and magnesium. Zinc regulates the neurotransmitter dopamine, and low iron levels correlate with cognitive deficits and severe ADHD. Like zinc, magnesium is used to make neurotransmitters involved in attention and concentration, and it has a calming effect on the brain.

We also recommend that those with ADHD avoid sugary foods and artificial dyes. Remind patients to read food labels carefully, looking for and avoiding the following ingredients (code words for sugar): high-fructose corn sweetener, dehydrated cane juice, dextrin, dextrose, maltodextrin, sucrose, molasses and malt syrup.

For more tips, check out the Cookbook for Busy Minds e-book by CHADD.

Behavioral Therapy

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Assessments

Assessment services are available in all 50 states.

Assessment and Treatment Plan Development & Implementation**

The patient completes our asynchronous assessment and receives the report from a doctorate-level psychologist within 3-5 days.

The patient schedules an initial appointment with one of our providers to develop a treatment plan through a secure virtual appointment.

The patient schedules subsequent follow-up visits with our providers for ADHD medical treatment or behavioral therapy.

**If available in your state

Assessment and
Treatment Plan Development**

The patient completes our asynchronous assessment and receives the report from a doctorate-level psychologist within 3-5 days.

The patient schedules an initial appointment with one of our providers to develop a treatment plan through a secure virtual appointment. We provide you and your patient with a copy of our full report. You take it from there.

**If available in your state

Assessment

The patient completes our asynchronous assessment and receives the report from a doctorate-level psychologist within 3-5 days.

We provide you and your patient with a copy of our full report. You take it from there.

Assessments available in:

All 50 states

Medical Treatment available in:

Arizona
California
Colorado
Connecticut
Delaware
Florida
Georgia
Idaho
Illinois
Indiana
Iowa
Kansas
Kentucky

Maine
Maryland
Massachusetts
Michigan
Minnesota
Mississippi
Missouri
Montana
Nebraska
Nevada
New Hampshire
New Mexico
North Carolina

Ohio
Oregon
Pennsylvania
Rhode Island
South Carolina*
Tennessee
Texas
Utah
Vermont
Virginia
Washington
Wisconsin

Teletherapy available in:

Florida
Georgia
Indiana
Michigan
Missouri
New Jersey

Ohio
Pennsylvania
Texas
Tennessee
Virginia

*Prescriptions via telemedicine for Schedule II (stimulants) medications are not permitted by state law in South Carolina. Patients can receive prescriptions from our providers for non-stimulant medications.

south carolina

*South Carolina allows for the prescribing of non-stimulant medications through telemedicine visits. Please contact our support team to learn more about state regulations of stimulant medications and how we can help.