Parents are beginning to look at natural supplements for ADHD treatment over prescription medications. Drugs possess some negative stigmas, potentially unwanted side effects, and the risk of possible dependency. This has many individuals and families looking for alternatives. Skepticism towards drugs have naturally, no pun intended, led many to the doorstep of supplements.
But are supplements safe? Are they pure? How can we know? Will they actually be able to treat ADHD?
When I was in medical school in South Carolina, I remember hearing a “root doctor” give a talk. Following that talk, the head of pharmacology spoke about the medication we get from those “roots”. Now, some 40 years later I find myself going back to the “roots” and looking at the supplement and pharmaceutical (drug) business.
If the drug came from the root, why can’t I use the root to create a natural supplement?
Supplements and the Changing Research
Through the years there have been incredible success stories using medication. But are we willing to adapt to current research? We've seen that antibiotics given to an infant for a simple ear infection can change the immune system later in life. C-sections may prevent normal bacteria flora within the gut to develop. Additionally, the over-use of antibiotics is giving rise to bacteria causing super infections.
If our understanding of nutrition and disease has changed, and we are rightfully adjusting in that domain, shouldn’t our protocol for treating and caring for ADHD adjust as well? Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is being linked to our gut, inflammation, and overall nutrition.
If we are giving our attention to treating ADHD, we have to consider these other variables and respond accordingly. In his book, Wheat Belly, Dr. Davis, MD describes how in 1985 they re-engineered wheat to make more of it to grow on an acre of land, and what does this wheat do when consumed by our bodies? It turns into sugar.
Sugar is not such a bad thing, but people do need to consume it in moderation. In itself, it does not cause ADHD, but a diet high in sugar causes the body to respond with inflammation, creating all kinds of unwanted side effects, and even the possible onset of type II diabetes.
Medications in the ADHD world do not typically consider overall health interaction. Instead, they go straight to producing a desired effect in the patient. Many treatments never consider underlying nutrition.
Thinking More Holistically about Nutrition, ADHD, and Supplements
Prescription medications are like attaching a rocket to the top of your car without first diagnosing and fixing what’s under the hood. It may get the car from point A to point B, but without fixing the underlying problem, and you can count on unwanted side effects.
Managing ADHD with care and excellence must include nutrition as a foundation. This is where supplements enter the picture of care. Supplements seek to give natural support to the body and brain, treating the person as a unified whole, and helping one’s brain to function and perform at an optimum level.
For many, this means they no longer need the rocket fuel of medications. ADHD sufferers had the engine they needed all along, they just needed the right assistance -- a jump start or better fuel.
The sad reality is large drug companies develop drugs with dollar bills in view. Sometimes they may fail to consider the nutritional component. For example, Shire Pharmaceuticals developed Vyvanse, an ADHD medication, at the cost of more than $1 billion. If you ever wondered why they cost so much, that's why.
The downside of supplements is they don't offer large companies any incentive toward profit.
They may be a legitimate means of ADHD care. They may also be as effective as some medicines -- or even more effective -- but because they are natural, the profits don't exist for large companies. Not to mention, natural supplements aren't promoted because of the huge expense that is required in order to pass FDA approval.
FDA Approval of ADHD Supplements
This is what leads to one of the common problems people have with supplements: they aren’t FDA approved.
That is true. There is rightful concern over the multitude of supplements on the shelf. We have the same concerns. PBS released a documentary on supplements depicting a study that found only 21% of products from the local GNC or Walgreens actually had in their product what they were advertising on the label. And that’s not even talking about getting the amount right. That’s just the right ingredient in a natural supplement.
Here's a short clip from the show...
Since supplements are not governed by the FDA or the agriculture department, it is left up to the corporation that makes the supplement to ensure its purity and accuracy.
Why don't more universities study supplements?
You might wonder why more studies are not done by major universities on supplements. Why is so much money spent researching synthetic drugs and not natural options? Surely, if they work, we'd be giving attention to them, right?
It turns out that universities and research groups know that supplements, because they are natural, do not have the ability to obtain a patent. Therefore, they've lost their ability to corner the market, and they'd never make their money back that they spent on research.
It's a tragic cycle.
FastBraiin and Supplements
In my office over 80% of my patient’s parents have tried a supplement of some sort for their child. And most of these supplements have no studies to support them and are not used in clinical, medical, or university settings.
We developed FastBraiin Supplements because I saw these issues and wanted to do something about it. I couldn't stand seeing patient after patient come in putting who knows what in their body.
So I partnered with two men: Gary Allred, PhD, is highly trained in plant derivatives for medical use, and Matt West, ND, who has a large naturopathic practice in Oregon. We spent years developing and studying the effects of FastBraiin Supplements on focus, attention, memory, mood, and energy.
Understanding our reputation is on the line with each patient (and each capsule), we keep close accounting with our patients. As many as 30% of my patients take FastBraiin supplements for attention, and many are taking them along with their stimulant medications in order to keep the medication dosages lower and side effects down.
Changes in nutrition, healthcare, and a growing desire for natural ways to treat ADHD have caused an increase in supplement usage. On the one hand, we can celebrate this. There are definite benefits to supplements. On the other hand, it has opened the door for unregulated and unmonitored use outside of professional care.
We believe FastBraiin is setting the standard with supplements and their usage.
Our supplements are:
- Rigorously tested for purity
- Developed by physicians
- Tracked to promote the highest level of clinical effectiveness.
If you are looking for natural ADHD supplements, we hope you'll give FastBraiin a try. You can also schedule an appointment to discuss an overall care and treatment strategy for ADHD. Our natural supplements for ADHD target different aspects of nutrition and brain performance, all which may have a positive effect on ADHD.
- Focus A offers a natural boost and synergistic effect to promote focus.
- DHA along with PS (phosphatidyl serine) addresses total brain health. It may take 1-2 months to build up optimum levels.
- Vivalive targets serotonin and melatonin levels for increased mood and sleep.
- Activate gives a natural, stronger boost of energy and focus without "the jitters" (use on an intermittent basis).