Fish Oil is More Effective Than ADHD Drugs

In All Health Watch, Cognitive Health, Featured Article, Mental Health

Big Pharma makes a fortune from ADHD. The number of adults taking drugs for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder has skyrocketed by 53% in just four years.

More than 4.8 million adults now take ADHD medications.

Millions of children take the drugs, too—even those not much older than babies. A report by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found that 10,000 American toddlers are taking ADHD drugs like Ritalin (methylphenidate) or Adderall (amphetamine).

In all, 4.2% of U.S. children take ADHD drugs.[1]  

Ritalin and Adderall can help people with ADHD focus. But they are also addictive, can destroy sleep, cause heart rhythm problems…and that’s just the beginning of their side effects.[2]  

What ADHD sufferers or their parents may not know is that there is a natural alternative that works just as well as stimulant drugs. 

A study published in the journal Translational Psychiatry looked at 92 children with ADHD. Researchers test their blood levels of EPA. It’s one of the two main fatty acids in fish oil.[3]

The subjects were then randomly given either omega-3 fish oil supplements or a placebo every day.

After 12 weeks, the subjects whose EPA levels started low and got the biggest boost from fish oil supplements had improvements in “focused attention and vigilance.”

The improvement from fish oil was measurably greater than from Ritalin.

Dr. Jane Chang was the co-lead researcher. She said fish oil supplements “are at least as effective” as drugs for treating ADHD among those “who have omega-3 deficiency.”

Most Americans don’t meet the recommended levels of fish and omega-3 intake.[4]

Although the study focused on kids and teenagers, there’s no reason to think the results wouldn’t hold true for adults.

The Best Kind of Fish Oil

Not all fish oil supplements are created equal. You should make sure you get the right kind.

Most fish oils are made with a cheap, fast manufacturing process that yields something called an ethyl ester (EE). This kind of fish oil is less bioavailable. Labels of EE fish oil often say the product is derived from “marine oil concentrate.”[5]

Instead, look for brands that contain the triglyceride form of fish oil. It should be noted on the label.

A high-quality fish oil will also be relatively free of any fishy tastes or smells. And it should be translucent and free of cloudiness.

You’re more likely to find quality fish oil supplements at health food stores and online than at drug stores and supermarkets.

According to the European Food Safety Authority, omega-3 supplements can be safely consumed at doses up to 5,000 mg daily.[6]

But if you’re on a blood-thinning medication, check with your doctor before taking fish oil.

Studies show fish oil reduces your risk of heart attack and Alzheimer’s. So if you take it instead of a drug for ADHD, not only will you avoid the side effects, but you’ll be getting other important health benefits, too.[7] [8]

Editor’s Note: Unlike much of the mainstream media, we don’t accept advertising from Big Pharma. That’s why you can count on us for unbiased medical information. Our only motivation is your good health.

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