ADD and ADHD are common in today’s society, especially in children. In North America alone, 12% of children and 6% of adults have been diagnosed with these conditions. Pediatricians and family doctors are quick to hand out prescriptions for pharmaceuticals to reduce the symptoms of hyperactivity, inattention and memory problems that are associated with these conditions, however, new research is suggesting that a more natural and safer alternative could be a viable solution for adults and children who suffer from Attention Deficit Disorder or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Krill oil, a highly bioavailable omega-3 fatty acid, has shown promising results in a number of studies and may be a healthy way to combat the effects of ADD and ADHD.
1. Children With ADHD Are More Likely to Be Deficient in Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Studies conducted by Perdue University suggest that children who are deficient in essential omega-3 fatty acids are much more likely to display behavior problems such as hyperactivity, inattention and memory issues. Research estimates that 60% of individuals are deficient in this critical nutrient, and as much as 20% have levels that are so low, they cannot be measured with current testing technology. Supplementation with omega-3 fatty acids in lab controlled studies of rats indicated that the rats had an increased ability to learn and improved brain function. The addition of krill oil supplements into the diets of children and adults who exhibit symptoms of ADHD and adult ADD may reduce the frequency and intensity of the symptoms.
2. You Are What You Eat — Or, At Least Your Brain Is
Surprisingly, the brain is comprised of 60% fat. DHA, or docosahexaenoic acid, is the primary component of the cerebral cortex, which is the area of the brain that is responsible for impulse control and attention span. DHA is known to facilitate the electrical impulses between neurons and connect vision processing with memory. A deficiency in this critical component of the cerebral cortex could easily contribute to a struggle with controlling impulses and maintaining attention. However, by supplementing the diet with krill oil on a daily basis, you can increase the brain’s cognitive function and in essence, provide it with the healthy nutrition it needs to do its job well.
3. Studies Show a 60% Increase in Concentration With Krill Oil Supplements
The improvement in behavior and cognition in double blind, gold standard test subjects is significant. The International Organization of ADHD sponsored a study in 2007 where subjects who took 500 mg of krill oil every day for six months showed a 60% increase in concentration, a 39% improvement in focusing ability and almost a 50% increase in social skills. Other notable areas of improvement include an increase in the ability to manage money, drive safely and plan ahead. These results are promising for adults with Attention Deficit Disorder and parents of children who exhibit ADHD symptoms.
4. Krill Oil Is More Easily Absorbed By the Brain When Compared to Other Fatty Acid Supplements
All omega-3 fatty acids aren’t the same. Fish oil, for example, is high in omega-3’s, but is poorly absorbed by the body. Studies indicate that when compared to fish oil, krill oil is more effective than fish oil and placebos in lowering blood lipid and triglyceride levels. Additional studies show that krill oil is 17% better absorbed than fish oil over a period of 4 weeks, and 40% better absorbed after a period of 8 weeks.
5. A Lower Dose Is Sufficient For Optimal Results
The above studies were conducted using only 500 mg of krill oil, which is much lower than your standard fish oil supplement. Krill oil has been shown to reach optimal efficacy with a relatively low dose, which may be beneficial for children, and even adults who are sensitive to supplements. Before supplementing with krill oil, be sure to speak with your child’s pediatrician or your family doctor. Review with your doctor all of the current medications your are taking, and discuss recommendations for supplementation in addition to other lifestyle and diet changes to help manage ADD and ADHD symptoms. Not only has krill oil been shown to effectively reduce the incidence of hyperactivity, attention deficit and impulse control associated with ADHD and ADD, it also has a host of other benefits to the body as well. It contains phospholipids and powerful antioxidants, including astaxanthin, which is known to support joint and bone health. Krill oil can become a healthy part of your diet and exercise plan to naturally combat the symptoms of ADD and ADHD. Discuss with your doctor how to begin supplementing with krill oil and you can enjoy the proven benefits of this incredible animal based omega-3 fatty acid.