Is Fish Oil a Cure for ADHD?

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Could fish oil cure ADHD? A recent study indicates that omega-3 fish oil might alleviate the symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This study also appears in the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.

Fish Oil Studies

Researchers at the University of South Australia performed the study with 132 children suffering from ADHD. It lasted for 30 weeks. All the children were between the ages of 7 and 12 years.

During the first 15 weeks, researchers split the children into three groups. The children were assigned either an omega-3 supplement, omega-3 plus a multivitamin, or a placebo in the form of palm oil capsules. After this, each child was also given omega-3 and the multivitamins for the remaining 15 weeks.

Study Findings

Researchers found over 50 percent of the children taking omega-3 for the entire 30 weeks had considerable improvements in symptoms like hyperactivity, impulsivity, and also inattention. However, the children taking only multivitamins showed no change in ADHD symptoms.

However, when the placebo group switched to omega-3s, all children showed improvements in ADHD symptoms.

Philip Calder is the professor of nutritional immunology at the University of Southampton. He also claims the results are further evidence that omega-3 fatty acids are important in understanding ADHD symptoms.

He added, “The results of this latest trial add to the growing body of evidence showing that children with attention problems can benefit from increased intake of certain fatty acids.”
SOURCE: Journal of Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics, April 2007, http://www.jrnldbp.com/pt/re/jdbp/abstract.00004703-200704000-00002.htm

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