Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a complex condition that can be difficult to treat. It’s estimated that between 3% and 5% of children in the United States have ADHD, which is linked with other conditions including oppositional defiant disorder and conduct disorder. Although stimulant medications are often prescribed to treat ADHD symptoms, they aren’t always effective and can lead to side effects such as weight loss or sleep problems. However, research shows that a healthy gut may play an important role in reducing ADHD symptoms—and eating healthy foods can help restore balance to your child’s microbiome.
An imbalance in gut bacteria can manifest in digestive and behavioral problems.
The gut microbiome is a complex ecosystem that plays a role in many aspects of health. It’s estimated that the gut microbiome contains over 100 trillion microorganisms, making it the largest reservoir of living cells in the body. The microbiome can influence everything from mood and behavior to immunity and digestion. For example, an imbalance in gut bacteria can manifest itself in digestive problems like constipation or diarrhea; behavioral issues such as anxiety and aggression; or cognitive difficulties like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
In one study published by Nature Neuroscience, researchers found that mice lacking proper bacteria had difficulty learning new tasks because their brains were unable to produce enough serotonin–a neurotransmitter linked with mood regulation–to help them focus on what they were doing at that moment. This suggests that certain strains may be especially helpful for children who struggle with concentration due to their ADHD diagnosis.
The gut-brain connection is a two-way street.
The gut-brain connection is a two-way street. That is, the brain can influence the gut, and vice versa. Here are some examples of how this works:
- The vagus nerve connects your brain to your digestive tract. When it’s working properly, it helps pass signals between these two systems–for example, when you feel nervous or stressed out (a signal from the brain), that feeling will be passed along through this nerve to activate certain parts of your digestive system in response. For example, if you’re about to speak in public and get nervous about it (a signal from the brain), then some people might experience nausea or stomach pains due to activation of these nerves by stress hormones like adrenaline or cortisol; others may feel their appetite increase because their bodies think they need more fuel for running away from predators!
- Hormones produced by our organs can travel through blood vessels into other organs throughout our body–including those located outside our skin barrier such as lungs/lungs and kidneys/kidneys.
Research suggests that probiotics may help children with ADHD or autism.
A number of studies have shown that probiotics can improve symptoms of both conditions, including:
- A 2016 study found that children with ADHD had lower levels of some bacteria in their guts than kids without the condition. After taking a specific strain of Lactobacillus rhamnosus (LGG), those levels went up significantly and their symptoms improved. The researchers concluded that “gut microbial imbalance might contribute to the pathogenesis” (or development) of ADHD.
- Another study from 2017 found that children with autism who take certain types of probiotics have fewer behavioral problems than those who don’t take them or are given placebos to control for placebo effect caused by belief in treatment efficacy rather than actual effectiveness.
Gut microbes can influence brain development and function throughout life.
The gut microbiome is a complex community of bacteria that plays an important role in health and disease. Gut microbes can influence brain development and function throughout life, affecting mood, behavior, learning and memory. They also affect the immune system and endocrine system.
In particular, probiotics have been shown to improve anxiety-like behavior in rats (1). This suggests that they may help with symptoms related to ADHD such as anxiety or depression (2).
Probiotics may reduce the severity of ADHD symptoms.
Probiotics have been shown to reduce the severity of ADHD symptoms. In fact, a recent study found that children who received probiotics had lower levels of hyperactivity and impulsivity than those who did not receive the supplements.
Another benefit of probiotic use is its ability to help improve gut health and reduce inflammation in the digestive system. This can help reduce anxiety and depression as well as stress, which are all symptoms associated with ADHD. The good news is there are many different strains available today that can be taken individually or together for maximum effect!
Probiotic supplements are available, but healthy eating habits can also help restore balance to your child’s gut microbiome.
Probiotics are available in supplement form. Probiotic supplements can be found in yogurt, kefir, kombucha and other fermented foods. They also come in pill form.
Probiotics are an important part of gut health for everyone–but especially children with ADHD who may have a compromised digestive system due to their disorder or medication use. The good news is that probiotic-rich foods can be easily incorporated into your child’s daily diet to help restore balance to his or her microbiome (the microorganisms living inside his or her body).
Treatment for ADHD should include dietary changes to restore health to the gut, which could have a positive impact on the brain and behavior.
Probiotics are good for your health and can help with ADHD. The gut is home to trillions of bacteria, which play a crucial role in regulating our immune system, metabolism, mood and behavior. Gut health has become an increasingly popular topic thanks to research showing that probiotics may improve mental health conditions ranging from depression to autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
Research shows that probiotics may also benefit people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). A 2017 study found that children who took a daily dose of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GG had decreased symptoms of ADHD after six weeks compared with those taking a placebo. Another study published earlier this year found that kids who consumed fermented milk products had lower rates of behavioral problems than non-users.
The gut-brain connection is a two-way street. Research suggests that probiotics may help children with ADHD or autism. Gut microbes can influence brain development and function throughout life. Probiotic supplements are available, but healthy eating habits can also help restore balance to your child’s gut microbiome.
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