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ADHD Nutrition and Weight Loss/Gain

obesity and ADHD linked.

I am obese and it needs to stop. Just read their is a big link between obesity and ADHD. We tend to overeat or eat frequently to have more dopamine in our brains.  Makes sense.  I’ve got to get in shape or I could get Diabetes.  I worked out yesterday for 1 1/2 and today for 1 hour.  I’ve got to get myself under control.  And no more Abilify or psych meds that cause weight gain.  I’ve got to go natural and heal myself through exercise. Anyone else out there feel the same way. smile


It would be wise to get some professional help in going about this. Just like changing meds, if you are not satisfied with professional help you may have received, a counselor who specializes in ADD/ADHD.  may help, or may know of a doctor that has treated and helped others with your issues.  As for meds, there are so many out there now, that although some cause weight gain, others do not. I was prescribed Lexapro years ago, and it has both helped my depression and my ADD.  I would also recommend Overeaters Anonymous, a 12 step program, that works like Alcoholics Anonymous and has great success. Many people come in, not just because they want to be thinner, but because they have become diabetic or have other health reasons where they must lose weight and can’t seem to manage it alone. They have online, phone, and face-to-face meetings and there is no cost.

Posted by graceeeee on Jul 15, 2014 at 6:57pm

Get your thyroid checked. The usual testing many docs still use such as TSH isn’t necessarily the best.
A website and book called Stop the Thyroid Madness has some of the only info I’ve ever recommended written by a lay person. But she did her homework well and has references I’ve cross checked. Also my doc has recently gone in for extra training on hormones and uses the same types of testing and treatment with Armour natural dessicated thyroid—this is a prescription medication. Do not accept a ‘normal’ T3 level as optimal. Symptoms plus blood testing are critical. Being at the higher end of normal, her mentor recommends a free T3 around 4 as being where most people finally feel like they have true vitality. There are other cofactors needed for thyroid health.
Thyroid issues are linked with a lot of mental health issues. For ADD, this might be part of it. Tyrosine is a precursor of several hormones and brain chemicals. Thyroid hormone is one of them. Dopamine and Norepinephrine, the main neurochemicals associated with ADD also use this. But simply taking tyrosine supplements don’t usually do the trick alone for either thyroid or ADD as there are other things needed to have it convert to each.
But the possible link with ADD is that the body tries to do all these conversions with not enough raw material or some slowdown in the conversion process. ie you may have plenty of product to ship out and enough trucks but not enough drivers. or you may have enough trucks and drivers but a part is on back order and you can’t make all the widgets needed to get your work done’ One way or the other you are short on widgets.
Consider getting wheat out of your diet. Maybe all gluten but wheat in particular has some appetite and brain issues. It also can affect connective tissue. But wheat seems to trigger appetite more than other grains. Some of this is effect on blood sugar even if all whole grain. Some of it is that it seems to affect our endorphins—feel good natural opiates. Which can give some brain fog and develop enough addictive effects that when the effect wears off, you crave wheat.
A number of athletes, especially endurance athletes are finding that getting wheat out improves performance and shortens recovery from exercise.
Then start a diet of ‘real food’ no fake fats, olive and coconut oil and butter but no transfats or corn/soy/canola oils no crisco or shortening. coconut oil or palm oil make good substitutes for shortening.
No processed foods, soft drinks but coffee and tea in moderation, no juice but fresh fruit ok, fresh veggies,
and organic meat, milk, eggs and cheese if you can afford it or wild caught fish.
Reduce cleaning supplies and personal care products to as ‘green’ as possible. The chemicals in detergents, shampoos, clothes softeners, and more make the ADD worse as our body has to take energy to clear the garbage out. Once you clear out some of the junk, and get used to eating real food, your body starts to be able to notice what is good for you and the junk will taste like junk.
All this will make your appetite start to settle down to what you truly need and make exercise easier—the engine doesn’t have all that gunk clogging the fuel line and carburetor.
And find a good multi vitamin and mineral supplement. Costco has some multi packs that are quite good for the price. Their line of supplements has been checked by independent testing as has their olive oil and both are testing well for purity and potency. Lots of olive oil isn’t what is on the label. And lots of supplements are rip offs.
When your body gets what it needs to exercise and.has cleared out the gunk, exercise is much easier. And simple changes done often enough make a big difference. Heard of a doc on NPR yesterday getting obese teens to lose weight simply by having them get off the school bus a few blocks away and gradually increasing that distance.
That you had the energy to work out that long is great. Keep going!
I started bodybuilding in 1977 and was one of the few women lifting weights at the time. I found that my mind, mood and body all felt better with exercise. It took some months to really get in the groove but I’ve kept the habit of exercise lifelong. It changed with circumstances to karate, horseback riding,  hiking/walking, yoga but if I don’t get Vitamin Ex regularly I get cranky and feel stupid as well as physically edgy or lethargic.
Kudos to you for making that critical step so few do make. To choose to make a change that will be good for you body mind and spirit. Keep us posted!

Posted by Gadfly on Jul 15, 2014 at 7:44pm

Hi amaxfield!

I applaud your focus on your health. I agree with Gadfly that watching what you eat is as important as exercise. just had a webinar on Weight Loss Secrets for ADHD Adults. Listen to the archive here:

Good luck!

ADDconnect Moderator, Author & Mom to Tween Boy with ADHD and LDs

Posted by adhdmomma on Jul 16, 2014 at 2:25pm

So thanks for all the messages.  I find that I eat a lot when I am bored. I met with my nutritionist the other day and told her I will try to keep track of what I eat everyday-but forget about calorie counting.  With my ADHD, if I keep a log for a month that’s huge in and of itself and I will loose weight because I will be annoyed by having to track everything, I’ll just choose not to eat between meals.

Posted by amaxfield on Jul 18, 2014 at 4:39pm

Ok full disclaimer I am a Plexus Ambassador.  BUT! Let me tell you my 100% true story.  My friend and I were going to the gym trying to get fit and in shape.  I love snacks and fast food.  I would say addicted to fast food and cookies.  I have never been able to stick to a diet.  My friend said that she had some friends on facebook who were having great weight loss success with this stuff called Plexus.  I researched it and figured what the heck I’ll try it.  there is a 60 day guarantee which I 100% thought I would be taking advantage of.  When researching I just read weight loss testimonies.  I had no idea people with ADHD were having relief with Plexus.  Not until I started taking it and found that I felt more self control over food.  Really I felt more self control over many things in my life.  It was not until then I researched Plexus and ADHD.  I found many testimonies from mothers getting approval from their doctors to give to their children with ADHD.  I started Plexus for weight loss and I have lost 20lbs but that has just been a bonus to everything else it has done for me.  This is just my story results may not be typical and that is why there is a 60 day guarantee.  email me with any questions I would love to get you in touch with more testimonies.

Posted by gonwa5 on Jul 21, 2014 at 2:42pm

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