WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — Children who have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may need an extra helping of fish, Purdue University researchers say.
In a study of 96 boys ages 6 to 12, Purdue researchers found that boys with low levels of omega-3 fatty acid in their blood were more likely to have behavior problems associated with ADHD.
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in fish and other seafood.
ADHD commonly is treated with Ritalin, a stimulant that eases the behavioral symptoms. It enables a child to maintain concentration at home or in school but doesn't treat the cause, which is unknown.
Environmental as well as dietary factors are among the leading suspects.
Previous studies by other researchers have indicated a link between fatty acid deficiency and ADHD. Symptoms associated with fatty acid deficiency include dry skin and hair, frequent urination and thirst. All are exhibited to a greater extent in children with ADHD.