Do you, your child, or someone you know struggle with ADHD? Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopment disorder involving inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsiveness.
How does ADHD impact nutrition?
The impulsivity and inattention related to ADHD can increase the prevalence of binging or overeating. It can increase difficulty in planning meals, remembering to eat, appetite changes, impulse food decisions, and more.
How does Nutrition Impact ADHD?
Although ADHD is not considered curable there are some nutritional things you can do to help manage it. While the effect of food on ADHD symptoms is inconclusive – diet can help improve mood and behavior.
ADHD Medication is a stimulant that can reduce your appetite. On the flip side, with one of the medications, you may find your
self extremely hungry and craving foods high in sugar and fat. How to navigate this?
- Plan meals ahead of time and Pack Protein + Carbs
- Eggs + Cuties
- Cheese Stick + Grapes
- Yogurt + Berries
- Hummus + Carrots
- Eat small frequent meals while appetite is low.
- Whole-Fat Dairy
- Work with an NWW Nutrition Coach to build habits
- Eat with the intent to regulate blood sugars
- Low and High Blood sugars can increase difficulty concentrating, Dizziness, irritable, and food cravings.
- Work With a NWW Coach to know What, When, and How much to eat to feel best! (Student-athlete coaching)
If you are on medications, it is super important to work with your Doctor, Dietitian, or Med Provider to see review these concerns. Foods that contain large amounts of citric acid and ascorbic acid (vitamin C) may prevent the absorption of certain ADHD Medications.
ADHD and Eating Disorder Prevalence:
Research from Biederman, J., et al. (2010), indicates that adolescent females with ADHD are 3.6 times more likely to develop an ED and 5.6 times more likely to develop bulimia nervosa.
One Sample from Mattos, P. et al (2004), found that 10.4% of participants with ADHD experienced an ED, most commonly binge eating disorder 
“One theory is that there is a neurological basis for both ADHD and binge/pure EDs. Researchers believe that individuals with either/both disorders have a “lack of dopamine-based natural reward,” leading to impulsive behaviors such as hyperactivity and/or binge eating “.
How to raise dopamine?
- Avoid Alcohol
- Healthy Diet
- Limit highly processed foods
- Exercise regularly
- Get some Sunshine
- Sleep 8-9 hours
- Fun activities
- Meditate or practice yoga
All foods fit but be mindful of your choices! Healthy food = a healthy body! For some mindful eating tips check out NWW Coach and Dietitian Sydney’s fantastic blog on Gentle Nutrition!
In good health, faith, and fitness
Sydney Mink, MS, RDN, LD
Sydney earned her MS from Illinois State University! She is passionate about sports nutrition and fueling adequately to perform at an elite level. Sydney was a First-team All-American athlete who competed at the Olympic Trials in the Discus throw. She is passionate about building muscle mass and fueling to have optimum energy, reduced injuries, and a positive relationship with food. Sydney uses an intuitive eating approach to empower individuals to understand one’s bodies for sustainable eating habits that can optimize athletic performance and improve day-to-day functioning. She played basketball, volleyball, softball, golf, and soccer and competed in track throughout her life. Sydney has experience coaching Division 1 track and field throwers. Sydney was recently married and moved near Iowa City, Iowa. She enjoys playing with her dogs, trying new restaurants, and traveling with her husband. She enjoys disputing myths about diet culture and aims to help clients find a positive relationship with food by following the gentle nutrition concept of intuitive eating.
To book a discovery call with Sydney to discuss your goals click the Booking Link Here!
 Bleck, J et al. (2015). Underlying mechanisms and trajectory of comorbid ADHD and eating disorders: proposing an innovative systems framework for informing research. International Journal of Mental Health and Addiction, 14: 449-458.
 Biederman, J., et al. (2010). Adult psychiatric outcomes of girls with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder: 11-year follow-up in a longitudinal case-control study. American Journal of Psychiatry, 409-417.
 Mattos, P. et al (2004). Comorbid eating disorders in a brazilian attention deficit/hyperactivity adult clinical sample. Revista Brasileira de Psiquiatria, 248-250.