Chocolate: A Cure for ADHD?

In children with ADHD, there is an ongoing struggle to obtain the ability to focus on tasks for extended periods of time. In behavioral therapy, ADHD children are taught to complete goals through the establishment of mini-goals and then focusing on the smaller tasks in an effort to achieve the final desired outcome. With this in mind, research has recently shown the sensory neurotransmitter, phenylethylamine, increases mental activity and promotes focus. In children with ADHD, this naturally based neurotransmitter is usually deficient and is desperately needed in the treatment of the ADHD symptoms such as improving focus and concentration.

So, oddly enough, where is phenylethylamine, PEA, found? Chocolate. In prior years, scientists had found the PEA presence in chocolate was responsible for short term mood enhancement and focus. In drugs such as Ritalin and Adderall, it is commonly known that the ADHD patient’s ability to concentrate is significantly improved. What is not known is that both Ritalin and Adderall contain PEA and may offer significant improvement for individuals suffering from ADHD and show signs of deficient PEA naturally. By consuming the prescription medications, the ability to focus and concentrate is improved thus research is now focusing on the PEA contribution that may be found in a piece of chocolate. Unfortunately, at present, the levels of PEA found in chocolate are not significant enough to warrant a definitive solution to the focus deficits of ADHD.

PEA continues to be in test phase with regard to ADHD but with signs pointing to improved concentration and improved depression, the anticipation is that PEA levels may be increased in a variety of chocolate forms specifically designed for the ADHD patient. In patients currently taking phenylethylamine, the overwhelming response is an increased sense of calmness and kindness towards their environment. Moreover, the PEA dosing tends to provide this optimistic thinking approach more readily than Ritalin or Adderall; a sort of euphoria without resulting in the side effects associated with these other ADHD medications.

Looking forward, patients suffering with ADHD, parents of children with ADHD and medical practitioners may soon find, oddly enough, that chocolate may be one of the key ingredients in the treatment plan for ADHD and relieve symptoms without a doctor’s prescription. With this prospective, the results are unlimited in terms of decreased health care costs and improved concentration and daily living for the ADHD patient.

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