9 Natural Ways to Help ADD/ADHD

Natural Strategies

I am not opposed to medication, but it should never be the first or only thing you do to help someone. Here are 9 things to consider before medication if you struggle with ADD/ADHD (short attention span, distractibility, disorganization, procrastination, impulsivity, restlessness).


  1. Try an elimination diet for 3 weeks—eliminate sugar, gluten, dairy, corn, soy, and artificial dyes and sweeteners. Then add these back one at a time (except artificial dyes and sweeteners) and see how you feel. If there’s a culprit, avoid it.
  2. Try a higher-protein, lower-carbohydrate diet, such as ketogenic or paleo, for a month to see if it helps your focus.
  3. Boost exercise—walk like you are late for 45 minutes 4 times a week.
  4. Increase sleep and maintain good sleep habits.
  5. Decrease screen time.
  6. Work closely with an integrative physician to check ferritin, vitamin D, magnesium, zinc, and thyroid levels, and balance any that are not optimal.
  7. Take 1,000 mg of EPA+DHA omega-3 fatty acids per day.
  8. Take 200–300 mg of phosphatidylserine per day.
  9. Take 100–500 mg of magnesium glycinate, citrate, or malate per day.

If someone truly has ADD/ADHD, they will still have it a few months after I first see them, so it is worth the investment and time to get their brain health optimized before starting a medication that they may be on for years or even decades.

Medication should never be the first or only thing you do to help ADD/ADHD. Click To Tweet


I often recommend nutraceuticals or medications targeted to their specific type of ADD/ADHD (see my book Healing ADD). There is a negative bias against medication for ADD/ADHD, and it is not always warranted.

Miracle and horror stories about stimulants abound. One of my own children went from being a mediocre student to getting straight As for 10 years while using stimulant medication. I was never more proud than the day she was accepted to one of the world’s best veterinary schools.

On the other hand, I’ve had patients referred to me because they became suicidal on stimulants. Their brains were already overactive to start, so stimulating it further made them more anxious and upset. The problem is, physicians, assume everyone with ADD/ADHD is the same, which invites failure and frustration.

Today’s Practice: If you struggle with ADD/ADHD, choose one of the tips to start today. Stick with it for at least 30 days and keep track of how you feel.

In Change Your Brain Every Day, psychiatrist and clinical neuroscientist Daniel Amen, MD, draws on over 40 years of clinical practice with tens of thousands of patients to give you the most effective daily habits he has seen that can help you improve your brain, master your mind, boost your memory, and make you feel happier, healthier, and more connected to those you love.

If you want to join the tens of thousands of patients at Amen Clinics who have already learned how to change their brain every day and have a better life, speak to a specialist today at 888-288-9834 or visit our contact page here.  


  1. Do you carry the recommended ADHD supplements

    Comment by Gretchen — March 1, 2023 @ 3:50 AM

  2. Do you have to be clinically diagnosed ADD before doing supplements and such? I qualify as having ADD and I’ve worked the steps which has helped tremendously but don’t want to communicate it with my Dr cause I don’t want him to think I’m crazy.

    Comment by Kim Warren — March 3, 2023 @ 6:31 PM

  3. My granddaughter who is 7 recently was diagnosed with ADD, I am wondering if you would recommend the same protocol as you would an adult?

    Comment by Patricia A Cox — June 9, 2023 @ 4:43 AM

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