Creatine for Inattentive ADD and ADHD?

Creatine for Inattentive ADD and ADHD?

Is supplementing with Creatine for Inattentive ADD effective for improving the symptoms of Inattentive ADD?  It might be.  This very inexpensive supplement has been found in an Australian study to help working memory and intelligence.  It has been used by body builders and athletes for years to improve sports performance and it has been recently found to improve brain functioning.

What is Creatine?  Creatine is compound that our bodies make naturally and that is abundant in people who consume a lot of meat but is known to be deficient in some vegetarians.  Creatine is essential for the normal functioning of both our muscles and our brains. 
creatine for inattentive add and adhd

Creatine work on the brain’s Adenosine Triphosphate (ATP).  If you have Inattentive ADD, as I do, you probably will not remember the lecture on ATP from your high school biology class.  I will not bore you with the details but ATP is something that our body uses to produce all sorts of cell energy.  Creatine may improve Inattentive ADD by improving the efficiency and effectiveness of the ATP function in our brains and in our muscles.
Inattentive ADD - ADHD

Creatine helps inattentive ADD because higher brain creatine is associated with improved neuropsychological performance.  Creatine supplementation has been shown to increase brain creatine and creatine kinase (CK).  CK has been found, in studies, to both protective the brain and to improve brain functioning. One study reported that, in animal studies, Ritalin increases creatine kinase.  It is possible that this increase in creatine kinase is one of the ways that Ritalin improves the symptoms of ADHD and Inattentive ADD.

Creatine Supplements for Inattentive ADD-ADHD

You would have to eat lots of meat to get the amount of creatine that has been found in studies to improve brain functioning.  Fortunately, creatine, which costs about 10 cents a dose, is available in supplement from.

Creatine can be taken as a supplement and the therapeutic dose for Inattentive ADD would be between 2-5 grams a day for adults and about half that dose for children. Supplemental Creatine is showing great promise in the treatment of Parkinson's disease and is also currently being studied to determine it's effectiveness for the treatment of other diseases such as congestive heart failure (CHF), depression, bipolar disorder, high cholesterol and rheumatoid arthritis

Studies have shown that Creatine has very few side effects.  One study reported brain benefits at levels of 2 grams a day in adults.  Reports indicate that the side effects of this supplement which can include stomach bloating, diarrhea and body odor are minimal when taken at these doses.

Creatine may help Inattentive ADD by helping the brain's cell energy system.  It may work similarly to Ritalin and act as both an anti-oxidant and as fuel for amino acid and neurotransmitter functioning.  The use of Creatine supplementation for Inattentive ADD has not been specifically studied but there is reason for me to believe that Creatine supplementation may help the symptoms of Inattentive ADD.

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Amino Acids. 2011 Mar 11. [Epub ahead of print]
Use of creatine in the elderly and evidence for effects on cognitive function in young and old.
Rawson ES, Venezia AC.

Amino Acids. 2011 Mar 30.
The creatine kinase system and pleiotropic effects of creatine.
Wallimann T, Tokarska-Schlattner M, Schlattner U.

Proc Biol Sci. 2003 Oct 22;270(1529):2147-50.
Oral creatine monohydrate supplementation improves brain performance: a double-blind, placebo-controlled, cross-over trial.
Rae C, Digney AL, McEwan SR, Bates TC.

Life Sci. 2008 Dec 5;83(23-24):795-800. Epub 2008 Oct 5.
Methylphenidate increases creatine kinase activity in the brain of young and adult rats.
Scaini G, Fagundes AO, Rezin GT, Gomes KM, Zugno AI, Quevedo J, Streck EL.

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