ADHD-Related Dopamine Deficiency Can Sabotage Your Diet

ADHD-Related Dopamine Deficiency Can Sabotage Your Diet

Posted on: February 23rd, 2021 by NeuroHealth Associates

ADHD can wreak havoc on your diet. Why is this? Let’s take a look at how and why ADHD affects your diet and how Neurofeedback Therapy can help get your diet back on track.

The ADHD brain craves dopamine, the neurotransmitter that impacts mood, motivation, memory, and more. Dopamine is released when we exercise — and when we eat doughnuts, which is a problem. Understand the neurology behind your cravings, and how to manage your weight-loss plan.

Weight management is difficult for everyone. Like many other tasks, it’s an even bigger challenge for adults with ADHD. Symptoms like impulsivity make us more prone to give in to cravings for high-fat, high-sugar foods. And the dopamine rush we get from carbohydrates and sweets becomes addictive; it feels as if our brain needs that grilled cheese sandwich.

But don’t despair! Armed with information about the ADHD-obesity link, you can understand why shedding pounds has been difficult in the past, and take the right steps to lose them once and for all.

The ADHD-Obesity Link

A recent study found that more than 25% of people struggling with obesity at a specific clinic had a history of ADHD symptoms — much higher than the 4-6% found in the general population.

Additionally, other studies have found that candidates for gastric bypass surgery — who have a body mass index above the 90th percentile — have a very high rate of undiagnosed ADHD. After surgery, those people with ADHD are prone to losing less weight and gaining more back.

ADHD creates problems with self-regulation — of attention, short-term memory, and emotion—that extend to food intake. The trouble with impulse control keeps people with ADHD from thinking, “I won’t eat that because it’s not healthy, and I will regret it later.” Instead, we grab an unhealthy snack without considering if it’s a good idea or not.

The ADHD brain has low levels of two neurotransmitters: dopamine (responsible for feelings of reward) and GABA (responsible for inhibition). We crave sugar to stimulate dopamine production. This, paired with a lack of

Why Diets Don’t Work

Diets don’t work for adults with ADHD because they are considered a short-term fix to lose weight before returning to a manageable “normal.” But ADHD bodies are often sending the wrong signals about what “feels right,” so relying on our natural tendencies can lead to overeating.

The same difficulty with impulse control that leads you to interrupt in conversations also makes it harder to resist a tasty snack when it’s calling your name. The same feelings of being overwhelmed that stop you from cleaning a room can keep you from adding a detailed new diet plan to your life.

Help Fight ADHD-Related Obesity with Neurofeedback Therapy

Here at Neurohealth Associates, we specialize in Neurofeedback treatments. Neurofeedback can help deal with a multitude of ADHD symptoms. The easy, noninvasive treatment can painlessly improve your mental health condition and outlook on life.

Schedule a consultation with NeuroHealth today and find out how we can help you.

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Neuro Fact

Information is only stored in short-term memory for about 20 minutes; when information is connected to prior knowledge and emotion, it can be stored in long-term memory

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