ADHD Medications Can't Correct Trace Element Imbalances
I'll be keeping you posted in the coming days on more interesting studies and reports on the relevance of trace element awareness and testing for comprehensive review of cognitive challenges often associated with ADHD symptoms. This brief note introduces new complexity to ADHD target definition.
Understanding copper can dramatically change ADHD treatment outcomes.
Neurotransmitter imbalances, like dopamine in the prefrontal cortex, can live downstream from copper challenges. Too much or too little copper can create psychiatric challenges that evade traditional superficial, DSM 4, appearance-based assessments.
Why Think About Copper?
For comprehensive assessments target recognition is imperative. Tissue mineral analysis is the standard of care/assessments for drug and alcohol testing, why not consider it for even more precise measurement of trace elements and heavy metals?
If you don't know what you're shooting at, you can hit symptoms only by chance. Like shooting geese at night: Honk, Bang! I cast my vote for improved scientifically-based predictability, especially if we're shooting at correcting brain function.
For Starters: Consider Copper and Immunity
Excerpts from this interesting summary: Understanding Copper Deficiency in Celiac Disease July 28th, 2010 by Cleo Libonati, RN, BSN [I strongly suggest reading this entire article.]
- Copper usually receives little coverage, but this unpretentious nutrient deserves center stage. It is time for a serious role review.
- Two reasons for review: First, deficiency of this trace mineral can debilitate and threaten our lives, and second, deficiency develops with increased frequency in those of us with celiac disease, unlike the general population. [Ed. note: An important connection with malabsorption]
- Copper is required for hemoglobin production in red blood cells, production and function of white blood cells, the absorption, transport and use of iron, energy metabolism, the development, growth and maintenance of bone and connective tissue, the formation and maintenance of myelin sheath (outer surface of nerve fibers), adrenal hormone production, thyroid hormone production, muscle tone, immunity, reproduction, tissue repair, pigmentation of hair and skin, and proper growth and development of infants and children.
- Copper deficiency is characterized by fatigue, anemia, neutropenia (low level of neutrophils, the most common type of white blood cell that protect against infection), leukopenia (abnormal decrease of leukocytes or white blood cells), bone and joint abnormalities, skin abnormalities, impairment of nerve and muscle function, impairment of adrenal and thyroid gland function, reproductive difficulties and loss of hair and skin color.
- Copper deficiency weakens the immune system, permitting increased vulnerability to infection. Resulting immune malfunctions involve low activity of white blood cells to invading pathogens, poor cell response and low production of hormone by the thymus gland. Neutropenia, or low white blood cell count, is a hallmark of copper deficiency.
- Neurotransmitters: Copper-containing enzymes are required in the formation, activity and breaking down of neurotransmitters. Neurotransmitters are essential chemicals needed for proper nervous system activity and include dopamine, epinephrine, norepinephrine, and serotonin.
We regularly witness copper imbalances tied to both gluten and casein sensitivity and to ADHD presentations, and plan more missives on these matters, so stay tuned.