A healthy diet is a key component for cognitive development and improving our ability to focus. Nutritionists recommend filling our plates with fruits and vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains. However, certain foods that contain antioxidants are especially helpful in managing ADHD symptoms.
Research shows that Oligomeric proanthocyanidins (OPCs) have specific antioxidants that improve cognitive processing, working memory, and brain function. OPCs are found in fruits, vegetables, and nuts with dark or vibrant colors. The chemical that produces these rich colors (phytochemicals) is responsible for antioxidants that protect us from disease. Interestingly, these same compounds have also been shown to change our brain wave patterns. ADDitudeMag.com reviewed a book called “Miracle Cures” by Jean Carper. Jean Carper’s book discusses how OPCs influence brain wave activity and that “EEG assessments (a measurement for brain activity) of patients who were given OPCs — such as extracts of grapeseed, blueberry, and green tea — showed a dramatic decrease in theta waves and an improved ability to pay attention.”
Popular supplements for OPCs include or combine bilberry, grape seed, red wine, and pine bark extracts. Since the research is limited, there appears to be no daily recommendation for antioxidants. If you eat a well-balanced, nutritious diet, you should be getting plenty of antioxidants. Having a bit of dark chocolate is a good way to treat yourself with a boost of antioxidants. If you or your child struggle to eat a healthy diet, you may want to consider a supplement for OPCs. However, always check with your physician before starting a new supplement.
A healthy diet will support cognitive development. Play Attention will help you develop the cognitive skills you need to strengthen executive function and self-regulation. A healthy diet plus Play Attention training equals one powerful plan! Call 800-788-6786 and speak to one of our executive function coaches about customizing a program for you, your child, or your clients.