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Published on March 2, 2022

Randomized controlled trial shows behavioral and mental health benefits of vitamin D and magnesium for children struggling with ADHD

Key Points

  • Studies have found that children with ADHD tend to have lower levels of both vitamin D and magnesium than those without ADHD, and that supplementation can be beneficial
  • An RCT of 66 children whose vitamin D level was below 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/L) found that those receiving vitamin D and magnesium supplementation had significant increases in both magnesium and vitamin D levels, as well as significant reductions in emotional problems, conduct problems, peer problems, prosocial score, total difficulties, externalizing score, and internalizing score
  • Children and teens are at high risk of vitamin D deficiency; 93% of children in the general US population have vitamin D levels below 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L), 16% of whom are below 20 ng/ml (50 nmol/L)

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is said to affect almost 1 out of every 10 children in the United States, according to the CDC. Its main symptoms include inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, and many of these symptoms can persist into adulthood.

Studies have found that children with ADHD tend to have lower levels of both vitamin D and magnesium than those without ADHD, and supplementation with magnesium, vitamin D, as well as omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin B6, and zinc have shown beneficial for these children.

What Difference Can Vitamin D and Magnesium Make for Children with ADHD?

A randomized, double blind, placebo-controlled trial by Hemamy et al. enrolled 66 children with ADHD to evaluate the effects of vitamin D and magnesium supplementation on their mental and behavioral health status. The children were between the ages of 6 and 12 years old, not currently taking any multivitamin or mineral supplements, had a baseline vitamin D level below 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/L) and a serum magnesium level below 2.3 mg/dL, and had been diagnosed with ADHD based on at least 6 of 9 of both inattention and hyperactivity cases. They were also excluded if they had been suffering from any chronic medical or other psychiatric disorders.

The 33 children assigned to the co-supplement group received both vitamin D (50,000 IU per week) and magnesium (6 mg/kg per day), while 33 other children of similar health characteristics were given placebos. The intervention lasted for 8 weeks, with before and after measurements for emotional problems, conduct problems, peer problems, prosocial score, total difficulties, externalizing score, and internalizing score completed by parents using a strength and difficulties questionnaire.

Significant Benefits Seen in the Co-Supplementation Group

After 8 weeks, children in the co-supplementation group had significant increases in both magnesium and vitamin D levels, as well as significant reductions in emotional problems (p = 0.001), conduct problems (p = 0.002), peer problems (p = 0.001), prosocial score (p = 0.007), total difficulties (p = 0.001), externalizing score (p = 0.001), and internalizing score (p = 0.001).

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Compared to the placebo group, the children receiving vitamin D and magnesium co-supplementation had significantly better

  • emotional problem scores (28% lower)
  • peer problem scores (31% lower)
  • total difficulties score (20% lower)
  • internalizing score (29% lower)

Overall supplement compliance was high among both groups, and no side effects were seen from vitamin D or magnesium supplementation.

Could Vitamin D and Magnesium Make a Difference for You or Your Child?

Children and teens are at high risk of vitamin D deficiency; 93% of children in the general US population have vitamin D levels below 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L), 16% of whom are below 20 ng/ml (50 nmol/L). Enroll your child in the Children of the World D*action project to measure their vitamin D level and other nutrient levels (including magnesium) from home and learn how to help them avoid deficiency.

Having and maintaining healthy vitamin D levels and other nutrient levels can help improve your health now and for your future. Choose which additional nutrients to measure, such as your omega-3s and essential minerals including magnesium and zinc, by creating your custom home test kit today. Take steps to improve the status of each of these measurements to benefit your overall health. With measurement you can then determine how much is needed and steps to achieve your goals.  You can also track your own intakes, symptoms and results to see what works best for YOU.

Enroll in D*action and Test Your Levels Today!

What Does it Take YOU to Get Your D to 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L)?

Did you know your health could be greatly affected by making sure you have a vitamin D level of at least 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L)? Help us help you.

STEP 1 - Do you know what your vitamin D level is? If not, be sure to test today to find out.

STEP 2 – Determine your target level. Are you at your target level? Experts recommend a level of at least 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L).

STEP 3 – Need to boost your level? Use the D*calculator to see how much vitamin D it may take to reach your target. Opt for the Loading Dose for a quicker boost.

STEP 4 – Optimize how your body absorbs and utilizes vitamin D with co-nutrients and these simple steps.

STEP 5 – Re-Test! This is an important step to make sure you have reached your target level, and to ensure you are not taking too much! Re-testing after 3-4 months is recommended.

STEP 6 – Adjust, Repeat…

Give your immune system the nutrients it needs to support a healthy you and protect yourself from unnecessary diseases, especially COVID-19.

NEWS ALERT

The first Randomized Controlled Trial on vitamin D and COVID-19 has shown a 96% lower risk of ICU admission for those receiving vitamin D (as 25(OH)D to quickly boost vitamin D blood levels) along with the standard treatment, compared to those receiving standard treatment alone.

These results support many previous observational studies showing a relationship between vitamin D levels and intake and COVID-19 severity.

Review the Latest Nutrient Research for COVID-19

GrassrootsHealth Nutrient Research Institute has launched the new Immune Boost project with the use of our myData-myAnswers nutrient health system that nearly 15,000 people are already using for their health. Specific markers that influence immune health are suggested for testing as part of this project including:

  • Vitamin D
  • Omega-3 Index
  • Essential elements magnesium, selenium, and zinc
  • hsCRP

Our goal is to demonstrate how one can use the Nutrient Research Model established by Dr. Robert Heaney to show the effect of vitamin D serum levels of at least 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L) on risk reduction for all ethnicities in the population. Status and intake of other nutrients will also be analyzed for any type of relationship to immune status and symptom severity. Join the project today!

Please let us know if you're interested in helping sponsor this project.

CLICK HERE for updates and new information about the project.

Through GrassrootsHealth Nutrient Research Institute, you can also test your essential elements magnesium, copper, zinc and selenium, toxins such as lead, mercury and cadmium, as well as your omega-3 levels, inflammation levels and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) level. Find out your levels today! Log on to the test selection page (click the link below) to get your tests and see for yourself if your levels can be improved.

Make sure you track your results before and after, about every 6 months!

Click Here to Access the Test Page

How can I track my nutrient intake and levels over time?

To help you track your supplement use and nutrient levels, GrassrootsHealth has created the Personal Health Nutrient Decision System called

For each specific supplement, you can track what days you take it, how much, and many other details.  This will help you know your true supplemental intake and what patterns of use work for you to reach and maintain optimum nutrient levels. Check it out today!