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Top Labs To Run Bi-Annually On Your Patients Who Suffer From Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

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Top Labs To Run Bi-Annually On Your Patients Who Suffer From Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a leading childhood condition that can last throughout adulthood. This can be a challenging condition because it impacts many areas of the affected person’s life, sometimes making it difficult to carry out responsibilities and tasks of daily life. While the diagnostic term implies two categories, attention deficit, and hyperactivity, some additional signs and symptoms can be present in someone with ADHD. 

In integrative medicine, it’s essential for us to understand how ADHD is impacting the individual and how we can assist in root-cause healing and restoration. Taking a whole-person approach starts with gathering information and data. One objective way to do that is through functional medicine testing, which can pinpoint underlying disturbances causing dysfunction.    


What is Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)? 

ADHD is a common neurodevelopmental condition affecting children and adults. The area of the brain involved with ADHD is the frontal lobe, which controls executive functioning. When this lobe is not working optimally, it can negatively impact attention span, decision-making, and behaviors like impulse control. 

There are three categories in which someone can be diagnosed with ADHD, which are inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. The last two usually go together and can impact an individual's life more obviously because it typically appears more often, more severe, and impacts their life in social, school, or work settings. One vital component to understand about ADHD is that the symptoms may dissipate or improve as a child’s brain develops. It’s important to know that the prefrontal cortex does not fully mature until about 26 years old. Research has shown that there is potential for fewer ADHD symptoms with maturity. 

What Causes Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?  

There is no singular road to ADHD. It’s considered a multi-factorial condition that affects each person differently. These are the leading causes associated with the development of ADHD.  

Nutrient Deficiencies

Having a lack of key vitamins and minerals is common in those with ADHD. The primary nutrients that are deficient include magnesium, iron, zinc, and vitamin D. Each of these items has multiple functions and purposes in the body that pertain to ADHD. A study on nutrient replacement and ADHD found that the combination of vitamin D3 and magnesium decreased social issues, anxiety, shyness, and conduct problems, which can greatly benefit a child or adult managing this condition.  

Omega-3 fatty acid deficiency has also been linked to ADHD. The human body can not effectively produce these essential fatty acids; therefore, you need to obtain them from your diet or with supplementation. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid are anti-inflammatory omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids that support neurotransmitter function and the brain, which makes them ideal nutrients for ADHD.


What you are exposed to in your everyday life can impact your neurocognitive function. Toxins in the environment, such as phthalates, bisphenol A (BPA), and lead, have been studied and found to be associated with ADHD symptoms. Investigation into organophosphates such as the chemical compound DMAP (dimethyl alkylphosphate), which is a common ingredient in pesticides, has also been linked as a possible contributor to ADHD in children. 

Trauma and Stress

Inborn traumas during utero, traumatic brain injuries, premature birth, and low birth weight can all contribute to the development of ADHD. In-utero traumas include exposure to toxins from mothers that consume alcohol or smoke during pregnancy. 


Clinical practice and research have provided information that shows ADHD has a dominant heritability link. One source states that the heritability of ADHD is as high as 74%, which has sparked further targeted gene research. 

ADHD Symptoms

The signs and symptoms of ADHD span a broad spectrum. An individual may express characteristics that fall into inattention, while others have a more hyperactive-impulsive picture. With that being said, here are the top symptoms of ADHD in children and adults:

Childhood ADHD Symptoms:

  • Fidgety
  • Excessive talking
  • Difficulty focusing
  • Forgetful
  • Distractable
  • Appears to not be listening when spoken to
  • In constant motion
  • Running, climbing, and jumping excessively
  • Difficulty with turn-taking and waiting  
  • Lack of personal space awareness
  • Impulsive dangerous activity (Example: running into the street)

Adult ADHD Symptoms:

  • Disorganization and difficulting prioritizing 
  • Poor time management skills
  • Difficulty focusing on the task at hand
  • Hard time multitasking
  • Impulsivity issues
  • Restless
  • Physically overactive
  • Easily frustrated
  • Mood swings
  • Difficulty coping with stress  
  • Hot tempered
  • Problem following through on tasks

What Are The Benefits of Regular Lab Testing For Patients With ADHD?

Lifestyle factors such as environmental exposure, nutrient intake, and medications can shift an individual's overall health and vitality. Monitoring and modifying treatment plans as patients improve, is vital for managing ADHD. Oftentimes, children will be doing well on a dietary, supplement, and medication regimen, but it may not stick for long-term resolve. Continually assessing changes in one's life, which can include anything from diet and toxin exposure to family dynamics and social parameters, can alter how someone with ADHD is managing. 

Top Labs To Run Bi-Annually On Patients With ADHD

Assessing areas that may be compromising your health and leading to ADHD is necessary to address the root cause properly. Ideally, certain labs should be checked prior to a treatment protocol and then re-ran after a set duration of time. Knowing when to run bi-annual labs is based on the work you and your healthcare provider are doing to assist your health. Here are four labs that are commonly utilized for ADHD and could be beneficial to your case. 

Micronutrient Testing

Evaluating for adequate levels of vitamins, minerals, and nutrients involved in ADHD is important for monitoring treatment protocols. Testing independent markers- vitamin D, iron, magnesium, zinc, and fatty acid balance of omega-3 would ensure your practitioner can assist you in appropriate support. Some individuals choose to run a full Micronutrient Test to rule out any additional deficiencies. This will look at 50 biomarkers, including your omega-3 status.

Organic Acids Test (OAT)

Looking at metabolic byproducts through an Organic Acids Test will provide great insight into overall health. This test detects if there is inflammation, oxidative stress, intestinal pathogens, and neurotransmitter imbalances. It’s a great test to help monitor treatment protocols, especially for those that have a neurocognitive disorder. 

Gut Health Assessment

Intestinal pathogens and gut dysbiosis can due to diet and environmental impact can disrupt neurotransmitter production and negatively affect the gut-brain connection. GI-MAP with Zonulin can assess if gut health and integrity are playing a role in one’s ADHD picture. If it is, treatment and then re-testing can verify that the treatment protocol has been successful. 

Environmental Toxins

Assessing toxins that you may be exposed to in your environment and are impacting your health is essential in an ADHD picture.

Additional Labs to Check  

If you are on prescription medication for ADHD, it’s important that your dosage is regularly monitored. There is no specific test that can determine what the appropriate dosage is for you, but your prescribing physician should monitor your medication through clinical assessment, including signs and symptoms, to determine if the dosage needs to be modified or if a different pharmaceutical is a better option. While integrative and holistic practitioners aim to treat the root cause of health issues as naturally as possible, there is a time and a place for medication. Each case should be assessed on an individual level and treated accordingly. 



Utilizing functional medicine testing for the purpose of root cause analysis and treatment protocols is one way you can find success in improving your ADHD symptoms. Taking a deep dive as to what could be contributing to your particular situation is healing work in of itself. There is also power in knowing if there is a disturbance, such as a nutrient deficiency, and then working on correcting that imbalance. Playing an active role in this process can better equip you to understand your symptoms and empower you to take charge of your health.

The information provided is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always consult with your doctor or other qualified healthcare provider before taking any dietary supplement or making any changes to your diet or exercise routine.
Learn More

Lab Tests in This Article

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