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Limbic ADD

People diagnosed with Limbic ADD typically have short attention spans, low energy, are often unfocused and disorganized and suffer from frequent negative thoughts and excessive guilt. They are usually misdiagnosed with clinical depression, but often find that antidepressants increases their moodiness.

Mood problems can occur when the limbic system of the brain is overactive. The limbic system is about the size of a walnut and lies near the center of the brain. This is the part of the brain that helps determine how positive or negative you are in your outlook, and also affects motivation and drive. It controls the sleep and appetite cycles of the body, and affects the "bonding mechanism" that enables you to connect with other people on a social level, which in turn influences your moods.

Nutritional intervention can be especially helpful. Our deep limbic system needs a balanced diet of containing protein, "good fats" and carbohydrates to function properly. That means including healthy fats (such as the omega-3 fatty acids found in fish), complex carbohydrates (which increase serotonin levels) and protein in every meal.

Nutritional supplements can also increase levels of brain serotonin and decrease negative emotional reactiveness. SAMe, St. John's Wort, L-tyrosine, and Inositol can also be extremely beneficial.

Diet & Exercise

A balanced protein/fat/ carbohydrate diet (such as "The Zone") that emphasizes the inclusion of protein, healthy fats and complex carbohydrates in every meal and snack will help stabilize mood and stamina. Avoid simple carbohydrates, including white bread, white rice, white potatoes, sugar, corn syrup, honey and candy in favor of fiber-rich, whole grain foods like brown rice, whole grain breads, durum wheat pasta, etc.

Strive for 30-45 minutes of aerobic exercise at least 5 times a week. A fast walk is fine, but whatever exercise you choose needs to raise your heart rate. As always, consult your doctor or a certified personal trainer before starting a rigorous exercise program.


Low energy
Frequent irritability
Tends to be socially isolated
Frequent feelings of hopelessness, helplessness or excessive guilt
Low interest in things that are usually considered fun
Sleep changes (too much or too little)
Chronic low self-esteem


SAMe (S-adenoslmethionine) is a naturally occurring compound found in all living organisms. SAMe is critical in the maintenance of cartilage and in the manufacture of important brain compounds such as neurotransmitters. Read more >





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