Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Amino Acids Help ADD, Depression

I have suffered with ADD throughout my life. As a child I became a sugar and chocolate junky to help myself feel better and be able to better concentrate. I'd start the day with my favorite sugar sweetened cereal, eat more junk at lunch and "mainline" Hershey's chocolate syrup, sucking it straight from the container as soon as I got home from school.

I would also gorge on high carb foods like potato chips, other starches and candy bars to give myself a mental "boost". Powdered Nestle's Quick I enjoyed eating from it's box with a spoon, not bothering to mix it with milk.

And it did "help". With all that sugar and chocolate stimulating my system, I was mentally alert and had very fast recall. Problem was, I couldn't sit still, focus on anything for extended periods and would blurt out creative, "wiseguy" answers in class. This would crack people up, which was my goal and my reward. It also disrupted the lesson which did not gain me the favor of my teacher.

At night I would often have nightmares which I never had any recall of the next day. My family would hear me screaming and thrashing about in my bed. I attribute this to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) as my body overproduced insulin to try and regulate all the sugar I was pouring in.

I've also struggled with bouts of depression from time to time.

Over the years, I've tried reading books on nutrition, nutritional therapy, food allergy treatments, acupuncture, natural supplements and prescription drugs to try and alleviate my ADD. All this has been quite expensive. Until now, acupuncture is the only treatment that had some positive effect.

I recently began using a product called "Neu Becalm'd" from a company called Neurogenesis. It is a natural amino acid mix and actually helps me feel better and focus. It is available online. The two main active ingredients seem to be D-L Phenylanaline and L-Glutamine. They recommend taking it up to 3 times a day.

A less expensive solution is to buy these amino acids separately at a health food store. In Neu Becalm'd the ratio is 1 part L-Glutamine (300 mg) to 2 parts D-L Phenylanaline (600 mg). Make sure you get D-L Phenylanaline and not "L- Phenylanaline".

If you decide to try it, give it a few days and see if you notice any difference. For me they were subtle but significant. And there should be no side effects. Don't eat for at least 30 minutes after taking.

Hope it helps you as much as it has me.


For more info I recommend the book, : "Overload: Attention Deficit Disorder And The Addictive Brain" by David Miller and Kenneth Blum, Ph.D.

It was a bit of a revelation. I learned that:

*Addicts, their offspring and those with ADHD and ADD may be born with a predisposition to abnormal neurotransmitter levels, leading to sensitivity, discomfort, anxiety and pain.

*Some symptoms of ADD and ADHD parallel the "Common Characteristics" of ACOAs.

*Many people with ADHD are children of alcoholics and ADHD is common in the relatives of ADHD children.

You can read more about this here:

The Reward Deficiency Syndrome

The ACA ADD Connection Pt. 4

The ACA ADD Connection Pt. 3

The ACA ADD Connection Pt. 2

The ACA ADD Connection

Check out the Orange County ACA website at: Orange County Adult Children

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Codependency - What is it?


Codependency - What is it?

Codependency is when a person has a strong desire to control people around them, including their spouse, children or co-workers. Codependents believe they are somehow more capable than others, who need their direction or suggestions to fulfill tasks they are responsible to complete. They feel compassion for people who may be hurting and feel they should be the one to help them. Codependent people give of their time, emotions, finances, and other resources. They have a very difficult time saying "no" to any requests made of them.

Codependency - A Matter of Control

Codependency, for others, doesn't express itself in a desire to control, but instead, in the need to be controlled by others. Because it is nearly impossible for Codependents to say "no" to people, they may find themselves the victims in physically and emotionally abusive relationships. They believe that if they can be good enough, or loving enough, they can change the other person's behavior. They sometimes blame themselves for the abusive behavior: "If only I had not forgotten to do the dishes, he would not have had to hit me."

Codependency causes internal struggles with the opinions of others. Codependents may make decisions based on what they think other people want them to do. While they may believe that their motive for helping people is compassion, in reality they are doing it because they want love or approval. They may come to recognize the underlying nature of their behavior when they become hurt or angry at people they have helped who didn't return the same amount of help, love, or appreciation when they themselves were in need. They have difficulty understanding that instead of helping others by providing things they need, they may actually be hurting them by creating a dependent relationship.

Codependency can also cause struggles in the area of time management. Codependents may feel they never have enough time to fulfill all of their commitments because they have made too many. The most important commitments and relationships are often neglected because they are too busy helping other people, participating in multiple activities, and running from one event to another throughout the week. This also relates to their inability to say "no" when asked to volunteer, attend a function, or help a friend. The idea of not volunteering, not helping or not attending is unthinkable. They may believe they are not being responsible, not being a good friend, or not being a good person if they refuse any requests. However, many of those situations and relationships leave them feeling hurt, angry, or resentful.

Codependency - The Questions

Do you find yourself making decisions based on other people's opinions?
Is it important to you that people like you and want to be your friend?
Do you have a strong desire to help others, but deep down you know you do it so that they will like or love you?
Do you seem to notice everyone else's problems and have a need to tell them what you think they should do to solve them?
Do you feel anxious, angry or upset when people don't do things you want them to do, or do things the way you want them to do them?
Do you find yourself in relationships where you do all the giving and the other person does all the taking?
Are you involved in activities that demand all of your time and energy and you are neglecting your family or yourself?

Codependents must understand God's love of them first. They must realize that they serve an audience of ONE. They must curb their desire to "rescue" people out of their own (deceived) need to be loved or needed. They must learn how to refuse to take responsibility for situations that other people are responsible for, and learn to seek and rely on God to grow these others through their trials. Codependents can learn to help people from servant-heartedness, with no desire for anything in return. When they learn to accept other people's faults, failures and inadequacies, they can refrain from giving advice or trying to fix others unless they are asked for help.

Check out the Orange County ACA website at: Orange County Adult Children

Monday, August 6, 2007

How Do I Get Healed?

From: "The Road to Recovery" by Dick Innes

We were damaged in unhealthy family relationships—we are healed in healthy family relationships.

As the rules for a dysfunctional family are you don't talk, you don't trust, and you don't feel, the rules for a healthy family are that you do talk, you do trust, and you do feel. So, to recover from the effects of a dysfunctional family background, you need to find a church or chapel that has groups where it is safe to talk, to trust and to feel—where you will be loved for who you are and not for what you have or haven't done.

Furthermore, these small groups—be they care groups, support groups, therapy groups, or twelve-step recovery groups—are the closest thing to a family you can find. And as long as they are open, honest, safe, accepting, non-judgmental and loving, they hold the key for the recovery of millions of families and individuals.

It is absolutely essential that we be connected to loving, accepting, and non-judgmental people with whom we can share our darkest secrets and who will love and accept us as we are. Through their love and acceptance we learn to love and accept ourselves.

It is this love that heals us and sets us free. But we can only be loved to the degree that we are known. Thus to be known we need to bring our dark side into the light.

Read the entire article here: "The Road to Recovery"

Dick Innes, Founder and International Director of ACTS International, commenced the literature outreach ministry of ACTS in 1968. He also works part time as the Director of Publications of the Narramore Christian Foundation (NCF), a Christian mental health organization, located in the Los Angeles area in California, and was for several years the editor of the NCF Psychology for Living magazine.

Check out the Orange County ACA website at: Orange County Adult Children