FREE SHIPPING. Up to $10 OFF FOCUS PACKS for the launch of our NEW SITE

Study proves link between ADHD and even 'safe' lead levels

Study proves link between ADHD and even 'safe' lead levels

February 28, 2018

By Lynne Terry

Posted on January 10, 2016

Source Article:


Lead, even in amounts well below levels considered safe for children, is directly associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, a new study found.

Researchers at Oregon Health & Science University studied nearly 400 children between the ages of 6 and 17 years old, including half who were diagnosed with ADHD. They found that those with a certain gene mutation and ADHD had more severe symptoms. The gene appears to protect against lead damage.

Past research has associated lead with ADHD but this study, published in Psychological Science, confirms a tie between the two, said Joel Nigg, lead investigator and director of OHSU's ADHD program.

"One of the myths about ADHD is that this is just a genetic condition," Nigg said. "While we know genes play a role, we're proving that environmental pollutants are part of the story."

Lead is a neurotoxin that poses a particular threat to children and fetuses, causing learning and attention problems and lower IQs. At high levels, lead can cause seizures, coma or death. Though U.S. environmental regulations have reduced the amount of lead in the environment, for example in paint and gasoline, children can still be exposed by drinking water from aging lead pipes and by exposure to lead paint and dirt in school yards and to some imported toys and costume jewelry.

Though the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has not established a safe lead level in children, the agency considers anything above 5 micrograms per deciliter of blood, or 50 parts per million, too high.

In Oregon, about 12,000 children younger than 6 are tested each year. Between 80 and 100 have levels higher than 5 micrograms per deciliter.

The children in the study had a little less than 1 microgram per deciliter or 10 parts per million, similar to the population average, Nigg said.

The children in the study were in Michigan, which has surveyed a random sample of residents for the gene, HFE C282Y. The study group had the same proportion of kids with the gene - 10 percent. That and their lead level made them a representative sample in terms of their genetics and exposure, Nigg said.

Although some ADHD research involving lead has been based on surveys, the children in the study went through detailed evaluations for the disorder. That included parent-teacher ratings, interviews, observations and psychological tests. The data were reviewed by a licensed psychiatrist and child psychologist who were unaware of the children's lead levels or the purpose of the study.

"The diagnosis was bulletproof," Nigg said...

Leave a comment

Also in ADHD Natural News

What Happens When Our Kids Lose Track of Time — for a Full Year
What Happens When Our Kids Lose Track of Time — for a Full Year

March 05, 2021

ADHD brains lose track of time. This is triply true in a pandemic, when our kids’ guardrails of school, sports, and social activities are gone. How has the suspension of normal routines and schedules been most challenging — or liberating — for your child ADHD?

Read More

2 Simple Ways to Build Novelty Into Online Learning – While Boosting Executive Functions
2 Simple Ways to Build Novelty Into Online Learning – While Boosting Executive Functions

October 21, 2020 4 Comments

For students with ADHD, building variety and structure into the daily learning routine is vital to improving distance learning and building key executive function skills.

Read More

How to Overcome Your Need for Perfection
How to Overcome Your Need for Perfection

December 31, 2019 4 Comments

The problem is that the need for perfection creates a tremendous amount of pressure which, much like boredom, is kryptonite for ADHD brains.

Read More

Try our Newsletter

Special discounts, new products and natural ADHD related information.