Finally Focused: The Breakthrough Natural Treatment Plan for ADHD (Review)
ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactive disorder) is not a “behavior problem” or a “discipline problem,” according to authors James Greenblatt, M.D. (and Bill Gottlieb CHC).
It is primarily a neurological condition. It is also a nutritional-deficit disorder and a sleep-deficit disorder. It is really one disorder with many names, but it is not a disease.
State-based Prevalence Data of Parent Reported ADHD Diagnosis
Purpose of the Book
There are 6,000,000 children (11% of those between ages 4 to 17) and another 8,000,000 adults diagnosed with ADHD. Dr. Greenblatt intends to help many of them by sharing his approach which has been effective in thousands of cases.
He believes that each patient has a unique pattern of deficiencies and excesses which cause an imbalance in the brain. His Plus-Minus plan is tailored to the needs of the individual, to add to the deficiencies and subtract from the excesses.
He uses natural treatments first and medications only when necessary. He claims that his natural treatments restores attention and minimizes hyperactivity in ADHD patients and also offers relief from the side effects of medications. He presents case after case demonstrating his success and he includes testimonials of gratitude from his satisfied clientele.
The Book and The Author
Paperback: 272 pages
Publisher: Harmony; 1 edition (May 9, 2017)
Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.7 x 9.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
Amazon Rank: #5 in Books > Health, Fitness & Dieting > Children's Health > Learning Disorders
James Greenblatt MD. has treated thousands of children and adults with ADHD over the past 30 years. He has trained and supervised medical professionals in integrative strategies for depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and schizophrenia. He currently serves as chief medical officer and vice president of medical services at Walden Behavioral Care in Waltham, Massachusetts.
His previous books include Breakthrough Depression Solution, Answers to Binge Eating, and Answers to Anorexia.
There are three outstanding features of Finally Focused which makes it recommendable.
1) The Plus-Minus Plan
The majority of the book is dedicated to the demonstration of this approach. Greenblatt begins by proposing that a plus for every ADHD patient is magnesium which nourishes the brain. He explains how the stimulant drugs prescribed to help patients often deplete this mineral from the body, resulting in side effects like irritability and anxiety. Scientific studies have proved him right, citing that 96% of the children they studied were magnesium deficient, and correlating with his own finding of 90%.
For every case, he begins with the symptoms, tests for lack and excess and devises a treatment plan. Some of his plus nutrients include iron, zinc, probiotics, digestive enzymes, protein, omega 3s, according to the patient’s needs. Exercise and mindfulness are also on his plus list. Some of his minus items include phosphorus, copper, sugar and foods which contribute to intestinal imbalance. He makes his prescriptions age appropriate, recommending adjustments as necessary.
2) Scientific Support
In every chapter, this is a section devoted to the support of Greenblatt’s proposed treatment. He presents statistics and other scientific findings from reputable medical journals and university studies. He includes his own clinical experiences which give his readers confidence that there is correlation between his work and that of other scientists.
His chapters also contain inserts which explain the uses and benefits of herbs and other items he recommends – one of them being dark chocolate. They tell success stories of patients who show behavioral improvement after they add items on his plus list or decrease the use of items on his minus list.
3) Step By Step Action
The sub-heading as the final section of every chapter is Step-by-Step Action Plan for Healing ADHD. It lists the plus and minus items previously mentioned. Then he introduces the steps with a sentence, sometimes worded differently, which essentially says, “Here’s a practical, step-by-step summary of the actions discussed in this chapter.”
In an attractive bulleted layout, he lists reminders of the important points in that chapter. They may be easy to remember, but it is not advisable to extract them from the book as a list of instructions without reading and understanding the benefits, the dosage, the options and other relevant information in the chapter.
For parents and guardians who have ADHD children in their care, Finally Focused may be a second Bible. Greenblatt asks questions to help adults discover from the children’s symptoms what could be their lack or excess. He guides them through the treatment recommending medical professional help where necessary. The evidence in favor of his Plus-Minus treatment stacks up impressively against stimulants like Ritalin and Adderall.
Chapter 9 might be the only challenge for readers (like me) who are not very familiar with names of drugs. The chapter explains neurotransmitters (chemical messengers that transport signals between brain cells) and presents neurotransmitter precursors as a plus for ADHD children. It demands focused attention to learn what supplements in various formulas turn these precursors on or off. However, it is well worth the extra effort to fully understand the process.
Altogether, the book is an easier read than expected. Starting with minimal knowledge of the topic and gaining reasonable clarity about it after one read, is evidence for me that this is a great presentation.
I received this book free from the publisher through Blogging for Books (http://www.bloggingforbooks.com). The opinions I have expressed are my own.
Questions & Answers
© 2017 Dora Weithers