High dose NIACIN often is the only way to stop some serious mental problems
including schizophrenia and Bipolar.
Bipolar kids will be helped by many things, Lithium Orotate, Omega 3,
E3MV, etc but sometimes there is no substitute for Niacin and sometimes at
levels of thousands of mg a day in divided doses of 500 mg tablets.
This link discusses one such case. I have used Abraham Hoffer's
recommendations successfully on hundreds of children ever since Linus Pauling
suggested we call it Orthomolecular Medicine.
Ongoing research about genetic differences in humans provides the
necessary scientific documentation that higher than normal levels of some nutrients
are vitally needed in some people. See research papers by Bruce Ames PhD,
University of California, Berkeley.
Also we can never go wrong to lower the body burden of toxins and
pathogens and eliminate foods that someone is sensitive to but the FIGHT program
requires knowledge about higher than normal doses of many nutrients including
not just Niacin, but C, D, Selenium, 5’MTHF and the list goes on and on,
giving us all more to learn.
Garry F. Gordon MD,DO,MD(H)
President, Gordon Research Institute
Orthomolecular Medicine News Service, October 16, 2008
Bipolar Kids Need Nutrition, Not Junk Food and More Drugs
(OMNS, October 16, 2008) The NY Times Magazine's cover story, "The Bipolar
Kid" (September 14, 2008), is a very bleak article. While emphasizing the
miseries of living with such a child, Jennifer Egan's article offers little
hope except for ever-increasing doses of lithium. Long on discussions of
definitions and diagnoses, it is remarkably short on treatment alternatives.
Not a word about diet. Not a word about vitamins. Indeed, in this 9,500
word feature, describing the daily life of an out-of-control, beyond-ADHD
boy, the word "nutrition" is not mentioned at all. Neither are the words
"sugar" or "caffeine."
What astounding omissions. Pediatrician Lendon H. Smith, M.D., nationally
famous as "The Children's Doctor," was very plain in stating that sugar
causes profound mood disorders.
He specifically advised parents to give their children a "sugarless diet
without processed foods." (1) It is not easy. The Center for Science in the
Public Interest has reported that children between the ages of six and
eleven drink nearly a pint of soda pop a day. 20% of toddlers drink soda pop,
nearly a cup daily. (2) And, of the seven best selling soft drinks, six have
caffeine in them. In sensitive persons, caffeine can cause psychotic
Food colorings and benzoate preservatives increase childhood
hyperactivity, according to research published in Archives of Disease in Childhood, June
2004. (4) The study, involving 277 preschool children, also demonstrated
that withdrawing these chemical additives decreased hyperactivity. When
additives were reintroduced, there was once again an increase in hyperactivity.
"Additives do have an effect on overactive behavior independent of
baseline allergic and behavioral status," said lead author Dr. J.O. Warner.
So many parents, and any of us who have taught school the day after
Halloween, can verify this.
It is possible that the children profiled in the NY Times story are
unusual in that they do not consume any sugar, or any artificial food colorings,
or any benzoate preservatives, or any caffeine-laced soft drinks. But it is
much more likely that they do. The article ignored these important factors
even though health professionals are increasingly aware that the normal
functioning of the brain and nervous system is nutrient-dependent and
additive sensitive. Ian Brighthope, M.D., says, "What is going on in the mind can
be influenced by the nutrients and chemicals going into it. You can't get
anywhere with a patient with psychiatric symptomatology if their brain is
hungry, starved, or poisoned." (5)
Yet in the entire Times article, the words "allergy" and "junk food" are
not mentioned, not even once. Children's learning and behavior problems
often begin in their parents' grocery carts. Allergist Benjamin Feingold, M.D.,
was convinced of the negative effect of food chemicals on children's
behavior and the role of good nutrition in treatment. (6) Says the Feingold
Association: "Numerous studies show that certain synthetic food additives can
have serious learning, behavior, and/or health effects for sensitive
Another word totally absent from the Times article is "vitamin."
Psychiatrist Abram Hoffer, M.D., has had decades of experience and considerable
success treating children's behavioral disorders with vitamins. High doses of
vitamin B-3 (niacin, or niacinamide) were first used by Hoffer and colleague
Dr. Humphrey Osmond in the early 1950s. The trials were double-blind and
placebo controlled. Over half a century later, vitamin therapy has still
been largely ignored by the psychiatric profession, and, evidently, by some
What a loss to patients and their families. I know and personally observed
a preadolescent who was having serious behavioral problems in school and
at home. Interestingly enough, the child had already been taking
physician-prescribed little bits of niacin, though totaling less than 150 mg/day, but
evidently it wasn't enough to be effective. When tried, drugs (especially
Adderall) actually made him worse: far more angry and dangerously
confrontational. I was present when his parents had to hold him down while he
screamed death threats at them. In desperation, his mother finally tried giving
him 500 mg of niacin, three times daily (1,500 mg total). There was some
improvement. With about 500 mg every two hours (an astounding 6,000-8,000
mg/day), the boy was a new person. He was now a cheerful, cooperative,
affectionate youngster. Adding vitamin C and B-6 to his regimen helped even more.
His school performance soared, the teachers loved him, and they repeatedly
said so. At age 15, his maintenance dose was about 3,000 mg/day. He has since
graduated from high school and is successfully employed. This is exactly in
line with what Dr. Hoffer has repeatedly demonstrated for over 50 years.
People often ask, "If this treatment is so good, how come my doctor
doesn't know about it? How come it is not in the newspaper?" Those are good
The NY Times should know that reporting one side is not good reporting. To
tell the whole story, we need nutrition. So do bipolar children.
(1) Smith L. Foods for Healthy Kids. Berkley, 1991. ISBN-10: 0425127087;
(2) Jacobson MF. Liquid Candy: How soft drinks are harming Americans'
Accessed Sept 18, 2008.
(3) Whalen R. Welcome to the dance: caffeine allergy, a masked cerebral
allergy and progressive toxic dementia. Trafford Publishing, 2005. ISBN-10:
1412050006; ISBN-13: 978-1412050005. Reviewed in J Orthomolecular Med, 2005.
Vol 20, No 3, p 215-217 and at http://www.doctoryourself.com/news/v5n11.rtf
Synopsis at http://www.doctoryourself.com/caffeine_allergy.html
(4) Bateman B, Warner JO, Hutchinson E et al. The effects of a double
blind, placebo controlled, artificial food colourings and benzoate preservative
challenge on hyperactivity in a general population sample of preschool
children. Arch Dis Child. 2004. Jun;89(6):506-11.
(5) Interview, in the documentary film, Food Matters. Permacology
Productions, 2008. http://www.foodmatters.tv
(6) Feingold BF. Why Your Child is Hyperactive. NY: Random House, 1985.
ISBN: 0394734262. List of Dr. Feingold's publications:
Free email newsletter available.
(8) Hoffer A. Healing Children's Attention & Behavior Disorders:
Complementary Nutritional and Psychological Treatments. Toronto: CCNM Press, 2004.
ISBN-10: 1897025106; ISBN-13: 978-1897025109. List of Hoffer's publications:
[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]