skip to Main Content

Natural Management of Autism and ADHD Symptoms

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and autism are debilitating neurodevelopmental disorders that often coexist with each other. According to CDC, 1 in every 44 children has ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder). There is also a roughly 2.2% estimated prevalence of ADHD in children and teens. For many years, experts have been finding ways of treating these conditions like medication and behavioral treatments.

Conventional medicine is limited to prescribing Ritalin or Adderall for managing seizures associated with these conditions. Patients and parents are also presented with options such as diet and lifestyle change, supplementation, or autism and ADHD natural remedies.

Diet and Lifestyle Changes for ADHD and Autism

Leveraging exercise and sleep with a clean and healthy diet greatly help in managing autism and ADHD symptoms. The goal is to manage behavioral issues and treat gut inflammation that is often associated with these conditions.


Sugar, preservatives, and other additives are the major culprit in the upshot of ADHD and autism symptoms. Foods that contain gluten such as bread, cereal, and pasta can cause inflammation linked to behavioral issues, anxiety, and depression.

Allergenic foods and those that cause intolerance can affect energy levels and trigger behavioral changes. It may make a person act impulsively and decrease brain clarity and concentration.

Feingold diet is one way of dealing with ADHD through an elimination diet that was popular in 1970. It involves the elimination of food additives, artificial sweeteners and flavors, preservatives, and other potential triggers. After a period, it is reintroduced into the diet to see whether the symptoms return.

Natural Management of Autism and ADHD Symptoms- ketogenic diet

Ketogenic diet, a low-carb high-fat diet, is also considered for reducing seizures associated with ADHD. There are studies that prove the keto diet’s positive results in improving behavior and focus. It also reduces mitochondrial dysfunction, microbiome issues, sociability, and stress response relating to autism.

GAPs diet is another diet plan intended to repair inflammation and repair the gut. It is a restrictive diet adjustment relying on healthy fats, bone broth, and probiotic-rich food. The diet restricts grains, processed carbohydrates, commercial dairy, and refined sugar. It has various stages that incorporate more food as it progresses for two years until the gastrointestinal symptoms are treated.


An exercise routine that is followed diligently is an effective way of improving ADHD and ASD symptoms. It often includes moderate to vigorous activities but is not very exhaustive for a child. One hour of varied activities like martial arts, dance, swimming, or basketball may reverse stress and improve brain function.


Sleep is a powerful tool in regulating mood and maintaining attention in ASD. Restful sleep is restorative and has many positive health benefits. Screen time from television, gadgets, and devices is one of the common culprits in sabotaging sleep. Avoiding screens and establishing a sleep routine will dramatically improve the mood and manage behaviors.


Vitamin supplements are important remedies reinforced into a proper diet, often prescribed by a doctor. Supplements are intended to help manage absorption issues due to compromised digestive systems. The most common food supplements and their daily requirements are:

  • Fish Oil (1,000 mg daily). Fish oil is a rich source of omega-3 fats, an anti-inflammatory nutrient that can help with mood and brain-related ailments.
  • Vitamin B-Complex (50 mg daily). Vitamin B complex, especially B6, promotes the formation of serotonin which helps boost brain health.
  • Minerals (50 mg, 250 mg, and 5 mg twice daily). Zinc, magnesium, and calcium, are important minerals that have a calming effect on the nervous system. The recommended intake of these minerals is 50 mg, 250 mg, and 5 mg twice daily.
  • GABA (250 mg twice daily) Gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) is popularly used in ASD therapy as it inhibits neuronal transmissions to provide a calming effect for the brain.
  • Vitamin D (2,000 – 5,000 IU per day). Vitamin D is a suggested therapy for children with autism since it can help in speech improvement. Deficiency in Vitamin D increases the risk of ASD, learning difficulties, and developmental delays.
  • Probiotics (25 – 50 billion units a day). Probiotics can effectively manage digestive issues associated with ADHD and ASD. Probiotic supplementation improves the gut-brain axis to improve their partnership and health.

Herbal SupplementsNatural Management of Autism and ADHD Symptoms- herbal medicine

Complementary and alternative medicine also has promising benefits as autism and ADHD natural remedies. Herbal supplements that promote better sleep and improve the gut flora have important roles in alleviating their symptoms naturally.

Water Hyssop. Water Hyssop (Bacopa monnieri) is an excellent natural medicine for reducing ADHD symptoms such as restlessness, impulsivity, and inattention. Its extract is used to support learning, memory, and focus as well as soothe anxiety and improve the stress response.

CBD oil. CBD oil can significantly reduce the occurrence of seizures, their frequency, duration, and severity in children with ASD. In lower doses, it can improve autistic social interaction deficits and manage depression and anxiety.

Ginkgo Biloba. Ginkgo has the same, although less potent, calming and antispasmodic effect as the ADHD prescription Ritalin. Daily intake of Ginkgo Biloba reduces the symptoms of ADHD and with fewer negative side effects.

Golden Root. Golden root (Rhodiola rosea) is an adaptogenic herb with centuries of use in anxiety, fatigue, and depression. It decreases brain stress which conversely increases the body’s resistance to stress.

⇒ Interested? Try the 4 herbs below, all found in the Brain Bundle.

Cordyceps and Reishi. These mushrooms are neuroprotective, meaning they protect the nerve cells against damage and degeneration. Cordyceps and reishi help improve the brain’s function to boost memory and focus when used as natural medicines for ASD and ADHD.

Lion’s Mane Mushroom. Lion’s mane is an adaptogen that encourages the brain to adapt to stress and normalize its effect on bodily processes. Its anti-anxiety and anti-depressant properties are useful for persons with ADHD and ASD

Lemon Balm. To improve sleep, intellectual performance and manage mood disorders in ASD and ADHD, lemon balm’s calming effect is very essential. It is a natural remedy for treating anxiety, mild depression, and mood disorders to promote mental alertness. You can take lemon balm by boiling its leaves and steeping it into tea or as a tincture.

⇒ The botanicals in Nicole’s Balanced Gut Blend and Anxiety & Stress Tincture may also be beneficial.

The bottom line

ADHD and ASD can take a toll on individuals and their families’ lives. Many people struggle with the condition for centuries but the right diagnosis and treatment provide them with renewed hope. Medication and other supportive treatment actions are important to help lessen its impact.

Autism and ADHD natural remedies and lifestyle changes are likewise effective in conjunction with therapy and treatment. With these supportive measures, they have better hopes of living happier and healthier lives without missing out on learning and development.

You may also like:Banner - Deep Sleep tincture

These Herbs Will Relieve Your Anxiety in No-Time

The Mushroom That Got Me Out of The Wheelchair (Video)

Eat This to Fertilize Your Gut

The Plant That Helps Every Part of The Body At Once

The Key to Handling Stress


Notify of

35 The Lost Herbs Comments
Newest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Thank you so much for this post! This could not have come at a better time. We are currently raising our Granddaughter (age 3). She has all the symptoms of ADHAD and Autism. It has pushed us to our limits and we have been looking for ways to try to treat her. The insurance company will not pay for any testing or evaluation. They claim its not a medical issue. She gets worse every day.
I think we may try to implement some of these natural alternatives. My opinion is the natural way is way better when we can take that route. God created these things for us to use but we have educated ourselves stupid as to how to use them.
Again, Thank you!

Jim, look into the Nemechek Protocol. It has been amazing for our girl with autism.

Find an integrative doctor and then test and find the root cause of her symptoms, then address them. we did all of the above, all helped, but we found also what is the root cause and use medication for that too.

You are definitely on the right track. For countless years I struggled with brain and gut chemistry. Doctors do not want to provide the source and cure to their patients, just harmful Pharmaceutical drugs. From my first visit with a homeopathic doctor; I have had positive results. I have not seen a GP in over a decade and am much better for it. Good luck, it will involve great discipline, but your family will inherit not only the best of health, but a healthy home environment too. God bless.

Hi Jim, I have an incapacitated autistic here. Our biggest issue was dairy.
Dairy can do some really strange things to these kids. You could say mine was
“addicted” to dairy ob top of it. Try eliminating dairy slowly and see if it helps. We also had great luck with Cod Liver Oil (recommended by Dr. Mary Megson) and TMG for mood and methylation. Saw a NOTABLE and near instant detectable improvement with the TMG, like 20 minutes. You can get it at Swanson for like $4.00 – try it! (Approved by our nutritionist).

Also, for the TMG – I just add the powder into food. If you need a liquid, you can get one at Kirkman Labs. This is an autism supplement
provider. A little expensive, but mostly hypoallergenic products.

Sure, “treatment” is important but it is not a fix. You definitely want to help her to get as healthy as she can so she can be at her best (and have less severe reactions and increased flexibility) just as you would with any child. It is more about you learning and having empathy and compassion than trying to changing her (do not assume her actions and behaviors mean the same thing as yours would if you behaved that way or that they have the same root cause because they don’t). You see over time if you do this right you will actually be able to communicate with her and therefore teach, instruct and guide her better (hopefully also be able to learn to see why she reacts the way she does and what she’s thinking and feeling) which will lead to changes in maybe the behavior you observe. You need to help her learn how to process her environment (by especially teaching her to understand herself, what she is feeling and why she reacts certain ways) more than likely a lot of “behavioral issues” in neurodivergents (adhders and autistic folks) are actually just processing issues (processing stimulation and emotions). Understanding her, patience, giving her tools and strategies that work for her, communicating through the double empathy problem, figuring out her needs, allowing and encouraging (not forceful) her to accomplish her best (also do not underwrite her and do not infantilizing her and her abilities due to your judgements and believes because your realities are generally so very different as a neurotypical- never place judgement on what she will be capable of in the future by her past or current reality because it is misleading ~ a differing level of skills is big, can be brilliant at organizing but bad at chores …progresses at different rate in improving diff skills than people her age~ some ahead and some behind) are major in this. Look up twice exceptional (2e) and the defiance issues that can follow adhd and autism – your expectations should be fluid and change according to her growth (rigidity and black and white thinking on your part will lead to major major issues, complications and frustration) (she will have more trouble with some things but be better at others so grow her strengths and help her strategize and figure out different ways personalized for her {not the neurotypical way – we believe things have to be done a certain way when really it’s flexible and can be accomplished many many different ways with the same end result meaning they are no less correct} to work with her brain through her weaknesses) (which just like your weaknesses may never be a strength, it is just natural proclivity) the absolute best thing your can ever do for her is to love her just the way she is, with acceptance and to most importantly teach her to love herself for her differences, teaching her that they are not bad or wrong and to use her differences to her advantage (that kind of mindset can give her the confidence to go far and withstand much in this hateful, judgmental world) – letting her and helping her to figure out how to navigate the neurotypical world in the way that works best for her while still being authentically herself will be harder in the short term but better for her health, sanity, and ability to interact as needed with society in the long term – these are some things that most neuro divergents wished they themselves and their parents knew to try or work towards

Ex post. Be good if you could point people in the right direction to get help with all that. Not easy for the lay person.

thank you for your thoughtful reply wisteria

Please look at how much sugar she is eating get her on a clean diet and eating regularly and
protein for breakfast makes such a difference.

Keep pushing. Asd is a mental diability, and they cannot refuse you treatment. Please keep fighting and find a doctor that will help you fight. It depends what state you’re in, but many states has schools that can help. Look for schools with PPCD (it may have another name now from when my daughter went to school). For us PPCD was a wolf changer. They helped us so much. If your grandchild has asd and ir adhd both she and you deserve help!

Please check out MMS also. It’s amazing.

Thanks for the post. I think that there is a mistake twice in saying seizures instead of symptoms. Seizures are not a common symptom of ADHD.. Thank you.

But they can be more prevalent in Autism Spectrum Disorder… My Adult son is autistic, and his body does not recognize heat and cold, nor pain, in the same manner as most others’ bodies do, and is therefore a bit more susceptible to seizures. Had them as a tot enough for me to figure that out. When one has neurological issues, seizures can be more prevalent. BTW, as a med-surg RN, I have seen it in others, too.)

I’m not sure who authored this article, but it has many errors.

Seizures are not common symptoms with either ASD or ADHD. We know many people with ASD and/or ADHD, including our own family members and children, and not one has seizures. It’s also not a diagnostic criteria for either of them.

ASD and ADHD are not diseases. They are neurological disorders. That’s like saying dyslexia is a disease.

“Many people struggle with the condition for centuries…”

Ahem. Does this mean my kids will be alive for a couple hundred years?

Sugar and preservatives are not why we have a higher prevalence of autism now. Our family has always eaten a low-sugar diet and yet we still have two kids on the ASD spectrum. The one born after I found “traditional foods” is the one who is most severe.

There are so many factors that we don’t understand that contribute to autism, as well as different diagnostic criteria as the DSM changes, and much higher awareness. Also, girls are finally being diagnosed whereas for years they weren’t because the original diagnostic criteria was based on how ASD presents in boys, and it presents differently in boys than in girls.

The GAPS diet helped, but it certainly didn’t “cure” either of our children’s autism. Not even close. The best success we’ve had so far is with the Nemechek protocol.

Totally agree with your comment! Was truly contemplating asking if perhaps a non native English language speaker wrote this in their native language and then subsequently had it translated very poorly…
Nicole, do you need writers? If so, hand up, I’ll write for your site!

Oh my gosh thanks for that comment! I was going to say something! This is an absolutely horrible, tone deaf article and shows extreme major issues with understanding basic knowledge about adhd and Autism plus it seems like someone just typed this up while driving down the road or something … seizures what the heck did they forget what topic they were writing about honestly it’s embarrassing how wrong this article is even though it had the potential to be great. This article needs to be pulled down or some parts retracted and severely edited by a professional with the guidance/input of the adhd and autistic community. Honestly, I am very disappointed and now no longer trust anything this site says and promotes… Even the email that leads to this article says things like cure, that adhd and autism are becoming increasingly common … and malarkey like that. ADHD and Autism ARE NOT DISEASES that need to be “cured.” They are neurotypes (not even true disorders – they are only classified as conditions due to the reality and standards of today’s society causing us more problems than people who have a different neuro type ~ in a world without light, blind people would not be considered disable). This neurotype difference means that a person’s brain is wired differently… not wrong, not broken to be fixed, just different. You are born and will die that way because it is how you are made … and it is not a bad thing. The symptoms are really the presentations and effects of our traits when put under today’s society’s pressures and expectations and from changes in the reality of everyday life at this time. Adhd and autistic folks think, act, react, process, and communicate differently. It is like when you first start living somewhere where you do not speak the language. You would have “symptoms” and appear different. Adhd and autism have always existed. We just finally decided to try labeling and diagnosing people. These “conditions” are not increasing. Instead the diagnostic criteria is changing to include more than just little white boys … meaning more folks are labeled but they were always autistic or had adhd… – We have symptoms and are placed in disabled categories because of the reality of today’s environment with technology, society’s judgment of the time, overstimulation, strict/rigid 9-5 idea of work and school with lack of understanding and ability and willingness to be fluid or flexible. Yes, gut problems and overall health can decrease our ability to deal with the stressors we are put under and therefore increase the severity of our “symptoms” as it does for everyone single person not just the neurodivergent folks. It can be more important for neuro divergent folks to focus on gut health and vitamin/mineral content as they can have a greater tendency to be vitamin deficient and have preexisting gut problems/more prone to have them, but this does not “fix” the problem which is not the adhd and autism itself. Taking care of these health issues through nature medicine/herbs and diet can be important to help bring us back to our normal state but by the natural/herbal community showing such blatant lack of knowledge and incorrect assumptions and beliefs, the community who could benefit from this is alienated and people adjacent to the community are misinformed and mislead. Gut health and over health are just as important for neurodivergents as everyone else. Their reactions and changes in behavior due to lack of good health and health disfunction are just different, and therefore more easily seen, pointed out and judged by others. All these things will do is make a neurodivrgent person healthier and therefore more able to put up with neurotypical people’s ridiculous and more able to outwardly behave/appear to behave (mask) in the way neurotypicals have said is the way it should be done (therefore doing less of the behaviors neurotypicals seem to despise and be annoyed by) because it is what is natural/easy for them (but not necessarily the correct or good way). It will not change the way it is natural for them to react (easier/takes less energy) or the way their brain works (passion driven, or fast connecting and processing, or connection driven, or logic driven … etc.) or even how they communicate. This site should not ruin good and useful information (spread thinly throughout this post) which could be going to the right people by publishing such misinformation, blatantly promoting falsities and antiquate misconceptions. Herbs have a truly great potential for REGULATING ADHD and Autism and could play a big part in the future, but in order for that to happen, basic facts must be understood and communicated correctly.

Thankyou! I’m absolutely horrified in this! And that some parents on here are promoting what should be illegal products such as MMS! Absolutely horrifying!

Hello Marjorie,

Thank you for your comment. Your feedback is very important to us.

The Epilepsy Foundation notes in a study that “children with ADHD have an increased risk of seizures, with approximately 14% of children with ADHD developing seizures. ADHD is the most common co-occurring disorder in children with epilepsy”.

Also, epilepsy and autism are linked to one another. Epilepsy is (somewhat) more common in kids with autism. Autism is a little more likely to occur in kids with epilepsy. The most frequent neurologic consequence in ASD is seizures.

Many blessings and good health!

Hi, I have found that the Medical Medium protocols of removing heavy metals being on vegan non gmo proccessed food diet helped a lot plus we only use destilled water..for cooking .drinking.i use lots of herbs like lemonbalm lavender lemongrass..and nature..being in nature for more then once a day..home education..and being more patient and calm../ Daniel Amen and others who healed children from autism adhd say..the heavy metal pockets between neurons are causing brain inflamation and is proven on scans..that causes the behaviour issues nerv and other isdues..gut is healable with vegan diet easily..we use gaba msm and chaga reishi velarian root to. Heavy metals cause the most issues as I understood..since changes in 3 years from a stressed out picky not listening sometimes aggressive child i got to a calm gentle and able to focus child. Anthony Williams books are life changing recepies delicious..many healings in our family because we use them../ i use Mark Romeros music to heal mood balance things…but there are many sound healers who can calm and fill with joy parents and the little ones. / autism adhd is a created issue kids are not born with it
.and dr dont really help..i been to a lot untill i figured out many parents healed their kids like there is Nourish to health..Hannah J Milles..she dedicated her life to help parent with kids who have autism..but saw many parent doing what dr said ..its not possible…ah as well energy medicine Donna Edens tools are amazing to..playing poi…DONT GIVE UP..and dont accept everything because somebody with white coat is saying it…trust reasearch..believe hope..God Bless you All.

Parasite cleanse. It’s all from parasites. Period.

Ritalin might lower someones seizure threshold and is not a treatment for seizures. Love the information on herbal treatments but please correct misinformation as it detracts from the helpful hints. Most kids with autism are undermethylated according to the research of Dr William Walsh. The vitamins they take should be in a methylated form so their bodies can process them. P5P for b 6 and zinc picolate etc. All wheat products in the USA are fortified with vitamins but the type used have to be methylated to be usable.
(Kids with ADHD are often Overmethylated (although according to Dr Amen, there are five types of ADHD which require different treatments). If someone is overmethylated you do not want to give them serotonin reuptake blockers (ssri’s) as it can push people into a psychotic state. Think Robin Williams and the only drug in his system was an antidepressant. He was acting bizarre before he killed himself, putting watch in his socks, ect….. also 50 of the school shooters were prescribed series before the event. Check histamine levels to determine methylation status. High histamine indicates undermethylation and low histamine levels indicate over methylation….

Thank you for all your work..

SSRI’s not series. (Spell correct)

Hello Maureen,

Thank you so much for taking the time to share this information with us! We really appreciate it. We will definitely do more research on this important subject.

Many blessings and good health!

My kindergarten teacher wrote on my report card, “Thomas cannot sit still. He is always fidgeting.” That was back in the early 1950’s. I take Bacopa now. I doubt if drug companies have any interest in curing their cash cow.

We found a tea of Passion flower blossom and slight Hawaiian Chili pepper synced up the different parts of the brain …relaxed what needed to be relaxed and sped up what needed to be activated. Very helpful.

Hello Esellie,

Thank you so much for your comment!
Passionflower has been shown to improve sleep quality, reduce anxiety, and promote healthy brain GABA levels.

Many blessings and good health!

Hey there,
I love what u guys are doing. I love all my books too! I even made homemade elderberry syrup by foraging around my area! 😁 thank u! My question is… I was taking ashwagandha for about 2 weeks, from mountain rose herbs. It was incredible. I felt amazing! However after the second week my heart started pounding, severe anxiety… so i stopped taking it and it took 2 months to get back to normal. Since I had this reaction, are all adaptogens off limits for me? It truly did help for those 2 weeks but I’m terrified to try anything else. I have some mushroom powder I want to try but I’m so scared. Thanks!

Hello Holly,

Thank you for your comment!
I am sorry to hear you had severe side effects. Typically, Ashwagandha lowers blood pressure and reduces inflammation, stress and anxiety.
However, a healthcare professional should be consulted about potential interactions or other possible complications before using any herbal remedies.

Many blessings and good health!

Gut needs help first of all. Best I’ve found is replace all chocolate & “cacao” with carob. Use a little Irish moss gel in your foods. Use Marshmallow root powder as git lining healer. I use Minteray Bay Herb Co. But this Lost Herbs Co. would be good also of course.
You can do all the diet & exercise exactly right but get the Breathing wrong & get bad results. The entire Yoga world & conventional medicine both have it exactly wrong.
You need sufficient blood CO2 for blood O2 release into the tissues. Most people are blowing out their CO2 without realizing it. O2 repiration doesn’t help in the least. The blood will read 98% O2 while body O2 is dangerously low! All due to low blood CO2. CO2 is the determinant of blood pH period.
Restoring Prana by Robin Rothenberg.
The Oxygen Advantage and
The Breathing Cure by Patrick McKeown.

Hello James

We really appreciate you took the time to write this information! We thank you for your valuable contribution.

Many blessings and good health!

So many experts! So confusing. Some even condescending!

Hi, I have found that the Medical Medium protocols of removing heavy metals being on vegan non gmo proccessed food diet helped a lot plus we only use destilled water..for cooking .drinking.i use lots of herbs like lemonbalm lavender lemongrass..and nature..being in nature for more then once a day..home education..and being more patient and calm../ Daniel Amen and others who healed children from autism adhd say..the heavy metal pockets between neurons are causing brain inflamation and is proven on scans..that causes the behaviour issues nerv and other isdues..gut is healable with vegan diet easily..we use gaba msm and chaga reishi velarian root to. Heavy metals cause the most issues as I understood..since changes in 3 years from a stressed out picky not listening sometimes aggressive child i got to a calm gentle and able to focus child. Anthony Williams books are life changing recepies delicious..many healings in our family because we use them../ i use Mark Romeros music to heal mood balance things…but there are many sound healers who can calm and fill with joy parents and the little ones. / autism adhd is a created issue kids are not born with it
.and dr dont really help..i been to a lot untill i figured out many parents healed their kids like there is Nourish to health..Hannah J Milles..she dedicated her life to help parent with kids who have autism..but saw many parent doing what dr said ..its not possible. Try Donna Eden energy medicine excercises and poi its connecting body brain help nervs attention all..and its easy all can do..most of her excersises.

Hello Jacinta,

We thank you for sharing these details with us! They are much appreciated.

Many blessings and good health!

Always talking about kids when it comes to adhd and autism. I am an autistic adult. Diagnosed when I was 16. I have never had digestive issues or seizures. Most of my issues are related to independent adult life and anxiety (I rely on family to help me, although I don’t need constant care). I don’t take any medications. I like foraging because being outside and looking at plants is relaxing and I like being able to bring something home for my family to add to a salad or make a dessert with (berries are my favorite). I don’t eat a lot of junk food because it makes me feel icky, so maybe that helps with symptoms. I don’t know. I don’t always sleep the best (I like to read a lot and I’m even here on The Lost Herbs at 1:30am). There’s a lot of confusion over adhd and autism and I think it’s because many times the people who actually are diagnosed with adhd or autism aren’t asked what it’s like for them. Another reason is because there are probably multiple causes since they are diagnosed with a collection of symptoms. I believe I was born this way for whatever reason, but there are other people who had a clear “onset” of symptoms at a certain point in early childhood. I doubt the same cause applies to everyone. I appreciate the list of herbs.

Back To Top