Eat Marmite To Help ADHD And Autism
Could marmite hold the key in helping ADHD and Autism?
You either love it or hate it, but even if you hate it, a new study shows that a teaspoon a day may help balance out the excitability in your brain and may help ADHD and Autism.
Personally, I don’t like the taste of marmite, but I have encouraged by kids to eat some due to the vitamin B12 it contains. I have always encouraged my son, in particular, to eat it, as he does not eat much meat, and so benefits from the B12 present in marmite normally found in meat. It’s also nut- free so handy for him to have in his lunchbox for school.
Eating marmite may also be helpful for older adults, who can become deficient in B12 due to the decreased stomach acid as you get older, or through medications or any condition that interferes with the absorption in the stomach or small intestine, such as Crohn’s disease. Diabetics can also have low B12 if they take Metformin, as this is thought to interfere with B12 absorption.
Marmite also contains folic acid, which is particularly important if you are thinking of having a baby, or are pregnant already to prevent any neural tube defects in the baby.
In this particular marmite study, participants were split into two groups. One group were given peanut butter and the other a teaspoon of marmite every day for a month.
The group who ate the marmite showed a 30 percent reduction in their brain’s response to visual stimuli, which was measured by recording electrical activity in the brain (EEG).
Researchers believe this might be due to the B12 in marmite increasing the levels of a specific neurotransmitter known as GABA in the brains.
So What Does This Mean?
GABA stops the excitability of neurones in the brain, a bit like turning down the volume if you like. Children and adults with ADHD tend to have impulsive behaviour and lack attention and forgetfulness. It is thought that GABA can act by calming this response down to reduce this impulsivity which would also help with anxiety.
What About Autism?
A deficiency of GABA in people with autism is thought to contribute to their brain becoming over stimulated, which can lead to a constant state of anxiety.
GABA is thought to help impulsivity, hyperactivity, anxiety/restlessness/ depression and stress.
If this is not enough evidence for you to start eating marmite, it is thought that the effects of marmite stay in the body for two months after you have been consuming it, so has long term benefits. Maybe a month of marmite eating is not so bad after all.
Are you a marmite lover? Have you got any marmite recipes to share? I would love to hear about them