Title Fatty acid supplementation helps children’s academics and behavior Author Rabiner, David Item Type articles Journal Attention Research Update Publisher David Rabiner Publication Date June 2005 Publication Year 2005 Summary Children with developmental coordination disorder (DCD) were treated with dietary supplements with omega-3 fatty acids. The dietary supplementation did not effect motor skills, but improvements in reading, spelling, and behavior were seen in the treatment group
SUMMARY AND IMPLICATIONS The results of this double-blind, placebo controlled study are exciting: among 117 children with developmental coordination disorders, dietary supplementation of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids was associated with substantial gains in reading and spelling as well as significant reductions in ADHD symptoms. Although these children were not diagnosed with ADHD, many had elevated levels of ADHD symptoms, and may have qualified for an ADHD diagnosis had they been formally evaluated.
The gains in children’s reading and spelling achievement were particularly noteworthy: children who received 6 months of treatment showed an average gain of over 20 months and a spelling gain of about 12 months. Thus, despite not receiving any specific academic intervention during this time, they went from being about a year below age level to essentially catching up with their peers.