I recently read an article on 5 Hour Energy and Focus . I have always thought of those little bottles of energy drinks that you see beside the grocery cash registers as something that teenagers use to pull all nighters. I have never considered them anything more than "lots of caffeine in a little bottle" but this 5 Hour Energy Article, written by Forbes Magazine a reputable publication, claimed that it was a focus drink and I wondered if it might help ADHD and Inattentive ADHD .
This morning I decided to give it a road test. Regular readers of this blog know that I stay fairly well caffeinated as I go through my day. The coffee that I drink every 90-120 minutes keeps me pretty on task and on track but today I did not drink my daily dose of caffeine inattentive ADD treatment , I had the 5 Hour Energy and Focus drink instead. The article reported that it cost $3.00 and that it tasted like puke. I got the 'Extra' variety in berry flavor at CVS for $2.00 and it tasted like cough syrup (which, as a kid, I found extremely yummy and which today I find palatable enough).
The reason for this experiment is that recently I have been trying to finish a book. The damn thing has grown to be an epic tome. The theme of the book is interventions for ADHD that are not prescription medication. This book is so close to finished that I can almost taste it. There is a huge section on the vitamins and supplements that decently performed medical research has shown to be helpful for ADHD. A huge section on what I call therapies of the mind which includes cognitive training, executive function training, neurofeedback, etc, and a pretty good section on what I call lifestyle intervention.
Because so many critics of these interventions claim that they are all a huge waste of money, I have gone out of my way to find inexpensive alternatives (often free and never costing more than $200.00 for virtually every intervention that has proved helpful-yes even neurofeedback. I am trying to get a lot accomplished so it can be published, edited, revised, formatted, etc and that brings me to 5 Hour Energy Drink and Focus.
I have a list of many things that I need to accomplish to get this book done. I have been able to scratch a few things off my list every day but not as many as I would like. One of the things on this week's list that I meant to scratch off on Monday and I am just now getting to is this blog post. I usually post on Mondays but as you can see I am a bit behind. The good news is that it does appear that the 5 Hour Energy works better than just the caffeine to keep me focused.
The difference between the energy drink and caffeine is that the energy drink has a bunch of B vitamins and amino acids as well as 220mg of caffeine (though it comes in decaf too). The amount of vitamins in the drink are often 100s of times the daily adult requirement but they are all water soluble so you pee out what you do not need so, providing you do not drink more than one a day-and you are an adult, there are few if any safety issues.
Many Functional Medicine Experts report that some people with ADHD need many time the USDA recommended daily requirement of the B vitamins and of amino acids to turn off the genes that are making them spacy, hyperactive or impulsive. The developer of this drink is from India and he has used the functional medicine model to make a product that, in my opinion, does improve focus.
I am glad to have an Inattentive ADHD focus and energy drink to turn to when my day is in need of extra focus but I do not think it will replace my coffee. I will use the 5 Hour Energy for days like today and my delicious coffee on most other days. I do not have to go through life super focused all the time and the coffee keeps me attentive enough. If you give it a try, I would love to hear about your experiences.