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ADHD & How Anyone Can Improve Their Focus | Huberman Lab Podcast #37

Updated: Feb 21, 2022

In this episode, I discuss ADHD (Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder): what it is, the common myths, and the biology and psychology of ADHD. I discuss both behavioral and pharmacologic treatments for ADHD, and brain-machine interface tools. I also discuss behavioral training protocols that can improve focus in people with ADHD and those without ADHD, and for people of different ages. I discuss the role of dopamine in coordinating 'default-mode' and 'task-related' neural networks, attentional "blinks" (lapses of attention) and how to overcome them, and the role of actual blinks in time perception and attention. Finally, I review some of the prescription and over-the-counter compounds for increasing focus such as Adderall, Ritalin, Modafinil and Armodafinil, the racetams, Alpha-GPC and phosphatidylserine and the role of diet for managing ADHD (and the controversies of diet for ADHD). The role of cell phones/technology in ADHD and ADHD-like challenges with focus are also discussed. Throughout, both basic science and clinical scenarios, as well as applicable tools and resources are covered.

Thank you to our sponsors: Roka - -- code "huberman" Belcampo -

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Support Research in the Huberman Lab at Stanford:

Links: Review of Compounds for ADHD, Smart Drugs & Focus -

Review of Atypical Compounds for ADHD - Study of Focus Protocol In ADHD & Non-ADHD Children -


00:00:00 Introduction & Note About Diagnosis

00:03:27 Sponsors

00:07:56 ADHD vs. ADD: Genetics, IQ, Rates in Kids & Adults

00:13:00 Attention & Focus, Impulse Control

00:14:57 Hyper-focus

00:16:45 Time Perception

00:18:25 The Pile System

00:20:00 Working Memory

00:24:10 Hyper-Focus & Dopamine

00:26:40 Neural Circuits In ADHD: Default Mode Network & Task-Related Networks 00:32:57 Low Dopamine in ADHD & Stimulant Use & Abuse

00:37:10 Sugar, Ritalin, Adderall, Modafinil & Armodafinil

00:47:00 Non-Prescribed Adderall, Caffeine, Nicotine

00:49:18 How Stimulants “Teach” the Brains of ADHD Children to Focus

00:52:00 When To Medicate: A Highly Informed (Anecdotal) Case Study

00:56:35 Elimination Diets & Allergies In ADHD

01:04:46 Omega-3 Fatty Acids: EPAs & DHAs

01:07:00 Modulation vs Mediation of Biological Processes

01:10:50 Attentional Blinks

01:16:56 Open Monitoring & 17 minute Focus Enhancement

01:22:50 Blinking, Dopamine & Time Perception; & Focus Training

01:30:10 Reverberatory Neural & Physical Activity

01:33:40 Adderall, Ritalin & Blink Frequency

01:35:00 Cannabis

01:37:30 Interoceptive Awareness

01:41:15 Ritalin, Adderall, Modafinil, Armodafinil; Smart Drugs & Caffeine: Dangers

01:48:05 DHA Fatty Acids, Phosphatidylserine

01:50:54 Ginko Biloba

01:51:45 Modafinil & Armodafanil: Dopamine Action & Orexin

01:56:19 Acetylcholine: Circuits Underlying Focus; Alpha-GPC

01:59:04 L-Tyrosine, (PEA) Phenylethylamine

02:01:23 Racetams, Noopept

02:05:15 Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation; Combining Technology & Pharmacology 02:09:14 Smart Phones & ADHD & Sub-Clinical Focus Issues In Adults & Kids

02:14:30 Synthesis/Summary

02:16:10 Support for Podcast & Research, Supplement Resources

Please note that The Huberman Lab Podcast is distinct from Dr. Huberman's teaching and research roles at Stanford University School of Medicine. The information provided in this show is not medical advice, nor should it be taken or applied as a replacement for medical advice.

The Huberman Lab Podcast, its employees, guests and affiliates assume no liability for the application of the information discussed. Title Card Photo Credit: Mike Blabac -


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