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Adderall XR & Diet

By Laura Wallace Henderson ; Updated August 14, 2017

Adderall is a medication that your doctor may prescribe to treat your child’s symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. This is a common disorder that may affect between three and five percent of school-aged children, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center. Adderall is a stimulant medication that may help reduce ADHD symptoms. While taking Adderall, your child may need to avoid certain foods.


Adderall is the brand name for amphetamine/dextroamphetamine. Adderall comes in an extended release capsule, as well as a short-acting tablet. This medication is among the drugs that doctors most frequently prescribe for ADHD. Adderall XR is the name of the extended release form of this medication. This medication may cause numerous mild and serious side effects. Common side effects your child may experience include trouble sleeping, dry mouth, diarrhea, dizziness and loss of appetite. Side effects that are more serious can include blurred vision, chest tightness, rapid heartbeat, tremors and seizures.

Foods to Avoid

Some foods tend to interact with drugs, including Adderall. Although most foods are suitable to continue eating while taking Adderall, certain fruits and beverages may cause an excess of organic acids in the digestive tract, reducing absorption of this medicine. Have your child avoid consuming citrus fruit, citrus juices, lemonade, carbonated beverages and beverages or supplements that contain vitamin C within one hour of taking Adderall.

Dietary Factors

Although there is no evidence that other foods may interact with Adderall, some parents and alternative health practitioners believe that certain types of diet therapy may help children with ADHD, especially if a food allergy exists. Your pediatrician may want to test your child to determine if a food allergy may contribute to the symptoms of ADHD. Dietary therapies may include restricting certain foods or focusing on consuming foods high in protein and complex carbohydrates, although research does not confirm the potential benefits of dietary manipulation in treating ADHD.


Follow your pediatrician’s instructions when administering Adderall RX to your child, and report any side effects that occur. Avoid making radical changes to your child’s diet in an attempt to treat ADHD, especially without the guidance of a nutritionist or other trusted health professional.

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