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Finally Focused: The Breakthrough Natural Treatment Plan for ADHD (Review)

Updated on July 26, 2017
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MsDora, six-year online writer, shares poetry, creative writing and reflections on how writing and writers influence our lives.

ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactive disorder) is not a “behavior problem” or a “discipline problem,” according to authors James Greenblatt, M.D. (and Bill Gottlieb CHC).

It is primarily a neurological condition. It is also a nutritional-deficit disorder and a sleep-deficit disorder. It is really one disorder with many names, but it is not a disease.

State-based Prevalence Data of Parent Reported ADHD Diagnosis

Percent of US Youth Aged 4-17 Ever Diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder by State: National Survey of Children's Health (2011)
Percent of US Youth Aged 4-17 Ever Diagnosed with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder by State: National Survey of Children's Health (2011) | Source

Purpose of the Book

There are 6,000,000 children (11% of those between ages 4 to 17) and another 8,000,000 adults diagnosed with ADHD. Dr. Greenblatt intends to help many of them by sharing his approach which has been effective in thousands of cases.

He believes that each patient has a unique pattern of deficiencies and excesses which cause an imbalance in the brain. His Plus-Minus plan is tailored to the needs of the individual, to add to the deficiencies and subtract from the excesses.

He uses natural treatments first and medications only when necessary. He claims that his natural treatments restores attention and minimizes hyperactivity in ADHD patients and also offers relief from the side effects of medications. He presents case after case demonstrating his success and he includes testimonials of gratitude from his satisfied clientele.

The Book and The Author

Copyright Finally Focused
Copyright Finally Focused | Source

Paperback: 272 pages
Publisher: Harmony; 1 edition (May 9, 2017)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0451496590
ISBN-13: 978-0451496591
Product Dimensions: 6.1 x 0.7 x 9.2 inches
Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces
Amazon Rank: #5 in Books > Health, Fitness & Dieting > Children's Health > Learning Disorders


James Greenblatt MD. has treated thousands of children and adults with ADHD over the past 30 years. He has trained and supervised medical professionals in integrative strategies for depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder and schizophrenia. He currently serves as chief medical officer and vice president of medical services at Walden Behavioral Care in Waltham, Massachusetts.

His previous books include Breakthrough Depression Solution, Answers to Binge Eating, and Answers to Anorexia.

There are three outstanding features of Finally Focused which makes it recommendable.

1) The Plus-Minus Plan

The majority of the book is dedicated to the demonstration of this approach. Greenblatt begins by proposing that a plus for every ADHD patient is magnesium which nourishes the brain. He explains how the stimulant drugs prescribed to help patients often deplete this mineral from the body, resulting in side effects like irritability and anxiety. Scientific studies have proved him right, citing that 96% of the children they studied were magnesium deficient, and correlating with his own finding of 90%.

For every case, he begins with the symptoms, tests for lack and excess and devises a treatment plan. Some of his plus nutrients include iron, zinc, probiotics, digestive enzymes, protein, omega 3s, according to the patient’s needs. Exercise and mindfulness are also on his plus list. Some of his minus items include phosphorus, copper, sugar and foods which contribute to intestinal imbalance. He makes his prescriptions age appropriate, recommending adjustments as necessary.

2) Scientific Support

In every chapter, this is a section devoted to the support of Greenblatt’s proposed treatment. He presents statistics and other scientific findings from reputable medical journals and university studies. He includes his own clinical experiences which give his readers confidence that there is correlation between his work and that of other scientists.

His chapters also contain inserts which explain the uses and benefits of herbs and other items he recommends – one of them being dark chocolate. They tell success stories of patients who show behavioral improvement after they add items on his plus list or decrease the use of items on his minus list.

3) Step By Step Action

The sub-heading as the final section of every chapter is Step-by-Step Action Plan for Healing ADHD. It lists the plus and minus items previously mentioned. Then he introduces the steps with a sentence, sometimes worded differently, which essentially says, “Here’s a practical, step-by-step summary of the actions discussed in this chapter.”

In an attractive bulleted layout, he lists reminders of the important points in that chapter. They may be easy to remember, but it is not advisable to extract them from the book as a list of instructions without reading and understanding the benefits, the dosage, the options and other relevant information in the chapter.

Personal Recommendation

For parents and guardians who have ADHD children in their care, Finally Focused may be a second Bible. Greenblatt asks questions to help adults discover from the children’s symptoms what could be their lack or excess. He guides them through the treatment recommending medical professional help where necessary. The evidence in favor of his Plus-Minus treatment stacks up impressively against stimulants like Ritalin and Adderall.

Chapter 9 might be the only challenge for readers (like me) who are not very familiar with names of drugs. The chapter explains neurotransmitters (chemical messengers that transport signals between brain cells) and presents neurotransmitter precursors as a plus for ADHD children. It demands focused attention to learn what supplements in various formulas turn these precursors on or off. However, it is well worth the extra effort to fully understand the process.

Altogether, the book is an easier read than expected. Starting with minimal knowledge of the topic and gaining reasonable clarity about it after one read, is evidence for me that this is a great presentation.


I received this book free from the publisher through Blogging for Books ( The opinions I have expressed are my own.

© 2017 Dora Isaac Weithers


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    • lambservant profile image

      Lori Colbo 5 weeks ago from Pacific Northwest

      I wish I had had this book when my boys were little as I had two boys with ADHD. It was very challenging and stressful. Thanks for sharing this book with us.

    • sallybea profile image

      Sally Gulbrandsen 5 weeks ago from Norfolk

      Very interesting MsDora, I personally know a few people who have been diagnosed with AHDH. I think they might well find this an interesting read, thank you for sharing.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 5 weeks ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      With my elder 3 it was meds time. Thank God they are all doing great. With my younger it is "dad slow your butt down and sit still with the boy". It is so fun to sit with him and get him to bounce around in his head. Parenting is wasted on the young.

      100 questi0ns in 5 minutes will drive you nuts. But if you take the time to jump into the first one it is bonding at a level times 1 billion.

      Thanks for this article at a time when I was a bit insecure. Friends like you are a treasure beyond human get.

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 5 weeks ago from USA

      I have only one child and she does not have this condition but I know plenty of parents who are navigating the maze of doctors, mere, and behavioral remedies. This sounds like a worthy place to start for someone who needs help.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 5 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Lori. that means you had both hands full of boy activities. You must have prayed a lot. Glad you made it through. Thanks for your feedback.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 5 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Sally, ADHD patients are all around us. Hope some parents find the book. Thanks for your comment.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 5 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Eric, I can tell that you're parenting is in the top percentile. God bless you and your son going forward. Thanks for sharing.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 5 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Flourish, I'm happy for you that you and your child does not have to deal with this condition. I wish everyone who needs this book will find it. It sounds like it could be a great help. Thanks for sharing.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 5 weeks ago from Olympia, WA

      I wish I had this book when I was teaching. When we first became aware of ADHD, as teachers back in the mid-Nineties, we were stumbling blindly through the days trying to find a solution which would work for each child. Anyway, great information here, Dora.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 5 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Bill, too late for some, but I pray it would be on time for many. Parents and teachers do need the help. Thanks.

    • tsmog profile image

      Tim Mitchell 5 weeks ago from Escondido, CA

      Great article and review Dora opening many doors for me. First, is how amazing our bodies are including the brain even with its woes. Then appreciation for those who dedicate their lives within science pursing causes and solutionss for those woes. Next, they offer those findings as book to the public to at least kick start the healing process, which may be a lifetime. I know the books on diabetes I have read allowed me to have dialogue with my doctors while knowing they would never have been able to explain the why's and how's for their recommendations in 15 minutes.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 4 weeks ago from New Delhi, India

      Very nice book and great review!

      It is sad that many are affected by ADHD and there is lack of information about it. Hope this book through your review spreads the word. I can imagine how difficult it must be for the parents whose children are affected by this.

      Thanks for sharing this well written and informative hub!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Tim, thanks for your very helpful comment. True, armed with information from these books, we make our doctors aware that we are not totally ignorant about what they're doing. We also show them that we care enough to do our own research. Thanks for adding this observation to the benefits of reading these scientific findings.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Chitrangada, I join you in expressing my concern for parents who have to deal with this condition in their children. Hope they take the time to read this review and obtain the book. Thanks for your input.

    • manatita44 profile image

      manatita44 4 weeks ago from london

      Ah, Dee,

      yet another great review. It is a topic that interest me very much as I'm into natural and alternative medicine. Yes, most Kinesiologist, worldwide in fact, find that zinc and magnesium or at least one, is always in short supply. The other nutrients also make sense. America is ahead in this field.

      Well presented and informative Hub.

    • Tamara Moore profile image

      Tamara Yancosky 4 weeks ago from No Idea Where


      I am indebted to you for this article concerning Natural Treatment Plans for ADHD! I will plan to purchase this book through your life-saving referral. I am not exaggerating, (even though, as a writer, I tend to do just that); I have severe ADD/ADHD, and sometimes even have to rewrite my poems over and over, before submission, due to them coming out incessantly backwards.

      I have been troubled with ADHD since I was a child. I don't like the idea of pharmaceuticals, but I must take them in order to focus, keep my thoughts from wandering into fragments, ETC.,.

      This is so wondrous that you just posted this article, as I, only last night, posted a new Rhyming Poem on My Ongoing Relationship With ADHD And Spock!

      I am so happy that I found your article this morning, and will email it to myself so that I can refer to it, and also purchase this book.

      My thanks and gratitude to you!

    • Tamara Moore profile image

      Tamara Yancosky 4 weeks ago from No Idea Where

      I just came to the realization that sometimes I comment on people's posts 2-3 times because I have forgotten that I had already commented in the past on the same

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Manatita. This topic was very interesting especially being in a field somewhat unfamiliar to me; but it was a clear presentation. Thanks for your kind comment and your helpful encouragement now and always.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Tamara, this book will be helpful to you. So glad that I recommended it. His methods of diagnosing and prescribing makes good sense. All the best to you going forward!

    • AliciaC profile image

      Linda Crampton 4 weeks ago from British Columbia, Canada

      You find some great books to review, Dora. This one sounds as though it could be very helpful for both adults with ADHD and parents of children with the disorder.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      True, Alicia. The author provides instructions and prescriptions for adults as well. I highly recommend the book. Thanks for your input.

    • lifegate profile image

      William Kovacic 4 weeks ago from Pleasant Gap, PA

      I've been taking a magnesium supplement for some time now for headaches. I've always believed in the natural approach as compared to the "drug" approach. Sounds like an interesting book, but I don't know if I'll ever get time to read it. Thanks for reading it for me, Dora!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Bill, it's a pleasure to read for you. However, I can only relate so much in a review. Hope your headaches go away; that might free you up to read some more. Thanks for your input.

    • Allie Brito profile image

      Allie Brito 4 weeks ago

      Dora, I think this book is absolute GOLD. Thank you for giving us a little break down of what to expect before we read. I wish that many of my friends parents in the 90s would have understood the implications of putting their small children on medication without knowing what the side effects are or how to combat them. I will be purchasing and adding to my summer reading list!

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 4 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Thanks, Allie. I feel the same way about the book. You and everyone else who prefer natural treatments will find it very useful. Best to you!

    • profile image

      DDE 3 weeks ago

      A well-informed hub on this problem. It is never too late to learn about ADHD.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Devika, you're right. Reading this book was the first formal effort on my part to learn about it. Interested to learn more.

    • Blond Logic profile image

      Mary Wickison 3 weeks ago from Brazil

      I have heard that a change in diet can help those with ADHD, it sounds like an excellent book to have as a resource of information.

      When I helped in schools, I was surprised at the number of children they listed as 'special needs', many of these were labelled with ADHD.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Mary, I highly recommend the book, if only because it suggests treatment other than the usual drugs. The research points to nutritional options and this may also be good for some of those special needs other than ADHD. Thanks for sharing.

    • Rachelle Williams profile image

      Rachelle Williams 3 weeks ago from Tempe, AZ

      I have Adult ADHD: Inattentive Type, and it has had a huge negative impact on me all of my life. I wasn't diagnosed until my early 40's, and I was put on Adderall once diagnosed. The Adderall made me sleep less (My normal sleep pattern was already only about 4 hours a night anyway - the medicine made it even less), my appetite was all but gone and I lost wight to the point people were concerned, and it made me loopy - the Adderall also, however, allowed me to focus, and that was something AMAZING for me.

      In the end, I didn't like the way I felt, and I was afraid of side effects from any pharmaceutical that had the power to rearrange my thought process as it did, so I stopped taking it, and settled for the negative effects of Adderall.

      I've been seeking natural remedies, but so far, noting has worked. Based on your recommendation, I'm going to purchase "Finally Focused," by Dr. James Greenblatt. Thank you for the tip, and I'll let you know how it goes.

    • MsDora profile image

      Dora Isaac Weithers 3 weeks ago from The Caribbean

      Rachelle, thanks for sharing. Looking forward to hearing how you like the book. Praying that it helps you significantly.

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