People are always commenting on the way we eat. We don't buy candy, we rarely purchase processed foods and when we do, only very minimally processed. We began eating this way because as I mentioned in an earlier post titled Qi Balance soup, I have PCOS and endometriosis. I wasn't getting anywhere with doctors so I began looking for alternate remedies. I stumbled across a book (again read that post) that changed my life. I was able to manage my disease with a very strict diet. It sounds crazy, but it is true. And when my symptoms do return, it is only because I have slipped in my diet over several months (because it is a tough and time consuming way to prepare food... but SOO worth it) It wasn't long after I made that change for myself that I began to see the change in my sons, specifically my son J, who we had been told for years by medical professionals, therapists and other parents, ought to be medicated for ADHD. I began doing my own "testing" and discovered that my boys were both *extremely* reactant to food dyes, specifically red #40. R can't even shower with gel or shampoo containing it without a HUGE reaction. I also couldn't believe how J was affected by refined sugar. I always heard that sugar made children hyper etc, but never felt its effects personally. Honestly, I thought that too was a lot of bologna. Don't get me wrong, I understand the health problems caused by eating excessive amounts of sugar, but I didn't really think it made children hyper. That is true with my other three children, but with J...WOW! The smallest amount of refined sugar and he becomes hyper and even violent. Consequently, NR therapy (which I talk about all of the time) also treats ADHD through its ability to "rewire" the brain. My son, that everyone said must be medicated, is not on ANY medication. It is amazing what the human body is capable of if we treat it right! Anyway, I didn't find the below article at all surprising or shocking. I've seen the proof of it in my own family. Diet in combination with NR has been our miracle.. and that's no bologna:-)
Article: For 64 Percent of Kids with ADHD, Food is the Cause
It's scary to think that over 5 million children in this country are diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and of those children, 3 million are medicated each year. ADHD is a problem with inattentiveness, over-activity, impulsivity, or a combination. It's the most commonly diagnosed disease among kids, in fact between 3 and 5 percent of kids are said to have it.
Many parents are hesitant to medicate their children because the side effects of medications like Ritalin can be quite drastic. From a lack of appetite to the inability to sleep, and in some cases, depression, the downside is real. The idea of having such a huge population of young children medicated like never before in any society in itself seems downright frightening. And a new study published in the Lancet and reported on Civil Eats, sheds some light on what many of us have been thinking for a while. It's the medication that we take three times a day that can really make a difference and that medication is our diet.
The study's lead author Dr. Lidy Pelsser of the ADHD Research Centre in the Netherlands said this to NPR:
“Food is the main cause of ADHD.” The study found that in 64 percent of children with ADHD, the symptoms were caused by food. “It’s a hypersensitivity reaction to food.” This is good news for parents, especially when you hear the long term impact that Ritalin can have on some kids. Civil Eat's Kristin Wartman, pointed to one study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry in 2007 that said "[a]fter three years on Ritalin, children were about an inch shorter and 4.4 pounds lighter than their peers."
Foods that Cause ADHD
Kids are showing both a sensitivity to foods themselves and food additives. The Feingold Diet proposed in the 1970s outlined particular foods to cut from a child's diet like artificial coloring, artificial flavors, added preservatives, Salicylates (a pesticide added to some food plants), and other food additives like sulfites, artificial sweeteners, MSG, and others. This really just points to a diet free of processed foods and rich in organic plant-based foods like fruits, vegetables, nuts, and beans.
Caffeine and processed sugar have also been known to be culprits. Flaxseed oil, on the other hand, has shown signs of correcting some of the negative behaviors associated with ADHD, just by mixing it with some of your kid's favorite foods. This is because omega 3 fatty acids are critical to healthy brain development as shown in this study on ADHD and related neurodevelopmental disorders.