The majority of these millions of children will be prescribed mood altering drugs by default, some of them as young as four years old.
With growing concerns of over-diagnosis and the impacts of mood altering drugs on children and teenagers, many parents are now looking for non-drug treatment options. In a previous post, I discussed how chiropractic could potentially benefit kids diagnosed with ADHD and today I will introduce another effective non-drug treatment: diet.
So many of the “foods” (I put quotations around “food”, because is it really food that we now feed children?) are now processed and packaged in factories where scientists have manipulated the chemical composition to improve shelf life, injected artificial dyes to improve eye appeal, and inserted artificial flavors to create addictive tastes. Most “food” has become so processed that regular people stumble to pronounce more than a few items on the product ingredients list. For example, the ingredients list from a package of Wonder 100% Whole Wheat bread:
All kids, and especially those who are hyperactive, need real, nutritious food. I encourage parents when going to the grocery store to stay to the outside edges of the store – that’s where you find the real food: fruits, veggies, proteins, and nuts.
Here are a few guidelines to follow when choosing food for your kids:
1. At the grocery store – stay to the outside!
2. Stick to foods with 10 or fewer ingredients
3. Understand and be able to pronounce all the ingredients.
Remember, even if you don’t feel like you can follow all these guidelines right away, know that just following one of them is greatly helping you, your child, and your entire family!
A healthy diet is important for everyone, but for children experiencing symptoms of ADHD, improving the nutritional value of their diet can help improve behavior at home, in school, and in their interactions with other children and adults.
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food”
Below are links that provide more information on what diets are appropriate for kids with ADHD, along with peer reviewed research on ADHD and diet.