Helping a child with ADHD is solving a jigsaw puzzle where it is important to identify the different pieces of the puzzle and set them in and finally complete it. The number of people that are being diagnosed with ADHD and prescribed synthetic medications with serious side effects is staggering. According to the National Survey of Children’s Health, in 2016 alone 6.1 million children i between the ages 4 to 17 were diagnosed with ADHD. Which essentially is almost 10% of the entire children population of the United States.
There is a wide range of factors that can cause a child to suffer from ADHD. Medical studies are being thoroughly conducted to analyze the causes of this condition which we would often overlook. Still, to be backed with substantial evidence, some research findings have reported a positive relationship between an unhealthy diet and ADHD. Which hence calls for a cause of concern for parents to make certain amendments that can prevent further complication related to this illness. Usually, the food items which are known to result in inflammation in the body are the major contributor towards ADHD hence should be avoided.
This article will examine the food items which are responsible for worsening the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). It is not to assert that parents should completely exclude the contributor item(s) from the child’s diet. Following a pattern of a reasonable amount is the best way possible that will unlikely cause any complications in the body.
Added sugar will cause insulin and blood sugar spikes which are responsible for the hyperactivity reactions. The other issue with sugar is that it allows candida to reside in the body. When candida or excess pathogenic microbes start lining the intestinal walls, they trigger the secretion of toxin which causes inflammation in the said region. The consequence of which is the leaky gut syndrome or increased intestinal permeability which can further result in allowing harmful bacteria to leak through the gut walls into the blood causing inflammation that translates into ADHD symptoms. As a result, the child has problems focusing in school, studies or likewise situations. Thereby, child psychologists would strongly advise against excessive sugar in early age as it can worsen a number of the condition symptoms.
The problem with gluten in relation to ADHD is similar to processed sugars, for it causes inflammation in the intestine region allowing the permeability of toxins into the bloodstream. In addition, gluten is also responsible for other major medical complications like the autoimmune disease which develops over time. Which is why it is pertinent for parents to have the child avoid all food items which can contain a significant portion of gluten including:
- Cereal and Granola
- Noodles/ Pasta
- Baked Items
- Breakfast items like pancakes, waffles
Conventional Dairy Products
Having a small reasonable portion of goat/sheep’s milk, yoghurt or kefir is known to cause no harm and paediatrics would often recommend a calcium-rich diet for strong bones and teeth. However, the problem lies with conventional dairy items like milk and cheese products which are composed of Beta Casein A1, known to be more harmful than gluten. In fact, there are more receptors in one’s body which could be anywhere from 2 to 26 times more inflammatory to the body if it is not doing well with casein, as well as lactose in there as well. So, the milk sugar can be difficult for some people to digest. As a result, it is important to shy away from conventional dairy products for they can trigger the symptoms of ADHD.
A lot of studies put into examining the causes of ADHD have shown that food dyes and additives can cause an outburst. There have been reported cases where these artificial food colours have cause reactions in the body which were linked to the symptoms of ADHD. A precautionary step could be to look for the ingredient column whenever buying any of the packaged food items. If it is known to contain yellow 5 or blue 22 or any other colour with a designated number that should signify the presence of food dye.
Refined carbohydrates are the ones which get slowly absorbed into the bloodstream, avoiding an elevated rise in blood sugar level. The problem associated with refined carbohydrates is in its ability to cause inflammation as most of the items are composed of gluten and sugar. Cereals, breakfast pastries, are two examples of food items that contain a high amount of refined carbohydrates. Therefore, it is important to stay away from them
Often fund in luncheon meats like breakfast bacon, cold ham, sausages etc. The processing of these meat items involves the addition of nitrates. As a consequence, it results in acidity and major gastric inflammation.
Do not be mislead by those food items which contain no sugar and have artificial sweetener as a viable alternative! Sucralose contained in most of these sweeteners is composed of chlorine which can cause damage to the probiotics present in the gut. One of the most vital steps for anyone who is suffering from ADHD is to have a strong buildup of probiotics or good microbes which can help fight off complications like inflammation. Artificial sweetener, on the other hand, festers the problem as opposed to resolving it causing short-term problems like memory loss and impaired cognition. The gut-brain connection that needs to be strengthened for ADHD patients is, in fact, gets disrupted.
Soy is loaded with phytoestrogens. Miso or natto, which are the fermented form of this substance is unlikely to cause any substantial harm. However, other products like soybean oil and protein have a known connection with causing inflammation in the gut region. They tend to be very high on the allergen spectrum of things that many often times adults and children are found to be allergic to. Thereby, having other substitutes form of oil are recommended.
Not a food category in general, rather a recommendation for testing whether you or someone you love is suffering from ADHD. Sometimes, certain food items are known to disrupt the bodily functions of one person but not of the other. People can have a food sensitivity to anything from eggs to peanuts to some dairy products. When faced with such a situation there are some essential steps to follow to get rid of the food sensitivities that might have a solid link with symptoms of ADHD. An IgG food antibody test is conducted to examine the bodily reactions to a certain item. In addition to that, the elimination option could also be employed which is one easy to execute step. The suspected food item is eliminated with another to find out whether any complications that were witnessed previously will continue to occur or not. Some of the things to look out for are a runny nose, redness and changes in the bowel movements (constipation or loose motions).