Diet for ADHD - Does changing what you eat change how you act?

Dietary changes, or some might say a diet for ADHD, can be a difficult alternative treatment to implement but one that is worth exploring.

There is a push to consider big diet modifications for these children. Some will suggest that this alternative treatment by itself can cure a disorder. We do live in a fast food nation so I suppose it makes sense.

Maybe the most commonly known diet is the Feingold Diet. It teaches you how to eliminate virtually everything "artificial." Sweeteners, dyes, flavorings, etc. The idea is that today's children over-consume artificial ingredients, leading to behavior and learning problems.

A lot of parents of ADHD children say that their kids get out of control when they over consume sugars, especially in the form of sodas, candy, cookies, etc.

Take this to a more scientific level and this would include a heavy carbohydrate diet. Simple carbs convert in the body to sugar. Many ADHD children crave carbs. Our nutritionist says this is because they are constantly "running on empty" and their body tells them to find a quick fix, in this case, sugar. A diet for ADHD would limit, or even eliminate a lot of carbohydrates and sugars.

The other popular diet choice is a gluten-free, casein-free (found in dairy) diet. The theory is that these children are one or both of these things;

1. They are allergic to wheat and similar products and their behavior and learning challenges are the reaction to the allergy and/or

2. Their bodies do not properly control the yeast that naturally exists inside it, therefore leading to an overgrowth. The second idea is an especially popular theory among the autism community.

There is an ever increasing number of stores and websites dedicated to gluten and casein free foods.

And gluten free recipes are becoming increasingly easy to find.

This is something we have only recently begun with our son.

He is now completely gluten/dairy/corn free. It is very difficult. VERY. He was living on cheese and tortilla chips. We have not found a successful way to give him back his mexican food. But we are trying.

My absolute favorite blog for recipes is Elana's Pantry. She is a Celiac patient and a wiz in the kitchen. Her baked goods are to die for.

We will keep you posted on how the diet progresses and what benefit we will see hopefully soon.

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