Have you or your child been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)? Maybe you suspect you or one of your children may have ADHD.
Good news is research shows diet may be one of the most influential factors for improving or worsening ADHD symptoms. Why use drugs first when the food we put in our bodies may have the most powerful health influence on ADHD? Start by examining the most basic and fundamental cornerstone of your health — the foods (and non-foods) you put into your body.
Dr. Lidy Pelsser of the ADHD Research Center in the Netherlands and lead author of a study on food and ADHD, stated in an interview with NPR that ADHD is easy enough to regulate through diet.
“Food is the main cause of ADHD,” lead researcher Lidy Pelsser told NPR. “After the diet, they were just normal children with normal behavior. They were no longer more easily distracted, they were no more forgetful, there were no more temper-tantrums.”
"The teachers thought it was so strange that the diet would change the behavior of the child as thoroughly as they saw it. It was a miracle, the teachers said.” After five weeks, more than 60 percent of the kids in the test group had seen their moderate-to-severe symptoms fade to mild or fall out of the clinical range altogether.
Always consult with your doctor before making any diet or lifestyle changes. Never stop taking medications unless approved by your doctor.
Alright, lets get straight to the point — The Diet
Diet couldn’t be much simpler, really. It only restricts unhealthy foods.
To summarize, you're going to cut foods with preservatives, known allergen foods, some food colorings, added sugars and high glycemic foods. This is a low allergen diet. Most ADHD symptoms are heightened by food sensitivities and allergies.
If you did nothing but cut all dairy, beef and 90% of the sugar in your diet, you would see very positive changes. Incorporate the other changes and for most people, the positive impact will be simply amazing.
FIRST TWO WEEKS
- NO DAIRY PRODUCTS - especially cow’s milk. This is the single most important restriction. Instead, try sugar-free almond milk or sugar-free rice milk. Drink water instead of milk. Do not drink sodas, gatorade, sweet teas, etc.
- NO YELLOW FOODS - especially corn or squash. Bananas are white. Don’t eat the peel.
- NO JUNK FOODS - If it comes in a cellophane wrapper, don’t eat it.
- NO FRUIT JUICES or DRIED FRUIT - too much sugar content. One small glass of apple juice has the sugar content of eight apples. Later on, you can have juice, but dilute it with water 50/50. Dried fruit is normally coated with sugar and has concentrated sugars in them. Limit fruits to 2 to 3 servings per day.
- CUT SUGAR INTAKE BY 90% - if you can, cut it down to zero. Sugar is in just about everything, but give it a try. Do your best without going crazy. This does not mean cut the sugar in real food like a sweet potato, carrots or beets. Eliminate as much added sugar as possible. Some names of added sugars are include sugar, raw sugar, beet sugar, brown sugar, powdered sugar, cane juice, glucose, sucrose, turbinado sugar, maple syrup, rice syrup, malt, corn syrup, high fructose corn syrup, maltose, dextrose and corn starch. If you stay away from refined and processed foods, you will have no problem with sugars. If you have been consuming a lot of sugars in your diet, you may have a headache for a day from the withdrawal effects.