ADHD & Nutrition
Over the years, various dietary factors have been suggested as a possible cause or link to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Because of this, various dietary treatments have been promoted, such as the Feingold diet, the omission of sugar, allergy elimination diets and megavitamin therapy.
The truth is that there has not been a scientific link between diet and the cause, intensification, or cure of ADHD. What has been discovered, however, is that there have been many successes in lessening ADHD symptoms with
alterations in diet, but this is a very individualized process. There is “no one size fits all” solution.
Many people suffering with ADHD have various food allergies, asthma, severe nutritional deficiencies, poor digestion, gut problems, Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or malabsorption of nutrients. Most people with ADHD take medications to help control ADHD and these medications, in turn, interfere with the way nutrients are absorbed in the body.
As a Registered Dietician, I understand the science of food and how it works in the body. I can analyze your current nutritional intake and make the appropriate recommendations to enhance the intake of nutrients you may be lacking and ensure that your diet is providing optimum nutrition to help lessen the symptoms of ADHD.
As a general rule, on a daily basis most people do not make the best nutritional choices. There is a very big nutritional difference eating a 100 calorie bag of potato chips and eating a 90 calorie banana. The bag of potato chips provides empty calories or very little nutrients, and lots of salt, fat, chemicals and calories, and the banana packs a wallop of nutritional value.
Most people don’t get enough essential fatty acids in their diet. Essential fatty acids are fats that your body cannot manufacture and you must obtain from eating foods with those fatty acids. Foods like salmon, tuna, flax seeds and nuts all contain these amazing nutrients which have been linked to behavior and developmental disorders, as well as heart, cholesterol and diabetes problems.
Most people eat more fast foods than they need. When I say fast food, I’m not only talking about the Wendys and Burger Kings of the world. I’m talking about packaged foods that have become a standard part of our daily diet. These foods contain a great deal of sodium, sugar, preservatives, chemicals and fat and can lead to whole host of nutritional and metabolic problems. If we try to make better food choices 80% of the time, the better off we’ll be and our bodies will respond accordingly. Simply prepared foods from all of the major food groups are our best bet for a healthier, long life.