For years, doctors have speculated that certain foods may be associated with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). But, according to global research, food on its own may not cause ADHD, but some of it can worsen symptoms or induce behavior in a child that mimics the signs of ADHD.
Features of the diet of a child with ADHD
Several studies suggest that children with ADHD may have low levels of essential fatty acids. Therefore, adding omega-3 fatty acids to the diet of a child with ADHD can improve their behavior. These acids interfere with the transmission of certain neurotransmitters . While the balance of omega-3 and omega-6 is beneficial for the overall health of both adults and children, the typical Russian diet includes too few of them. Some studies show that ADHD and omega-3 deficiencies are characterized by two symptoms: excessive thirst and an increased need to urinate. But more research is needed in this area.
Doctors and nutritionists recommend that a child with ADHD eat more fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, lean meats, and fish. It is better to check with the doctor about the types of fish. Most experts are of the opinion that foods with artificial colors, sweeteners and food additives, including colored sodas, candies and colorful cereals, can negatively affect children with ADHD. Therefore, it is best to eliminate processed foods from your baby’s diet and opt for a healthy, balanced diet filled with fresh, quality food to optimize your baby’s health and well-being.
It is important to remember that excessive doses of vitamins and minerals can be toxic to children and interact with ADHD pills. Experts advise against indulging in dietary supplements to treat the syndrome: there is little consistent evidence to date that they may be effective for ADHD. It is much better and healthier to follow a balanced diet.
To learn more about the diet for ADHD, you need to consult with your doctor and observe how your child behaves after adding a new product to his diet. It is harmful to overly limit the baby in the choice of food. This can lead to nervous breakdowns and generally worsen his health. It is advisable that the doctor, together with the parents, draw up the optimal menu, taking into account the age, physical characteristics of the baby and the nature of ADHD.
Food with caffeine and fructose
Even if doctors do not give your baby ADHD, it is advisable to avoid drinking soda. They are often high in sugars and sweeteners, which can cause obesity and digestive problems. Experts believe that sugary sodas can trigger an increase in hyperactivity . In addition, soda often contains other ingredients that worsen the symptoms of the syndrome, such as high fructose corn syrup and caffeine.
In one 2013 British study, 5-year-olds who regularly drank soda water were more likely to be aggressive and dislike towards others. The abundance of caffeine and “fast food” exacerbate hyperactivity and impair the attention of children.
Mix for baking and icing
The confectionery departments of supermarkets have a wide range of mixes for making muffins, pancakes, cakes and icing. They make cooking easier, but they are high in sugar, artificial colors, and sweeteners that can increase hyperactivity and other symptoms of ADHD. To avoid undesirable consequences for the child, it is recommended to cook baked goods from natural products and adjust the amount of sugar yourself.
What kid doesn’t like candy and sweets? But many of them are filled with sugar and artificial colors. This is a poor combination for children with ADHD. Both ingredients, studies have shown, contribute to the development of symptoms of the syndrome and hyperactivity , moreover, they are bad for the fragile teeth of children. It is best to learn how to make candies at home using natural ingredients such as dried fruit.
Frozen fruits and vegetables
It is known that a child’s diet must necessarily include fresh fruits and vegetables. But in winter and to make cooking easier, people sometimes buy bags of frozen fruit and vegetable mixes. Such food products may contain artificial colors and elements of harmful fertilizers, so it is necessary to carefully study the product label.
Frozen foods treated with insect-fighting organophosphates have been shown to cause neurological behavioral problems that mimic ADHD. Such substances are often used by foreign manufacturers. The best solution is to buy fresh berries and fruits, or freeze them yourself in summer and autumn.
Teenagers love to use them, but sometimes also younger students who want to seem older. Energy drinks contain a lot of harmful chemicals and ingredients that can significantly worsen ADHD symptoms: sugar, artificial sweeteners, artificial colors, caffeine and other stimulants. Neuroscientists believe that energy drinks are at the top of the list of foods that cause teenagers to exhibit behaviors that mimic ADHD. Even if the child is healthy, the love of energy drinks can seriously harm him.
Fish and seafood
Mercury-containing fish and seafood can also worsen ADHD symptoms in the long term. It is worth being careful with the inclusion of fish such as shark, mackerel, swordfish and fish of the Malakanty family in the child’s diet . Mercury, like cellulose, is very difficult to digest and can accumulate in the brain over time. This can lead to hyperactivity .