One of the most important natural remedies for ADD and ADHD that every sufferer must adhere to is the "avoiding of certain foods and the eating more of certain foods".
So here's a complete list of the "best and worst" for ADD and ADHD...
Article by Troy Sawyer (Certified Holistic Nutritionist, Health & Wellness Coach, Sports Nutritionist)
Updated March 21, 2023 -- This post contains affiliate links
Eliminate All Food Colourings, Refined Sugars, Excitotoxins, Dairy Foods and Carbonated Soft Drinks From The Diet:
Even to this day, the medical profession, the FDA, and the pharmaceutical industry still make the ridiculous claim that allowing your child to eat foods loaded with artificial colors, flavor enhancers, preservatives, refined and processed sugars - along with consuming soda and soft drinks - does absolutely nothing to alter their behavioral patterns. This is in spite of the strong evidence proving otherwise…
An in depth study in 2007 by the University of Southampton, and published in the prestigious Lancet Medical Journal, found that hyperactive behavior increased in children when they consumed two different mixtures of artificial colors and a preservative.1 As a result of the study, the British Food Standards Agency advised parents to reduce or eliminate six particular food coloring's from their child’s diet. Then a committee of the European Parliament went even further and banned all synthetic dyes used in baby foods and other foods consumed by small children.
If you have any doubts about food colorings causing hyperactive behavior then I challenge you to give your child a glass of red cordial and watch what happens. (I’m only kidding of course. I actually did this myself once in my early, “non experienced”, parental days and I can honestly say that the transformation in your child’s behavior is unbelievable!)
The fact that refined sugars and food colorings cause hyperactive behavior in children is a no brainer (literally). I think all of us have been caught out when we’ve given our child sweets (normally without even thinking) and then watched them become an out-of-control gremlin!
The main problem I see with parents of ADD and ADHD kids is on many occasions they genuinely think they're giving their child a food or drink low in sugar or artificial additives, but it’s actually high in these ingredients. So it really is of utter most importance that you check every single ingredient in a food or product before you allow it to go into your child’s mouth. For ADD and ADHD kids… its zero sugar allowed!
Carbonated soft drinks are also behavioral destroyers that must be eliminated from the diet. Not only do these disastrous inventions suck valuable minerals from the body at an astoundingly fast rate (and neutralize stomach acid so your body can’t absorb any nutrients) they're also loaded with tons of sugar, or even worse, deadly excitotoxins such as aspartame.
And speaking of excitotoxins - these nasty chemicals will also exacerbate ADD and ADHD symptoms like nothing else. Aspartame, in particular, is a truly shocking food additive. It over-excites the brain cells and nervous system to the point of exhaustion, and eventually even death. Not only does it cause debilitating diseases such as multiple sclerosis and fibromyalgia (along with brain tumors), it also causes memory loss, mood swings, depression, anxiety attacks, rage disorder, dyslexia and paranoia (all of which ADD and ADHD sufferers don’t want or need!) 2
Other excitotoxins that must be eliminated include monosodium glutamate (MSG) and hydrolyzed vegetable protein and fats. This one is another no brainer folks - not just for ADD and ADHD sufferers, but for everybody.
Dairy products are also amongst the worst foods for ADD and ADHD sufferers. The pasteurisation and homogenisation process turns them into horrible gunk that sticks to the lining of the gut. This prevents the digestion and assimilation of all food and nutrients.
Most ADD and ADHD sufferers also have low immune function so intolerance to foods such as eggs, soy, corn and wheat/gluten is very common. It’s therefore good practice to restrict these foods from their diet as well.
Junk food is exactly what it says… “Junk food”. Now I know it tastes good, but for humans it’s nothing but death food! And for ADD and ADHD sufferers, it’s a very potent behavioral disrupter, so you need to get rid of it ASAP.
Real food, on the other hand, (or as some people like to call it… “health food”) is a good behavior savior!
Fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, herbs and spices, whole grains such as raw oats and rice, along with fish and chicken (organic and free range if possible) are the only foods an ADD or ADHD sufferer should be eating. And a recent study published in The Lancet Medical Journal gives evidence to this.
The research conducted in this study revealed that just by an ADHD sufferer doing nothing more than following a simple "restrictive elimination diet", they can improve their ADHD symptoms quite dramatically.
In the study, researchers decided to follow 100 children and give them either the restricted elimination diet or the typical American diet. The elimination diet group consumed rice, fruits and vegetables, white meat and filtered water - while being forbidden to eat the most common allergenic ADHD foods such as eggs, soy, dairy products and corn (along with all refined and processed foods of course).
Results from the first part of the study showed 78% of the children in the elimination diet group experienced a sharp improvement in their ADHD symptoms. In the second part of the study the allergic foods were reintroduced into the children’s diet. This immediately resulted in 63% of participants suffering a dramatic relapse of their ADHD symptoms!
For more information on this terrific study, you can click on this link... Food Affects Behavior
Go from natural remedies for ADD - foods to avoid, foods to eat - to more home remedies for ADHD
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