Saturday, February 5, 2011

Dietary Intervention Decreases ADHD Symptoms

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a widespread childhood illness.  According to the National Institute of Mental Health, this disorder causes hyperactivity as well as difficulty with focusing and paying attention.  However, a recent study published in the HealthDay News suggests that a special, restrictive diet significantly reduces symptoms of ADHD. 
According to an article in, food additives and preservatives can negatively impact a child’s behavior.  When children between the ages of 4 and 8 were placed on a strict diet consisting of no processed foods for five weeks, ADHD symptoms significantly reduced in 78 percent of the children.  However, when the eating restrictions were lifted from their diet, two-thirds of the children endured a relapse in symptoms.   
Dr. Jaswinder Ghuman explains that this study does pose numerous unanswerable questions.  It can’t be proven that dietary intervention will reduce symptoms long-term.  Therefore, she does not condone changing the current clinical practices of ADHD based on the results of this single study; however, she finds that eliminating foods high in IgG (an antibody made by the immune system that is linked to food hypersensitivities) will significantly decrease symptoms of ADHD in children.  Although there are some uncertainties, research indicates a link between the consumption of food additives and an increase in activity.
-Jordan Gutterman     

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