Attention Deficit Disorder (sometimes with hyperactivity) is a complex and poorly understood condition often characterized by impulsive behavior, hyperactivity and poor attention span. The diagnosis is subjective and symptoms can range from restlessness, mood swings and disorganization to depression and anxiety.
There are studies that indicate that diet plays a large role in the development of ADD/ADHD. The kids of today grow up on diets of processed foods that are high in sugar, simple carbs and void of any nutrient value. Even several pieces of fruit per day can be too much sugar for a child’s body. If you have a banana that is one serving of fruit for you, but if a child has a piece of fruit that may be equal to 4 pieces of fruit for him depending on his size, so right there that is a large amount of sugar for their size to process at one time. Sugar will rob the body of minerals and vitamins particularly B vitamins which are needed for thinking, coordination, energy and memory.
Our food and beverages are filled with additives, colorings and dyes and some children may have adverse responses to these ingredients. The child may have unbalanced blood sugar, poor gut health, nutritional deficiencies or food sensitives, all which can contribute to ADD/ADHD.
Instead of opting for medication as the only solution try changing the diet first to see if there is any improvement. When changing the diet of a child, the entire family must be on board; approaching it as a change for the better for the family not just the child. Often other family members will notice changes in themselves as well such as improved sleep and more energy. Replacing refined foods such as processed sugar and gluten products with foods such as whole grains, vegetables and quality proteins and fats is a good starting place. Work with someone who can guide you and make the process easier for the child and the family; someone who will get to the root issues of the ADD symptoms.
While my main focus is on depression, I do address other mental health issues as well since I have found that many (not all) with depression also have other issues such as anxiety and ADHD.