Every child is a unique spark of light in their own right. As much as the scientific world is trying to quantify and analyse possible causes, co-factors, whatever other associations, patterns and links with the definitions of various “labels” of a diagnosis, you as a parent know that your child has an essence about him or her that perhaps science isn’t even able to explain or ever will.
It’s becoming common knowledge perhaps that at least optimising a child’s diet and nutrition should minimise presentations of symptoms or blow-outs, or reduce their frequency or severity.
By understanding that essential vitamins and minerals are the building blocks of our cells for anyone to function, it is logical to then associate optimum nutrition with optimum wellbeing for any child, whether “diagnosed” or not.
Sometimes there is a struggle between acknowledging whether the child’s behaviour or tendencies is a result of nature or nurture — that is, many judgemental eyes at the supermarket wondering why you don’t discipline your child enough, or whatever, etc. And oftentimes parents don’t realise there is anything particularly “wrong” with their child until a school teacher comments or points out that they are “difficult” in class or other worse complaints.
Sometimes it can feel as it you want to blame the whole system!
Why don’t we simply home school our children and let them roam and forage in the rainforests, as nature intended and let them burn off all that energy anyway? Or why do we have to have an education system not set up for more introverted personality types?
There’s many, many factors (and this post, I’m trying to steer back to nutrition!), what’s probably the most important is being empowered with more information as a parent, so you can make the necessary decisions for your child to grow, thrive and navigate through society.
Some common nutritional deficiencies being researched with children of ADD/ADHD include
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin B3
- Essential fatty acids (Omega-3’s)
(“The DEAL for Happier, Healthier, Smarter Kids” by Dr. Peter Dingle)
Artificial sweeteners, additives, and processed foods are all associated with exacerbation of symptoms for ADD/ADHD/Autism and spectrum disorders. Overall gut health, and supporting digestive functions has been associated with improvement of symptoms and reduction or severity. And the choice of organic over non-organic has also shown benefits. (More to expand on in upcoming posts).
Is an off-the-shelf multivitamin enough?
This depends on each child and their individual situation. What else are they eating, what else are they doing through their days, their weeks? Whether their digestive function is absorbing the nutrients they are taking?
Every situation is unique and the common nutritional deficiencies found in research are simply a starting point for investigation.