Children’s Health, ADD ADHD & Magnesium Nutrition

adhdADD & ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) has been a diagnosed “illness” in children since the 1980s. Many argue that…

… ADD and ADHD should not be classified as a “disorder” but simply consists of a set of problems that are a normal part of childhood. Nonetheless, many of ADD’s & ADHD’s symptoms, including wandering attention, nervousness and hyperactivity, do exist and can be extremely troubling to parents and teachers alike. Drugs such asRitalin, promoted as ADD & ADHD treatments for some years, have been found to have highly dangerous side effects and not to be true solutions at all. At the same time, many nutritionists have found, not surprisingly, that many of the answers to ADD & ADHD lie right in a child’s diet in the form of food additives, sugar, and the lack of essential nutrients.

Food Additives and Sugar


In a notable example, one child, horribly hyperactive, out of control and diagnosed as having ADHD by a school psychologist, was taken off any foods containing a particular red dye. As if by magic, the child’s hyperactivity ceased; she began paying attention and living a normal life.

Supporting such a result, a study just completed at Yale University School of Medicine’s Prevention Research Center showed a direct connection between food additives and hyperactivity. In the study, 297 children were given drinks containing common artificial food colorings and additives similar to those found in commercially available food and candy. A control group was given drinks without additives. The children who drank the additive enhanced drinks displayed significantly more hyperactive behavior and also had shorter attention spans.

Another very common cause of ADD & ADHD symptoms is children overdosing on sugar. With all the snack-food breakfast cereals available, and all manner of high sugar-content treats, hyperactivity is no wonder. You can observe a child who ingests a large quantity of sugar (just a doughnut and a soda will do the trick) and watch what occurs with the child. They’ll hit a high of seemingly out-of-control hyperactivity, and then become grouchy and fidgety and prone to tantrums. This is sometimes called a sugar rush and is somehow unknown to many parents as a source of problems.


Taking a Child Off Sugar Will Do Miracles


In addition to removal of chemical additives and processed sugar from the diet, a number of noteworthy nutritionists have traced ADD & ADHD symptoms to a lack of the mineral magnesium, which is essential to and missing from most diets today. Kids drinking a lot of soda, or even drinking fruit juices, are getting high amounts of sugar but not magnesium, says Carolyn Dean, MD, author of The Magnesium Miracle. “Kids without magnesium suffer irritability, insomnia and constipation.

These symptoms, usually diagnosed as ADD or ADHD, clear up very quickly when a child is put on magnesium. You also can’t concentrate in school when you’ve got a magnesium deficiency, your brain is irritated. Daniella Chace, nutritionist and author of the best-selling book Smoothies for Life, agrees: It is my belief that many ADHD symptoms stem from a high sugar diet and also, in many cases, from a magnesium deficiency.

Sirena Stever, a naturopath practicing in Augusta, Georgia, also agrees. Sugar and overrestimulation, like stress, will actually exhaust a child’s nervous system, she says. One of the nutrients we start them on is magnesium. They can tell such a difference. The magnesium allows the nervous system to rebuild, and will allow the child to relax. Dr. Stever has actually assisted many children to come off ADD & ADHD medications and helped restore them to normal lives. Children are the future of our society. Assisting them to survive naturally is something for which we must all take more responsibility.

Article by Bruce Boyers – Health Advocate, Freelance Writer

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