This article is, primarily, for parents whose children have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) but eliminating unhealthy foods from our diets is something we should all consider. With the festive season behind us let’s focus on our eating habits – and get into a healthy eating routine.
Experts believe that foods do not cause ADHD, but some foods seem to worsen the condition’s symptoms. Here are a few foods you may choose to limit or avoid –
- artificial colourings and flavourings
- processed foods, including sugary snacks, sweets, drinks and fast foods,
- breakfast cereals that are high in sugar,
- excessive intake of caffeine that can lead to jitteriness, nervousness, and disrupted sleep.
While there is no one diet that fits all individuals, it’s important to monitor your child’s reaction to certain foods. Your healthcare provider would best advise you on a balanced diet, tailored to your child’s specific and individual needs.
It’s important that we eat regular, balanced meals and aim for a diet that includes a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean proteins, and healthy fats. These ensure we get the essential nutrients for overall health and brain function. Protein-rich foods such as such lean meats, chicken, fish, eggs, dairy products, legumes and nut help regulate blood sugar levels and provide a steady release of energy, while complex carbohydrates such as brown rice, quinoa, oats, fruits, and vegetables can help stabilise blood sugar levels and provide sustained energy.
Remember to give your child a bottle of water every day because dehydration can affect concentration and mental function.Do you read the labels on the food you buy? If not, start doing so – and if you don’t know what an ingredient is, don’t eat the item until you have established what it is. Google can help you here!