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Food Additives May Up the Possibility of an ADHD Diagnosis

by | Conditions and Disorders, Latest News, Research

Home Conditions and Disorders Food Additives May Up the Possibility of an ADHD Diagnosis

We’ve heard that bad parenting may be to blame, that perhaps a little foul play during pregnancy contributed to the child’s Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Ambiguous claims that “diets lacking in balanced nutrition” may be partially responsible for the development of ADHD in some children. However, it is rare that we hear of specific correlations between foods (or food additives, in this case) and the increased possibility of ADHD.
According to the Huffington Post, scientists have made progress in the analysis of food additives correlating to instances of ADHD. Researchers have speculated that food coloring and preservatives have existed as components that exacerbate a child’s ADHD symptoms. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? Did the ADHD stem from a genetic basis or did the excess of food coloring and preservatives spawn the birth of ADHD in the child? That question requires further research to warrant an accurate response. However, controlled studies reveal that there is an undeniable correlation between ADHD symptoms after eating the food additives. It sounds as though children with a predisposition to ADHD may be stirring the underlying symptoms – for the worst – by indulging in unnatural food additives.
Who knew eating M&M’s could lead to hyperactivity in children? Apparently, parents need to be cautious about what they feed their children. Although M&M’s and other preservative-filled candies pepper up an otherwise bland Easter Basket with color and spunk, they may be doing their children a disservice. Bernard Weiss, Ph.D, professor of environmental medicine at the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, in New York, says “it’s clear that food additives can sometimes affect child behavior, at least in the short term.” According to the Huffington Post article, “A 2007 study published in The Lancet found that a mixture of four artificial food colors plus the preservative sodium benzoate aggravated hyperactivity in two groups of children without ADHD — three-year-olds and eight- to nine-year-olds.” My question is – why bother toying with the clinical results, as new as they may be? Why not just eliminate such dyes from our diets? I mean, clearly they are unnatural. Anything turquoise blue in a hard candy shell doesn’t exactly equate to the leafy green vegetables our grandma always told us to finish eating.
Weiss’s controlled trials involving the food additives reveal: “From the standpoint at least of acute effects produced by food color consumption, you really can’t deny the evidence any more.”
Scientists are collaborating with the Food and Drug Administration in an effort to include warning labels on candies containing dyes. Going forward, we may be seeing warning labels on everything from M&M’s to Marshmallow Peeps, that say “may have an adverse effect on activity and attention in children.”
The Health Section of the Huffington Post goes on to specify the most devilish culprits in the additive world:
“Those colors are Yellow No. 5 (tartrazine), Yellow No. 10 (quinoline yellow, not
approved in the U.S.), Yellow No. 6 (sunset yellow), Red No. 3 (carmoisine, not
approved in the U.S.), Red No. 7 (ponceau 4R, not approved in the U.S.), and Red No.
40 (allura red). Britain’s Food Standards Agency (the equivalent of our FDA) is also
trying to get companies to phase out these additives.”
I am not going to sit in a perpetual state of suspense awaiting further trial results. I’ll take the limited evidence presented and keep my future children, and grandchildren, away from dyes. By the time I have grandchildren, the dyes will probably be outlawed across the world – deemed detrimentally consequential substances. Bright blue Skittles in little Ava’s Christmas stocking? I’d replace it with a few ripe oranges, but that’s just me!