The Medicated Child

      106 Comments on The Medicated Child

I watched a PBS documentary titled The Medicated Child a couple of nights ago.  It made me want to reach into the TV and strangle some of the doctors who are pumping kids full of drugs.  I don’t doubt that some people are born with true chemical imbalances that require medication, but when we’ve got literally millions of children being diagnosed as bipolar or suffering from ADHD and put on drug therapy, something is very, very wrong.

If you have a Netflix account that includes streaming and an internet-enabled TV, you can find the documentary there and watch it on the big screen.  If not, you can watch it below.  You’ll hear the word “nutrition” mentioned only once, if memory serves.  Meanwhile, you’ll see kids consuming ice cream, cookies, battered corn dogs, and Gatorade.  No wonder they have brain issues.

Watching shows like this, I’m thankful I’ve learned so much about nutrition.  My daughter Sara is highly intelligent, but also bouncy and energetic.  Put her on a lousy diet, and I can easily imagine her behavior changing enough that some well-meaning teacher would tell us she’s hyperactive or suffering from ADD and may need medication. 

As Dr. Barry Sears once wrote, every time you eat, you’re drugging yourself.  I can’t help but think most of these kids are taking prescription drugs to offset the effects of the “drugs” they eat.


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106 thoughts on “The Medicated Child

  1. Maria Minno

    One problem is that parents and doctors don’t realize what good nutrition really is. If you go by the USDA guidelines you’ll get sick. People generally don’t know what good fats are (they think “olive oil” instead of “butter!”), how much children need (I mean, they really need a LOT!), and what supplements to choose (e.g., nothing can compare with the fermented cod liver oil/ butter oil blend from Blue Ice). There is so much bad information out there. I’m glad there is the Weston A. Price Foundation’s excellent journal, website, and conferences around the country to provide information that is accurate and useful. It has proven itself reliable and accurate and practical over and over again to me and my family and many of my friends.

    That’s why I believe much of the blame lies with the USDA and all the other lipophobes in authority. The last thing that would occur to most parents and doctors is that the kids aren’t eating enough natural saturated fats.

    Reply
  2. Auntie M

    As a teacher, I get really tired of bearing blame for everything related to education and children. Trust me, I’m surrounded by children all day long. I know what “normal” looks like. I can peg a student diagnosed with ADHD at a hundred paces, as can most teachers I know. Truthfully, I feel like many of them could be fixed or at least see some improvement with changes in diet, not that I’m allowed to say that.

    Most teachers are good people with good intentions, and we want students to be able to learn. I’ve seen students for whom medication was a miracle, and others who saw little benefit or became like zombies. I would venture that 95% of them would benefit in some way from dietary changes like GAPs, SCD, Feingold, and/or gluten/dairy/sugar-free diets. Most of the students eat “carbage” all the time, and they have starving brains. It’s tough to teach students like that, and even tougher when I’m personally blamed for their inability to learn. I’m held solely responsible for any and all failures in my classroom. Teachers are the current scapegoats for all that’s wrong with education. It’s downright depressing.

    I can tell that many of my students need an intervention of some sort to help them become better learners. Legally speaking, though, I can’t suggest or force a parent to do anything. We’ve been told that if someone in the school suggests medication or testing to a parent, the school district legally has to pay for such testing and/or medication because it was our idea. If we have a student who takes medication, and that student obviously hasn’t taken it, we’re not even supposed to say, “Did you take your medication?” We’re supposed to ask him/her if he or she needs to go see the nurse. It’s sticky. If some teacher or school has tried to tell you that you “have to” medicate your child, get a lawyer.

    The really irritating thing is the parents who know their student has behavior problems, but do absolutely nothing because they don’t want to medicate. Doing nothing to help the child is as much child abuse as overmedicating. I think some of them just don’t know what to do, and are paralyzed.

    I would love to suggest dietary changes to parents, but I can’t. I think some of the parents would welcome that information, but my hands are tied. Truthfully, many of them wouldn’t want or perhaps be able to change their child’s diet so radically. My own sister has ignored my suggestions to change her daughter’s diet, because it would be “too hard”. Her daughter’s therapist, by the way, just suggested the same gluten/dairy/sugar-free diet that I’ve been suggesting for years. That’s at least an encouraging sign that some people are taking diet more seriously.

    Something like GAPs pretty much requires that everyone in the house go on it, so you can clear your house of noncompliant items. Most people aren’t willing to change their lives to that extent, and many don’t believe that it will make a difference. They’re brainwashed into the idea that saturated fat is bad, whole grains are good, and food has no effect on behavior.

    Sorry for the rant. The “blame the schools” thing always irritates me.

    I don’t blame the teachers. My mom and sister were both teachers, so I have a sense of what you’re going through. Teachers aren’t supposed to be substitute parents.

    Reply
  3. Auntie M

    Sorry, Tom. I wasn’t saying that YOU blame the teachers. Lots of other people blame the schools and teachers, and it bothers me that parents (and students, in certain cases) hold little accountability in our current system and in the public eye.

    No offense taken here. Eric Oliver pointed out in our interview that people want to dump all these non-academic responsibilities on schools, such as turning them into diet centers, and it’s backfiring. I totally agree.

    Reply
  4. Bruce

    Part of the problem, I think, is the amount of ingredients that are GRAS that are allowed to be in a lot of the foods we eat. Even if you are trying to eat healthy, the ingredient list grows. HFCS is one, as it is included in many things that do not need to be sweet. But, I noticed the other day, that the Emerald Nuts cashews and the deluxe mixed nuts I usually buy now contain; “nuts (of course) oil (for frying) and salt”. But now they also contain “Natural Flavors” What the f%&@??? I wrote an email to Emerald to inquire why that ingredient was included. The reply came back that if I was unhappy with the product, to give them my home address and they would mail me a coupon for replacement. So, no more Emerald for me.

    It’s not about eating crap, it’s the amount of crap that we eat if we do not read labels.

    That’s we buy nuts at Costco. The ingredients are nuts and salt.

    Reply
  5. Ron_Mocci

    WOW Korey, I said the same thing you said. this is what I said : I’m so sick of this kind shit , It really hurts my heart ! 10 min. into the movie there is a 4 year thats needs lots of cuz of meds , it shows the mom giving her kid ( corn dogs and a soda ) The soda is 2 sev. thats 28 grs x 2 =56 grs sugar WTF now the corn dogs = 0 Vits and no mins ! the kid needs real food and good fats ! Please open your eyes and see the USAD is making us all sick !
    than : Cuz I made mistake : sorry .. needs lots of food …
    Ron*

    The corn dogs are also full of refined carbs and probably fried in some nasty vegetable oil.

    Reply
  6. Auntie M

    Sorry, Tom. I wasn’t saying that YOU blame the teachers. Lots of other people blame the schools and teachers, and it bothers me that parents (and students, in certain cases) hold little accountability in our current system and in the public eye.

    No offense taken here. Eric Oliver pointed out in our interview that people want to dump all these non-academic responsibilities on schools, such as turning them into diet centers, and it’s backfiring. I totally agree.

    Reply
  7. Pierce

    I was fortunate enough to have a great pediatrician. He always advised eating lots of real foods as a better alternative to taking vitamins. When my kindergarten teacher suggested I had ADD that should be treated, his response was “Here’s my number… tell her to call me and I will explain a few things.”

    She never said anything again, and I am grateful.

    I’m not sure what these teachers expect though. When I was a kid, our whole neighborhood would stay out in the pool or our backyards until bedtime every in the summer. Then Labor Day rolls around, and we were all stuffed in classrooms reading poorly rhyming and insultingly stupid books about noisy mice. How did they expect us to react?

    You were lucky to have such a good pediatrician.

    Reply
  8. Bruce

    Part of the problem, I think, is the amount of ingredients that are GRAS that are allowed to be in a lot of the foods we eat. Even if you are trying to eat healthy, the ingredient list grows. HFCS is one, as it is included in many things that do not need to be sweet. But, I noticed the other day, that the Emerald Nuts cashews and the deluxe mixed nuts I usually buy now contain; “nuts (of course) oil (for frying) and salt”. But now they also contain “Natural Flavors” What the f%&@??? I wrote an email to Emerald to inquire why that ingredient was included. The reply came back that if I was unhappy with the product, to give them my home address and they would mail me a coupon for replacement. So, no more Emerald for me.

    It’s not about eating crap, it’s the amount of crap that we eat if we do not read labels.

    That’s we buy nuts at Costco. The ingredients are nuts and salt.

    Reply
  9. Ron_Mocci

    WOW Korey, I said the same thing you said. this is what I said : I’m so sick of this kind shit , It really hurts my heart ! 10 min. into the movie there is a 4 year thats needs lots of cuz of meds , it shows the mom giving her kid ( corn dogs and a soda ) The soda is 2 sev. thats 28 grs x 2 =56 grs sugar WTF now the corn dogs = 0 Vits and no mins ! the kid needs real food and good fats ! Please open your eyes and see the USAD is making us all sick !
    than : Cuz I made mistake : sorry .. needs lots of food …
    Ron*

    The corn dogs are also full of refined carbs and probably fried in some nasty vegetable oil.

    Reply
  10. Nick S

    On top of your (accurate) observation that diet is a smarter first fix to try for ADHD than drugs, there’s also the fact that doctors will almost universally ignore behavioral therapy. When I was diagnosed with adult ADHD, I was told that behavior modification was time consuming, hard, and ineffective.

    After suffering through a few months of the medication, I got fed up with the Adderall roller-coaster and went out looking for alternatives. If you’ve never tried Adderall, don’t. Taking it daily is a nightmarish existence unless you can afford the staggeringly expensive slow-release caps; my insurance wouldn’t pay.

    A few books later (all of which together costing less than one month of Adderall) I found that I had the tools to bring my ADHD under control. I am not cured, but I am hugely improved, and no longer need medication. All it took was a low-carb diet and truly simple behavioral changes. Now that I know it, I am disgusted by the crudeness and carelessness of meds-first treatment plans.

    I’m glad you were able to find a non-drug method of handling it.

    Reply
  11. Hilary Kyro

    “Hot medicine! Hot medicine! Hot Medicine!”
    Corndog kid is the cornerstone of the economy.
    As noted by Jesred and Tom; the tubby popcorn parents have high insulin resistance and low point of purchase sales resistance. SeeWantCandy. -Label buyers.
    Dr. Bacon is a smooth salesman; saying no would feel like you’re neglecting the child’s morbid juvenile mania. Saying yes is suicide, but at least you tried everything.
    Why don’t these quacks take their own medicine and donate their bodies to science?
    Is this cutting-edge, heroic pediatrics or The Heart of Darkness? The horror, the horror…
    Fatheads; let’s keep spreading the good news like butter!

    Specifically, let’s spread the news like Kerry Gold butter.

    Reply
  12. Pierce

    I was fortunate enough to have a great pediatrician. He always advised eating lots of real foods as a better alternative to taking vitamins. When my kindergarten teacher suggested I had ADD that should be treated, his response was “Here’s my number… tell her to call me and I will explain a few things.”

    She never said anything again, and I am grateful.

    I’m not sure what these teachers expect though. When I was a kid, our whole neighborhood would stay out in the pool or our backyards until bedtime every in the summer. Then Labor Day rolls around, and we were all stuffed in classrooms reading poorly rhyming and insultingly stupid books about noisy mice. How did they expect us to react?

    You were lucky to have such a good pediatrician.

    Reply
  13. Emily Deans, M.D.

    First off – I have to say that none of the psychiatrists to whom I might send my kids would even think of medication without considering many options and the whole picture. Childhood ADHD is a multifactorial issue with many, many causes and multiple solutions, behavioral therapy ALWAYS important (in children and adults) – but, frankly, medications can be miraculous. I’m an adult psychiatrist but I’ve seen it more than once in kids of my patients, and one of my dear colleagues is a child psychiatrist who works her butt off trying to help troubled kids navigate a confusing world. (And I have to say, Whittiker’s book has a somewhat bizarre premise – Dr. Carlat who has made his career going against “Big Pharma” and publishes the fantastic Carlat Report has a review here: http://carlatpsychiatry.blogspot.com/2011/01/anatomy-of-epidemic-carlat-take-part-2.html

    But that is beside the point – I believe that diet has a lot to do with ADHD. I’ve blogged about it extensively, and the latest post discusses a recent (Feb 2011), well done, randomized controlled trial of a mostly paleo+ rice diet that improved ADHD and oppositional defiant symptoms in 60% of the patients, whose symptoms worsened when they returned to the “healthy” control diet.

    http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.com/2011/02/food-elimination-diet-and-adhd.html

    The psychiatrists and teachers are not the enemy – mostly.

    Glad to know you look to diet as a potential cause. Unfortunately, diet was only mentioned once (almost as a throwaway) in the documentary, and was never investigated as a possible cause with the people in my extended family who were diagnosed as bipolar or ADD.

    Reply
  14. Jan

    @Bruce – “Natural flavors” or “flavorings” is a popular industry euphemism for the ever popular Monosodium Glutamate, or MSG. I won’t tough the stuff with a 10-foot pole – it gives me horrible headaches.

    Reply
  15. Nick S

    On top of your (accurate) observation that diet is a smarter first fix to try for ADHD than drugs, there’s also the fact that doctors will almost universally ignore behavioral therapy. When I was diagnosed with adult ADHD, I was told that behavior modification was time consuming, hard, and ineffective.

    After suffering through a few months of the medication, I got fed up with the Adderall roller-coaster and went out looking for alternatives. If you’ve never tried Adderall, don’t. Taking it daily is a nightmarish existence unless you can afford the staggeringly expensive slow-release caps; my insurance wouldn’t pay.

    A few books later (all of which together costing less than one month of Adderall) I found that I had the tools to bring my ADHD under control. I am not cured, but I am hugely improved, and no longer need medication. All it took was a low-carb diet and truly simple behavioral changes. Now that I know it, I am disgusted by the crudeness and carelessness of meds-first treatment plans.

    I’m glad you were able to find a non-drug method of handling it.

    Reply
  16. Hilary Kyro

    “Hot medicine! Hot medicine! Hot Medicine!”
    Corndog kid is the cornerstone of the economy.
    As noted by Jesred and Tom; the tubby popcorn parents have high insulin resistance and low point of purchase sales resistance. SeeWantCandy. -Label buyers.
    Dr. Bacon is a smooth salesman; saying no would feel like you’re neglecting the child’s morbid juvenile mania. Saying yes is suicide, but at least you tried everything.
    Why don’t these quacks take their own medicine and donate their bodies to science?
    Is this cutting-edge, heroic pediatrics or The Heart of Darkness? The horror, the horror…
    Fatheads; let’s keep spreading the good news like butter!

    Specifically, let’s spread the news like Kerry Gold butter.

    Reply
  17. Emily Deans, M.D.

    First off – I have to say that none of the psychiatrists to whom I might send my kids would even think of medication without considering many options and the whole picture. Childhood ADHD is a multifactorial issue with many, many causes and multiple solutions, behavioral therapy ALWAYS important (in children and adults) – but, frankly, medications can be miraculous. I’m an adult psychiatrist but I’ve seen it more than once in kids of my patients, and one of my dear colleagues is a child psychiatrist who works her butt off trying to help troubled kids navigate a confusing world. (And I have to say, Whittiker’s book has a somewhat bizarre premise – Dr. Carlat who has made his career going against “Big Pharma” and publishes the fantastic Carlat Report has a review here: http://carlatpsychiatry.blogspot.com/2011/01/anatomy-of-epidemic-carlat-take-part-2.html

    But that is beside the point – I believe that diet has a lot to do with ADHD. I’ve blogged about it extensively, and the latest post discusses a recent (Feb 2011), well done, randomized controlled trial of a mostly paleo+ rice diet that improved ADHD and oppositional defiant symptoms in 60% of the patients, whose symptoms worsened when they returned to the “healthy” control diet.

    http://evolutionarypsychiatry.blogspot.com/2011/02/food-elimination-diet-and-adhd.html

    The psychiatrists and teachers are not the enemy – mostly.

    Glad to know you look to diet as a potential cause. Unfortunately, diet was only mentioned once (almost as a throwaway) in the documentary, and was never investigated as a possible cause with the people in my extended family who were diagnosed as bipolar or ADD.

    Reply
  18. Jan

    @Bruce – “Natural flavors” or “flavorings” is a popular industry euphemism for the ever popular Monosodium Glutamate, or MSG. I won’t tough the stuff with a 10-foot pole – it gives me horrible headaches.

    Reply
  19. cancerclasses

    ADD, ADHD, schizophrenia & other brain function disregulations are predominantly caused by dietary deficiencies of good, organic, CIS configured omega 6 linoleic acid, omega 3 alpha linolenic acid, saturated fats & cholesterols from animal proteins, and the related consumption of toxic, oxidized TRANS configured omega 6 linoleic acid polyunsaturated vegetable oils in most all processed & fast foods which are not the proper form for physiological & metabolic processes and which disrupt neurological signalling & brain function.

    “The entire spectrum of autoimmune disorders, endocrine imbalances, gastrointestinal disturbances cardiovascular difficulties and central nervous system involvement are all rivoted in derangement of fatty acid metabolism.”

    “The use of trans fats literally shuts down the fatty acid metabolism. The synthesis of prostaglandins-local hormones that control all cell to cell interactions within the body-are completely dependent upon the ingestion of high quality, unaltered fatty acids. The body requires specific fatty acids to create gastrointestinal integrity, bilipid membranes, hormones, neurohormones, prostaglandins and immune modulators all derived from fatty acids and these fats must be supplied and trans fats avoided if modulation of the faulty metabolism is to be achieved.”

    See Patricia Kane, Ph.D. article, Essential Fatty Acids, Lorenzo’s Oil and Beyond https://www.explorepub.com/samlple-articles/217-essential-fatty-acids-lorenzos-oil-and-beyond-.html

    ADD, ADHD and even schizophrenia & other brain function disregulations have been resolved & mediated in as little as 2 weeks by:

    1. Stopping ALL intakes of oxidized, inflammatory TRANS configured omega 6 linoleic acid polyunsaturated vegetable oils & all processed & fast foods,

    2. Supplementing the diet with good, UN-adulterated, organic CIS configured omega 6 linoleic acids found in organic, cold pressed Evening Primrose, sunflower & safflower oils, and omega 3 alpha linolenic acids found in flax & fish oils & reintroducing into the diet the good, organic, grass fed animal proteins & saturated fats & cholesterols in them, and

    3. Restricting intakes of all carbohydrates to a level equal to, or even less than, 50 or 60 grams maximum per day which yields a total calorie intake by carbs of only 200 to 300 calories per day.

    Utilizing this 3 step approach can produce amazing results quickly. If you have any doubts & require further proof, start by trying just this one simple thing: daily cod liver oil.
    Certified nutrition educator Misty Humphrey on ADD & ADHD child behavior & cod liver oil, http://twaud.io/q88w Podcast here: http://bit.ly/gotdO6

    Thank you for the links.

    Reply
  20. Isabel

    It makes me wonder if our babies aren’t getting enough healthy fat before the age of 1? Most people are now avoiding eggs the first year due to possible allergies, but wouldn’t that be the healthiest way to give it to them?

    And what kind of fat is in infant formula?

    OMG! I just looked it up!

    “D Nonfat Milk, Lactose, High Oleic Safflower Oil, Soy Oil, Coconut Oil, Whey Protein Concentrate, Less than 2% of: C. Cohnii Oil, M. Alpina Oil, Potassium Citrate, Calcium Carbonate, Ascorbic Acid, Potassium Chloride, Choline Bitartrate, Magnesium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Ferrous Sulfate, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Taurine, M-Inositol, Alpha Tocopheryl Acetate, L-Carnitine, Mixed Tocopherols, Sodium Chloride, Zinc Sulfate, Niacinamide, Calcium Pantothenate, Cupric Sulfate, Vitamin A Palmitate, Thiamine Chloride Hydrochloride, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Beta-Carotene, Folic Acid, Manganese Sulfate, Phylloquinone, Biotin, Sodium Selenate, Vitamin D3, Cyanocobalamin and Nucleotides (Adenosine5 -Monophosphate, Cytidine 5-Monophosphate, Disodium Guanosine 5-Monophosphate, Disodium Uridine 5-Monophosphate)”

    Is this what we are feeding our babies in their first year when their brains are growing so fast?

    And then we are told to avoid eggs, and get them off whole milk as soon as you can…

    Ok, next baby will be strictly breast-fed.

    Sure some kids do just fine on formula, but maybe some kids are more susceptible? I’ve always read that autism and other behavioral issues are increasing exponentially, especially among the well educated and more affluent communities. Is thise because they have better access to health care, leading to more diagnosis? Or is it because these families are more likely to follow a low-fat, high carb diet? Also, what about diet during pregnancy? So many questions…

    Weston A. Price wrote about diet and pregnancy in Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Our girls were breast-fed for a year, with bits of solid foods introduced around six months. Fortunately, my older daughter’s favorite baby food was the pureed lamb.

    Reply
  21. cancerclasses

    ADD, ADHD, schizophrenia & other brain function disregulations are predominantly caused by dietary deficiencies of good, organic, CIS configured omega 6 linoleic acid, omega 3 alpha linolenic acid, saturated fats & cholesterols from animal proteins, and the related consumption of toxic, oxidized TRANS configured omega 6 linoleic acid polyunsaturated vegetable oils in most all processed & fast foods which are not the proper form for physiological & metabolic processes and which disrupt neurological signalling & brain function.

    “The entire spectrum of autoimmune disorders, endocrine imbalances, gastrointestinal disturbances cardiovascular difficulties and central nervous system involvement are all rivoted in derangement of fatty acid metabolism.”

    “The use of trans fats literally shuts down the fatty acid metabolism. The synthesis of prostaglandins-local hormones that control all cell to cell interactions within the body-are completely dependent upon the ingestion of high quality, unaltered fatty acids. The body requires specific fatty acids to create gastrointestinal integrity, bilipid membranes, hormones, neurohormones, prostaglandins and immune modulators all derived from fatty acids and these fats must be supplied and trans fats avoided if modulation of the faulty metabolism is to be achieved.”

    See Patricia Kane, Ph.D. article, Essential Fatty Acids, Lorenzo’s Oil and Beyond https://www.explorepub.com/samlple-articles/217-essential-fatty-acids-lorenzos-oil-and-beyond-.html

    ADD, ADHD and even schizophrenia & other brain function disregulations have been resolved & mediated in as little as 2 weeks by:

    1. Stopping ALL intakes of oxidized, inflammatory TRANS configured omega 6 linoleic acid polyunsaturated vegetable oils & all processed & fast foods,

    2. Supplementing the diet with good, UN-adulterated, organic CIS configured omega 6 linoleic acids found in organic, cold pressed Evening Primrose, sunflower & safflower oils, and omega 3 alpha linolenic acids found in flax & fish oils & reintroducing into the diet the good, organic, grass fed animal proteins & saturated fats & cholesterols in them, and

    3. Restricting intakes of all carbohydrates to a level equal to, or even less than, 50 or 60 grams maximum per day which yields a total calorie intake by carbs of only 200 to 300 calories per day.

    Utilizing this 3 step approach can produce amazing results quickly. If you have any doubts & require further proof, start by trying just this one simple thing: daily cod liver oil.
    Certified nutrition educator Misty Humphrey on ADD & ADHD child behavior & cod liver oil, http://twaud.io/q88w Podcast here: http://bit.ly/gotdO6

    Thank you for the links.

    Reply
  22. Isabel

    It makes me wonder if our babies aren’t getting enough healthy fat before the age of 1? Most people are now avoiding eggs the first year due to possible allergies, but wouldn’t that be the healthiest way to give it to them?

    And what kind of fat is in infant formula?

    OMG! I just looked it up!

    “D Nonfat Milk, Lactose, High Oleic Safflower Oil, Soy Oil, Coconut Oil, Whey Protein Concentrate, Less than 2% of: C. Cohnii Oil, M. Alpina Oil, Potassium Citrate, Calcium Carbonate, Ascorbic Acid, Potassium Chloride, Choline Bitartrate, Magnesium Chloride, Choline Chloride, Ferrous Sulfate, Ascorbyl Palmitate, Taurine, M-Inositol, Alpha Tocopheryl Acetate, L-Carnitine, Mixed Tocopherols, Sodium Chloride, Zinc Sulfate, Niacinamide, Calcium Pantothenate, Cupric Sulfate, Vitamin A Palmitate, Thiamine Chloride Hydrochloride, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Beta-Carotene, Folic Acid, Manganese Sulfate, Phylloquinone, Biotin, Sodium Selenate, Vitamin D3, Cyanocobalamin and Nucleotides (Adenosine5 -Monophosphate, Cytidine 5-Monophosphate, Disodium Guanosine 5-Monophosphate, Disodium Uridine 5-Monophosphate)”

    Is this what we are feeding our babies in their first year when their brains are growing so fast?

    And then we are told to avoid eggs, and get them off whole milk as soon as you can…

    Ok, next baby will be strictly breast-fed.

    Sure some kids do just fine on formula, but maybe some kids are more susceptible? I’ve always read that autism and other behavioral issues are increasing exponentially, especially among the well educated and more affluent communities. Is thise because they have better access to health care, leading to more diagnosis? Or is it because these families are more likely to follow a low-fat, high carb diet? Also, what about diet during pregnancy? So many questions…

    Weston A. Price wrote about diet and pregnancy in Nutrition and Physical Degeneration. Our girls were breast-fed for a year, with bits of solid foods introduced around six months. Fortunately, my older daughter’s favorite baby food was the pureed lamb.

    Reply
  23. cancerclasses

    I forgot to include these links in my previous post in the graph about how seriously toxic trans fats are & how & why they cause cancers & brain disregulations.

    EFA researcher-educator Paul Beatty on the REAL cause of breast & prostate cancer, audio clip http://twaud.io/q8jn Short 7 minute Video here http://bit.ly/gbfqlI

    The other related Paul Beatty videos are good too, click on a few of those to learn more about omega 6 & 3 oils.

    Reply
  24. cosmic1

    Tom, I am loving your blogs. Also, I bought Fathead and it’s great!

    Thinking back when I was a child – no one was on medication and we were all pretty high energy. Going outside at recess helped us release our pent up energy – as did gym classes. Plus, after we got home, we stayed outside as long as possible.

    In today’s world, we would have all probably been diagnosed with ADHD. The father was right when he said that 3 year olds are not supposed to have impulse control (paraphrasing). I’ve no doubt that the diets have had an impact on behavior, but medication should be a last resort.

    Learning how to behave in public is something that gets taught at home first and gets reinforced by other adults. The whole ‘epidemic’ just puzzles me. I am fearful as to what will happen to these children as they get older – what are all those drugs doing to them?

    I’m afraid the drugs will just cause other problems when they’re older.

    Reply
  25. cancerclasses

    I forgot to include these links in my previous post in the graph about how seriously toxic trans fats are & how & why they cause cancers & brain disregulations.

    EFA researcher-educator Paul Beatty on the REAL cause of breast & prostate cancer, audio clip http://twaud.io/q8jn Short 7 minute Video here http://bit.ly/gbfqlI

    The other related Paul Beatty videos are good too, click on a few of those to learn more about omega 6 & 3 oils.

    Reply
  26. cosmic1

    Tom, I am loving your blogs. Also, I bought Fathead and it’s great!

    Thinking back when I was a child – no one was on medication and we were all pretty high energy. Going outside at recess helped us release our pent up energy – as did gym classes. Plus, after we got home, we stayed outside as long as possible.

    In today’s world, we would have all probably been diagnosed with ADHD. The father was right when he said that 3 year olds are not supposed to have impulse control (paraphrasing). I’ve no doubt that the diets have had an impact on behavior, but medication should be a last resort.

    Learning how to behave in public is something that gets taught at home first and gets reinforced by other adults. The whole ‘epidemic’ just puzzles me. I am fearful as to what will happen to these children as they get older – what are all those drugs doing to them?

    I’m afraid the drugs will just cause other problems when they’re older.

    Reply
  27. Katy

    Forgive the overgeneralization here, but medicated children, if other avenues of relief are not employed, often become self-medicated adults (alcohol, illegal and legal drugs, etc.).

    Reply
  28. Katy

    Forgive the overgeneralization here, but medicated children, if other avenues of relief are not employed, often become self-medicated adults (alcohol, illegal and legal drugs, etc.).

    Reply
  29. Ellen

    I’m with Cathy here, as the (Primal-eating) mother of two kids with ADHD. I’m beyond tired of getting blamed by the blogosphere for (a) “causing” it via a poor diet or bad parenting, (b) asserting that ADHD exists at all (instead of being just “kids with high spirits” or, again, kids who are poorly disciplined), and/or (c) medicating our kids, which we decided to do after extensive research.

    This is third-generation ADHD, by the way — heritability of the disorder is extremely high (76%, says Medscape, which rivals heritability of height!). I don’t disagree that diet may be a factor for some children, but genetics is clearly a major component of ADHD. (And no, the previous two generations of their father’s family didn’t eat the modern SAD either.)

    And Katy, I’m afraid that studies seem to show the opposite of your hypothesis: the kids with ADHD who were *not* medicated are the ones who self-medicate in adolescence and adulthood with caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, heroin, and cocaine. That’s a major reason we chose to medicate.

    You can go back through history and find people with chemical imbalances that caused emotional or behavioral problems, which is why I don’t think it’s all about the diet in every case. But I do believe the huge rise in cases over the past generation is largely about diet.

    Reply
  30. Ellen

    I’m with Cathy here, as the (Primal-eating) mother of two kids with ADHD. I’m beyond tired of getting blamed by the blogosphere for (a) “causing” it via a poor diet or bad parenting, (b) asserting that ADHD exists at all (instead of being just “kids with high spirits” or, again, kids who are poorly disciplined), and/or (c) medicating our kids, which we decided to do after extensive research.

    This is third-generation ADHD, by the way — heritability of the disorder is extremely high (76%, says Medscape, which rivals heritability of height!). I don’t disagree that diet may be a factor for some children, but genetics is clearly a major component of ADHD. (And no, the previous two generations of their father’s family didn’t eat the modern SAD either.)

    And Katy, I’m afraid that studies seem to show the opposite of your hypothesis: the kids with ADHD who were *not* medicated are the ones who self-medicate in adolescence and adulthood with caffeine, nicotine, alcohol, heroin, and cocaine. That’s a major reason we chose to medicate.

    You can go back through history and find people with chemical imbalances that caused emotional or behavioral problems, which is why I don’t think it’s all about the diet in every case. But I do believe the huge rise in cases over the past generation is largely about diet.

    Reply
  31. Stargazey

    ADHD is associated with many genes including a single nucleotide polymorphism of latrophilin 3 gene, copy number variations of several genes on Chromosome 16, the 7-repeat form of the D4D dopamine receptor, a dopamine transporter polymorphism and a norephinephrine transporter polymorphism.

    Perhaps behavior modification, a good diet and excellent parenting could compensate for these genetic differences in somes cases. However, when a child is severely affected, sometimes a pharmacological approach is required. Psychostimulants cannot cure children with ADHD, but these drugs can make their symptoms manageable. This in turn gives them a reasonable chance at success in school, at work and in their social relationships.

    I’m sure that’s true. But of course, diet affects gene expression. So while I don’t believe all cases of ADHD can be prevented or cured with the proper diet, I definitely believe bad nutrition is responsible for the rising number of cases.

    Reply
  32. Stargazey

    ADHD is associated with many genes including a single nucleotide polymorphism of latrophilin 3 gene, copy number variations of several genes on Chromosome 16, the 7-repeat form of the D4D dopamine receptor, a dopamine transporter polymorphism and a norephinephrine transporter polymorphism.

    Perhaps behavior modification, a good diet and excellent parenting could compensate for these genetic differences in somes cases. However, when a child is severely affected, sometimes a pharmacological approach is required. Psychostimulants cannot cure children with ADHD, but these drugs can make their symptoms manageable. This in turn gives them a reasonable chance at success in school, at work and in their social relationships.

    I’m sure that’s true. But of course, diet affects gene expression. So while I don’t believe all cases of ADHD can be prevented or cured with the proper diet, I definitely believe bad nutrition is responsible for the rising number of cases.

    Reply
  33. Robin

    “Let food be thy medicine”
    Words to live by.
    My husband has ADHD and although it is not 100% cured, he is much more tolerable A) off meds and B)eating the diet I give him. His mother is a diabetic, his father has hypertension(and I beleive “metabolic syndrome”), and they think I’m crazy for what I feed him and my child. I’m fat but have no metabolic conditions, I wish they’d think about that. (But they attribute it to age and genetics they should look at my “genetics”)

    I just wish some people could wake up.

    I have the same wish.

    Reply
  34. Robin

    “Let food be thy medicine”
    Words to live by.
    My husband has ADHD and although it is not 100% cured, he is much more tolerable A) off meds and B)eating the diet I give him. His mother is a diabetic, his father has hypertension(and I beleive “metabolic syndrome”), and they think I’m crazy for what I feed him and my child. I’m fat but have no metabolic conditions, I wish they’d think about that. (But they attribute it to age and genetics they should look at my “genetics”)

    I just wish some people could wake up.

    I have the same wish.

    Reply
  35. gollum

    One hypothesis I never got around to write up (so you heard it here first) –

    I noted the chemical similarity of ketone bodies (that the body runs on on low carb) to a neuro transmitter, I would have to look it up but I think it was GHB, gamma-hydroxy-butyric acid. It is also used as a sleep inducer, and popular as an illegal recreational drug (“liquid extasy”).

    Further speculation was about lithium and its “stabilizing” effect on “bipolar disorder”. Why should a simple alkali metal stabilize moods? No one knows. And with the intense flash of goodness I got from entering ketosis, I hypothesized that the lithium forms an unknown compound/salt with fatty acids/ketone bodies/GHB. Compound stays in your tissue in metastable equilibrium and acts like a buffer. This means the highs are dulled, and the lows are helped a bit.

    Why lithium? Maybe only lithium, which is quite aggressive, can form a compound that has the right semi-stability (one would wonder why Na and K do not work – but these are ubiquituous in our body).

    There are all sorts of fascinating connections (I fear I had a “flash” at that time). For instance, light therapy is supposed to help with depression, but it involves waking the patient as early as possible. It is also known that sleep deprivation will “help” somewhat against depression (at least in the short term). The idea is that these people experience low blood sugar, ketones plus stress hormones.

    All good thoughts.

    Reply
  36. gollum

    One hypothesis I never got around to write up (so you heard it here first) –

    I noted the chemical similarity of ketone bodies (that the body runs on on low carb) to a neuro transmitter, I would have to look it up but I think it was GHB, gamma-hydroxy-butyric acid. It is also used as a sleep inducer, and popular as an illegal recreational drug (“liquid extasy”).

    Further speculation was about lithium and its “stabilizing” effect on “bipolar disorder”. Why should a simple alkali metal stabilize moods? No one knows. And with the intense flash of goodness I got from entering ketosis, I hypothesized that the lithium forms an unknown compound/salt with fatty acids/ketone bodies/GHB. Compound stays in your tissue in metastable equilibrium and acts like a buffer. This means the highs are dulled, and the lows are helped a bit.

    Why lithium? Maybe only lithium, which is quite aggressive, can form a compound that has the right semi-stability (one would wonder why Na and K do not work – but these are ubiquituous in our body).

    There are all sorts of fascinating connections (I fear I had a “flash” at that time). For instance, light therapy is supposed to help with depression, but it involves waking the patient as early as possible. It is also known that sleep deprivation will “help” somewhat against depression (at least in the short term). The idea is that these people experience low blood sugar, ketones plus stress hormones.

    All good thoughts.

    Reply
  37. Bonnie

    I have inattentive ADD, and a primal diet hasn’t helped it at all unfortunately. My diet as a child was 100x better than your average kid, too. Some of our brains are just different – I take after my father in so many ways, and we both struggle with many of the things normal people find easy.

    I’m not medicated currently, but thinking seriously about trying it again. I’m trying to live the life I want, and failing because of my lack of ability to organize myself and follow through tasks…

    That’s right; diet doesn’t explain all the cases of ADD. But I think it has something to with the rise in cases.

    Reply
  38. Bonnie

    I have inattentive ADD, and a primal diet hasn’t helped it at all unfortunately. My diet as a child was 100x better than your average kid, too. Some of our brains are just different – I take after my father in so many ways, and we both struggle with many of the things normal people find easy.

    I’m not medicated currently, but thinking seriously about trying it again. I’m trying to live the life I want, and failing because of my lack of ability to organize myself and follow through tasks…

    That’s right; diet doesn’t explain all the cases of ADD. But I think it has something to with the rise in cases.

    Reply
  39. Lisa

    I watched “Fat Head” out of pure curiosity(having already seen Super Size Me) and walked away a Fan. Your thoughts mirror alot of my own. I found your blog and am currently in the middle of reading through your postings when I came across this one. I also saw a documentary on PBS a while ago(I am pretty sure it is the same one) and remember crying for these kids and being so angry that these parents can treat their children this way! And that these so called Doctors see no problem prescribing mind altering drugs to children whose brains are not even fully developed. It’s lunacy. There was one boy who has permanent ticks because of all the crap meds they put him on, it broke my heart. All because he couldn’t concentrate in school. I WISH people were smarter, that common sense would prevail. Thank you SO much for being a voice of REASON. And I look forward to reading more of what you have to say.

    Reply
  40. Lisa

    I watched “Fat Head” out of pure curiosity(having already seen Super Size Me) and walked away a Fan. Your thoughts mirror alot of my own. I found your blog and am currently in the middle of reading through your postings when I came across this one. I also saw a documentary on PBS a while ago(I am pretty sure it is the same one) and remember crying for these kids and being so angry that these parents can treat their children this way! And that these so called Doctors see no problem prescribing mind altering drugs to children whose brains are not even fully developed. It’s lunacy. There was one boy who has permanent ticks because of all the crap meds they put him on, it broke my heart. All because he couldn’t concentrate in school. I WISH people were smarter, that common sense would prevail. Thank you SO much for being a voice of REASON. And I look forward to reading more of what you have to say.

    Reply
  41. Gabrielle

    Have you ever seen “Making a Killing”? (I believe you can still watch the full video at http://www.cchr.org/videos/making-a-killing.html.) It’s an excellent documentary i highly recommend if you want to learn where all this mess with psych drugs came from and how government associations like the FDA are, once again, in it for themselves rather than the people.

    I just bookmarked it and will try to watch later in the week. Thanks for the link.

    Reply
  42. Adrienne

    My husband of over 40 years has ADD. So do my two sons. When he grew up, he lived on a farm and ate food grown on the farm–beef, pork, whole milk from a resident Jersey cow, butter, garden vegetables. He has always been thin and active. I won’t go into all the details of his life but I will say that we have been strict low carb for 6 months now. He has reached his goal weight (I have not). He takes Ritalin and has taken Ritalin for 20 years. I asked him today what was his attention span on low carb and how did it affect his ADD. He said that when he takes a Ritalin holiday (as he does most weekends), he still is unable to focus, has trouble talking and it takes him MUCH longer to complete his sudoku puzzles (he does ultra screaming black belt sudoku). Physically, he feels fine, energetic and alert. ADHD does have a genetic component and can be passed from parents to children. Our schooling methods are horrible for these kids. We raised our boys with grass fed beef we grew ourselves, home grown turkey, rabbit, a 1/4 acre organic garden but this did not seem to have the effect that you would think. We used Feingold when that method became known. But, in the end, it was Ritalin that enabled them both to graduate from university (one with a master’s degree). My husband had to struggle when he graduated from university–everything took twice as long or more for this very intelligent man. Please do not dismiss those who truly struggle with ADD or ADHD every single day. Sometimes medication helps in being able to focus all day during a workday and getting a job done. And when my husband takes his Ritalin, I can have a conversation with him while eating our hangar steak, mashed cauliflower, and strawberries with whipping cream. A prominent psychiatrist, who himself has ADD, wrote that ADD people are the hunters in a farmer’s world. The world they need no longer exists. Yes, I do believe that ADD is overdiagnosed by parents who don’t know how to train children but, remember, the American continent attracted the “hunter” immigrants from other parts of the world when the country was new and unexplored. That alone ensured that Americans have a LOT of ADD/hunter genes in the population that persist down to this day. Stargazey above made a serious comment and I felt that your comment was a little bit snappish so this is why I felt I needed to respond. I am part of the low carb choir but I have also lived with ADD humans for 45 years.

    Reply
  43. Adrienne

    My husband of over 40 years has ADD. So do my two sons. When he grew up, he lived on a farm and ate food grown on the farm–beef, pork, whole milk from a resident Jersey cow, butter, garden vegetables. He has always been thin and active. I won’t go into all the details of his life but I will say that we have been strict low carb for 6 months now. He has reached his goal weight (I have not). He takes Ritalin and has taken Ritalin for 20 years. I asked him today what was his attention span on low carb and how did it affect his ADD. He said that when he takes a Ritalin holiday (as he does most weekends), he still is unable to focus, has trouble talking and it takes him MUCH longer to complete his sudoku puzzles (he does ultra screaming black belt sudoku). Physically, he feels fine, energetic and alert. ADHD does have a genetic component and can be passed from parents to children. Our schooling methods are horrible for these kids. We raised our boys with grass fed beef we grew ourselves, home grown turkey, rabbit, a 1/4 acre organic garden but this did not seem to have the effect that you would think. We used Feingold when that method became known. But, in the end, it was Ritalin that enabled them both to graduate from university (one with a master’s degree). My husband had to struggle when he graduated from university–everything took twice as long or more for this very intelligent man. Please do not dismiss those who truly struggle with ADD or ADHD every single day. Sometimes medication helps in being able to focus all day during a workday and getting a job done. And when my husband takes his Ritalin, I can have a conversation with him while eating our hangar steak, mashed cauliflower, and strawberries with whipping cream. A prominent psychiatrist, who himself has ADD, wrote that ADD people are the hunters in a farmer’s world. The world they need no longer exists. Yes, I do believe that ADD is overdiagnosed by parents who don’t know how to train children but, remember, the American continent attracted the “hunter” immigrants from other parts of the world when the country was new and unexplored. That alone ensured that Americans have a LOT of ADD/hunter genes in the population that persist down to this day. Stargazey above made a serious comment and I felt that your comment was a little bit snappish so this is why I felt I needed to respond. I am part of the low carb choir but I have also lived with ADD humans for 45 years.

    Reply
  44. Leanna

    haha….. dr. bacon.

    ..although humorous, this entire thing makes me sick! i have an 8 month old, and the first time any doctor/teacher/anyone tells me my child needs medicated–i will say a few pleasant words, pick her up, and walk away… and then we will go eat some steak.

    Reply
  45. Leanna

    haha….. dr. bacon.

    ..although humorous, this entire thing makes me sick! i have an 8 month old, and the first time any doctor/teacher/anyone tells me my child needs medicated–i will say a few pleasant words, pick her up, and walk away… and then we will go eat some steak.

    Reply
  46. Bug's Mom

    Obviously, you and other commenters have no experience dealing with a young child who’s suicidal. The type of “bouncy” and “energetic” behavior you describe your daughter having when she’s on the wrong diet aren’t anything close to what most parents who make the extremely difficult choice to medicate a child are dealing with. I am an athlete and know the importance of a healthy diet. She doesn’t drink Gatorade, sodas, eat corn dogs, fast food, chips or other crap. My daughter is, by her own choice, a vegetarian. For most parents, the decision to give their child medication is an agonizing one and a last resort after trying things like therapy alone, diet changes, etc. We are sick of being judged by those who haven’t been in our shoes. Medication isn’t a perfect solution. But it has given my once suicidal, extremely anxious daughter back her childhood.

    Who’s judging you? Some people need medication, but it should be the last resort, not the first. Most doctors reach for the prescription pad immediately.

    Reply

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