If the average person is asked what the most effective response to ADD/ADHD would be, the answer is almost certain to be medication. Many people would, in fact, be able to go beyond this and name specific brand names that are targeted to the condition. This just goes to show how successful the huge multinational drug companies have been in pushing their products into our cultural consciousness. This has happened to the extent that â€˜ADD/ADHD=Medicationâ€™ is an almost unquestioned formula within our society. A lot of the work that I am doing is dedicated to proving that this is not necessarily the case! I also argue that we should do everything in our power to try and find alternatives to the dangerous drugs that are commonly administered to those dealing with attention issues. For years the vested interests in drug companies have tried to suppress voices like mine by saying that we represent only a tiny minority of scientific opinion. This position is becoming much harder to sustain, as a recent study published in The Lancet (5 February 2011 edition) one of the most prestigious medical journals in the world, have shown.
The article profiles a study entitled Impact of Nutrition on Children with ADD/ADHD (INCA) that was done in the Netherlands under the highest possible academic research protocols. The purpose of the study was to determine whether certain foods contribute to the onset of ADD/ADHD and/or whether the symptoms of the condition could be alleviated by following a nutrition-based strategy. 50 Children with ADD/ADD/ADHD were placed on a restricted diet that eliminated many of the foods that are believed to be contributing factors in the incidence of the condition. Children on the trial were only allowed to eat rice, meat, vegetables, fruits, certain types of wheat and water. 41 of the children completed the five-week trial. Out of the 41, 32 showed a significant improvement in their symptoms. What makes this study even more fascinating is the fact that certain ‘trigger foods’ were introduced in the diets of those children who showed improvement, almost immediately kicking off negative consequences as far as symptoms were concerned.
The authors of the study are very careful when it comes to formulating their conclusions, but they do make the point that nutritional factors should be considered when it comes to the treatment of ADD/ADHD. Talk about stating the obvious! To my mind this study clearly proves, once again, something that I have consistently advocated here on this site. Namely that all possible avenues of enquiry should be explored when it comes to the diagnosis and treatment of the condition. To have a kind of pharmaceutical one track mind is dangerous and can be very counter-productive in the sense that the best possible way to deal with the condition might be missed in the process. It is for this reason that I lay so much emphasis on eliminating the possibility of misdiagnosis (by first making sure that all other possible explanations are accounted for) and then on treating the condition in a holistic way by taking into account a variety of lifestyle and nutritional factors. In doing so I do not offer a kind of miracle cure but I do think that my approach is very valuable in terms of helping people to reconfigure their lives in the best possible way to conquer ADD/ADHD.
This research also reminded me, once again, of why I do what I do. I love to see people being liberated from the false conviction that there is only one thing (and a very unpleasant and dangerous thing at that) that can be done when ADD/ADHD appears on the horizon. I am passionate to show the way towards healthier and balanced alternatives. I therefore encourage you to, if you haven’t done so already, seriously consider the alternatives that are part of the ‘3 Steps ADDâ€™ approach. You will find, among other things that nutrition is something that is taken very seriously as a means of dealing with the condition. For a long time this kind of approach has been derided by those who have a vested interest in maintaining the status quo but it is clear that the status quo is crumbling! When very influential publications like The Lancet begin to chip away at the reigning consensus, a complete change in the cultural consciousness and perception of the condition cannot be far behind. Here at ‘3 StepsADD‘ we are very well placed to respond to this change in cultural consciousness. We have, after all, been stressing the value of nutrition and lifestyle factors, in combating the condition, for years. So my invitation to you is to join the vanguard of those who say no to the stranglehold of stupefying drugs and yes to alternatives that allow children to be children and adults to realize their full potential. Join us!