Nature or Bad Parenting?
Friday, July 1st 2005
Coping with ADHD and Oppositional Defiance
Dr Jackie Stordy, the former director of nutrition, dietetics and food science at the University of Surrey and author of "The LCP Solution - The Remarkable Treatment for ADHD, Dyslexia and Dyspraxia" says that recent claims that parents or teachers may not be doing enough to 'prevent' the condition are simply not true:
"It is unfortunate that the parent or teachers should get the blame for this exceedingly difficult condition. It is not a lack of discipline as it is genetic, one or both parents will often tend to suffer from the condition as well.
One of the most difficult symptoms to cope with is oppositional defiance. It makes the child defiant, hostile and disobedient particularly towards authority figures such as parents and teachers.
Parents can learn behavioural strategies to cope with the condition however these are not going to cure it, only make it more liveable for the child and the affected family.
ADHD is a genetically determined, biologically based condition. Studies have clearly showed that the composition of cell membranes within the brain differs within children who suffer from ADHD.
The brain is made of 60% fat and the way a child with ADHD processes fats is hugely different. Good 'fats' otherwise known as omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are essential for brain and eye development and studies have shown that a deficiency suggests the cause of the condition.
One way of coping with this demanding behaviour is to look at the child's diet and introduce omega-3 fatty acids found in oily fish to the diet. A recent study using Efalex revealed that children already on medication for ADHD showed a 'remarkable' reduction in oppositional defiant behaviour after supplementing their diet with the DHA-rich supplement.
After the trial 75% of the group were no longer classified as showing 'oppositional defiant behaviour', which is characterized by stubbornness, outbursts of temper, and acts of defiance.
An on-going concern for parents is whether they look to medication or alternative therapies to treat ADHD. This study clearly shows that whether a parent chooses medication or not, nutrition plays a key role in relieving symptoms."
The idea that Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) may be due to bad parenting is "a nonsense" according to respected independent nutritionist, Dr Jackie Stordy.
Efalex, a unique formulation of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, provides children from an early age with the 'good fats' needed for all aspects of brain and visual development including learning ability, concentration and coordination.
Featured in seven published studies, Efalex is available in capsules or a lemon flavoured liquid and either can be used.
Uses for Efamol liquid Evening Primrose Oil include as an alternative to capsules for vegetarians or for those who do not like swallowing capsules. For children who dislike capsules, to assist child skin health, eczema and dermatitis.
It can be mixed in with drinks, yoghurts, smoothies etc or used in salad dressings.
Reproduced unabridged from the July - September 2005 issue of Health and Herbal News, with the kind permission of Health and Herbs International Ltd.
Footnote from Ideal Health:
The following products are useful for Children's Behaviour and Learning:
Calcium - Magnesium
Coromega - Omega 3 fish oil
Childs Sleep Support Tart Cherry Concentrate
Efalex Young Minds Brain Formula
Efalex Liquid 500ml
Hi Strength Liquid Fish Oil
Mega Magnesium Powder
Vitamin & Mineral Boost Powder
Related health information can be found here:
Multivite - why taking a multivitamin and mineral supplement is so essential?
Neuromuscular system and nutritional support
Recommended Calcium Intake for New Zealanders
Smart nutrients for better brain function
Related articles can be found here:
Doctors recommend a multi-vitamin a day
Healthy eye & brain development for babies
How to boost your brain power
Minerals: Critical for well-being
Nature or Bad Parenting?
Omega-3 - Studies find link to depression
Working with Children
If you need help or advice, you are welcome to email our naturopathic team with your health question.
Disclaimer: The health information presented here has been written for the New Zealand health consumer. It is of a general nature and is only intended to provide a summary of the subjects covered. The information is not intended to be comprehensive or to provide medical advice to you. While all care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information, no responsibility or liability is accepted, and no person should act in reliance on any statement contained in the information provided. All health ailments should be treated by a qualified health professional.
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