January 9, 2012
By Ryan Jaslow
Do diets that claim to reduce symptoms of ADHD in kids actually work?
A new review of ADHD diets by pediatric researchers suggests healthy eating could actually help kids reduce their ADHD symptoms. But the researchers warn a diet probably shoud not be the first line of defense against ADHD, but merely a supplement to other proven therapies such as medication.
“Supplemental diet therapy is simple, relatively inexpensive, and more acceptable to patient and parent,” the authors wrote in the review, published in the Jan. 9 issue of Pediatrics. “Public education regarding a healthy diet pattern and lifestyle to prevent or control ADHD may have greater long-term success.”
For the study, Dr. J. Gordon Millichap and Michelle M. Yee, researchers at Children’s Memorial Hospital and Northwestern University in Chicago, reviewed 70 studies on diet-based treatments for ADHD.
Some diets that have been thought to reduce symptoms of ADHD include the preservative-free Feingold Diet, a sugar-restricted diet, an “elimination diet” that avoids potential food allergens, and diets loaded with Omega-3 fatty acid supplements that supposedly boost brain health. What did the researchers have to say?
The Feingold Diet, which says to avoid foods like apples, grapes, luncheon meet, hot dogs, cold drinks, and anything else with orange and red dyes, was not proven to be effective by other studies, the researchers said. Parents who wish to follow this diet need patience, perseverance, and an understanding doctor and nutritionist, the authors wrote.
What about sugar? On the surface it seems giving a kid too much sugar can boost hyperactivity, but the researchers said the majority of studies it looked at failed to demonstrate that a diet high in sugar or artificial sweeteners had an effect on a child’s behavior or cognitive function, thus questioning the importance of a low-sugar diet for kids with ADHD. The authors realize despite their findings, the perception that sugar makes a kid more hyperactive is unlikely to change.
Did any of the diets actually work?
April 5th, 2011
The Huffington Post
By: Craig Cooper
Debate over the health benefits and risks of flaxseed and omega-3 fatty acids, in particular alpha-linolenic acid (ALA- a form of omega-3 fatty acids), is ongoing and often contentious. People tend to become very defensive about their food choices, especially when they are making those choices because they are trying to prevent and/or treat a serious health problem, such as prostate cancer.
One controversy related to omega-3 fatty acids is whether ALA and flaxseed, which is a rich source of ALA, are beneficial or harmful to prostate health. According to medical oncologist and prostate cancer researcher Snuffy Myers, M.D., flaxseed and ALA, contrary to popular marketing, are not helpful for overall health nor for prostate health. Myers also states there is little to no evidence in the medical literature to support the use of flaxseed or flaxseed oil, that these products are hyped by marketers, and that people should turn to fish and fish oil as the best sources of omega-3 essential fatty acids. (1)
Omega-3 Essential Fatty Acids
Omega-3 essential fatty acids are so-named because the body needs them for overall health. However, because the body cannot manufacture them they must be acquired through diet and/or supplementation. This fact is also true for omega-6 essential fatty acids. One significant difference between these two types of essential fatty acids — and there are several differences — is that omega-6s are plentiful and even excessive in the Standard American Diet (yes, our “SAD” diet) while omega-3s tend to be deficient.
The three dietary omega-3s are alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). In addition to flaxseed and flaxseed oil, ALA is found in soybeans and soybean oil, pumpkin seeds and pumpkin seed oil, walnuts and walnut oil, and purslane. EPA and DHA are found in cold-water fish such as halibut, herring, mackerel, salmon, sardines, and tuna. These fish do not themselves produce EPA and DHA, but instead acquire it from the krill and algae they eat.
EPA and DHA are the omega-3s necessary for health. This does not mean ALA has no role in your well-being. However, ALA is much less active than EPA and DHA and is mostly limited to cardiovascular benefits, and even in this capacity it is less effective than the other two omega-3s. In fact, before ALA can be utilized by the body, it must be converted into EPA, which is then transformed into DHA. Because the conversion rate of ALA to EPA and DHA in men is very low — less than 4 percent of ALA is changed to EPA and less than 0.1 percent becomes DHA — it is clearly better to get omega-3s from sources that provide EPA and DHA rather than ALA. Young women experience a significantly higher conversion rate — 21 percent of ALA becomes EPA, and 5 to 9 percent of EPA is converted into DHA — because the conversion is supported by estrogen activity. (1)
Flaxseed and Flaxseed Oil
Flaxseed is often touted as providing protection and relief from a number of ailments, although the validity of these claims has been questioned by some researchers. One group that examined the claims was from Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center.
Experts at Sloan-Kettering reviewed the available literature on flaxseed in human studies from nine databases, 20 additional journals, and various bibliographies. The reviewers found 13 categories in which flaxseed had been studied, including prostate cancer, constipation, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, high cholesterol, atherosclerosis, breast cancer, cyclic breast pain, menopausal symptoms, diabetes, high blood pressure, lupus nephritis and HIV/AIDS. The reviewers concluded that nearly all the studies were of poor quality, and that “although flaxseed and flaxseed oil have several promising future uses, the available literature does not support recommendation for any condition at this time.” (Basch 2007)
When it comes to health impact, which one is worse, flaxseed or flaxseed oil? Although advocates of flaxseed and flaxseed oil might say the oil is the better deal because it delivers much greater amounts of ALA than does flaxseed, high levels of ALA also appear to increase the risk of advanced prostate cancer (see “Alpha-Linolenic Acid and Prostate Cancer” below).
In defense of flaxseed (but not the oil), Dr. Myers notes there is “good evidence” that flaxseed can quickly reduce the severity of high blood pressure, and that it is also beneficial in reducing elevated blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. This quality is attributed to flaxseed’s high soluble fiber content. (1)
As the July 4th weekend is just days away, most of us will be surrounded with great weather, fireworks, and a feast of delicious foods. With that said, here are some foods that we all need to watch out for…
Resin linings of the tin cans contain BPA, which is a synthetic estrogen. It’s been linked to reproductive problems, heart disease, diabetes, asthma, obesity, depression and mental disorders. The acidity in the tomatoes, particularly, cause the BPA’s to leach into the tomatoes. Studies show that BPA in most people’s bodies already exceed the amount that suppresses sperm production and causes chromosome damage to the eggs in women. Americans sare the most infertile people on the planet and it’s caused by things such as these BPA’s. The solution is to choose tomatoes in glass bottles.
Corn Fed Beef
The problem here is that cattle evolved to eat grass, not grain-like corn. But cattle ranchers today feed cows corn and soy beans. Most importantly, these rangers feed the cows genetically modified corn and genetically modified soy beans specifically designed to increase the fat in the animal artificially. The ranchers also feed the cows ground up diseased and dead cows, pigs, horses, chickens and goats. Now, why do they do this? Because it makes them more money. However, that means that the cows are less nutritious and are loaded with toxins and poisons and disease. A recent comprehensive study conducted by the USDA and researchers from Clemson University found that when you compare corn fed beef with grass fed beef the difference is dramatic. The grass fed beef is higher in beta-carotene. It has all types of nutrients, including vitamin E, very healthy omega 3s, and much higher levels of CLA, which is good for your heart, your health, your brain function, your mood and burns fat. Grass fed beef also is much higher in calcium, magnesium and potassium. Grass fed beef also has lower amounts of omega 6s which cause inflammation, like gout. Grass fed beef is also lower in saturated fats and doesn’t have pesticides or antibiotics in them. The solution is real simple, always buy grass fed beef from GrassLandBeef.com. The quality, the taste is absolutely mind blowing and is so much healthier for you.
Chemicals in the lining of the bag of the microwavable popcorn are part of a class of compounds that are linked to infertility in humans. That was a study conducted at UCLA. The chemicals in the microwave popcorn also caused liver, pancreatic cancer and testicular cancer. Studies show that microwaving causes the chemicals to vaporize and migrate into the popcorn. They stay in your body for years and accumulate there over time. What’s the solution? Old fashioned natural non-genetically modified popcorn kernels and pop it the old fashioned way. I’ll give you my little technique. First, I have my grass fed raw butter and my sea salt. Then I get my non-genetically modified, all organic popcorn kernels. I get a stainless steel mixing bowl, I grab some tongs and add a little bit of olive oil or peanut oil to the bottom. I then add my kernels and put some tin foil across the top. I take a fork and pump a couple of holes in it for a little bit of steam because I don’t want the popcorn to steam. And then I put it over the heat and I shake until they stop popping. Then I take my butter, which I’ve melted and I pour it over and throw some salt on there and it is delicious and nutritious.
The problem is that the root vegetables absorb herbicides, pesticides and fungicides that wind up in the soil. In the case of potatoes, the nations most popular vegetable, they’re treated with fungicides during the growing season then sprayed with herbicides to kill off the vines before harvesting. After they dig up the potatoes, they are treated again to prevent sprouting. Try this experiment. Buy a conventional potato in the store and try to get it to sprout. It won’t. Never eat non-organic potatoes. Always eat 100% organic potatoes. They are slightly more expensive, but they taste better, they’re denser, they’re more nutritious and you’ll eat less.
David Carpenter, medical doctor and director of the Institute for Health and the Environment at the University of Albany, New York, published a major study in the journal Science on Contamination in Fish. Here’s what the problem is folks, nature didn’t intend salmon to be crammed into pens and fed soy, poultry litter and hydrolyzed chicken feathers, which is what farm raised salmon get fed. These cesspools that the farm raised fish are in, are also loaded with other toxic chemicals and growing agents, as well as, drugs. The results mean farm raised fish have low levels of Vitamin D and are incredibly high in major poison containments, including carcinogens, which are agents that cause cancer. This particular doctor says that you could eat one farm raised fish dinner every five months and still increase your risk of cancer.! So, what’s the solution? When you go to a restaurant, any fish on the menu, ask them if the fish is farm raised. If it’s farm raised, do not eat it. If the package says ‘ Fresh Atlantic.’ It’s still farmed. They lie. There are no commercial fisheries left for Wild Atlantic Salmon. It has to be Alaskan, Norwegian or Tasmanian salmon.
Milk Produced With Artificial Hormones The problem is that milk producers treat the dairy cattle with bovine growth hormone, which is BGH and sometimes called BST. It’s designed to boost milk production so they can make more money. It increases, unfortunately, udder infections and even puts puss into the milk. It also leads to higher levels of a hormone called insulin like growth factor in the milk. Basically, high levels of this growth factor can contribute to breast, prostate and colon cancers in human beings. This is a big problem here. The solution is to always check for BGH or BST-free, produced without artificial hormones, or organic milk.
Apples, pears, peaches are loaded with artificial hormones. Like I always say… ONLY BUY ORGANIC!
Folks, have a very safe and happy 4th of July weekend!
Yours in Health,