Category Archives: Hyperactivity

Ghanizadeh 2015: The effect of dietary education on ADHD, a randomized controlled clinical trial

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Annals of General Psychiatry (2015) March 1; 14:12 This was a study on children with ADHD who were already receiving Ritalin therapy, to see if improving their diet in general might make a difference.  The children were divided into two … Continue reading

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Breakey 1997: The role of diet and behaviour in childhood

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Journal of Paediatrics and Child Health. 1997 June; 33(3): 190-4. The author summarizes and discusses the research from the 1970s up until the 1990s.  She emphasizes that studies often only can deal with a single item but in actuality there … Continue reading

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Schnoll 2003: Nutrition in the treatment of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A neglected but important aspect

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Applied Psychophysiology and Biofeedback, 2003 March; 28(1): 63-75. In this paper, Schnoll reviews the research on food additives, refined sugars, food allergies, and fatty acid metabolism as it relates to ADHD. QUOTE:  “Although clinicians and researchers alike acknowledge the complex … Continue reading

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Konikowska 2012: The influence of components of diet on the symptoms of ADHD in children

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Roczniki Panstwowego Zakladu Higieny. 2012;63(2): 127-34 In this review of ADHD treatments, Konikowska describes hyperactivity as a genetic trait connected to abnormal brain maturation, likely related to less activity by neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine.  While stimulant medications effectively increase the … Continue reading

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Goldenring 1980: Effects of continuous gastric infusion of food dyes on developing rat pups.

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Life Sciences. 1980 Nov 17;27(20):1897-904. In this study, some rats were treated with 6-OHDA and some were treated with placebo.  In each of these groups, some were given food dyes and some were given placebo, resulting in 4 groups of … Continue reading

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Vojdani 2015: Immune reactivity to food coloring

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Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine, 2015. 21 Suppl 1:52-62. During the past 50 years, the amount of synthetic dye used in foods has increased by 500%.  At the same time, there has been an alarming rise in behavioral problems … Continue reading

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Malakar 2014: Minding the greens – Role of dietary salicylates in common behavioural health conditions

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Acta Alimentaria, 43(2), 344-359. QUOTE:  “Given that it is now well-known that autistic patients tend to be PST-deficient, causal link between a low-salicylate diet and the mitigation of symptom-severity seems a rather plausible hypothesis.” QUOTE:  “It is quite apparent from … Continue reading

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Stevens 2014: Amounts of artificial food colors in commonly consumed beverages and potential behavioral implications for consumption in children

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Clinical Pediatrics, 2014. Feb; 53(2): 133-40. The amount of food dyes certified over the years has increased more than 5-fold since 1950 (12 mg/capita/day) to 2012 (68 mg/capita/day).  Studies that used 50 mg or more of food dyes showed a … Continue reading

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Verlaet 2014: Nutrition, immunological mechanisms and dietary immunomodulation in ADHD.

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European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 2014 Jul;23(7):519-29. Verlaet discusses the common causes of GI problems, asthma, eczema, ear infections, and ADHD – involving both genes, immunity, and inflammation.  An immune imbalance can be related to food provoking ADHD-like behavior.  Food … Continue reading

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Doguc 2013: Effects of maternally exposed colouring food additives on cognitive performance in rats

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Toxicology and Industrial Health, 2013. Aug; 29(7): 616-23. In this study, Doguc gave pregnant rats the ADI (Acceptable Daily Intake) amounts of the following food dyes by mouth, continuing to do so after the babies were born so that the … Continue reading

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Gray 2013: Salicylate elimination diets in children: Is food restriction supported by the evidence?

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The Medical Journal of Australia, 2013. Jun 17; 198(11): 600-2. Gray was treating patients who had tried the low-salicylate diet (called the FAILSAFE diet) used in Australia, which is more restrictive than the Feingold diet, eliminating both more of the … Continue reading

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Sonuga-Barke 2013: Nonpharmacological Interventions for ADHD: Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses of Randomized Controlled Trials of Dietary and Psychological Treatments

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American Journal of Psychiatry, 2013.  March. 170(3): 275-89. This paper is a review of dietary and psychological treatments for ADHD. QUOTE (Conclusion):  “Free fatty acid supplementation and artificial food color exclusions appear to have beneficial effects on ADHD symptoms, although … Continue reading

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Stevens 2013: Mechanisms of behavioral, atopic, and other reactions to artificial food colors in children

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Nutrition Review, 2013 May;71(5):268-81. Stevens reviews the research on mechanisms by which food dyes and common foods may cause behavioral changes in children with and without ADHD.  The three potential mechanisms are toxicological, antinutritional, and hypersensitivity. Suggestions for future studies … Continue reading

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Arnold 2012: Artificial food colors and attention-deficit/hyperactivity symptoms: Conclusions to dye for

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Neurotherapeutics. 2012 Jul;9(3):599-609. Arnold reviews the history of the effects of artificial food colors (AFC) on ADHD and the testimony to the 2011 FDA Food Advisory Committee. Arnold discusses possible biological mechanisms such as the effects of food dyes on … Continue reading

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Millichap 2012: The diet factor in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder

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Pediatrics, 2012 Feb;129(2): 330-7. Millichap says his article is a comprehensive overview of the role of diet for treatment of children with ADHD “when pharmacotherapy has proven unsatisfactory or unacceptable.”  Unfortunately, he falls short of his promise.  He quotes almost … Continue reading

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Weiss 2012: Synthetic Food Colors and Neurobehavioral Hazards: The View from Environmental Health Research

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Environmental Health Perspectives, 2012 Jan;120(1):1-5. Dr. Weiss examines the basis of the FDA’s position on food dyes, the decision of the Food Advisory Committee, and the reasons that this is an environmental health issue He points out that they limited … Continue reading

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Kamel 2011: The Potential Health Hazard of Tartrazine and Levels of Hyperactivity, Anxiety-Like Symptoms, Depression and Anti-social behaviour in Rats

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Journal of American Science, 2011; 7 (6) This paper from Egypt describes a double-blind controlled study on rats to determine the behavioral effects of long-term exposure to various doses of tartrazine (E102, Yellow 5) provided in the drinking water of … Continue reading

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Pelsser 2011: Effects of a restricted elimination diet on the behaviour of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (INCA study): a randomised controlled trial

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The Lancet, 2011. Feb 5;377 (9764): 494-503 This is a study of 100 children diagnosed with ADHD but not selected on any basis of expectation of a dietary effect.   The children were randomly assigned to an experimental diet group and … Continue reading

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Pelsser 2009: A randomised controlled trial into the effects of food on ADHD

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European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. 2009 Jan;18(1):12-9. In a randomized controlled trial in the Netherlands, 27 children were assigned either to an elimination diet or to a “waiting list” control group for 5 weeks, beginning after a 2-week “baseline” diet … Continue reading

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McCann 2007: Food additives and hyperactive behaviour in 3-year-old and 8/9-year-old children in the community: a randomised, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial

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Lancet, September 6, 2007 As a followup to the earlier Bateman (2004) study, the authors retested a 153  toddlers as well as 144 elementary school (8/9 years old) children from the general population.   They were briefly put on a … Continue reading

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Lien 2006: Consumption of soft drinks and hyperactivity, mental distress, and conduct problems among adolescents in Oslo, Norway

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American Journal of Public Health, 2006. Oct;96(10):1815-20 The authors surveyed almost 5,500 students in 10th grade to see how many sugar-containing soft drinks they consumed per day and to assess their mental health and conduct. AUTHORS’ CONCLUSIONS:  “High consumption levels … Continue reading

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Bateman 2004: The effects of a double blind, placebo controlled, artificial food colourings and benzoate preservative challenge on hyperactivity in a general population sample of preschool children

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Archives of Disease in Childhood. 2004 Jun;89(6):506-11. The authors put 277  3-year-old children from the general population on a diet without artificial food dyes or benzoate preservatives for a week, and then challenged them at various times with a drink … Continue reading

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Starobrat-Hermelin 1998:   The effect of deficiency of selected bioelements on hyperactivity in children with certain specified mental disorders

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Annales Academiae Medicae Stetinensis, 1998;44:297-314 Deficiencies of magnesium, copper, zinc, calcium, and iron occur more in children with ADHD, and magnesium deficiency is the most frequent.   Starobrat-Hermelin studied a group of 110 hyperactive children who also had a variety … Continue reading

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Uhlig 1997: Topographic mapping of brain electrical activity in children with food-induced attention deficit hyperkinetic disorder

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European Journal of Pediatrics, 1997. Jul;156(7):557-61. Uhlig carried out EEG brain mapping on 15 children with food-induced ADHD, both when they were on their diet and when they had been given provoking foods. Consuming the provoking foods caused a significant … Continue reading

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Boris 1994: Foods and Additives are Common Causes of the Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder in Children

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Annals of Allergy, May 1994, Vol. 72, pp. 462-8. 73% of 26 children with ADHD responded favorably to a diet eliminating reactive foods and artificial colors. 16 of the improved children were given a double blind challenge with 100 mg … Continue reading

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Rowe 1994: Synthetic Food Coloring and Behavior: A Dose Response Effect in a Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled, Repeated-Measures Study

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Journal of Pediatrics, November 1994, Vol. 135, pp.691-8 150 of 200 children [75%] improved on an open trial of a diet free of synthetic food coloring, and deteriorated upon introduction of foods containing synthetic colorings. 34 other “clear” or “suspected” … Continue reading

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Carter 1993: Effects of a Few Foods Diet in Attention Deficit Disorder

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Archives of Disease in Childhood, November 1993, Vol. 69 (5), pp.564-8 59 of 78 children (75.6%) referred for “hyperactive behavior” improved on an open trial of an elimination diet.  19 of them were studied in a placebo-controlled double-blind challenge protocol. … Continue reading

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Egger 1992: Effect of diet treatment on enuresis in children with migraine or hyperkinetic behavior

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Clinical Pediatrics (Phila) 1992 May;31(5):302-7. 21 children with migraine and/or hyperkinetic behavior disorder also had daytime or nighttime enuresis (wetting).  Use of an oligoantigenic (few-foods) diet controlled their migraine and/or hyperkinesis, and for 76% of them the diet also stopped … Continue reading

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Novembre 1992: Unusual reactions to food additives

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Pediatria Medica e Chirurgica 1992 Jan-Feb;14(1):39-42 The author describes two cases of reactions to the food additives tartrazine (Yellow 5) and benzoates involving mainly the central nervous system (headache, migraine, overactivity, concentration and learning difficulties, depression) and joints (arthralgias), confirmed … Continue reading

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Pollock 1990: Effect of artificial food colours on childhood behaviour

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Archives of Disease in Childhood, 1990.  Jan;65(1):74-7, Heart and Lung Institute, Brompton Hospital, London. Pollock did a double-blind placebo-controlled challenge study on 19 children who had improved previously on an additive-free diet.   He didn’t use any additives but food dyes, … Continue reading

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Sarantinos 1990: Synthetic Food Colouring and Behavioural Change in Children with Attention Deficit Disorder: A Double-Blind, Placebo Controlled, Repeated Measures Study

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Proceedings of the Nutrition Society of Australia, 1990 pg. 233. Sarantinos studied 13 children,  4-14 years old, who had been at least 6 weeks on a diet free of synthetic food dyes as part of their treatment for ADHD.  The … Continue reading

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Egger 1989: Oligoantigenic diet treatment of children with epilepsy and migraine

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Journal of Pediatrics, 1989. Jan;114(1):51-8. Egger put 45 children with epilepsy and recurrent headaches, abdominal symptoms, or hyperactivity on an oligoantigenic (few foods) diet.   36 of them — 80% — improved. QUOTE:  “Headaches, abdominal pains, and hyperkinetic behavior ceased … Continue reading

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Kaplan 1989: Overall Nutrient Intake of Preschool Hyperactive and Normal Boys

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Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, April 1989, Vol. 17(2), pp.127-32. Kaplan compared food diaries of children with and without ADHD and concluded that it was idiosyncratic sensitivities to components in the diet rather than a different overall diet. MedLine || … Continue reading

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Rowe 1988: Synthetic Food Colourings and “Hyperactivity”: a Double-Blind Crossover Study

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Australian Paediatric Journal, April 1988, Vol. 24 (2), pp. 143-7 Of 220 children referred for suspected hyperactivity, 55 were put on a 6-week trial of the Feingold Diet.    40 of them — 72.7% — exhibited improved behavior, and 26 of … Continue reading

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Burlton-Bennett 1987: A Single Subject Evaluation of the K-P Diet for Hyperkinesis

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Journal of Learning Disabilities, 1987 Jun-Jul;20(6):331-5, 346. A single subject ABAB (on-off-on-off) design design was used to test the effectiveness of the Feingold (K-P) diet in the treatment of a 6-year-old hyperkinetic male who seemed to  be diet-responsive.  His behavior … Continue reading

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David 1987: Reactions to dietary tartrazine

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Archives of Disease in Childhood, 1987. Feb;62(2):119-22. In a double-blind study, David challenged 24 of his patients with benzoic acid (a preservative) and a large dose of coloring — 250 mg of Yellow 5.   After his intervention, 22 of the … Continue reading

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Gross 1987: The effect of diets rich in and free from additives on the behavior of children with hyperkinetic and learning disorders

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Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. 1987. Jan;26(1):53-5. SUMMARY Gross carried out a diet study in a summer camp which is a great way to totally control the diet and get solid results in a study. … Continue reading

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Schoenthaler 1986: The Impact of a Low Food Additive and Sucrose Diet on Academic Performance in 803 New York City Public Schools

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International Journal for Biosocial Research, 1986, 8(2); 185-195. Over 4 years, 803 New York City schools changed their breakfast and lunch programs.  They lowered sucrose, synthetic food color/flavors, and two preservatives (BHA and BHT). For each change, there was an … Continue reading

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Egger 1985: Controlled Trial of Oligoantigenic Treatment in the Hyperkinetic Syndrome

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The Lancet, 9;1(8428):540-5. 62 of 76  (81.6%) overactive children improved by at least one grade level on an oligoantigenic (few foods) diet.  Benzoic acid and tartrazine (Yellow 5) were the most common problems, but all children had other sensitivities as … Continue reading

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Egger 1983: Is migraine food allergy? A double-blind controlled trial of oligoantigenic diet treatment

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Lancet, 1983. Oct 15;2(8355):865-9 93% of 88 children with severe frequent migraine recovered on an oligoantigenic (few foods) diet.  40 of them were challenged with various foods in a double-blind test, establishing that it was the diet that had helped.  … Continue reading

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