South African Family Practice,
2020 Sep. 3; 62(1): e1-e8
This paper is about a survey of 79 parents of ADHD children aged 5 to 17, in South Africa.
The authors report that 92.4% of the parents believed that “reducing sugar or food additives were effective to reduce symptoms.” This was considered an incorrect answer despite the numerous studies that support the connection. It appeared the authors preferred the parents to believe that ADHD was genetic and/or an imbalance of chemicals in the brain.
NOTE: Since these were parents asking for help, one must assume that either they had not tried any dietary treatment, that their efforts had been unsuccessful, or that the effect they saw was sporadic. After all, if they had already found the solution, they would not have been looking for help.
The authors also reported that 67.1% of the parents believed that “prolonged use of stimulant medications leads to increased addiction.” That, too, is considered incorrect by the authors, in spite of the Black Box Warning at Drugs.com, clearly stating that stimulant medications have “high potential for abuse and dependence.”
That’s awful! Lifestyle changes should be first-line. Reducing sugar and additives had been shown to reduce adhd issues specifically and are at the very least a healthy start. Listening to patients when they tell you what is working is important, too. This information is vital to discovering the possible cause or causes of a problem.