Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can be very challenging to deal with, but there are several things you can do that can help with the symptoms. The importance of a healthy and balanced diet cannot be underestimated. Many studies have found that certain food groups can help alleviate the symptoms or make them much worse.
Different things will work for different kids, so it may take a bit of trial and error to find the foods that work best for your child. In this article, we will take a look at some of the top foods that help ADHD symptoms.
Balanced Diets Are Essential
It is crucial that you aim for a balanced diet that helps to minimize drops and surges in blood sugar. You may notice that certain foods trigger the symptoms, and these should be avoided. As a rule, you should try to avoid, or at least minimize, foods that are high in sugars or contain artificial dyes, preservatives, and sweeteners.
Instead, aim for a diet that contains lots of complex carbohydrates, protein, fruits, and vegetables. We have put together a few ideas for you below.
Protein can be beneficial to people with ADHD because it can help to minimize blood sugar spikes. There are many excellent sources of protein that can be introduced to even the fussiest eaters. Excellent sources of protein include:
- Meats—ideally lean cuts
- Low-fat dairy products
Protein helps to “wake up” the brain, and it is always a good idea to include protein sources as part of your child’s daily breakfast.
Omega-3 has many benefits for people with ADHD, as it can help to minimize hyperactivity and improve concentration. Omega-3 has been nicknamed “brain food,” so you should try to get your kiddies eating fish as early as possible.
Lots of studies have shown a significant improvement in symptoms when patients have a sizeable Omega-3 intake. However, if your kid doesn’t really like eating a lot of fish, Omega-3 is readily available as a food supplement, so pop down to your local health food store.
Foods Rich in Iron
Iron, magnesium, and zinc have been found to be great for reducing the symptoms of ADHD. Kids with ADHD tend to have lower levels of these minerals in their systems. Foods rich in iron include lean red meat, chicken, and beans. For older kids, shellfish is also a great source of iron.
But before you get the supplements out, it is essential to get your child properly checked out to see what their specific needs are. The last thing you want to do is overload their systems with minerals they don’t need, as that can be dangerous.
Foods Rich in Magnesium and Zinc
These two minerals help with concentration as well as keeping the brain “calm.” Magnesium and zinc can be easily introduced into your child’s daily diet, as there are lots of different sources available, such as:
- Nuts and seeds
- Legumes, grains, and yogurt
You should talk to your pediatrician if you are worried about your child’s ADHD. They will be able to help you with dietary advice and can carry out blood tests.