ADHD is a hot topic with parents. Does my kid have it? Should I medicate him? Would better teaching or better parenting make a difference? I really loved the show we aired yesterday on Diagnosing and Treating ADHD. Dr. Vincent Monastra, a clinical psychologist specializing in ADHD, wrote the ADHD book published by the American Psychological Association–Parenting Children with ADHD: 10 Lesson that Medicine Cannot Teach. His advice was practical and founded in the research.
To Medicate or Not with ADHD
According to Dr. Monastra, the research supports that medication can be effective, but it needs to be tailored to the specific type of ADHD. About 80% of kids will have the type of ADHD with an underactive frontal brain lobe. For those kids, a stimulant medication can work. Stimulant meds are a disaster for kids with the type of ADHD with an overactive frontal lobe.
Diet and ADHD
Dr. Monastra does not take a one-size fits all approach to treating ADHD. He also encourages parents to look at food allergies and sleep. The most interesting thing we discussed was the increased need for protein for all kids, but especially for kids on ADHD medication. He discusses specific numbers of protein grams needed for breakfast and lunch on the show, but for an example, a 10-12 year old would need around 15 grams of protein at both breakfast and lunch.
I really do recommend that you listen to this show if you have a child that struggles with attention.
Have you found that changing your child’s diet affects their attention?