The Relationship Between Food Sensitivities and ADHD

Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder affects 3-7% of the world’s population under the age of 19. This disorder typically presents during childhood. According to the 1994 book, Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Ed. IV, (DSM-IV), ADHD is a Disruptive Behavior Disorder characterized by the presence of a set of chronic and impairing behavior patterns that display abnormal levels of inattention, hyperactivity, or their combination. Sixty percent of children diagnosed with ADHD retain the condition as adults. One-fifth of all cases are caused by toxic exposure or trauma.

Food allergy testing is highly indicated, as many children are sensitive to foods that can be disruptive to the immune system, which in turn can cause brain dysfunction. It important to note that a food sensitivity is different than a food allergy. An allergy to a food produces Immunoglobulin E or IgE and a sensitivity produces Immunoglobulin A or Immunoglobulin G. IgA or Immunoglobulin A is released acutely or immediately in response to foods, preservatives, food dyes, food coloring agents, or spices. IgG or Immunoglobulin G is released up to 48-72 hours after ingestion. The most common food sensitivities are wheat, gluten, corn, dairy, and soy. A food avoidance and elimination diet is the usual treatment.

Specialized testing is available and utilized by many Integrative and Naturopathic Physicians. In my practice I utilize Neuroscience, a specialized laboratory which offers various food sensitivity panels. A quality food sensitivity panel is quite affordable and will test for 22 foods, including the most common listed above. Contact us today for current pricing and to schedule your next appointment.