Food Additives and Learning or Behavior Problems
In a recent post, you learned about the Gaps Diet, which can heal learning & behavior issues (and many more health problems) by first healing the immune system. There are many facets of the Gaps Diet, or other similar diets, and for some, one piece of the puzzle is the turning point. Often that piece is related to the additives in our food. I recently became aware of The Feingold Association – they specifically address the issue of food additives, how detrimental they are, and how they affect our kids.
The Feingold Association helps you learn how to avoid these additives:
- Artificial (synthetic) coloring
- Artificial (synthetic) flavoring
- Aspartame/Nutrasweet – artificial sweeteners
- Artificial (synthetic) preservatives BHA, BHT, TBHQ
Read more about the Feingold Association:“Many learning and behavior issues begin in your grocery cart!”
Next, read a copy of this great letter I received from Jane Hersey, director of the Feingold Association.
I just sent this letter to a Boston paper and wanted to share it with you as well. The school I mention at the end is described on the School Lunch site.
Subj: Better school foods for kids
Providing better school food really isn't so difficult or complicated. Think back to the school food of the 1950s and if you're too young to remember, I will tell you about it.
Each morning the ladies in the white uniforms and hairnets prepared meatloaf or spaghetti or mac & cheese, etc. They cooked real potatoes and mashed them, and sometimes they made cookies, cake or cupcakes.
Yes, it took more time than microwaving a frozen disk, and yes, in many cases they were not especially talented cooks. But it was food, and most children were able to sit still after lunch, to focus and learn. Some kids were a bit “slow,” some were chubby, and some didn't behave so well, but we didn't have a need for IEPs, body-mass index screens, and metal detectors at the doors.
Sometimes a child was sick, and there was an occasional bloody nose, but on most days the school nurse wasn't very busy. She did not have to keep tabs on dozens of Ritalin prescriptions, asthma medications, drugs for diabetic children, and epi-pens.
Sadly, what is currently being served in most school cafeterias can no longer be called “food.” It is a collection of hard-to-pronounce chemicals that give the appearance of food. They fool our eyes and might even fool our taste buds, but there's no fooling our bodies. Humans need food in order to thrive, and this is not food.
The good news is that we can combine the technology of the 21st century with the wholesomeness of the 20th century. One remarkable mom in a small town in Vermont has shown the way. She provides wonderful, healthy food that sounds like it came from an upscale bistro; but the astonishing thing is that she is doing this for far less money than the school previously spent on the usual foodless offerings. It is enjoyed by the children, teachers, staff, administrators, visiting parents, as well as an occasional grandparent. They all come to the cafeteria in this modest school to enjoy what is created in a dated kitchen by a small staff. You can read about it at School-Lunch.org.
More you might like:
- Healthy school lunch alternatives – scroll down here for a whole list of healthier ideas. Also at this post you can read more about the impact of rotten food on our kids, and on their ability to learn.
- Read about how Jane's daughter got her involved with the Feingold program
- More success stories
- By the way, they are a non-profit organization, but they do have a resource page for some helpful materials.
- Read about the GAPS DIET and how it can heal issues like ADD, ADHD, Austism, constipation, candida, asthma, learning/behavioral problems, depression, and many more health problems
- Need some healthy new recipe ideas?
- FAQ's about this site