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Children's Health-Home Body Health Newsletter, Oct. 20, Issue #002
October 20, 2004
Helping You and Yours to Better Health, Naturally
Learn how to improve your health and that of your family and friends through natural and alternative options, supplemented by education so that you can make informed decisions. The goal is to create optimum health so that you can live life to the fullest.
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Home Body Health Newsletter Issue #002, October 20, 2004
In This Issue:
Helping ADD and ADHD without medications.
How to know if your children are eating enough or too much.
Assessing children's vitamins to find the best quality supplement for kids.
My first topic is ADD and ADHD in children. I was watching Dr. Phil the other day (yes, Oprah and Dr. Phil are two people that I like to learn from) and the subject was Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. They were talking to parents of kids who were put on medication for these disorders.
As the program went on, I was just about to email Dr. Phil to tell him about my son and how I'm able to help control his behavior by watching what foods he eats. I wasn't going to mention the Applied Kinesiology method that I use for allergy testing, because I didn't want to sound like some wacko and get my email deleted immediately.
To my surprise, the guest, Dr. Frank Lawlis, who wrote the book, The ADD Answer, began to talk about food. He presented a method of testing to find out which foods will be metabolized by the brain properly so that your child's brain won't go 'off on a tangent' (my words at the end).
He used Applied Kinesiology, but his method of testing is a little different from what I teach on the allergy page of FibromyalgiaHope.com.
He had the child hold his thumb and forefinger together, making a round or oval-shaped hole. He placed his thumb and forefinger around the child's fingers and through the hole in the same fashion, like a chain link. He then pulled on the connection where the child's thumb and forefinger met. If the child could hold his fingers together and not let the Dr.'s fingers slip through, the food was good. If the doctor's fingers slipped through and the child could not hold his thumb and forefinger together, the food was not OK to eat.
He stated that this wasn't allergies, but metabolic contraindications that the body can sense. I call it sensitivities.
I've tried this for myself by gripping the handle of the refridgerator and pulling sideways (so I get resistance and don't just open the door). It is very effective.
Dr. Lawlis also made the comment to the child while testing a certain food: "That was the strongest one so far." This verifies my observations from Home Body Health issue #001, that there are varying degrees of strength when testing foods (or other products such as room fresheners, personal care products, or cleaning products).
You can find the book, The ADD Answer at Amazon.com by clicking here.
If this link doesn't work with your email software, either I made a big mistake or it may mean that your software doesn't read HTML, the Internet's language, and you may have more luck by updating your email program. You can also highlight the link, copy it, and paste it into your browser.
I hope you will try this method of testing food on your children and yourself. Better health will be in your home because of it.
My next topic today is how to know if your children are eating enough or too much. I'll talk about children ages 2-12 today. Teen-agers can follow adult requirements, adding more Calcium. I'll save talk about babies for another time.
I think the biggest concern for parents is when their child doesn't eat enough. I had one of these, and to see a kid eat three bites for each meal is really a little scary. You might think, "How can they survive?"
First of all, keep up with their regular, yearly doctor visits so that you can chart and record if they are growing at an average rate. If your child has always been in the 25th percentile on the growth charts, then that's just your child and his or her uniqueness. But if your child started out in the 90th percentile and is now down to the 10th percentile, this will clue you and your doctor to investigate and find out if there is some type of problem.
Then, you have to remember all the snacks, juice, and milk that you've fed your child between meals in order to accurately decide if your child is eating enough.
Children should not drink more than 4-6 ounces of juice per day. If they do drink more juice, this fills them up without giving them the variety of nutrients that they need.
Water is as important for your children as it is for you. If they don't like the taste of water, and don't acquire a taste in a matter of days with water as their main option when thirsty, you probably need a water purifier. This will improve the taste and make it easier to persuade your children to drink. I have a number of options for water purification.
Next, it really doesn't work to make your child sit at the table for hours until they finish their food. It never worked for me as a kid and I don't suppose it worked if your parents made you sit for three hours. The theory these days is that if you force a child to always clean his plate, this will promote obesity. You want a child to recognize when they are full, not stuff themselves like I used to do on Turkey Day.
But you can cut down on snacks between meals so that your child is hungrier when meal time does come. I realized that I was giving my light eater a snack only an hour and a half before supper because he was begging me for food and I wanted him to eat more. When I stopped feeding him whenever he asked for food and put up with the, "I'm so hungry!", his eating habits got better. A snack three hours before a meal is fine and recommended.
I also do not give any more food or dessert in the evening unless the kids have eaten their supper. If they are hungry in the evening and haven't eaten their supper, I pull the plate out of the fridge and heat it up. It almost never fails that they eat some more of their supper at this later time. If not, they go to bed hungry and eat pretty well at breakfast. You just have to stick to your rules, so the child knows what to expect.
Sometimes when I say no dessert (the times that I happen to have some) unless you finish your supper, my light eater will finish his supper and not want any dessert because he's full. I like that.
There's also the picky eater that only eats the meat one meal, or the vegetable or pasta for another meal. You have to look at the overall intake of food over several days to judge if your child is getting enough of a variety of foods. If they only eat pasta every meal, this is a problem. But if they vary between the different food groups- meats, grains, dairy, fruits and vegetables-then you probably don't have to worry about severe deficiencies.
If your child likes fruit or raw vegies let them eat as much of these kinds of food as they like (as long as they test OK for them through the Applied Kinesiology method discussed above). A child can get lots of nutrition through fruits and vegetables. Few people realize that there is even a small amount of protein in most fruits.
I never tell my kids that they can't have more of a fruit if they want more. This is where eating instinctively is easy with kids. If the food is raw, in it's original state, they can tell when their body needs more. They will ask for more, so give it to them. They will not be able to verbalize why they need more of a certain food, but if they're asking for more of something that's good for them, allow it, please.
I've heard people say that their child gets diarrhea if they have too many grapes, so they limit the amount. This can the thing to do, if the food does not test OK. Foods that people are sensitive to may test OK and be permitted in small amounts every other day. For instance, I can have a little wheat (one slice of bread or half a bun) every other day, without any adverse effects. If I have 4 slices of bread, I can hardly get off the couch for a day and a half.
The flip side of this subject is one that parents don't always think is such a big deal and has really become an epidemic. This is when your child eats too much. In my opinion, if your child has love handles, they're eating too much. Once a child forms fat cells (after the initial baby fat, which is necessary) they will have that number of fat cells for the rest of their life. They will be able to decrease the size of their fat cells, but a person cannot decrease the number of fat cells that they have created during their childhood (at least not without surgery).
If you would just think about giving fruit for a snack (with milk, if they aren't sensitive, or some other protein) instead of chips or other processed foods, this simple substitution will ward off a lot of weight problems. I realize it's a little more work to wash and cut up some fruit than to toss a bag of chips at them.
But think about it, when a child gets enough fruit, they will stop eating. This is because fruit has fiber to fill a child up, and the taste of a fruit will change to unpleasant when the child has had enough of that particular fruit. An example of this would be my son one day saying, "Mom, this orange tastes so good!" The next day, I fix an orange from the same bag for him and he won't even finish it. He complains that it just doesn't taste good.
But there's no such thing as getting enough chips. It's easy to eat the whole bag. Children (and grown-ups) will find it difficult if not impossible to stop eating after a reasonable amount. Have you ever noticed what a serving size is for chips? Like, about nine chips. Yeah, right!
Also look at the portion size of your children if they are overweight. Stomaches can get stretched out and the child's brain won't signal that they are full with a reasonable amount of food. It is also easy for people to mistake thirst for hunger. This is another powerful reason to give your children lots of water.
Don't try to comfort your child with food. Try to get them to talk about their feelings and get the feelings out rather than to push the feelings down with food.
So, my last subject, to follow this line of thought, is are your children getting enough nutrition? Studies show that over 90% of kids do not get the recommended amounts of nutrients that they need to grow into healthy adults. Wouldn't you like to give them a better start on life?
I'm going to discuss children's vitamins for ages 4-12. (The supplement that we use, I gave a half a dose for my kids when they were 2 and 3.)
But how do you judge a good children's vitamin? First, they have to like the taste, so that they eat them. I've tried a couple kinds of children's vitamins found at discount stores. One of them, my kids wouldn't even eat. They would hide them under their plate, or drop them on the floor, or sneak them into the garbage.
Both of the brands looked good when I checked the label at the store, because they all claim to be good for your children. They pay big bucks for marketing stategies. But when you compare them to a high-quality children's dietary supplement, they just don't match up.
Here's what to look for in children's vitamins:
No artificial flavors, sweeteners, colors, or preservatives.
A child-safe lid: Accidental overdose of iron-containing products is a leading cause of fatal poisoning in children under 6. Keep away from your children as an extra precaution, because they do figure out the child-safe lids at some point.
No sugar, because you don't want to rot your child's teeth as a trade-off for good nutrition. A multi for kids sweetened with Xylitol is the best. This ingredient may even reduce the risk of tooth decay.
Look for 100% of the following in these forms (stated in parenthesis) which are the most absorbable:
Vitamin C (as ascorbid acid)
Vitamin D (as cholecalciferol)
Vitamin E (as d-alpha tocopheryl acetate)
Thiamin (as thiamin mononitrate)
Riboflavin (no alternate forms)
Niacin (as niacinamide)
Vitamin B6 (as pyridoxine hydrochloride)
Folate (as folic acid)
Vitamin B12 (as cyanocobalamin)
Biotin (as d-biotin)
Pantothenic Acid (as d-calcium pantothenate)
Biotin is the nutrient most often lacking the quantity of 100% in children's vitamins. Because it's one of the B-Vitamins and they all work and support each other in the body, it is very important. The reason it's often lacking is because it's expensive to put Biotin in a supplement, so most companies will cut corners, and therefore compromise your child's health, in order to have an attractive price and sell more product.
Calcium is often low in a children's vitamin. This is normal because Calcium takes up a lot of room in a supplement, and if your child has 4 servings of dairy products a day, they will probably get enough Calcium. If your child does not have at least 4 servings a day of dairy products, you should provide additional Calcium supplementation.
Look for Bioflavinoids in the ingredients list. This is needed in order for the body to utilize Vitamin C.
You want a Children's Multi to be made from whole foods, not extracted vitamins, or worse yet, synthetic vitamins. When you see ingredients like alfalfa, rose hips, rice bran, and sea kelp, this is a clue that the company has used whole foods to make the dietary supplement.
Here's some other nutrients found in the high-quality children's supplement that we use at our house: Vitamin A, Vitamin K, Iron, Iodine, Magnesium, Zinc, Selenium, Copper, Manganese, Chromium,and Molybdenum.
How does your child's multi measure up? Are you giving your children a multi-vitamin? I'd like to hear from you.
That's all for now. . .
Contact me below if you have any questions about this newsletter.
Until next time. . .
Health Disclaimer These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. These statements and products are not intended to diagnose, cure, prevent or treat any diseases. The information here is not provided by medical professionals and is not intended as a substitute for medical advice. Please consult your physician before beginning any course of treatment.
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