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Monday, December 15, 2008

Food colours are linked with hyperactivity of your child

This post is a part of series about children having hyperactive or ADHD symptoms effecting their overall progress at school. I hope that this piece of information would be helpful for all parents and teachers who want to learn more about it.
Parents who are concerned about their child's hyperactivity or ADHD need to learn about the factors which are responsible for it. Definately, learning the causes for hyperactiviy or ADHD can help us save our child from the bad effects of it.

Hyperactivity is when a child is over-active, can't concentrate and acts on sudden wishes without thinking about alternatives. There is no single test for diagnosing hyperactivity. Experts think it affects 2 to 5% of children in the UK. The figures are higher in the United States. Hyperactivity is a general term used to describe behavioural difficulties affecting learning, memory, movement, language, emotional responses and sleep patterns. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is more than just hyperactive behaviour. Research funded by the FSA has suggested that consumption of mixes of certain artificial food colours and the preservative sodium benzoate could be linked to increased hyperactivity in some children.

ADHD is linked to a specific pattern of behaviour, including reduced attention span and difficulties concentrating such that they affect the child’s ability to learn and function at home and at school. Children with ADHD often have learning difficulties and behavioural problems.

Important new research has shown that commonly used food dyes, such as Yellow 5, Red 40, and six others, are linked to hyperactivity, impulsivity, learning difficulties, and Attention Deficity Hyperactivity Disorder in many children. The Center for Science in the Public Interest has petitioned the Food and Drug Administration to ban the use of these dyes, many of which are already being phased out in Europe.

These dyes—petrochemicals, mostly—are often used to simulate the presence of healthy, colorful fruits and vegetables. But considering the adverse impact of these chemicals on children, and considering how easily they can be replaced with colorings derived from real food ingredients, it’s time to get rid of them altogether.

Download FREE 20 page pamphlet "A Parent's Guide to Diet,ADHD & Behaviour"
- Download link

* If your child shows signs of hyperactivity, or if on the basis of this information you have concerns, you might choose to avoid giving your child food and drinks containing the following artificial colours:

sunset yellow FCF (E110)
quinoline yellow (E104)
carmoisine (E122)
allura red (E129)
tartrazine (E102)
ponceau 4R (E124)
These colours are used in a wide range of foods that tend to be brightly coloured, including some soft drinks, sweets, cakes and ice cream. Parents may wish to check the labels of brightly coloured foods if they want to avoid certain colours.
For details: FSA advice to parents on food colours and hyperactivity

More useful links:

* Understanding e numbers

* The Hyperactive Children's Support Group helping ADHD/Hyperactive children and their families for over 30 years. The HACSG is Britain's leading proponent of a dietary approach to the problem of hyperactivity.

Related posts:

* Teacher's Ideas: Dealing With Students Having ADD/ADHD

* Hobbies, Interests and Activities helping children with ADD

* Tips to deal with your hyperactive child
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