WHEN Emiley Cooper was prescribed Ritalin and Concerta for her attention deficit disorder she became extremely sick. Normally a bubbly girl, Emiley retreated and became withdrawn and lethargic.
So concerned by her daughter’s dramatic weight loss and reaction to the drugs, her mother Allysia started to question whether the medication was making life worse.
“I think drugs might benefit some kids but there’s no advice on other ways to treat them,” Ms Cooper, of Nambucca Heads, said.
With a combination of fish oil and a change in diet, Emiley has regained weight and returned to her normal self, but without her attention disorder.
She is performing well at school and playing with friends again.
The Coopers are among thousands of families who believe the food children eat can affect their behaviour, which is sometimes wrongly diagnosed as ADHD.
Almost 7000 families are part of the Food Intolerance Network, founded by Sue Dengate, who wants controversial preservatives linked to hyperactivity and ADHD, which are banned in the UK, also taken out of food in Australia.
“It shouldn’t be up to parents to make sure their kids aren’t eating the additives,” Mrs Dengate said.
“The Government should be removing them from foods.”
Source: The Daily Telegraph, November 23 2009, http://www.news.com.au/story/0,27574,26386783-421,00.html