Is your Children’s Diet Affecting Their Mood? Ask Yourself These 3 Questions

Remember the old saying, “You are what you eat?” This certainly holds true when discussing a child’s diet. Studies have found that children with ADHD specifically fall under this category, where their behaviors are closely linked to the foods that they eat. 

When considering your child’s diet, be aware that specific categories can be affecting your child’s mood and behaviors. The following questions can be helpful when assessing your child’s diet.

1.Does your child’s diet include artificial food dyes?

Studies have shown direct links between artificial food dyes and hyperactivity. Artificial Food Dyes are petroleum-derived substances. These dyes have been banned in many other countries. However, in the United States artificial food dyes like Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Blue 1, and Red 40 can be found in many processed foods.

 Artificial food dyes can be found in processed foods such as:

  • Candy
  • Sports drinks
  • Cereal
  • Salad dressing
  • Frozen treats

2. Does your child’s diet include gluten?

Gluten is the protein found in the grains of wheat, rye, and barley. For children with gluten sensitivities, gluten has been shown to increase irritability and aggressive behavior. Studies have also shown that certain mood disorders can be heightened from gluten intake. Research published in BMJ Journals also shows that there is a link between Gluten Free diets and reduced hyperactivity. 

Gluten can be found in food such as:

  • Breads
  • Pastas
  • Cereals
  • Crackers
  • Sauces

3. Does your child’s diet include dairy?

Studies have shown that there is a link between consuming dairy and a child with ADHD’s behaviors. After consuming dairy, children with ADHD can show behaviors such as hyperactivity, irritability, anxiety, and difficulty concentrating. Dairy can also affect a child physically with symptoms such as bloating, nausea, and fatigue. 

Diary can be found in foods such as:

  • Milk
  • Yogurt
  • Ice Cream
  • Sour Cream

Changing your child’s diet can help with your child’s mood. The right diet can mitigate your child’s hyperactivity, irritability, and aggressive behaviors. Below you can find a few easy and healthy recipes you can try with your family this month. 

Cauliflower Fried Rice






Herbed Roast Turkey Breast







Cantaloupe Ice Pops

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Children’s Wellness & Developmental Center
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Spring Lake Hts, NJ 07762 Monmouth County
T: 732.919.1335
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