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Empowering Parents of Children with ADHD: Tips and Strategies from the ADHD Thrive Institute

Article presented by Maria Williams

According to the National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) survey, about 9.4% of children in the United States have been diagnosed with ADHD. The condition is characterized by difficulty with focus, organization, and impulsivity, which can make it challenging for children to learn and succeed in a traditional classroom setting. While medication is often a part of treatment, research has also shown that natural approaches can be highly effective in managing symptoms and improving overall well-being.

As the founder and CEO of the ADHD Thrive Institute and the creator of the “ADHD Thrive Method 4 Kids” program, Dana Kay, Board Certified Holistic Health and Nutrition Practitioner, has dedicated her career to helping children with ADHD succeed in school and in life. Through her work with families, she has seen firsthand the powerful impact that natural approaches, such as diet and nutrition, can have on managing ADHD symptoms and promoting overall well-being.

A recent study published in the Journal of Child Neurology found that a diet rich in whole, nutrient-dense foods may improve ADHD symptoms in children. The study, which included 246 children with ADHD, found that those who followed a diet high in fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds had significantly fewer ADHD symptoms compared to those who followed a diet high in processed and sugary foods.

In addition to diet and nutrition, other natural approaches that have been shown to be effective in managing ADHD symptoms include exercise, sleep, and mindfulness practices. A review published in the Journal of Child Neurology found that physical activity can improve cognition and behavior in children with ADHD, while a study published in Sleep Medicine Reviews found that improving sleep quality can have a positive impact on ADHD symptoms. Mindfulness practices, such as meditation and deep breathing, can also help children with ADHD regulate their emotions and improve focus and attention.

Kay believes that the gut-brain connection plays a critical role in managing ADHD symptoms and promoting overall well-being. The gut microbiome, which consists of the microorganisms living in the gastrointestinal tract, plays a key role in regulating the immune system, digestion, and brain function. A healthy gut microbiome is important for overall health and well-being, including cognitive function and behavior. Research has shown that the gut microbiome can be influenced by diet and nutrition, as well as other factors such as stress, sleep, and exercise.

By focusing on a diet rich in whole, nutrient-dense foods and avoiding highly inflammatory foods and food additives and dyes that may have an adverse effect on behavior, parents of children with ADHD can support the health of the gut microbiome and improve overall well-being. 

Incorporating probiotics and prebiotics, which are beneficial bacteria and non-digestible plant fibers that feed the good bacteria in the gut, can also help support the gut microbiome.

Kay recommends working with a holistic health practitioner or other healthcare professionals to develop a plan that is tailored to the specific needs of each child. By addressing the whole child and finding a balance that works for each individual, it is possible for children with ADHD to succeed and thrive without relying solely on medication. She encourages parents to be proactive in seeking out information and support, as this can make a significant difference in the well-being and success of their children with ADHD.

By sharing her expertise and the strategies she has developed through her work with over 1000 other families, Kay hopes to empower other parents of children with ADHD to find natural solutions that work best for their families. She believes that by focusing on the whole child and considering all aspects of health and well-being, parents can help their children with ADHD succeed and thrive.

Members of the editorial and news staff of Woman's World were not involved in the creation of this content.

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