Is it ADHD or something else?

176: Nourishing Brains: How Anti-Inflammatory Diets Shape Kids’ Behavior

Explore the impact of processed foods on children’s health and discover strategies for nurturing better eating habits and gut health.

Processed snacks, sugary drinks, and fast meals are everywhere in kids' lives nowadays, often taking the spotlight away from healthier, nutrient-packed foods. This shift in dietary habits raises concerns about the long-term impact on their health and well-being, as they may miss out on essential vitamins, minerals, and other beneficial nutrients crucial for growth, development, and overall health. It thus becomes increasingly important for us to explore alternative approaches to nourishing their bodies and minds.

Join me in today’s episode and let’s delve deep into anti-inflammatory diets and the intricate world of improving gut health and addressing picky eating habits in children. As a parent myself, I understand the frustration and challenges that come with trying to expand a child's palate and ensure they're getting the nutrients they need.

Anti-inflammatory diet for picky eaters and brain health.

It is totally understandable to be quite scared or hesitant about changing your kid’s diet, especially if they’re picky in what they eat. But we must keep in mind that our kids’ brains need those nutrients. That’s why shifting to an anti-inflammatory diet is highly recommended; it’s a great way to enhance brain function.

Anti-inflammatory diets come in many forms, but they're all beneficial for our kids. From the Mediterranean diet to the Paleo diet, these dietary patterns emphasize whole, unprocessed foods rich in nutrients and antioxidants while minimizing the intake of inflammatory foods such as processed snacks, sugary treats, and refined carbohydrates.

For children, whose developing bodies and minds are particularly vulnerable to the effects of inflammation, adopting an anti-inflammatory diet can be especially beneficial. Not only does it provide essential nutrients needed for growth and development, but it also helps to support cognitive function, mood stability, and behavioral regulation.

Diet and behavior with a specialist.

I often get asked about having a diet and a healthy lifestyle. In fact, I recently got approached by a mom and we had a heartfelt chat about the importance of diet in influencing behavior, and I emphasized how crucial it is to work with knowledgeable professionals. She shared how she found relief through our Brain Behavior Reset Program and it just felt so incredibly rewarding to hear about the positive changes happening in her family's life.

We also talked about how effective an anti-inflammatory diet is, especially with a focus on the Mediterranean diet. Such a diet prioritizes whole foods and limits or excludes inflammatory ingredients like wheat, sugar, and dairy, has been extensively researched and shown to offer numerous health benefits.

The Mediterranean diet's emphasis on fresh fruits and vegetables, healthy fats, lean proteins, and whole grains not only supports overall well-being but also plays a significant role in reducing inflammation in the body. By adopting this dietary approach, individuals can potentially reduce the risk of chronic diseases and improve their overall health and vitality.

What I want to emphasize as well is how the quality of wheat in the US differs from that in other countries, which may contribute to potential inflammation and other health concerns. It is thus important for us to know the wheat quality and its differences to make better and informed choices about our dietary habits.

Anti-inflammatory diet and brain health.

I’m gonna share with you an enlightening conversation I had with Dr. Annamaria Temple about eczema, skin health, and the role of magnesium. It was a conversation that truly opened my eyes to the interconnectedness of these factors and their significant implications for our overall well-being. I gained a deeper understanding of how deficiencies in magnesium can contribute to a range of skin issues and how addressing these deficiencies can pave the way for transformative improvements in skin health.

Focusing on high-quality food is key to fueling our bodies and nourishing our skin from within. As someone passionate about holistic wellness, I advocate for nutrient-dense alternatives. Take, for example, my family's love for homemade cauliflower pizza. Beyond being a delicious meal option, it's packed with essential nutrients like vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Anti-inflammatory diet is crucial especially now that kids today face an onslaught of toxins and genetic variants that can hinder detoxification and neurodevelopment, leading to heightened stress and inflammation. Switching to an anti-inflammatory diet not only reduces inflammation but also provides essential nutrients, supporting optimal brain function.

Adding magnesium supplements to your routine, especially ones that are well-balanced, can help make eating healthier easier. Over time, taste preferences adapt, and even natural sweeteners like honey and maple syrup become more satisfying than refined sugar. Though the path isn't easy, the benefits are significant, from improved mood and reduced anxiety to enhanced neuroplasticity and cognitive function.

Brain health, nutrition, and self-regulation.

The sad truth that many people don’t know about is that certain medications can actually shrink the frontal lobes of our brains. This is where an anti-inflammatory diet comes in, playing a vital role in supporting our brain's health and communication, as well as its ability to adapt and grow, known as neuroplasticity.

It's not just about what we eat; it's also about other lifestyle factors, like sleep. 90% of our brain's detoxification process occurs while we sleep. Yet, many of us, especially neurodivergent individuals and peri-menopausal women, aren't getting enough quality sleep. This is where an anti-inflammatory diet steps in, helping to regulate blood sugar levels, which are closely linked to mental health.

By reducing inflammation and oxidative stress, an anti-inflammatory diet promotes not only physical well-being but also supports good gut health and the production of neurotransmitters like serotonin, crucial for mood and focus. Unfortunately, our modern diet often prioritizes convenience over nutrition.

Improving gut health and addressing picky eating in kids.

Improving gut health and addressing picky eating in kids are two interconnected challenges that many parents face. As someone who advocates for nutrient-dense alternatives, I encourage everyone to incorporate nutrient-dense foods into their diet as it not only supports gut health but it also has profound effects on our brain function and mood.

It's about fostering a deep connection between the food we eat and the way we feel, recognizing that our dietary choices have a profound impact on every aspect of our lives. So, let's make a conscious effort to fill our plates with nutrient-dense goodness, knowing that each bite brings us one step closer to vibrant health and vitality.

As I have emphasized in my previous episodes, magnesium is a vital nutrient that our bodies need for over 300 different processes. When we give our bodies the magnesium they need, it not only supports gut health but also aids in neurotransmitter production, helping our brains function optimally. That's why I'm proud of the magnesium supplement we've formulated as it is packed with high-quality ingredients to support overall health.

It’s also important to address sensory needs, especially for children who are sensitive to certain textures or sensations. Occupational therapy techniques, such as sensory diets and desensitization exercises, can help children gradually become more comfortable with a wider variety of foods.

Another crucial aspect of addressing picky eating is managing anxiety and stress around mealtimes. Creating a positive and relaxed mealtime environment, offering choices within healthy options, and involving children in meal preparation can help reduce mealtime stress and encourage exploration of new foods.

Through our program, I've seen countless children make progress in expanding their food choices and improving their overall well-being by addressing both sensory needs and anxiety. It's all about finding what works best for your child and sticking with it, knowing that small steps forward can lead to significant improvements over time.

Helping children eat healthier meals.

One of the common mistakes I see parents make is giving up too soon. It's crucial to understand that change takes time and patience is key. In fact, research suggests that it can take anywhere from 14 to 30 exposures for a child to accept a new food, highlighting the importance of persistence.

It’s also best to be your child’s model and start with your healthy eating habits by enjoying the same foods as your child during meals. By creating a shared experience, you're reinforcing the idea that trying new foods is a normal and enjoyable part of mealtime. Additionally, involving children in meal preparation can be a game-changer. When kids participate in cooking, they're more likely to try new foods and develop a sense of ownership over their meals. This approach isn't just for young children – teens can benefit too.

Remember, it's not about making drastic changes overnight, but rather making gradual swaps and additions to your child's diet. Whether it's replacing a few unhealthy snacks with nutrient-dense alternatives or eliminating trigger foods that affect behavior, every small step counts.

To learn more about the best diet for children with ADHD, PANS and PANDAS, check out these posts:

●      ADHD Diet

●      The Best Diet for Children with Pans and Pandas

For more information, visit:

Podcast Episode with Dr. Ana-Maria Temple

Get Dr. Roseann's Magnesium Supplement for Kid's Mental Health. Buy Neurotastic Multi-Mag Brain Formula

Get Dr. Roseann's It’s Gonna Be OK! Book

Learn more about working 1:1 with Dr. Roseann in her program, Brain Behavior Reset Program

Be calm anytime, anywhere with Calm PEMF

➡️ Join our FREE Natural Parenting Community to receive science-backed resources for your child and family. Join here.

➡️ Get help from Dr. Roseann and her team. Apply here. 

➡️ “Is it ADHD or something else?” Take the quiz. 


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