Junk-food Diet 'Makes Children Badly Behaved'
In the study, around 40 per cent of children given omega-3 fatty acid supplements made dramatic improvements in reading and spelling. More Information:
3 Fatty Acids
(Omega 3 Fatty Acids) and Anxiety/Substance Abusers Order:
3 Fatty Acids
05 May 2005
DIETS high in processed foods are causing bad behaviour and learning difficulties in children, scientists warned yesterday.
They said junk food stops the brain working properly, leading to underachievement and a host of disorders.
Such foods not only lack the vitamins, minerals and essential fatty acids that boost brain power, but actually reduce the body's uptake of nutrients that improve concentration, a study has found.
Thousands of children given medication to combat attention deficit disorder might be better off simply improving their diet, according to the research.
The Oxford University study showed that giving children essential fats found in fish and nuts could improve their brain power.
Their ability to learn was increased and their behaviour dramatically improved by supplementing their diets with such fats.
Startling results in children who were underachieving and in some cases being disruptive were recorded after just three months.
The study involved more than 100 British children battling with physical coordination problems.
They were given daily supplements rich in omega-3 essential fats (fatty acids) that are vital for brain development but have been reduced in the national diet over the last couple of decades.
There was also a significant improvement in concentration and behaviour, says a report in this month's issue of the U.S. journal Pediatrics.
Researchers were led by Dr Alexandra Richardson, from Oxford University's department of physiology.
She said: 'Food affects behaviour. To ignore the role of nutrition is indefensible. If you paid attention to diet you could really make a difference.' Patrick Holford, who runs the Brain Bio Centre which tackles mental health problems through nutrition, said: 'We're seeing outrageous imbalances in brain chemistry caused by the kinds of foods that sadly millions of kids are eating, and no one's doing anything about it.
'These kids are digging their own graves with a knife and fork. We know some fats found in processed and fried foods should be avoided.
'However, there are other fats that are essential and a deficiency can negatively impact on a child's behaviour.' The study involved 117 children aged five to 12 in County Durham. They were of normal ability but underachieving and suspected of having a condition that affects co-ordination. It is thought to affect at least 5 per cent of British pupils.
Half the children were given omega-3 essential fats capsules for three months, while the rest had 'dummy' treatment with capsules of olive oil.
Those on omega-3 fatty acids made up to ten months' progress in reading in three months, compared with those taking olive oil who made normal progress.
When the children swapped treatments, there was a similar jump forward for those transferred to omega-3 fatty acids for the second three- month period.
After three months on the supplements, half showed such improvement they were no longer classified as having problems.
In some cases, children improved their reading age by up to four years.
Dr Richardson, who is also co-director of the Food and Behaviour Research charity, said unhealthy dietary fats can actually displace the healthy fats in the brain.
Known as trans fats, they are mostly found in processed foods such as crisps, biscuits and cakes.
Many teenagers get 40 per cent of their calories from fat.
The researchers fear that junk-food diets could permanently damage brain development and by adding omega 3 fatty acids may improve a host of health problems.
In the study, around 40 per cent of children given omega-3 fatty acid supplements made dramatic improvements in reading and spelling.
More Information: Omega 3 Fatty Acids | EPA/DHA (Omega 3 Fatty Acids) and Anxiety/Substance Abusers
Order: Omega 3 Fatty Acids
Enjoy the benefits of our flat rate shipping and handling! You receive the same great service for the same shipping price whether you order one item or one hundred!
USA only - US Post Office 5-9 business days.
Save 8.25% on all purchases - Texans and everyone!
It's all tax free! You will be able to review all charges before they are charged to you.
At checkout (after you click the Add button on any of the order pages), the billing address you enter must match the address where you receive your credit card (security effects). The shipping address you enter does not have to match.
All orders placed by Noon Central Standard Time (CST) are shipped the same day. PO Boxes Okay.
Payment by credit card is immediate. Payment by check adds a few more business days -- as soon as funds clear.
We do not sell the information you give us to anyone.
Nutrition Home Page
The information and statements made throughout this web site have not been endorsed/evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration or any other governmental authority, unless otherwise specifically noted. We do not offer products or services for the benefits or purpose of diagnosis, prescription for, treatment of, or claims to prevent, mitigate or cure any viral or disease condition or be free from side effects. Please, seek the advice of a competent medical professional about anything you read on our site.RSS Feed