Restricted Diet Can Identify Food-Induced ADHD

Children who undergo dietary intervention experience significant improvement in symptoms

FRIDAY, Feb. 4 (HealthDay News) -- Dietary restriction may be a useful tool in the treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children, according to research published in the Feb. 5 issue of The Lancet.

Lidy M. Pelsser, of the ADHD Research Centre in Eindhoven, Netherlands, and colleagues randomized 100 children with ADHD to five weeks of a restricted elimination diet or a control group (controls received instructions on a general healthy diet); clinical responders from the restricted diet group were then assigned to a four-week challenge phase where high-immunoglobulin G (IgG) or low-IgG foods were added to the diet based on IgG blood levels.

The researchers found that children in the intervention group of the first portion of the study experienced significant improvements in symptoms according to the ADHD Rating Scale. During the challenge portion, however, 19 of 30 (63 percent) children experienced a relapse of ADHD symptoms independent of IgG blood levels.

"A strictly supervised restricted elimination diet is a valuable instrument to assess whether ADHD is induced by food. The prescription of diets on the basis of IgG blood tests should be discouraged," the authors write.

Two authors disclosed financial relationships with pharmaceutical companies.

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