10 Signs Your Child May Need a Diet Change
Our guts, and our children’s guts, are in bad shape. Even if you have an organic garden outside of your back door, there may still be reason to work on healing your gut.
I suggest reading The Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Natasha Campbell-McBride. Through her research, she has found an undeniable link between unhealthy gut bacteria, poor digestion, and toxicity from chemicals, which can "severely affect brain chemistry."
There are several small signs that can go overlooked for years with your child.
10 Signs Your Child May Need a Diet Change
This is a list of outward signs that the gut is in distress. While there are several other possible signs, these are the most commonly seen. While every child is different, and how you will heal your child’s gut will vary from others, it is possible to alter the diet by eliminating processed foods, dyes, and artificial sugars, and removing any trigger foods.
The key is figuring out what your child’s trigger foods are. If anything on this list jumps out at you, please look into closely working with your doctor and following an elimination diet.
Sporadic Emotions: High highs and low lows; sudden tantrums or more extreme tantrums than normal.
- Research shows that essential fatty acids (specifically Omega3) aid the body in balancing emotions and keeping a stable feeling of contentment or happiness. The body is not able to create essential fatty acids on its own, so you have to get them from what you eat.
- One of the first ways the body excretes toxins is through urine. When toxic urine comes into the bladder, it irritates and causes chronic underlying inflammation in the mucous membranes of the bladder and urethra. As a result, the child does not have a chance to get to the bathroom – and may not even wake up at night. (Daytime urinating is more frequent, too.)
- Yeast is a sign of an unhealthy gut - even in an infant!
- Children with hyperactivity tend to have poor gut bacteria and digestion.
Dry Skin, Rashes, Acne, Eczema, Cradle Cap, Dandruff
- Fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E and K are linked to keeping the skin healthy. A diet full of sugars and carbohydrates, processed/refined food, caffeine, alcohol, rancid oils, and unhealthy fats leads to skin irritations. The gut is directly linked to the skin. Heal the gut and heal the skin.
Anxiety or Depression
- While both anxiety and depression are thought to be neurological illnesses, the gut is linked directly to the brain, too. Studies have shown that inflammation may be involved in the development of depression. Depression is frequently associated with gastrointestinal inflammations and autoimmune diseases, all which can be treated through diet and gut repair.
- B12 deficiency is linked to speech delays. Boost naturally with wild-caught fish, etc.
- While sugary foods or a bottle of milk at bedtime can cause cavities, this warning sign is aimed at chronic cavities.
- Dr. Weston A. Price, a dentist known for his theories on the relationship between teeth and nutrition, found that cavities resulted from a deficiency in proper minerals, and also a deficiency in fat-soluble vitamins that are needed to absorb and assimilate the minerals.
- When we eat foods that aren’t nutrient-dense, our bodies are hungry. The body becomes starved for good nutrition and that’s why you won’t feel satisfied when eating highly processed foods and/or foods devoid of nutrients. Our bodies were meant to feel satisfied with the balance of all foods.
Frequent Illness (Colds/Flus)
- It is easy to blame childhood colds on school, playdates, or surrounding environments, but the truth is that healthy children don’t get sick often. A child with a healthy gut has the proper bacteria to increase immunity and is less susceptible to other children’s germs. There’s something to be said about serving a homemade bowl of Grandma’s chicken soup to help you feel better. Chances are that soup consisted of a bone broth simmered for days with local, fresh raised chicken or beef bones. This explains why it actually made people feel better. (Canned soup? Not so much.)
I know this was a list of ten, but I feel like these VERY obvious signs need mentioning:
FOOD ALLERGIES (If your child has food allergies, there is reason to ensure that all foods that cause any reaction are eliminated from his diet)
Research shows that iron and vitamin D deficiency are both common in children without showing obvious signs, but can be linked to many illnesses and chronic problems. These levels should be tested annually.