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J Paediatr Child Health. 1997 Jun;33(3):190-4.

The role of diet and behaviour in childhood.


This short review summarizes the most important research, particularly that from 1985 to 1995, on the relationship between diet and behaviour. Relevant studies particularly those using double-blind placebo controlled food challenge methodology were selected, and are presented within a historical context. Summary tables of the early development of concepts and later pertinent studies are provided. The research has shown that diet definitely affects some children. Rather than becoming simpler the issue has become demonstrably more complex. The range of suspect food items has broadened, and some non-food items are relevant. Symptoms which may change include those seen in attention deficit disorder (ADD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), sleep problems and physical symptoms, with later research emphasizing particularly changes in mood. The reports also show the range of individual differences both in the food substances producing reactions and in the areas of change.

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