Perth Nutritionists

Corrin Ainley
Rener Health Clinics

(08) 9330 2922

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Top 5 tips to improve children's health

by on 29 June, 2015

Here are five common things that can be affecting your child's health and happiness.

 

 

 

1.Consider food allergies and intolerance.

Food allergy and food intolerance are very different. A true food allergy is an immediate reaction by the body to certain foods, this can cause life threatening symptoms.  Food intolerance is when the body reacts to foods more slowly and is caused by problems with digestion.

•    Food allergy = immune system reaction to a food (IgE)
•    Food intolerance = inability to digest a food (IgG)


Look out for signs of food intolerance:

•    Fatigue
•    Food cravings
•    Skin: unexplained rash, eczema, dark circles under the eyes
•    Digestion: stomach aches, loose stools or constipation
•    Respiratory: asthma, mucous congestion
•    Neurological : headaches, ears ringing, dizziness
•    Psychological: mood disorders, anxiety, depression, panic attacks, aggression
•    Behaviour: hyperactivity, impulsivity, mood swings and restlessness


Common offending food are:

Gluten (in wheat, rye, barley, oats and their products)

Lactose and Casein (in dairy products)

Soy / Eggs / Corn / Nuts / Yeast

Salicylates; salicylates are chemicals found naturally in some plants, stored in the bark, leaves, roots, skin and seeds, where they protect the plants against insect damage and disease.

Food additives intolerance only affects a very small number of children and adults. The additives most commonly linked to food intolerance are artificial colours, e.g. tartrazine, sulphites and benzoates (types of preservatives).

Sulphites are preservatives and are commonly found in wine and dried fruit. The additive numbers for Sulphites are 220-228 and appear in the ingredient list. Sulphite reactions cause asthma, rashes, irritable bowel syndrome and headaches in sensitive people.

A healthcare profession can order IgG food testing to identify which foods are problematic. Alternatively you can eliminate foods one by one and monitor physical and emotional changes. It is important to seek advice to restore digestive function and the underlying reason for food intolerances.


2.    Should you test for Pyrrole Disorder?


10% of children this condition but most don’t know it.   Kyroptopyrroluria, also known as ‘Pyrrole Disorder’ is a condition I commonly treat. Children with Pyrrole Disorder have a genetic abnormality where the body produces a molecule leading to the loss of vitamin B6 and zinc. These deficiencies negatively impact physical and emotional health as they are needed to many processes in the body including digestion, brain chemistry and immunity. Pyrrole Disorder is diagnosed with a simple urine test ordered by healthcare professionals. Treatment is simple and effective with nutrient therapy.

Pyrrole Disorder Common symptoms

•    Anxiety
•    Overcrowded teeth and poor tooth enamel
•    Low stress tolerance
•    Mood swings
•    White spots on fingernails
•    Motion sickness
•    Sensory processing disorder
•    Memory loss
•    Temper outbursts
•    Insomnia
•    Joint pain
•    Poor dream recall
•    Cold hands and feet
•    Fatigue
•    Creaking knees
•    Irritable bowel syndrome
•    Delayed onset of puberty
•    Hyperactivity
•    Craving for high-sugar and high-carb foods

3.    Consider zinc deficiency

Many children are deficient in zinc, a critically important nutrient. Consequences of zinc deficiency are picky eating and a limited appetite. A lack of zinc distorts the sensory perception of taste, smell, and textures. A zinc deficient palate is unable to detect the subtle flavors of vegetables.

Foods high in zinc include: spinach, nuts, seeds, beans, chickpeas, seafood, beef, lamb, chicken, mushrooms. In many cases supplementation will be required.

4.    Check the toilet

Constipation and diarrhoea can have significant impact on a child’s body and brain. Constipation leads to increased toxins in the body and loose motions lead to malnutrition.

o    Tips for constipation:  increase water intake, increase exercise, eat stewed apples, drink warm lemon and honey in water upon rising, and take a magnesium supplement.

o    Tips for loose bowel motions: you may first try a gluten free/casein free diet, tests can be ordered for food intolerances and pathogenic micro-organisms. Keep well hydrated.

5.    Add a smoothie for Fussy Eaters


I often include a yummy smoothie to a fussy eaters diet. This is a great way of sneaking in nutrients. A high quality protein powder and superfood formulas are easily hidden and ensure they are getting the recommended daily intake of nutrients.

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