Diet Plans for Kids with ADHD

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Today’s post is a guest post from JoEllen Krauss, and while it’s called a diet plan for kids, adults can also benefit.


JoEllen Krauss writes freelance for Providian Medical who specializes in OB/GYN ultrasounds. During her spare time she likes spending quality time with her kids, baking and volunteering in her local community center. In this guest post she shares diet plans for kids with ADHD and ADD.

Diet Plans for Kids with ADHD/ADD

If you are parenting a child with ADHD/ADD then you know how difficult it can be to keep a healthy eating routine. The importance of diet in treating the symptoms of ADHD/ADD is widely accepted today by specialists and researchers.

The goal of a special diet for children struggling to maintain control and function normally is to enhance the brain’s cognition and depress the motor system. This will help a child think better and reduce restlessness.

The same diet that helps children with ADHD/ADD is healthy for all kids. The basic rules of healthy eating apply.

Eliminate processed foods made from sugar, corn syrup, and white flour.

Eat protein foods like beans, eggs, cheese, meats, and nuts.

Include Omega-3 rich foods like fish, olive oil, walnuts, and canola oil.

Eat complex carbohydrates including vegetables and fruits.

The timing of the diet is important for kids with ADHD/ADD. Your child should have a balanced meal every three hours for optimal nutritional balance. Frequent and regular meal times provide additional structure to the daily routine.

Tips for Mealtimes

Prepare foods from scratch with your child’s help.

Be creative and have fun with snacks made from vegetables and whole grains.

Make small portions and don’t worry if your child doesn’t eat the entire meal.

Incorporate new foods often but don’t insist on your child eating them at first.

Have regular family meals; breakfast and dinner are ideal times for families to connect.

Offer liquid after the meal and limit it to water or milk.

Make smoothies from fresh or frozen fruit for a healthy treat.

Add vegetables to everything! Soups, stews, casseroles, and many other foods have much better flavor when
chopped or grated vegetables are added.

Eliminate Sugars and Additives

It may seem impossible to eliminate the foods that contain additives and are loaded with sugars but it may be the most important component of a healthy diet for your child.

Throw out the junk food

Buy more vegetables and fruits

Incorporate fruit into dessert

Allow junk food on special occasions

Don’t buy processed and packaged foods

Sample Diet for One Day for a Toddler or Young Child


An egg, whole-wheat toast, one serving of fruit and milk


Handful of nuts, celery sticks with peanut butter, and water


Sandwich of tuna and lettuce on whole wheat, yogurt with granola, raw cucumber, and carrot, and milk


Sliced apple with cheese, whole wheat crackers and a glass of water


Stew with lentils and vegetables, brown rice, whole-wheat roll, and milk


Homemade frozen fruit pop or fresh fruit with whipped cream

Recipe for Lentil Stew


Chopped vegetables like carrots, onion, celery, bell pepper, garlic, and beets.

Rinsed and lentils cooked according to directions on the package

Beef or vegetable stock


Chop vegetables in small pieces and sauté in butter or olive oil until soft

Add all ingredients to a large pot and add water to the stock

Add your favorite seasonings

Bring to a boil, lower the heat and simmer the stew for about an hour.

Serve with whole wheat biscuits or rolls

Lacy Estelle

Lacy Estelle

Lacy Estelle is the writer of and the Podcast host for An ADD Woman.

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