How do you find a diet that fits your family? Choosing the best Nutrition plan can be a struggle but you already have all the information you need to begin.
Find a Diet that Fits You and Your Family
You’ve heard it all before. Choosing to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle can:
- Increase your energy and your strength.
- Often help you lose weight, making you look and feel healthier.
- Strengthen your immune system.
- Reduce your risk of disease
- Decrease symptoms associated with ADHD and other Neurological Disorders.
- Improve your mood, clarity, and better manage stress.
Yet even knowing all the positive reasons to apply a popular slogan to your nutrition plan and Just Do It, finding the right healthy diet and lifestyle can be a struggle.
Read more to find out what our family did to find a diet that fit; one that helps us to manage our ADHD and other health challenges.
Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional and do not claim to diagnose, treat, or cure ADHD. This post is for informational purposes only and should not be taken as medical advice. Always consult with your doctor before making any changes to your diet or lifestyle.
What Diet should my Family Follow?
When our family began to explore nutrition as a tool to manage our health and wellness, we were experiencing a whole lotta health issues and just wanted easy answers.
Should we eat gluten? Are there really certain vegetables or fruit I shouldn’t eat?
Unfortunately, there is no perfect method of eating that works for everyone. The Good News? You are the only one with the right answers.
It’s true that there are many experts that claim diet can help to address specific issues – including ADHD, ASD, and other Neurological Disorders. I am one of them!
Perhaps Dr. So and So’s hot new bestseller is where you begin to explore the benefits of nutrition in addressing side effects related to neurodiversity. And I say ‘Great!’
But you are the only one with your unique set of questions you are hoping Nutrition can answer.
First, figure out what you are trying to improve upon and determine a baseline.
We knew we had to do something. We had a growing list of health issues and our children were up against a strong history of ADHD.
I had heard a lot about using diet to manage ADHD symptoms but was confused as to where to turn. I didn’t have time to research everything, read book after book, or try one thing after another without results.
So we went to our paediatrician for direction who instead gave us ‘I can’t recommend anything that has not been well researched and proven to be true scientifically’ advice. I’m sure you can imagine how super helpful that felt at the time.
On a side rant, I still find myself repeatedly needing to advocate for our nutritional choices and opinions within/to our family’s team of health care providers. Also fantastically helpful.
Arm Yourself with Information
It seemed like more foods were beginning to affect all of us. We knew our children couldn’t tolerate red food dye and noticed their behaviour changed when they ate certain foods. My husband sniffled after eating eggs or drinking beer – but only certain kinds. One adult and one child had thrush at age 42 and 4 – Who knew that was even possible!?
Armed with this information and adults already shouting ‘I BELIEVE’ to the connection between nutrition and health, we undertook a full elimination diet with the guidance of a doctor of Naturopathic medicine. An elimination diet is a short-term eating plan that eliminates certain foods that may be causing negative reactions such as allergies, difficult behaviours, and other digestive reactions. An elimination diet was the tool we used to begin to figure out a nutrition plan; just like allergy tests or a diagnosis such as Gout or Celiac Disease might be.
We gathered more information about the reactions our bodies had to certain foods and used supplements to address problems of leaky gut and candida. Then we reintroduced certain foods one at a time in order to
determine which foods are, and are not, well-tolerated. And that was more than 5 years ago.
At this point, our diet is easiest described as an ‘Eat Clean’ approach to nutrition but kind of combines the Paleo or Whole Food methods of eating into the mix as well. But what is best for us may not be what is needed for you.
Using tools and gathering personal information helps to establish a baseline and find a diet to fit your family.
Determine a Baseline
Gathering information into a diary, chart, or app alongside the foods you eat BEFORE you begin a new diet will provide clues before you even begin! This, in turn, may help you to choose a nutritional plan that will work best for you and your family.
The issues you are looking to improve like weight, blood pressure, or sleep may be easily measurable. Blood Pressure? Pounds? Inches? How many emotional outbursts occur daily/weekly? Hours of sleep?
More subjective problems such as stress, behaviour, mood, or immunity are harder to track. Use Anecdotes, Report Cards, Performance Reviews, or Snap tests as additional tools to develop a measurement standard.
Whatever measurement tool you choose, it is important to identify a starting point.
Track and Monitor Your Progress
Once you find a diet right for you and start realizing the benefits, you quickly get used to the new norm. It is difficult to accurately determine success without the ability to look back at your baseline.
Measure your progress regularly using the same criteria. Being able to track and monitor your progress provides motivation that can help you maintain a healthy diet.
Use your Goals to Find a Diet
The best way to find a diet for you and your family isn’t always to turn to the latest and greatest of the day. Once you identify the issues are you hoping to address and determine a baseline, it will be easier to find a diet that fits your family.
Daily struggle with focus? Find a diet that focuses on providing healthy fats to optimize brain function.
At risk for heart issues? Experts recommend you find a diet with plenty of high-fiber foods, such as fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, and nuts.
The best nutritional plan for you is one that aligns with your goals; a diet that helps minimize a risk or relieves the issues you have identified as personally important to your family.
That is a diet you can stick to in the long run.
To Learn the #1 Way our Family tries to Maintain a Healthy Diet, click HERE.
FYI: We have BIG.FAT.PLANS to create a Resources page with information and recommendations to make it even easier to find the best fit for you and your family. Sign up for our Newsletter at the bottom of the page to be one of the first to learn when our Resource pages are live.