Thursday, May 05, 2011
A link between diet and ADHD? By Dr. Anthony Policastro

For many years people have been looking for a dietary cause of ADHD. Like many disorders, ADHD has many causes. In some cases it is due to something in the diet. I have had many patients whose ADHD has improved when I took them off milk and milk products. I follow three such patients now. In most of these cases the story is similar. The ADHD began long before the child started school. There was a history of formula problems during infancy. The behaviors were often bizarre in nature and not just hyperactive. In the 1970's, Dr Feingold proposed that food additives can cause ADHD. Formal scientific studies suggested that 95% of children with ADHD did not respond to the Feingold diet while 5% seemed to respond. Another item that was looked at was the use of sugar and hyperactivity. No relationship was ever found but I still have parents who try to take their child off sugar thinking that it will help ADHD. The newest link of diet and ADHD was published in the Feb. 5, 2011 issue of Lancet. It only looked at 100 children. Fifty of them were put on the diet and 50 were not. Some dropped out of the study so, in the end, 41 were on the diet and 42 were not. It was not a big study which makes the results less impressive. They put children with ADHD on a very restrictive diet. The diet included rice, meat, vegetables, pears and water. The results showed that some children responded very well to the diet. Their attention and hyperactivity scores improved while their defiant behavior decreased. Next they added back various foods a little at a time to see which ones caused the ADHD behavior. Not everyone responds to these kinds of dietary measures. The diet itself is very restrictive. However, it offers an alternative to parents who would like to start with something other than medication. It also offers an alternative approach for preschool children. As I noted above, this younger group of children is more likely to have diet caused ADHD than the traditional inherited type. It is likely that there will be more information in the future about dietary measures to treat ADHD. We will need to see if the positive effects in this small group of children can be found when larger groups are studied.

First aid classes offered Nanticoke Memorial Hospital will offer community First Aid classes to anyone interested in learning first aid on Tuesday, May 10 from 6:30 to 9:30 p.m., at the Nanticoke Training Center on Water Street in Seaford. Participants will learn basic first aid that will enable them to administer help during the first few moments until emergency responders arrive. Classes are open to participants 13-years-old and up. The course covers cognitive learning, role-playing and skill practice. Cost is $30. Payment and registration is required by no later than five business days prior to the class. Late registrations (if seating is available) will be an additional $5 fee. To register, or for more information, contact Nanticoke Memorial Hospital's Training Center office at 629-6611, ext. 8919. Pre-registration is required.

Community CPR classes Nanticoke Memorial Hospital will offer community CPR classes to anyone interested in learning CPR at the Nanticoke Training Center on Water Street in Seaford. Participants will learn how to perform the basic skills of CPR on adults, children and infants and how to help an adult, child or infant who is choking and use of the AED. This classroom-based, video, and instructor-led CPR course offers families, friends,and community members the opportunity to learn CPR and need a course completion card. Classes are open to participants 12-years-old and up. This program is specifically designed for those who prefer to learn in a group environment with feedback from an instructor. The target audience is those who have a duty to respond to a cardiac emergency because of job responsibilities or regulatory requirements. Cost is $40. Payment and registration is required by no later than five business days prior to the class. Late registrations may be accepted if seating is available. To register and to obtain a listing of class dates/times, contact Nanticoke Memorial Hospital's Training Center office at 629-6611, ext. 8919.Pre-registration is required.

Stroke Support Group Nanticoke Memorial Hospital's next Stroke Support Group meeting is Tuesday, May 17, 1:30 p.m., at the Seaford Library.

The support group is designed for individuals who have survived a stroke as well as their families and caregivers. The two-hour support group meetings will consist of guest speakers and breakaway sessions, in which caregivers and stroke survivors will meet in two groups to discuss concerns, provide support, and allow for networking. Refreshments will be provided. Pre-registration is not required for this free support group. For more information, contact Nanticoke Memorial Hospital at 629-6611, ext. 8626.

NAR-ANON support group Take Heart, Be Strong is a support group available to family members and friends who are concerned about the drug/alcohol addiction of a loved one. People in NAR-ANON understand what we are going through and are ready to share their experience, strength and hope to help. This group meets every Thursday at 7 p.m. in the Youth Room at Crossroad Community Church, 20684 State Forest Rd., Georgetown. If you are interested or know someone who might be, call Beth at 745-0466. This is an anonymous program and there are no obligations. Attendance is welcome with no prior arrangements. For more information, visit

Breast Cancer 5K Run/Walk The Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition (DBCC) will hold its Second Annual DE-feet Breast Cancer 5K Run/Walk at the Tanger Outlet Center in Rehoboth on Sunday, May 22. The Run/Walk will begin at 9 a.m. (rain or shine) at the Tanger Outlet Center's Seaside location, with registration from 7:30 to 8:50 a.m., outside Applebee's Restaurant, Rehoboth. Registration is $20 per person before May 13 and $25 thereafter and on the day of the event. The registration fee includes participation in the 5K Run, 5K Walk or 1-Mile Fun Walk, an event t-shirt and post-race reception. At the end of the event, awards will be presented to the top race finishers. Those who cannot attend but wish to support the event can register as Sleepwalkers, who can register normally, fundraise and receive event t-shirts. This Run/Walk is a family event open to participants of all ages. For more information, visit Online registration, as well as printable registration forms, can be found on the site. For more information about the Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, call 866-312-DBCC (3222) or visit

Bereavement luncheons Delaware Hospice's "New Beginnings" bereavement luncheons are an informal way to meet and talk with others, who have had similar loss experiences. Lunch begins at noon and is followed by a brief program. The location rotates each week of the month according to this schedule:
  • 1st Thursday: Grottos Pizza, Rt. 26, Bethany Beach;
  • 2nd Thursday: Georgia House, 300 Delaware Ave., Laurel;
  • 3rd Thursday: Millsboro Pizza Palace, Rt. 113-southbound lane, Millsboro;
  • 4th Thursday: Blue Ocean Grill (formerly Milton House), 200 Broadkill Rd., Milton;
  • 5th Thursday (when applicable): Texas Grill (formerly Ocean Point Grill), 26089 Long Neck Rd., Millsboro. "New Beginnings" luncheons are open to the public. Registration is not required.There is no fee except the cost of your lunch.
For more information, call Carol Dobson or Paul Ganster at 856-7717.

Breast cancer support group Delaware Breast Cancer Coalition, Inc. (DBCC) has expanded its Beginning Your Pink Ribbon Journey, a program for women newly-diagnosed with breast cancer, by partnering with Nanticoke Memorial Hospital Cancer Center in Seaford. The free, monthly program is offered at the Cancer Center located at 801 Middleford Road, Seaford, the third Thursday of each month from 3 to 4 p.m. Of particular value to newly-diagnosed women is DBCC's Peer Mentor Program through which they are paired with a long-term survivor for one-on-one support. To learn more about Beginning Your Pink Ribbon Journey at Nanticoke Memorial Hospital Cancer Center, call Lois Wilkinson at 672-6435. Registration is required and light refreshments and small gifts are provided.