Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Fast Food and Feingold

Today, boys and girls, we're going to have a word about Fast Food and Feingold.

As parents of ADHD kids, on a budget no less, early on we investigated non-medication methods for treating the wonderful adverse symptoms of... hey, is that a butterfly?
MWHAHAHA... Now that I have lost your attention...
One of the treatments we investigated is diet. Specifically, the Feingold Diet. The principle behind the diet is that we have lots of additives in our food that companies have put in there to make it fresher, brighter, tastier, and, well, many other ERs.

Food companies are in the business of making money. It's what they do, and why they exist, and we shouldn't shame them for it. After all, they employ a LOT of us, including now my oldest son, yay, he got a JOB!

But in order to make money, they need to pull out the sugar, which is kinda expensive, and replace it with Corn Syrup, which is also now kind of expensive, since we run our CARS on it. (go figure...). And they add BHT (Does anybody even know or care what that stands for??) to the packaging so that your cereal will stay fresher longer, meaning more can be on the shelf for you, and it can have a sell-by date many months in the future, rather than, like, next week...

Because you like your food brighter, they add artificial colors, like Red Dye #5. Or Yellow Dye #2. Sort of like Crayola, except you eat this stuff. Really, you DO. Just read the label on the stuff you're eating now while reading this. Those ingredients are just a tad scary.

So, these companies had the bright idea to add all this stuff into the food you eat. Nobody, not even the FDA, had a really good idea what that might do to you over the long haul, but they tested it out on mice and prisoners and some folks from Bug Guts MS, and there were no real ill effects. Right.

So, the basis on the Feingold Diet is to eat fresh food, and avoid all that other stuff you don't really need in you, because believe it or not, it really does seem to affect your brain. That's right, the effects of those chemicals affect your brain.

Anyway, lest I ramble further, we tried the Feingold Diet (There was an entrance fee for their book and subscription to their newsletter and website and some other goodies, and believe it or not, the DIET WORKED. Bringing a verse to mind, Psalm 34:8.
Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good;
Blessed is the man who trusts in Him!

I came into work after two weeks on the diet, and my head was clear for the first time in, like, ever, and I could actually think faster, talk slower, react more calmly, and in general was no fun anymore for my coworkers, who enjoyed my daily rants. One of them actually stopped me outside her office and said, "Ok, who are you, and what have you done with Chris??"

One of my coworkers actually started dropping by my office before staff meetings and giving me a Snickers Bar and a Mountain Dew so I would be good and wound up before our weekly staff meetings.
That's right, my coworkers sabotaged the diet, because I was no fun anymore.

Also, though the diet does not seem expensive, it actually is. You see, companies can sell cheaper food, well, cheaper, because fresh, natural, organic food is harder to grow, doesn't stay fresh as long, and therefore, costs more.

So now, we've got all the kids on medication, but one thing the diet DID do for us is give us a hunger for fresh food. So, while we do occasionally stop at McDonalds or Wendys for fast food, when we head to the grocery store, we usually try to pick up organics like apples and salad stuff.

So this weekend Rebecca came home with a bag of apples, intending to put them in a bowl on the table. But by the time she got a bowl out, this was all that was left...
Now, THAT's what I call FAST FOOD.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Cats, Controlled Substances, and Coffee

It's been a long long while since I posted to this blog, but something happened yesterday that applies to the whole ADHD thing, and I decided to chuck another post here, which I will probably cross-post to my writing site, creativeadventuring.BlogSpot.com

So, we have a lot of cats. I used to NOT be a cat person, more of a DOG person growing up, since our family had three dogs while I was growing up, and one cat (if I remember correctly, that got distemper and my pseudo-vet sister nursed it through by giving it droppers of Gatorade.)
But that was then, this is now. My wife was absolutely a CAT person, and made concessions on the dog, who as noted before in this blog, blows coat twice yearly, a snowfall we have to deal with stoically.

So, we currently have FOUR cats, Whose names are Tribble (From the Trouble With Tribbles, a classic Star Trek episode),
(note, this guy is 17 years old, so he's fragile and somewhat cranky)

 Kato (so named because of his clumsy Ninja skills), Kuro (Japanese for black. Go figure, it's a black cat),

and last but certainly not least, Cappuccino Jack (nicknamed Bean Bun for no logical reason)
Here he is, examining a jug of Tropicana Orange Juice (actually, it's water, not OJ, as you can see. I don't think Tropicana has come out with clear OJ yet (personal note, mention it to them...)) It's not Gatorade, but his stance here makes it clear that he is curious about people food.

This cat gets on the counter to eat our dinner before it's served. Not just steak or fish. He's often seen hauling a strand of cooked spaghetti through the house, or a leaf of lettuce. He eats all kinds of things he's not supposed to.

How, you may ask, does this have anything to do with ADHD?

Glad you asked.

Controlled Substances 
You see, every morning our family gets pills. Ones like the one in the picture below.
Frankly, I do NOT see how this looks like, smells like, tastes like, or acts like, FOOD, of ANY SORT.

Yet, we are seen every morning by our Mahar Shalal Hash Baz kitty consuming these tasty trifles. Not with any relish, but just to be able to function in HomeSchool.

My oldest son, just about to re-enter college, left his happy little pill just like the one above, lying on the counter, rather than ingesting it. (He says they make him nervous...)

The very same counter ol' Bean Bun climbs on to steal our FOOD.

Oh no, he didn't.

Oh yes, he did.

So, thankfully, he decided that, since it was FOOD, it required just a tad of chewing. And he discovered quickly that these pills taste quite different on the INSIDE than they do on the OUTSIDE.

Spitting and hissing, he left the pill half-eaten. But he spent the rest of the day calmer, more organized, and studious than he's been in his entire kitty existence.

Which goes quite a ways to proving out that he actually IS ADHD, a theory we've had for quite some time, observing the way he runs through the house every day until he is completely out of energy. Zipping under couches only to pop out elsewhere, claws extended, to shred someone's leg or one of his fellow citizens of the Cat Kingdom.

This goes to show why we try to keep these substances, well, controlled, as attested to by this lock on the cabinet...
The bottom line is, I don't think Bean Bun will become addicted to this stimulant. And thankfully, he's still staying away from this one... It's my own personal addiction...


So, this morning, he's back to his usual playful ADHD self. Here he is a few hours ago, playing with and attacking some of Maya's blown coat. Yes, please don't tell anyone, but he has a thing for large tufts of dog hair...

We were studying Psalm 60 and 61. When it came time to cover the part where God says 'Over Edom I will cast my shoe', I did what I often do, and pulled off my shoe and threw it across the room.

Bean Bun went after it, chasing it up the stairs, and then leaping to his usual attack vantage point:
Then came down while we continued reading, to investigate my white sock and see if it was, in fact, a VERY large tuft of white dog hair...

Sigh. Hurry To The Spoils, back at it again.