Diet changes fix behaviour
By SAM BENGERsamb@gladstoneobserver.com.au
IMAGINE a two-year-old on illegal drugs.
That's what Christine Free- man had to deal with when her son Lachlan was a toddler.
"He had extremely bad beh- viour, I didn't want to take him anywhere and he had nightmares every night ? he'd be screaming and going mad at everything and we knew something had to be wrong,'' Mrs Freeman said.
She said she became even more frustrated when told by friends and relatives that it was "just a phase'' and Lach- lan, now five years old, would grow out of it.
"My husband and I knew he shouldn't be so angry, he was throwing tantrums 10 or 12 times a day, I dreaded tak- ing him shopping, because he'd headbutt the trolley or the ground and he'd run out in front of cars ? it was like he was possessed or some- thing,'' she said.
It wasn't until a friend men- tioned diet that Mrs Freeman found sleeping disorders could be related to salicylates, a naturally occurring aspirin found in fruits and vegetables.
"I got Sue Dengate's cook- book and found a lot of the foods Lachlan was eating had a high amount of salicylates ? apples, honey, sultanas, to- mato sauce ? all the things he craved,'' she said.
"I took him off it straight away and for the first few days he was going crazy look- ing for it but after a few days he had his first full night's sleep and his behaviour start- ed getting better.''
Mrs Freeman said before she found out about salicy- lates, she thought her son's like of fruit was a good thing and encouraged him to eat more, not realising the affect it had on him. "We took him off it for a year and were really careful, but now we let him have small amounts ? he'll have some to- mato sauce on sausages now and he's OK,'' she said.
Author of books on chil- dren's behaviour and links to diet, Sue Dengate, will be at the Gladstone Entertainment Centre tonight from 7pm.
Tickets are $10 and can be bought by phoning the Entertainment Centre on 4972 2822.