40% of a typical 2 to 18-year old’s diet consists of “empty calories” (commonly known as “junk food”), and even in the remaining 60 percent of their diet, there are often roadblocks to gaining essential nutrients. Elimination and fad diets often prevent children from meeting daily requirements.
Dietary sources of energy, solid fats, and added sugars among children and adolescents in the United States. Reedy and Krebs-Smith (2010)
Essential nutrients are those nutrients our bodies require daily but can’t produce, so they need to be consumed. Deficiency of essential nutrients can cause numerous health issues, and as shocking as it may appear there is a rise in nutritional deficiency in affluent countries for various reasons including a rise in parents allowing children to exist on junk food diets.
Humans have a greater demand for nutrients and energy to support the body’s requirements for growth and development during early childhood than at any other time in life. As this is a time of rapid brain development, the nutrition that children receive in the first five years of life can have long-term effects on physical and mental health.Understanding the role of nutrition in the brain and behavioral development of toddlers and preschool children: identifying and addressing methodological barriers. Rosales et al. 2009
Early childhood marks the time when most children transition from eating food chosen by caregivers to making their own dietary choices (Rosales et al. 2009). As a result, food intake becomes subject to preferences that are not always based on good nutrition – or common sense. Essential nutrition can affect the ongoing development of higher cognitive processes at any stage of development, and its absence can result in long-lasting cognitive impairment.
In the special needs population for children, there are two main reasons for nutritional deficiencies including picky eating or feeding disorders as well as parents intentionally trying restrictive diets further limiting essential nutrients.
Habitual fast-food eaters — those who ate fast food daily – produced test scores that were up to about 20 percent lower than students who ate no fast food.
A study of 8,544 American schoolchildren measured their junk food consumption at the age of 10 and, after accounting for other factors, assessed their academic performance in reading, mathematics, and science at age 13 and found the consumption of junk food is linked to poorer academic outcomes. A healthy diet is linked to better reading skills in the first three years of school, though the investigators found that the positive associations of diet quality with reading skills in later grades were independent of reading skills in Grade 1.Fast Food Consumption and Academic Growth in Late Childhood Purtell et al. 2014
If your child is consuming a limited diet either due to feeding issues or restrictive diets this case study just published today published Monday in Annals of Internal Medicine is something parents need to be aware as a teen went permanently blind and developed a hearing loss after eating a strict junk food diet of Pringles, french fries, white bread, processed ham, and sausage for a few years.Blindness Caused by a Junk Food Diet Harrison et al. 2019
A teenager in the United Kingdom described as a “fussy eater” went blind and developed a hearing loss after eating a strict junk food diet of Pringles, french fries, white bread, processed ham, and sausage for a few years.
A case study published Monday in Annals of Internal Medicine, shows the boy suffered from nutritional optic neuropathy, a dysfunction of the optic nerve cause by a diet low in nutrients required for nerve fibres in the eye to function. The condition can lead to permanent vision loss if left untreated.
Researchers at the Bristol Eye Hospital in the U.K. said the boy first visited his family doctor as a 14-year-old with a normal body mass index, but complained of tiredness. His doctor gave him some vitamin B12 injections to treat low levels of the vitamin and suggested some dietary changes.
A year later, the boy had developed hearing loss and symptoms related to his vision, but doctors could not determine the cause. By age 17, the boy’s vision had regressed to the point of blindness.
Doctors investigated and found the boy suffered several bone, vitamin and mineral deficiencies. That was when the teenager admitted to avoiding foods with certain textures since elementary school. He said he only ate French fries, Pringles, white bread, processed ham, and sausage.
By the time doctors had completed the diagnosis, he had suffered permanent vision loss.
Though nutritional optic neuropathy is rare in developed countries, the University of Iowa documented a case in which a 28-year-old man’s diet consisted almost entirely of 1.9 litres of vodka per day, causing vision problems.
The authors of the U.K. case study say “fussy eating” restricted to junk food that causes serious nutritional deficiencies is a form of eating disorder.
The researchers say nutritional optic neuropathy should be considered in all cases of unexplained vision loss involving someone with a poor diet, regardless of the person’s BMI. source
WHILE SOME MAY QUESTION VITAMINS IN THESE SITUATIONS, FOOD, HEALTHY FOOD, IS THE PUREST FORM OF SUPPLEMENTATION.
In addition to seeking professional help if your child has a feeding disorder, I also highly recommend you try my patented nutritional formula IQed which provides all the essential nutrients (macro and micro) through the natural food ingredients. Here are some serving suggestionsfor IQedand some picky eater tipsas well.
Lisa Geng got her start as a designer, patented inventor, and creator in the fashion, toy, and film industries, but after the early diagnosis of her young children with diagnosis including severe apraxia, hypotonia, sensory processing disorder, ADHD, CAPD, she entered the world of nonprofit, pilot studies, and advocacy. As the mother of two “late talkers,” she is the founder and president of the nonprofit CHERAB Foundation, co-author of the acclaimed book, The Late Talker, (St Martin’s Press 2003), and holds two patents and patents pending on IQed nutritional composition. Lisa has been serving as a parent advocate on an AAN Immunization Panel since 2015 and is a member of CUE through Cochrane US. Lisa is currently working on a second book, The Late Talker Grows Up and serves as a Late Talkers, Silent Voices executive producer. She lives on the Treasure Coast of Florida.
IQed® is being planned for both preclinical and clinical studies