Nutrition – Raising Awareness

I started this blog when Liam’s tics started getting really bad, we had also just received his epilepsy diagnosis, I was in quite a state as we had been battling over the years with concentration, transition and fine motor troubles.  When his tic appeared, I was at the end of my tether.

I had been dragging Liam from one appointment to the next, therapy session after therapy session and then the tic formed and I just didn’t know what to do anymore.  I must say, I hit rock bottom when we received his epilepsy diagnosis after his EEG.

Mom guilt set in quite deeply, especially since he should never have been put on Ritalin.  I should have demanded an EEG before that Ritalin prescription was handed over, but ever trusting, I accepted the word of his Neurologist who said that an EEG wasn’t necessary.  I was so angry and upset and felt like I had been failing Liam over the years.  Just before we stopped giving him Ritalin, he developed both motor and vocal tics, one which included throwing his head back, so reading was becoming more and more challenging as he would keep losing his place.

We had been witnessing his tics for over 4 months when I decided to look at how nutrition can play a part in ones mental and physical well-being.  In the fifth month, after attending a nutritional talk on brain fog, I started giving Liam AIM BarleyLife and AIM FloraFood supplements and we started to notice his tics change.  Before the supplements, he was thrusting his shoulders up, throwing his head back and making a uh-huh sound – you can view the video here.  After starting the supplements his tics changed to just a sound like he was clearing his lungs of air – you can view the video here.

Once we introduced Metagenics Omegagenics and did the food intolerance test, eliminating gluten, dairy and eggs from his diet, we haven’t seen any tics at all.  We haven’t received any complaints from his school about his concentration.  At the last feedback session we had with his teacher, the only thing that was an issue, but not a serious one, was his handwriting.  We have also seen a massive change in his behaviour overall, he is no longer randomly screeching when he gets excited about something, he barely interrupts us when we are talking anymore, he’s concentrating for longer periods at a time when he’s doing something he doesn’t particularly enjoy, and he’s remembering his manners more often now too.

I decided to start this blog, not only to try to help others who may be going through what we have been going through, but also in the hopes of finding others who have been through this and have managed to help their children without medication.

I would always brush off any nutritional information in the past, I think mainly because of news headlines, one-day fat is bad for you, the next day fat is good for you, one day eggs are bad for you, the next day they’re good for you, and so it goes on.  You actually just don’t know what to do, so you just do what’s easiest.  I had heard about how bad aspartame is for you, but why would corporations put it into diet drinks, so I shrugged it off.  At the end of the day, if you like the taste of something, you will probably dismiss any information saying that that food is bad for you.  How could it possibly affect you anyway, right?  But it does, and that’s the scary part, we just don’t realise what we are putting into our bodies and HOW it really affects our mental and physical well-being.

On top of all the food advice and research going around, you also don’t want to be ‘that person’ who doesn’t eat this and doesn’t eat that, the picky eater, the one who brings their own snacks to a party, the one who says ‘oh no, I can’t eat that, it has gluten in it’, the one that people complain about and dread inviting over.

Soon after getting Liam and Ray’s results back we received a dinner invite at a friends house.  I accepted and mentioned that we are now gluten, dairy and egg free, but we can eat meat, fish, rice, veg and maize.  My friend replied thanking me for the heads-up. Then a couple of days before the dinner I received a message from her saying that she didn’t know what to do for pudding because of the ‘gluten, lactose, fructose and glucose people’.  I felt so guilty and embarrassed – eeeeeek I’m one of THOSE friends now.  I replied and told her I would bring chocolates along.

Even though I may have felt embarrassed, I still feel it is incredibly important to stick to my guns.  We have seen a remarkable difference in Liam, especially with his tics, so I will push through any embarrassment, or comments and eye rolls.  I want to talk to everyone about the differences we have seen in Liam, I want them to also try help their children nutritionally.

I realise that some children are picky eaters, so healthy eating isn’t always an option and medication is an easier alternative.  I’m not anti-meds, I’m just incredibly weary of the side-effects they can cause.  I will be taking Liam for another EEG before the year is over, and if the results still show that he has epilepsy, then I will consider putting him back onto his meds, especially when the warmer months approach and he will be swimming again, but I am hoping that that won’t be necessary.  I truly believe that we are on the right path.

I have spoken at length about AIM BarleyLife, AIM FloraFood and Metagenics Omegagenics.  If you would like to read up on what these supplements are, and their benefits, click on the links below:-

The links above do take you to American based websites, however, you can get all of the above products in South Africa, through a Nutritionist or Wellness Coach.


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