I think it makes sense to think about the effect the standard American diet (SAD) has on people’s moods and behavior choices in the context of starting into the world of drugs. We know that grains and sugar have an addictive effect, much the same way that heroin does on influencing behavior, feelings, thoughts, etc. We know that grains and sugar can cause increased levels of aggression. Are decisions about use being made in a clearheaded manner?
Think about tweens and teens who start experimenting and using. Nine out of 10 adults who are addicted started using before age 18. This group of kids are known for moodiness. Their bodies and hence feelings and minds are in a state of change. They are no longer small children and are not yet adults. This can be a very confusing time, even without the effects of drugs.
What about their diets? They are well known for consuming starches, sugars, and fast foods, not conducive to human health! Although their cognitive capacity is limited at this time of life, with developmental changes occurring and available food, is it any surprise that we have a heroin epidemic on our hands?
I have to wonder if these kids were growing up with a more balanced diet, lower carb style as the current research is indicating, if this epidemic would lessen.
What can we do about this? Education is key – even critical – aimed at parents. As kids get older, perhaps we should target school curricula as to healthier eating patterns, and certainly provide healthy breakfasts and lunches at the schools. This is not happening, in spite of what you may have heard!
Veggies are being used in innovative ways – we are spiralizing and slicing thinly to substitute for pasta. We can do wraps in lettuce leaves or thinly sliced zucchini instead of using bread for sandwiches. The Internet is full of low carb food blogs.
For more information, see my course entitled Living Healthy – Holistically: How to Make Life Choices Which Result in Health and Happiness. Also see my website for other information!
Dr. Donna Poppendieck (Dr. P) has over 30 years of experience in the mental health care field. She is a seasoned college professor and instructor for providers. She uses credible, proven holistic health strategies in instruction for parents of children with mental health challenges looking for another approach as well as healthcare providers seeking to implement or understand holistic strategies.