Any suggestion for a 20 month old who is very aggressive towards others?
Q. I am having BEHAVIOR trouble with my 20 month old. He gets in trouble all day long. In day care or playgroups, he starting hitting, pushing, grabbing, pulling kids down to the ground. I have a German Shepard and I’ve caught him hitting the dog. The dog just lays there. My husband and I are happily married. He sees lots and lots of love…And we give him lots and lots of love. What can I do?
A. Over the years I’ve had a lot of experience with the effects of food on behavior. It’s absolutely incredibly how powerful foods are and their effect on the brain. Even foods you might think of as “healthy” could be foods he is sensitive to causing him to become more aggressive. (food sensitivities can develop at any time).
Some of the most common things which can cause behavioral modifications are food additives, colors, artificial flavors, preservatives, artificial sweeteners, soy, and gluten (found in all flour containing foods). An example is the kids I work with who have autism. When they eat certain foods (i.e. gluten and artificial chemicals in food), their behavior goes out of control, or sometimes perhaps just exhibit more aggression. And when those triggers are removed, they improve dramatically. It’s amazing.
The reason for this behavioral effect from food is that certain chemicals can leak out of the gut, into the blood, and pass the blood brain barrier causing a drug like effect. It’s quite common (called “leaky gut”). If his gut is a little leaky, or organs not detoxifying well, all environmental chemicals including pesticides and household chemicals (and lead) can cause significant effects on behavior.
Anyhow, the info can get very technical, but I wanted to at least share with you some “food for thought”. Try giving your son a very “clean” diet of fresh real foods, no artificial anything, no boxed/canned/packaged foods, no sugar, caffeine, and no gluten for a month to see if there are any changes. Here is a summary of dietary changes with can make a big difference:
Supplements designed for kids 2-12 years old
Lastly, nutrient deficiencies can cause aggressive behavior. The research points to magnesium, zinc, Omega 3s, and vitamin B-6. Get him on some good nutrients. There are lots of great formulas for children which taste good. (i.e. Berry Frutol liquid, Vitavescence powder).
If you want to read some research summaries about nutrient deficiencies and aggressive behavior, type in “aggression, behavior, children” in the search box of Vitasearch.com.
Let me know if I can help you further! Good luck.
Annika Rockwell, CN