Sunday, August 15, 2010

Tasmanian Devil No More

A few weeks ago if someone had asked me to describe Matthew in one word I would have said "impossible". He was so manic all day long and half the night I was ready to tie him down to a chair or something. He honestly gave the term "bouncing off the walls" new meaning. He was no longer just bouncing, he was slamming into the walls repeatedly. It was horrible and somehow he was worse when we went out in public. Even my mother, who is usually much calmer than me, was at her wits end and told him she no longer enjoyed going out with him.

Then it finally dawned on me. He used to be like that, manic, bouncing off the walls and impossible to deal with and then someone commented that there was a lot of MSG in the ham on the pizza he was eating. I really started paying attention to the foods he was eating when we were out and had stopped giving him pizza altogether.

But slowly, I stopped thinking about it and the week leading up to the latest insanity he had pizza three times in a matter of four or five days. We were out a lot that week and it was something easy to grab on the go. Plus, I really like pizza.

I immediately stopped giving him pizza or any processed ham. I started reading the labels on everything I was buying (which is loads of fun as the packaging is often in Spanish and I don't speak Spanish). Within one day, Matthew was half as manic and within a few days he was behaving like a child again and no longer like a Tasmanian Devil.

So, there is a direct link between MSG and Matthew's ability to be focused and stay calm. Today, we went grocery shopping. Every single tin of Campbell's soup I picked up has MSG in it. So did most of the different tomato sauces I use to make dip for his tortilla chips. And so many other things we barely got any groceries. Thank God it's not in oatmeal or he'd really have a problem since that's his favorite thing to eat!

Are there any foods that send your children right over the edge?

Cheers :-)
- Rainforest Mommy


Kerri said...

Not so much. He only eats liike 10 things though, so....

My sisters are both allergic to MSG. They get horrible headaches.

LisaDay said...

Great news to find out what causes Matthew to lose it. Sorry to hear it's in everything. A nutritionist on a local radio station suggested if processed food has a long shelf life, you likely shouldn't be eating it any way.