How do your Paleo Children behave compared to other kids their age?
A recent post (Does anyone else sneak a look at other peoples' shopping?) made me realize I have exceptionally well behaved kids, when I compare them to the other kids at the grocery store.
My 3yo son is full of energy, but never throws tantrums, or really misbehaves at all. He also almost never will take naps, unless we are in the car. He eats his food, and isnt afraid to try new ones. He is constantly moving, but has no problem being calm when the situation requires it.
I can't help but to think diet is partially responsible for this, although he does eat SAD at daycare... But, I try to fill him up with Bacon and Eggs in the morning.
My 5mo daughter sleeps through the night consistanly, rarely cries, and is just totally content hanging out in her swing, seat, bouncer, etc. Due to Paleo Breastfeeding?
Has any one else noticed exceptionally well behaved CaveKids?
I have personal experience with this. Years ago, when my oldest son was in kindergarden, the school thought he would not be able to go into first grade due to hyperactivity. At that time we completely changed our household diet to a "paleo" way of eating. Well back then there was no term "paleo" and there was no internet.
The teacher felt my son would not be able to concentrate enough to learn to read. There was little about meds in those days but I assume they would have suggested it if this happened now.
After switching to a natural diet, he became calm and focused. By the end of the 1st grade he scored in the top 1% of 1st grade children in the nation in reading and math.
He is now 30yo and has a PhD. My second son always ate paleo and has been calm and focused since birth and now as an adult. They both still choose to eat this way.
The example Dave gave was excellent, parenting plays a very big part. And I know diet can make a significant difference also.
My daughters are very well behaved. But I can't attribute it to diet, since they eat the SAD. My wife is a kindergarten teacher and probably has more insight into child behavior than most people. I believe that has made a huge difference.
For example, most people don't follow through on threats, so kids know that they don't have any teeth. My wife always insisted that we must follow through. And once you say no, you can't cave in. (Caving in only trains them to needle and whine, because it is at least sometimes successful). Being consistent and fair really makes a huge difference.
I'm sure that diet plays a role. But most parents seem clueless about how to raise well-behaved kids.
We had neighbors whose 5 year son stayed up until 11PM every night and they would complain that they couldn't get him up in the mornings. When asked why didn't they put him to bed earlier, they responded that "He just won't go to bed earlier." Later, when my wife and I were alone, she said "Who is the parent? Who's in charge?" Obviously, the child. Another example is my wife following another mother with a small child throughout the grocery store and happened to wind up in line behind them. All through the store, the child demanded some candy to which the mother said no many times. My wife thought "Great, stick to your guns." But at the register, she caved. Basically, this trains the kid to whine until they get what they want.
Okay, maybe there's an inverse effect with teenagers but my grandson had excess energy even during cross-country season when most would agree he was getting a ton of exercise. I'm not saying he's totally out of control, but he has his share of visits to the principal and he struggles with sitting in classrooms when all he wants to do is move and be physical.
The better he eats the more energy he has and it's pretty scary. :-))
Frankly, back in paleolithic times I seriously doubt that the future warriors and leaders were very calm and well-behaved. They were the spirited, rowdy ones in many cases and had to be carefully handled by mature leaders so they were "gentled but not broken."
On the other hand, he hasn't been getting every bug that goes through the school and he's about as cheerful as you could hope for in a 17-year-old. He's not purely ancestral but he eats fatty meat and is limiting carbs because he wants to stay nice and thin for cross-country next year (and resulting admiration of his stable of girls.)
My experience (both with observing childrens' dietary reactions and my own reactions) is that eating paleo reduces hyperstimulation, which makes it easier to modulate emotions and respond in an appropriate manner, resulting in generally better behavior.
I would not consider my children particularly well-behaved. Or, for that matter, particularly ill-behaved. However, eating a SAD diet makes them more inclined towards inattention and explosiveness, both of which result in more behaviors that are generally considered "bad".
My kids are both muscular, lean, energetic, creative, talented people who are intelligent and really think for themselves...my daughter has ADHD, and diet coupled with supplements has helped tremendously, but her behavior is still way more explosive and unpredictable than most kids her age (12). My son (8) who doesn't have a behavior disorder is polite, mellow, and well loved by his teachers and classmates...oh, and it may be worth mentioning that while my daughter chews with her mouth open, my son always chews quietly with a closed mouth.
I have no children (that I know of!) , but I do have a 8 mo. old cat. It has been a 100% paleo cat since it appeared in our back yard four months ago. Her behavior is outrageously mellow at times and playful at times. I've lived with over 20 SAD cats in my life and this Paleo cat is unlike any of those. She is "appropriate" in any situation and expresses NO bad moods for which cats are famous. She is my Paleo guru, not KGH, Devany, Sisson et al.
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