Dubious Diagnosis?

Dr. Paul Mach, DN

Today’s article was inspired due to the fact that within the last 24 hours I have had 3 parents question me about the health of their child and the cares and concerns about getting them hooked on pharmaceutical drugs at an early age. Parents are smart enough to realize that this only masks the symptoms for the child (pssst. medications mask symptoms for adults too). We talk about drug free youth but don’t think twice about medicating the heck out of them legally for every little thing without looking at what is causing their condition. There is always a cause. No. Stuff does not just happen. It just takes work to trace a health condition, like Attention Deficit Disorder, to its origin. It is easier and much more profitable to diagnose a condition, and pigeonhole a patient. Than you can just write the appropriate prescription taught to you by your drug pusher, oops I meant pharmaceutical marketing representative. 

Lets take a look at some of the signs and symptoms of ADD. These are taken directly from the Merck Manual 17th edition. The three big ones are inattention: difficulty concentrating on tasks requiring sustained attention, impulsivity: acting before thinking and problems organizing work and hyperactivity: difficulty sitting still and “always on the go”. These are than broken down by DSM-III-R and lists 14 signs, 8 of which must be present for diagnosis. Caution is advised in diagnosis. These are subjective. Etiology is unknown. Several theories advocating biochemical, sensory and motor, physiologic, and behavioral correlates and manifestations have been proposed. Toxins, neurologic immaturity, and environmental problems have also been hypothesized.  

 A lot of possible causes as you can plainly see. A lot more causes than simply a Methylphenidate/Ritalin deficiency. Children are our future. Doctors knowing how important it is to have them fully functional and not hopped up on a central nervous stimulant, I know, take all the time necessary to rule out ALL possible causes for the child’s inattention, impulsivity and hyperactivity. That’s why they spend a couple hours going through the list of possible factors that always need to be ruled out. First do no harm. Second, always seek the cause. This is where the symptoms come from. The symptoms are an end byproduct. They are not the culprit but the result. (Just for laughs the contradictions as stated in the 1999 PDR for prescribing Ritalin are marked anxiety, tension and agitation, for it may aggravate these symptoms).


Always rule out:

  1. Dehydration: make sure your child drinks 6+ glasses of bottled water per day. No tap or well waters that contain fluoride, chlorine and who knows what else.


Food Allergies: A child’s sensitive system CAN NOT PROCESS the garbage food it is given to grow and develop on. These things are bad for adults, but are detrimental to a child. This list of foods that should definitely be removed from the child’s diet includes: all soda and juice drinks, sugars and fructose/corn syrup, refined carbohydrates like white flour and gluten products and most cereals, hydrogenated oils, dairy products and cheese, caffeine and chocolate, food dies/chemicals and additives, and all other foods where there are too many


  1. big chemical names, saccharine/Nutra Sweet/Sweet and Low and Aspartame. These substances were not created to sustain life. They are marketed to make corporation money. Do not eat these! Do not allow your flesh and blood, your child, who the universe has entrusted you to care for, to eat these. They are poison. If you don’t believe me do the research. The medical data is all out there.


  1. Heavy Metal or Environmental Toxins: These are extremely hazardous and found very frequently in our society. Do a Hair Biopsy.
  1. Malnutrition: SAD/Standard American Diet does not satiate growing bodies needs for all the vitamins, minerals, electrolytes and enzymes necessary for proper body function. (Iron, minerals, B6 and magnesium are common).


  1. Dysinsulism: This is due to carbohydrate sensitivity and a diet high in sugar and simple carbohydrates such as white flour. This is witnessed by the fact of the emergence of diabetes occurring in children.
  1. Candida or Intestinal Parasites: These can be checked by doing a digestive stool analysis. These are a more common than we would care to believe.



These ALWAYS need to be ruled out before medicating your child. They aren’t a bad idea to rule out before adults start taking Prozac or other medications. These culprits run rampant in our society. They need to be addressed. To not treat the cause is a sin. You are now educated. You are now responsible. Do not cop out. Short cuts and the easy way out will not be tolerated. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.