Let’s talk Discipline
Discipline is important for us all; it offers self-control. Yet, in my experience with children who repeatedly misbehave, my diligence teaching self-control may not work! A few years back some information really shook my approach.
Is Bad Behavior about Discipline or is it a Bad Gut?!
Is the child responsible for bad decisions or is the gut to blame for the inability to make a good decision?! Our gut flora is not just about our health…it’s about our behavior. For a while, I kept getting really creative on how to help our foster children and birth children learn to; be honest, enjoy nutritious food, have kindness, manage anger, etc…
The Case for Healthy Living
Some children are just harder than others. Discipline is unobtainable. Parents say this, but as a Foster Mom, it becomes vividly apparent. When you teach each child to eat with health in mind, you will see a significant improvement in behavior within two weeks. The connection is obvious, and when we put the pieces together it became exciting! The health of the gut affects the brain and the behavior.
But it shook and completely adjusted our world. Because the difficult child was now understood as the child with a leaky gut, overpopulated bad flora, or hosting too many chemicals and/or metals. It completely changes the perspective, right?!
In no way does this negate loving, being a role model, correcting harmful behaviors. However, this is a major shift that we found absolutely life-changing for raising our children.
Encouraging healthy foods becomes more of a behavior remedy, rather than a bother to enforce. The value of the food (organic, grass-fed, minimal processing, clean, whole foods) becomes a highly desired necessity. Just think! Would you rather fight, wrangle, talk-yourself-blue-in-the-face to help your children make good decisions, or would you rather make the effort to feed them healthier foods and enable them to make good decisions? Being healthy allows a child (and an adult!) to become more capable, kind, and a contributing member of the family and ultimately society.
So to drive this point in a little further; is your child that healthy? Or do you notice dark circles under the eyes? Glazing over of the eyes? Easily frustrated? Irritated and disrespectful? Allergies? Frequent headaches? Really picky eater? Craving bread all the time? All these are signs that we need to view as gifts. These gifts are only the symptoms, not the problem. The symptom exists so that we can discover what is wrong from within and then fix it before it becomes chronic. Once we change the diet; the root problem, the guidance and correction become a lot easier.
Many times we can simply change our diet and find terrific improvement in our health. This helps my perspective and I try not to be too hard on my children. Getting them healthy is a great start to help them become their greatest! The Ohio State University did a study evaluating the gut bacteria of 18 – 27 month old babies and made clear observations in personalities.1 This study documented better behavior and moods in babies with lots of good bacterium. And it was most noticeable in boys.
Here are some quick tips:
- Read an article on how to eat healthy
- As you accomplish #1, consider a gentle detox
- Then replenish your gut with one or more (we alternate):
- Food is always our first choice! Fermented foods have lots of good bugs; cabbage, carrots, peppers, salsa, onions, olives, salad dressing, and soda. These are simple ways to ferment that make a huge difference!
- Supplanting Enema – it stays!
- Transient probiotics like these or adult version
- More dormant probiotics like PreScript Assist
- Good yeast via a soda to combat bad yeast
- Broth and meat stock to re-mineralize and sooth the gut and gut lining.
- Take L-Glutamine or IPS, we use Biotics order through me or a health care practitioner because Biotics does not approve sales online or manage these expiration dates.
- Cabbage and/or Okra Soup
- Be emotionally positive. If food in the gut affects the brain, then it only makes sense that it works in reverse. So be kind to yourself.
It is surprisingly fast; just remember the days are long, but the years go fast. Hang in there and be positive! The recovery will be much faster. And be sure to appreciate any level of recovery. Find doctors (holistic MD, ND, DC) that validate and support good, real food nutrition.
We have gratefully moved through this dangerous behavior that plagues many families of autism. It was astounding when we discovered how many families have children that run away. Whatever you face, know that you are amazing! Know that your children are amazing. And know that as you move to a healthier diet, detox periodically, and replenish your gut; teaching discipline becomes easier. Behavior and the behavior of your children will improve.
We believe in Real Food Recovery! Join us on FB and share your success stories! It took 2 years but I wrote a cookbook of the same name to really help in your kitchen! You can do this!
1 Source: Brain Behavior and Immunity; UL1TR001070; R01 NR01366); R21 HD067670; (R01 AT006552); T32 DE01432