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ADHD in Children Health Center

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Expert Q&A: ADHD and Diet

An interview with Sheah Rarback, MS, RD


Q: What can parents do when their child has a decreased appetite from ADHD medication?

Talk to your doctor about the timing of the medication so that it does not interfere with meals. Some drugs do decrease appetite, so it is generally recommended to take the medication after a healthy breakfast. Monitor what he eats for lunch, as you may need to provide a larger after-school snack, when the medication is usually wearing off and the appetite is better.

Getting adequate nutrition is important for growth and development, along with normal weight gain. Parents need to carefully monitor their child’s intake so they don’t lose weight, but before you blame the medication, consider how the child eats when not on drugs.

Reviewed on April 30, 2009

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