Posted by: Megan | 2008/09/17

Diet and myelin sheath connection?

My 7 yr old son has been disgnosed by a neurologist as having immature myelin sheaths and given him concerta. He' s always been slim (on lower percentile) for his age and is now only 18kg which is a concern as the Concerta is going to decrease his appetite. I have taken him to a nutritionist and she says he eats very well as it is but there seems to be a problem in the absorbtion of the nutrients and supplements I give him. How can i test for the cause of this? Does he need probiotics then for the rest of his life or is it allergy related? I spend a lot of money on supplements etc...but he doesn' t seem to be getting it? Could this have caused the myelin sheath under development? If I can fix that then maybe I can get him off the meds.....

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageDietDoc

Dear Megan
I am sorry to hear about your son's problem. It may help to have your son assessed by a gastroenterologist (dr who specialises in the digestive tract) to find out if he has a problem with absorption of nutrients (this can be caused by a variety of conditions such as enzyme deficiencies, allergies, etc). Let's see what the gastroenterologist finds out regarding your son's absorption, because this will determine if he needs to take specific enzymes to help him digest his food, or to cut out specific foods to improve absorption. I think that when we have established what type of absorption problem he has we can then make additional dietary changes. In the meanwhile it is a good idea to use probiotics as they do help with digestion and with normalisation of the digestive tract. You can also give him a complete vitamin and mineral supplement for children (ask the chemist if you don't already have such a supplement) and salmon oil capsules to boost his omega-3 intake. The omega-3 helps with neurological development and health.
I do hope you will get to the bottom is this problem of the absorption.
Best regards

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