For twenty years I worked as a Probation Officer in Ohio and primarily corrected behavior by correcting the diet. (See www.naturalpress.info for books and DVD). We kept records for 12 years and the recidivism rate was less than 15%. In Sacramento County, CA the Community Addiction Recovery Association (CARA) worked with the Drug Court and they duplicated my work with an 85% SUCCESS rate over 10 years - saving Sacramento County $20 million - plus salvaging all those lives.
This approach is so basic it has been overlooked by the vast majority of states. My late husband Paul Stitt was a biochemist and the two of us owned a large Whole Grain Bakery in WI for over 25 years. In 1997, we were invited to provide fresh whole foods to an Alternative High School in Appleton, WI which was so out of control with violence they had a full time armed police office on staff. ALL we changed was the foods and in less than two months they had no discipline problems. A powerful 14 minute DVD "Impact of Fresh Whole Foods on Learning and Behavior" covers our 5 years of sponsoring the school....which was featured in the award winning film - "Super Size Me".
When the healthier foods program was extended to the entire school district of 15,000 students (K-12), the Superintendent and School Board were amazed at the improvement in attendance, behavior, academic and physical ability of the students. Their average of 450 high school drop outs per year plunged to an average of l6 .... out of 4500 high school students!
The neurotransmitters in the brain can not perform well unless they are nourished and free of allergens - it is that basic !
The general population - as well as the students - primarily consume refined factory made, artificially colored and flavored 'junk' foods instead of fresh nourishing whole foods. A percentage of these people are severely reactive to the artificial colors, sugar/corn syrup, and highly refined nutrient-deficient foods and drinks they are consuming. Soda machines, candy and other junk food machines make a lot of money for schools, companies and 'convenience' stores found everywhere.
This awful episode of senseless killing and maiming in Arizona is an example of how violent some people can get when they are suffering from low blood sugar reaction. The detectives who investigated the scene paid no attention to what 'foodstuffs' were in the house - nor did any of the 'professionals' who had attempted to work with him in the past. After doing hundreds of home investigations during my 20 years with the courts I can tell you with certainty they would find NO fresh, nutritional foods in that house....and this is always overlooked.
In 1975, I tested 106 probationers with 20 stating they 'easily became violent;' 14 admitted to suicidal tendencies, 6 felt a desire to cause damage to others and 7 would like to get revenge on society!
If you are genuinely interested in making an impact on the recidivism rate you may wish to contact CARA's Executive Director, Carolyn Reuben [Note: CARA stands for Community Addiction Recovery Association] in Sacramento, CA. You may also Google the Alliance for Addictions Solutions. Another excellent website is www.feingold.org. Dr. Ben Feingold discovered in the 1960's that artificial colors could cause violent behavior in some children as young as age 2 or 3 - and all ages including adults. I have personally witnessed this on a number of occasions.
I would enjoy speaking with you further if you desire.
Barbara Reed Stitt
Author: Food & Behavior - Nutritional Guidelines for Correcting Behavior - DVD - 'Impact of Healthy Foods on Learning and Behavior - www.naturalpress.info.