When FAUS held a contest to name the title for our June Open House in Connecticut (2005), the winner was Lisa Stuckey's "Got Petroleum?"
Lisa's search to help her family began when Annalicia, now 8 years old, was finishing kindergarten. While the little girl did not have any behavior issues, it was clear that school was difficult for her; she couldn't pay attention and was behind her peers in developing the skills she would need in later grades. Annalicia loved school but would cry because she was unable to do the work.
Lisa took her for a battery of tests and the diagnosis was "ADHD Inattentive Type." Added to that were learning disabilities: dyslexia, dyscalculia, and dysgraphia. Pure Facts readers will not be surprised to learn that the only option suggested was medication, but Lisa was sure there had to be a better way to help her child. A search on the Internet led her to the Feingold Program. The family started the program at the beginning of June and in less than a week the improvements were obvious — and Annalicia was able to make eye contact!
Just two months later:
When the private school started up in August, the teachers were amazed; they said she was a totally different child. Her teacher awarded her as "the most improved," both socially and academically, and her test scores rose from one to three grade levels from the end of the previous school year.
Compliance has not been a problem. Lisa explains that Annalicia "took to" Feingold immediately, and is so motivated to continue to excel in school, she will not accept any foods that are off her diet. So when a big box of natural treats arrived just before Easter, the Stuckey children were thrilled. The candy was delivered by the Easter Bunny, but fortunately the Squirrel's Nest Candy Shop in Delaware carries the same products, so natural goodies can be enjoyed any time of the year. (The exception is chocolate; many of the chocolate candies cannot be shipped during the hot summer months.)
Lisa has been surprised by another change. Annalicia is no longer a picky eater but is game to try new foods; one of her current favorites is fava beans — not what an 8 year-old typically digs!
Alexander, now 3 years old, was still an infant when the family stopped eating petroleum-based and other harmful additives. But although he has been "Feingold" all of his life, he has had developmental delays, sensory problems, poor muscle tone, and trouble sleeping at night. He has been helped by a variety of therapies, but the most dramatic change came when Lisa removed gluten and casein from his diet. Alexander slept well the first night he was off dairy. Annalicia is now also off of gluten and casein and Lisa has seen that there is indeed a link between them and her daughter's ability to focus.
It is not unusual for parents of sensitive children to see changes in themselves once the family "goes Feingold." Lisa tells Pure Facts that she used to have several headaches a week, and in the two years they have been on the program she has been headache-free — except for that one time she ate out and wasn't selective about her food. She has also noticed that her sense of smell has returned!
Lisa's parents have told their friends about the program that has made such a difference for their grandchildren, and they helped introduce several families to Feingold. Her mom saw the note in Betsy Flagler's syndicated column asking readers to contact her if they had used a diet to help their children's behavior. Lisa posted the information on the Feingold member's board and that led to a published letter and the mention of the Feingold Program in the column.