Do pesticides cause ADHD? Should parents feed their kids only organic products? Should adults with ADHD eat only pesticide free foods? These questions are being asked frequently right now due to a recent study published in the June, 2010 issue of Pediatrics, showing a possible link between organophosphate pesticide use and increasing rates of ADHD. Of course, no one study can prove anything, and people need to use caution in making decisions regarding their own and their children’s health, but anyone concerned about ADHD should learn about this study.
If you’re looking for information, Medscape published a good review. Regarding the study, Michael L. Goldstein, MD stated, “(The report) …. certainly got my attention when I read it; I was really impressed by it. I think it is a groundbreaking study.” Dr. Goldstein is a specialist in child neurology with Western Neurological Associates in Salt Lake City, Utah, and a faculty member of the American Academy of Neurology. Dr. Goldstein said the data on organophosphate pesticides and ADHD "look like the data we saw 30 to 40 years ago with lead exposure, and it may turn out to be the same thing — that even small exposures (to organophosphate pesticides) are very harmful to kids."
Dr. Andrew Weil, the founder and director of the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center, also comments on this study in his article Pesticides and ADHD, saying that he’s not surprised by these results.
Patricia Robinson MFT
I'm a licensed therapist in Danville, California and a coach for Asperger's and ADHD nationwide. I work with individuals of all ages who have special needs, like Autism Spectrum Disorders, ADD, ADHD, and the family members and partners of special needs individuals.