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What Color TV Has In Common With ADHD

ADHD & Color TV
ADHD & Color TV
(Image borrowed from Wikipedia Commons
And Modified by me)

There are people in this world who feel that specific mental health issues are new manifestations. They believe that certain disorders are caused by new things that we do, new things that we eat, new chemicals in vaccines and medications.

These people truly believe that ADHD didn’t exist before. They truly believe that Autism was caused by vaccines. And they honestly believe that they can cure these disorders with diets and restrictions.

But they can’t …

I’m not saying that proper diet isn’t important. I don’t care who you are, I don’t care if you suffer from ADHD, OCD, ODD, BD, SD or DON (Delusions of Normalcy), your diet is very important to your physical and mental health and your well being. You just can’t cure ADHD or any other combination of letters with a diet.

“But our changing diet caused ADHD … “

The hell it did! We have no idea what causes ADHD. We know it is heritable, we know it is genetic, we know that it can occur seemingly spontaneously. But we do not know what causes it to exist.

We know that it has been around for a lot longer than we have recognized it. The proof that the doom sayers use is the sudden increases in diagnosis. But the increase in diagnosis doesn’t align with an increase in cases, but rather an increase in understanding the disorders symptoms and sharing an understanding of what a certain group of symptoms means.

In other words, the increase in diagnosis is due to an increase in the ability to recognize disorders, not an increase in the disorders prevalence.

Are you ready for an analogy?

I hope so. Here’s a little thing for you to ponder. I was born in the late fifties. In the early sixties I remember watching TV and, since we weren’t really well off, I was watching Green Acres on a black and white television. (I’m pretty sure it was a black and white show, so that didn’t really matter.)

On one episode, the characters in this sit-com were picking apples, and I wondered if the apples were red or green. I still have no idea, but that isn’t the analogy.

As I watched, my mind started wandering into a world where someone who had TV but had never seen an apple before in their lives might think that all apples are red. And the TV show I was watching wouldn’t have helped them much.

The analogy? Are we getting anywhere close to hearing it?

Sorry, here it is: We, the human population, are the person who had never seen an apple before. We’d heard about them lots, but never knew they could be red or green. Suddenly, along comes color TV (proper diagnostic criteria) and we’re made aware of apples that are green, yellow, even rusty colored ones.

So … how does that show us anything?

The idea of looking for some current change to take the blame for a thing we now suddenly recognize is as ludicrous as blaming color TV for making apples different colors.

So next time you see a website that claims that it can cure your ADHD with a potion or a program, remember, the people who fall for that stuff are people who just got color TV.

Now I’m gonna go get an apple, I hear one a day will keep the doctor away, though someone else told me you have to have a good arm and an accurate aim for that to work. Hmm.

What Color TV Has In Common With ADHD

Kelly Babcock

I was born in the city of Toronto in 1959, but moved when I was in my fourth year of life. I was raised and educated in a rural setting, growing up in a manner I like to refer to as free range. I live in an area where my family history stretches back 6 or more generations. I was diagnosed with ADHD at the age of 50 and have been both struggling with the new reality and using my discoveries to make my life better. I write two blogs here at Psych Central, one about having ADHD and one that is a daily positive affirmation that acts as an example of finding the good in as much of my life as I possibly can.

Find out more about me on my website: writeofway.

email me at ADHD Man

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APA Reference
Babcock, K. (2013). What Color TV Has In Common With ADHD. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 18, 2018, from


Last updated: 24 Nov 2013
Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 24 Nov 2013
Published on All rights reserved.