Many families of children with autism provide their children with a gluten-free or gluten-casein-free diet. Some believe that children with autism experience a specific digestive problem which relates to autistic behavior.
This year, the medical journal Pediatrics reported that no rigorous evidence could conclude that special diets work for children with autism or that children with autism experience more digestive problems than other children.
Many parents report anecdotal evidence that these types of diets do help their children. Medical experts have concerns that children on these specialized diets may encounter nutritional deficiencies.
It is the belief of this author that many children who begin showing the symptoms of autism between the ages of two and eight years of age, have just that, a nutritional deficiency.
In fact, most Americans are at risk for any of 900 nutritional diseases. The problem is not with the "autism diet," it is how it is administered without the needed 90 essential nutrients and some of the items the diet includes.
When childrens' brains are developing, they need all of the essential nutrients and raw materials for their brains to make neurotransmitters. In typical American society, a child goes from being weened from breast milk or an infant formula to cereals and juices.
Examples are instant oatmeals, sweet fruit cereals, grape or apple juice, sweet toaster products, and sweet punches. As you can tell I am trying hard not to name product names, but you can imagine the different brands of cereals, etc. that could be on this list.
Childrens' brains can not develop on carbohydrates and sugars. Not only can this limit brain development nutritionally, but evidence itself in behavior. This is where the gluten-free diet can come into play. A gluten-free diet can help with digestive problems and can be healthy if a child also receives the right supplementation.
Another of the deadly nutritional errors we make in America is providing fried foods to our children. Can anyone say "chicken nuggets?" Eggs are a food that are excellent for the brain. Not fried of course, but scrambled, poached or soft boiled. Squash and sweet potatoes can be on this diet. If your child is not allergic to milk, you can put butter and milk in them. Rice, millet, flax, and buckwheat along with meat for protein and vegetables are also healthy choices.
The problem I have with some "autism diets" is the amount of carbohydrates and sugars I see in them. These are the most important things to avoid. Unfortunately fruit and fruit juices are sugars which may be problematic for these children. Supplementation must come into play here. That is why the medical review team from the study published in Pediatrics expressed concern about nutrition.
As previously stated, we can suffer from over 900 nutritional diseases. Dr. Joel Wallach, a pioneer in nutritional medicine, has been treating patients successfully for years with this science. We need 90 essential nutrients for our bodies. 60 Minerals, 16 Vitamins, 12 Amino Acids, and 3 Essential Fatty Acids (Omega 3 & 6 are essential). Over the years, our soils have become depleted of these minerals and plants can not put into foods what the soil does not give them. This is why we need to supplement with the 90 essential nutrients.
Dr. Wallach suggests that children born with true autism will benefit from a gluten-free diet and receiving the 90 essential nutrients or the "Mighty 90" as he calls them. However, the most important statement from Dr. Wallach comes next. He states that the 85% to 90% that have changed from a normal behavior to autistic can change dramatically with this diet and the 90 essential nutrients.
It is the hope of this author that more awareness can be brought about regarding nutritional deficiencies. Actually treating our diseases instead of masking them with drugs and providing temporary fixes with surgeries can benefit us tremendously, bringing about a better quality of life and longevity. Autism is just one of these nutritional deficiency diseases which can be treated by diet and supplementation.