I'm not sure if you've read this but it's a mother's testimonial of how Paleo helped her autistic daughter. Perhaps you could contact her for some support and help?
My youngest Son is four years old and is presenting a problem of severe speech delay (and has done for the past two years) and might have autism but we're not sure as yet.
Has anybody had success with changing diet and helping any of their children who have/had similar problems? If so what have you done and what has changed?
Before anybody tries to help and post advice (and I'm really not trying to be a pretentious twat here) on the scope of Autistic Spectrum Disorders, statements for him, language therapists, Makaton and health visitors etc, etc. We are well aware and these things and have been actioning/learning about all of this stuff (which is gut wrenching stuff I'd wish on no other parent) but we've had limited (or very slow) success. I really would like some advice on diet experiences please to see if there may be an avenue there.
Last edited by elliottsmith; 11-07-2011 at 09:45 AM.
No I haven't but will give it read through now, thanks.
The very first & most important thing to do is to get his Vitamin D3 blood level up to 70+ ng/ml. Shortages of Vitamin D3 have terrible consequences on the brain and other parts of the body.
Vitamin D optimization thoughts | Jack Kruse
For a child 4 years old, this will likely be 2,000 IU Daily for 3 months, then do a blood test. At home blood test $65 see below the line for more. You can give him liquid Vitamin D3 to make it easier.
* Children need 1,000 IU Daily per 25 lbs body weight (per the D-Council)
Then be certain he gets enough healthy fats in his diet to fuel his brain.
Be sure both you and your wife also get enough Vitamin D3. Start at 10,000 IU Daily and do your blood test in 3 months.
See my Vitamin D references below,
Last edited by Grizz; 11-07-2011 at 04:23 AM.
Have you heard of the GAPS diet? It stand for Gut and Psychology Syndrome, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride developed the diet protocol after realizing that every autistic child in her neuro practice had digestive issues. It is very much like paleo, but with emphasis on healing foods like homemade broths, and probiotic foods like sauerkraut. The testimonials I have heard from parents of autistic kids are nothing short of amazing. I am doing it for IBS/food allergies, and while it is a slow road, I have seen lots of improvements already!
$5 off iherb.com: QOC241
"Don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good." - Voltaire
For nutrition/wellness tips:
I really think that the scope of your problem is beyond that for getting help from a public bulletin board. I strongly suggest talking to Emily Deans at Evolutionary Psychiatry, she might be able to recommend a specialist in your area.
My son does not have autism, but has multiple behavioral issues as well as food sensitivity issues, and I have found a great deal of helpful info from the ('cure') autism community. I've also read many personal accounts from parents about changing diet/nutrition helping their kids that I 100% believe diet can greatly impact these things.
For us, going gluten, dairy, corn and soy free helped IMMENSELY in terms of reactions to foods etc. (physical and behavioral). Also, adding in nutrition supplements (specific vites/minerals) as well as amino acid therapy has been huge as well. It's an ongoing journey. Some resources to check that may be helpful:
Generation Rescue I Jenny McCarthy's Autism Organization » Generation Rescue | Jenny McCarthy's Autism Organization
Dr Amy Yasko - Recovering Autistic children and adults with neurological conditions
About SCD (SCD/GAPS, geared more towards families w/ children on the autism spectrum)
The mothering allergies forum is amazing as well: Allergies WAY more going on there than just allergies. A great resource for ideas/info.
The Spunky Coconut: Recovering Ashley Spunky coconut site--a mom who has great recipes, all free of gluten, dairy +, who has worked on 'recovering' her daughter from autism.
If you can, looking into a DAN! doc might be worth it IMO. Good luck with everything!!! I know from my son's issues (which are minimal in comparison to those of some kids') that it is very very hard and life changing to be dealing with these kinds of things... (((HUGS!)))
Hi - my son is 11 with moderate to severe autism. He was diagnosed at 3.5-4 yo - like your son, he presented by 2yo with a significant speech delay but was deemed too "happy and smiley and social" to be autistic.
I have done it all, diet-wise. Back then GAPS wasn't really around AFAIK, but the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) was - I used it before anyone else I knew was using it for autism, because my son also has cystic fibrosis, and it is one of the conditions the SCD is supposed to help. So long before he was diagnosed with autism, he and I were both on the SCD (I was on it b/c I was breastfeeding). At the time of his dx with CF we did a Great Smokies lab stool test and he had Klebsiella, which his holistic doc treated with a course of Augmentin. We were struggling quite a bit with his digestion and stools at this time but CF affects these things so we thought it was related to this (and it probably was largely a result of fat malabsorption from months of living with CF undiagnosed). We did probiotics and the SCD for about a year after his CF dx, from about age 14 months to 26 months. At that time I just sort of dropped it and he ate whatever.
At the time of autism diagnosis at 4yo he had self-selected foods and was eating basically just white cheddar cheese and bread. I know, but I had been sleep-deprived for over 2 years thanks to the autism sleep disturbances and I was just barely coping. We went on GFCF (gluten and casein free) and followed that for 3+ years strictly with him. He did not like anything with gluten-free subs that I baked, so he pretty much ate meat, veggies and fruit for this time.
At age 6 he began having some weight gain issues (people with CF struggle with weight gain due to a fast metabolism and other metabolic disturbances) so with pressure from his docs we added back first dairy, then gluten, over the course of a year.
It's hard to say for sure whether the diet changes made any difference, but I can say that I observed no dramatic difference in his autism on dairy and wheat or off it. In the beginning, I thought that perhaps the clean diet and gut healing we had done had led to "just" the speech delay and that he regressed from age 2 to age 4 when dairy/wheat were added back in, but I'm just not sure anymore. I think I really wanted and needed to have something concrete I could control re: his autism and diet was a convenient, controllable place to focus my energies.
He now eats a fairly primal diet, but modified for his CF calorie needs combined with his autism-related severe food taste/texture issues. His foods are: GF oatmeal occasionally, tons and tons of chicken (trying to get him to eat beef again), coconut oil, potato chips, Reeses PB cups. Trying to think of what else...he will eat pizza but we save it for occasional treats. He will eat gluten-free and then have gluten and I notice no immediate effects.
Anyway...just thought I'd share my experience. Some people see a dramatic change in their kids with diet changes. Others, not so much. Are GI issues part of his symptoms right now? I think my advice would be to focus on the therapies (speech, social - we loved floortime/DIR for J, it works great for him) and look at diet as an adjunct. Ie, pick your battles. It's a marathon, not a sprint, and you are going to need energy reserves for the long haul. How long have you been doing the therapies with him? It does take a while to see some changes. My son's autism is so significant that every change, every gain is a battle hard-won. This was true no matter what his diet was like. I'm sorry I don't have any more hopeful stories for you. Except that there are many gifts that come with autism and in time each is uncovered like a jewel. It's been quite a journey for us, but not the one we thought it would be when he was first diagnosed.
Feel free to PM me if you want to talk more. I don't like to talk in too much detail on public forums.
Cardiologist Dr. Davis discusses WHEAT as causing Autism & multiple other brain disorders:
autism | Search Results | The Heart Scan Blog
Read his new book, Wheat Belly
Wheat Belly | Lose the Wheat, Lose the Weight
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