The Gluten Free/ Casein Free diet has once again come up as a topic on our ASDPerspectives Fan Page so we thought it might be time to revisit this topic. As I share in chapter 4 of , “Healing Autism Naturally,” the GF/CF diet is a good place to start when you are trying to heal your child’s immune system. Why is this?
Both gluten and casein are protein found, respectively, in wheat and dairy. These proteins are very long and hard for the body to digest. Many people, and especially people on the autism spectrum, have trouble digesting these proteins… even when they are not technically allergic. We go intot he technicalities of why this is in the book, but for the sake of simplicity, when the body cannot properly digest a food, it can cause all kinds of symptoms, which include…
- constipation or diahrea
- swollem abdomen
- the feeling of going crazy
- symptoms of malnutrition (the villi are blunted preventing other nutrients from absorbing).
This is just to name a few. While many doctors will admit that their patients ont he autism spectrum often have digestive issues, western medicine has yet to actually acknowledge the direct link. Perhaps many doctors recognize that children with autism have poor diets (a symptom that food hurts), and assume this is the reason for digestive symptoms. Yet, they are not getting the root of the cause which is that our children do not digest properly.
Accrding to the Autism Research Institute, www.autism.com, about 60% families report noticeable differences when they remove gluten and casein fromt he diet. Both must be removed at the same time. If you choose to ease in, that’s okay; however, you cannot start the time clock for determining if the diet will work until the child is completely Gf/cf. I recommend doing so for atleast 8 weeks before making a determination as to whether this works for your child. Gluten can take 3 weeks to completely get out of the system and dairy, longer. Therefore, a few days will not be enough to make a determination.
For more on this topic, check out www.healingautismnaturally.com The book can also be found in paperback and Kindle on Amazon.com