A Gluten Casein Free Diet
Dietary Support, Nutritional Supplementation and Detoxification
Although biomedical interventions may not cure Autism Spectrum Disorder, overwhelming success has been observed in children who are treated with a combination of some or all of the diet modifications, supplements and detoxifying therapies listed here. Higher neuro-cognitive function, decreased gastrointestinal issues and overall improvement have been observed when ASD children have undergone these treatment protocols. Parents are professionally advised and children who undergo treatment at the Autism Treatment Center of Newtown Square are offered the following biomedical interventions:
In Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), children with injury to the gastrointestinal tract may convert certain foods into “gluteal peptides”, and in the case of milk (casein) products into “caseino morphins”. When absorbed, both byproducts impair the central nervous system, even causing a narcotic (morphine-like) effect on children affected by ASD. The Autism Treatment Center of Newtown Square bases its nutritional strategy on the “DAN” program. The goal is to reverse deficiencies of essential vitamins and minerals through nutritional supplementation, restoring metabolic function and detoxification pathways and resulting in more optimal neurologic function.
Children with chronic diarrhea, colitis and yeast overgrowth benefit from this intervention from a gastrointestinal standpoint alone. As the diet is hypoallergenic, it minimizes inflammation in an inflamed GI tract and helps to heal an injured gut. Most children (who respond to diet) as they improve and recover may go off it eventually.
Elimination of Excitotoxins/ Neurotoxins
Children with ASD also benefit from the elimination of excitotoxins and neurotoxins that often insidiously invade our diets. An excitotoxin is a chemical component that causes excitability to brain neurons, as a neurotoxin exerts a toxic effect. The elimination of several well-documented excito and neurotoxins include the following and are strongly recommended as part of dietary support: MSG – Monosodium Glutamate, Aspartate, food dyes and processed sugars.
Additional GI Support
Restoration of normal gastrointestinal tract flora with the use of probiotics helps the gut to heal and is an essential part of restoring balance with dietary interventions.
Additionally, other diets like the specific carbohydrate diet or macrobiotic diet, may be beneficial in some children with ASD
Treatment of yeast overgrowth with diet and or an antifungal drug, such as Nystatin, has proven to be very effective in children with a high yeast load. Yeast overgrowth is typically associated with metal and bacterial toxicities and often is a side effect of detoxification and antibiotic interventions.
Vitamins, Minerals and Fatty Acids
The use of supplements to restore deficits in vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and provide immune support is the goal of supplementation. Probiotics are also used to return normal balance to the gastrointestinal tract. To quote Derrick Lansdale, MD, “the body is a biochemical machine which can repair itself when given appropriate nutritional support”.
Detoxification: The Removal of Toxins
Glutathione is an immune stimulant and detoxifying chemical made in the liver of normal healthy children and adults. Glutathione deficiency is commonly seen in children with ASD. Except in children with sulfur sensitivity, for most children with ASD, Glutathione therapy is a safe, effective intervention that supports and addresses two of the primary deficits in children with ASD – immune and detoxifying deficiencies.