In October 2018, Autism Transformed hosted our third annual Autism Recovery Summit. We featured a panel of 5 cutting edge doctors from around the country and asked them the questions we get most from parents looking to help their kids feel better. Over the course of the next couple of months, we will be posting some of their answers here to help support your child and their journey towards recovery.
If you're reading this, you probably already know how emotional and overwhelming an Autism Spectrum Disorder diagnosis can be. We wanted to help parents answer the question:
My child just received a diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder, sensory processing disorder, developmental delay or some other neurodevelopmental issue.
- What should I do?
- What can I do before even seeing a professional or seeing a doctor?
Here's my answer to this question, as well as some of the expert advice by the autism recovery doctors in the panel.
The first thing to do would be to look at your child’s diet. Eliminating gluten and dairy can make a huge difference, as these can be very offensive for the brain. If your child seems addicted to these foods, it’s likely s/he has leaky gut and the breakdown products of the gluten grain and the dairy molecule, casein, are acting as morphines (like addictive drugs) to the brain. You may need to wean them off these items slowly. I would also cut out as much processed food as possible. Try smoothies with a good tasting kid’s protein powder and some fruit and almond or coconut milk. You could even try to sneak in some greens like kale or even lettuce. Go completely (or as much as you can) organic, which will eliminate the pesticides and herbicides, ingredients that shouldn’t be a part of our food. Eliminate all GMO (genetically modified organism) food. Look for the “non-GMO” badge on food products. You may want to check out the movie online called “Secret Ingredients”, which documents families that had health issues, including autism, who switched to an organic, non-GMO diet and their health symptoms went away. Keeping a food journal and working with a nutritionist can help you detect what your child is eating when, and see if symptoms occur shortly after a meal. This is a huge clue that what your child is eating is not helpful or nourishing for them.
Constipation can be a big contributor to unwanted behaviors, like aggression and anxiety. Helping your child empty their bowels with magnesium or Vitamin C can make a big difference. Please consult with a qualified practitioner to find if these would help and the proper dosages that apply for your child.
You can also look around this website for information that will help educate you that the symptoms of autism can be diminished or completely reversed by taking many steps. Inform yourself, so you can help inform your doctor, if need be. And don’t accept the standard medical answer that “There’s nothing we can do. Try ABA therapy.”Luminara Serdar, BS, MBA, NMT
Dr. Karima Hirani, Los Angeles, California, USA
“ There are many things that you could do before your child even gets formally diagnosed. First is start the gluten-free, casein-free, sugar-free diet! That seems to just really help across the board. At least 75% of the children benefit with this diet taking the the gluten and the dairy out. We feel the enzyme DPP-4 isn't working really well in these kids… So when the parents remove these foods the kids can start talking more, responding and being more present. Diet is something that parents can do on their own before even getting an evaluation by a medical doctor “.
Dr. Jerry Kartzinel, Irvine, California, USA
“Great question and we do get this quite a bit…
First, I think the next thing is to remove all of your cleaning agents and just go to natural cleaning agents… Your cleaning agents, whether it be your soaps you wipe down stuff for the toilets, the bathrooms, dishes, getting all of these as we talk about toxins out of the house is really, really important.
Second, for a child who's had numerous and numerous infections and treated with antibiotics, I would check to see if your child is constipated. We've got to get the poop out and using natural remedies can help the the bowels move a whole lot easier. If diarrhea is present, we have to get that evaluated to make sure that they don't have a form of inflammatory bowel disease but that is rare.”
Purchase your full length copy of the Doctor's Panel video.
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Educating yourself is invaluable! The Autism Recovery Doctor's Panel is full of wisdom that will help you better understand what's underneath your child's behaviors and can help make an immediate impact for your family. We want to ensure you can have access to all of it, whenever you need it.
The understanding you receive from this panel includes answers to the following questions:
- I just received an ASD (or SPD, developmental delay or other neurodevelopmental) diagnosis. What should I do? What can I do on my own, before the doctor visit, to help?
- I’ve been doing biomedical treatments, detox, therapies and been to several doctors for years. I’ve seen some incremental gains, but no real huge leaps. Now what do I do?
- Is there some treatment – intervention, test, supplement – that you use in your practice that consistently helps the most kids – a game changer (and what do you do with someone when that doesn’t work)?
- Can you give some insight into what is underlying some of the following behaviors and what to do? Tantrums/aggression, crying for apparently no reason, fears and anxiety for no apparent reason, stimming/hand flapping/rocking?
- Can you give some insights or what to do about when a child is stuck in a rigid behavior, has echolalia, not using expressive language, running away.
- What’s your number one go-to for constipation? Tantrums? picky eating?
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Read the 2nd blog post in this series: What to do if you feel like you've tried everything for your child