Speaking of the inside, that brings me to the point of this article. I titled this “The Cure For Autism” because I have it. I’ve spent a lot of time on this blog talking about the affects of Aspergers on me, and how I go about modifying my life to balance both my internal needs and those of the people around me. People say that autism is incurable, because it’s not a disease or something of that ilk. However, I believe that there is something that can greatly reduce, if not eradicate, the effects of autism. It’s a four letter word we use everyday.
Complex? Far from it. See, when we talk autism we immediately think of the brain, spinal cord, and nerves. Especially when regarding aspergers, since it is perceived to be a neurological disorder, do we assume that there’s something wrong with the brain. What scientists, autistics, and everyone in between fails to see is that our lower body is a mirror image of the upper regions. There is science out there that shows the similar the gut and the brain really are. The gut and the brain are connected, and when you alter one you alter the other.
A study released in the summer of ’15 showed that there was autism rates jumped 18% in children of teenage mothers. “This hasn’t really been seen before, and we can’t really explain it,” says Brian Lee, an associate professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at Drexel University and a research fellow at the A.J. Drexel Autism Institute. He hypothesized that it may have to had to do with sub-optimal pregancies and health care, but what if has to do with the poor food choices made by teenagers in America today?
Reading on “Food For The Brain”, I found these key pieces of information in the fight for autism clarity:
“Deficiencies in essential fats are common in people with autism. Research by Dr Gordon Bell at Stirling University has shown that some autistic children have an enzymatic defect that removes essential fats from brain cell membranes more quickly than it should. This means that an autistic child is likely to need a higher intake of essential fats than the average. And it has been found that supplementing EPA, which can slow the activity of the defective enzyme, has clinically improved behavior, mood, imagination, spontaneous speech, sleep patterns and focus of autistic children.”
“There is much overlap between ADH/hyperactivity and autism, so for autistic children who show signs of hyperactivity, improving blood sugar balance is a must.”
“Dietary studies consistently reveal that hyperactive children eat more sugar than other children4. Other research has confirmed that the problem is not sugar itself but the forms it comes in, the absence of a well-balanced diet overall, and abnormal glucose metabolism. A study of 265 hyperactive children found that more than three-quarters of them displayed abnormal glucose tolerance, – that is, their bodies were less able to handle sugar intake and maintain balanced blood sugar levels.”
“In any case, when a child is regularly snacking on refined carbohydrates, sweets, chocolate, fizzy drinks, juices and little or no fibre to slow the glucose absorption, the levels of glucose in their blood will seesaw continually and trigger wild fluctuations in their levels of activity, concentration, focus and behaviour-. These, of course, will not help any child’s brain function.”
“Paediatrician Mary Megson from Richmond, Virginia, believes that many autistic children are lacking in vitamin A. Otherwise known as retinol, vitamin A is essential for vision. It is also vital for building healthy cells in the gut and brain.”
“The best sources of vitamin A are breast milk, organ meats, milk fat, fish and cod liver oil, none of which are prevalent in our diets. Instead, we have formula milk, fortified food and multivitamins, many of which contain altered forms of retinol such as retinyl palmitate, which doesn’t work as well as the fish or animal-derived retinol. Megson began speculating what might happen if these children weren’t getting enough natural vitamin A12.”
“She realised that not only would this affect the integrity of the digestive tract, potentially leading to allergies. It would also affect the development of their brains, and disturb their vision. Both brain differences and visual defects have been detected in autistic children. The visual defects, Megson deduced, were an important clue because lack of vitamin A would mean poor black and white vision, a symptom often seen in the relatives of autistic children. If you can’t see black and white, you can’t see shadows. And without that you lose the ability to perceive three-dimensionality. This in turn leaves you less able to make sense of people’s expressions, which could explain why some autistic children tend not to look straight at you. They look at you sideways. Long thought to be a sign of poor socialisation, this sideways technique may in fact be the best way for them to see people’s expressions, because there are more black and white light receptors at the edge of the visual field than in the middle.”
This research is ASTOUNDING because it explains so much of what plagues those on the autism spectrum. Here we are, putting our heads in the sand believing that there’s nothing we can do for autistics, when in fact the very cure is right in front of us.
Take it from me, someone who works at a donut and coffee shop and whose favorite foods just happen to be the worst foods for me. It will be hard for me to give up things like donuts and pizza, but there’s nothing I wouldn’t give so my limitations could be breached. I’ve read the stories and heard the struggles. They can end, right here, right now.
Drastic reductions of symptoms are possible, IF we change our lifestyles. These changes are not easily undertaken, but gradual reductions of things like gluten, casein, and artificial sugars can change the lives of autistics across the world.
Starting today, I’m going to change my diet. The process will be gradual, but I will document each day. I’ll record how I’m feeling and thinking. I believe that if I have the ability to make myself better, why ignore it?
Maybe I’ll even encourage my fellow autistic bloggers to do the same.