Right now Carter is hanging out in my bedroom “reading” a book. He loves to read. He flips through each page and looks at everything on the pages as if he’s really reading it or studying it. I guess he’s just like his mom. I love reading too. Pretty soon I’m going to be diving into a book called The Kid-Friendly ADHD and Autism Cookbook. I’m attempting to try out this gluten-free/dairy-free program again that I’ve been reading about. There’s a lot of chatter about the link between autism and the foods that we consume–mainly foods with gluten, wheat, and dairy (casein). These ingredients are of course in everything Carter eats! He loves so much stuff with gluten–bread, biscuits, muffins, pizza, etc., etc., etc. Many people think that those with autism aren’t able to digest gluten and casein (a milk protein), which then forms peptides (chemical compounds) in their bodies. These peptides in turn act like opiates (which makes me wonder if this is why many with autism have a high tolerance for pain), which then alters their behavior and how they respond to their environment or surroundings. I know, it’s all scientific. Blah, blah, blah. Some parents say they saw mild to dramatic improvements in their child’s speech and behavior after removing those substances from their diet. Then there are others that say it didn’t really work for them. Of course it’s not for everyone.
The point is that I am interested in trying this diet out again. The problems are that this diet is high maintenance, expensive, hard to keep up with, and time consuming. It would be a lot of trial and error. Carter is pretty picky. Finding foods that he will eat that are also gluten and casein free, as well as high in nutrition will be very difficult. Getting everyone else to go along with it would be tough too. Carter is around a lot of people between daycare, family, and friends. It would be tough to get them all to go along with this diet. I can’t be with him 24/7, so I can’t monitor him and make sure he never eats gluten or casein.
This is just one of those things that I need to figure out for Carter. Having an autistic child is always going to require extra work. Extra reading. Extra research. Extra stress. And extra TLC. It’s all good, though. He’s happy. And so am I.
Great information about the GFCF diet here: