1. Do restrictive diets like GF/CF and SCD really help autistic children? Where can I get proof and more information?
There is convincing empirical evidence that special diets help autistic individuals. Please see:
5. How can I convince my spouse and family to support dietary and medical interventions for ASD?
Several clinicians and parents have published brief, written accounts of their children's dramatic improvement and even recoveries and posted them for free online. Printing and sharing their stories may help your family better understand your efforts.
- Science Behind GF/CF - Info for Caregivers - "Stop giving my kid forbidden stuff!" [.pdf]
- Selected Chapters from the book, Recovering Autistic Children
- Dr. Green's "Joining Hands to Overcome Autism"
- Natasha Campbell-McBride - "My Son"
- Lynn Hamilton - "There is Hope"
- Amy Holmes - "The King of Metals"
- Amy Lansky - "A Homeopathic Cure"
- Kelli Miller - "Hope Renewed"
- Diane Savage - "Matthew's Story"
- Karen Seroussi - "We Rescued Our Child from Autism"
- Robin and George Young, MD - "A story about Nicolai Young"
- Edward Arranga: Autism Treatment and Recovery
- Christina Adams: More Than Enough I Can't See Anything Else
- Generation Rescue Testimonials
- Recovered From Autism
- Treating Autism (UK)
- Autism TV
You can also download and burn a DVD from a Defeat Autism Now! Webcast.
6. Our teachers are complaining about our child's diet – what can I do to convince them it's necessary?
Talk About Curing Autism (TACA) describes issues with enforcing the diet at school.
A template for writing a letter to your school district appears on pages 92-93 of Special Diets for Special Kids by Lisa Lewis, PhD. The book also provides lists of foods most autistic children on restricted diets can and cannot have. Providing a brand-specific food list for your teacher can be a big help.
Get it in the IEP. Get a letter from the doctor. Infractions happen. Be ready with enzymes and charcoal. Use it as an opp to educate.
For more information, see Educators and Diets.
8. What are enzymes for? If we do those, can we skip the diet?
Most clinicians agree that digestive enzymes are most effectively used in conjunction with diets. Enzymes are taken just before food is eaten and help break down the proteins prior to entering the digestive tract. ARI does not advocate using enzymes as a replacement for dietary intervention.
9. Does my child have to stay on a very strict diet FOREVER?
Maybe. Some children are able to "come off" the diet after a length of time. Many are not. Your child's reaction will not be predictable. Parents have described reintroducing foods slowly, one at a time, to determine whether or not their child was ready to expand the diet.
You can consult with a clinician for more advice about making dietary changes. It is a very individual choice you may eventually make with your child.