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Food can trigger a multitude of medical concerns, even in healthy individuals. When the body is compromised due to autism spectrum disorders, certain foods can aggravate an already stressed immune system and manifest new challenges, including food intolerances, pH imbalance, yeast overgrowth, bacteria and autoimmune disorders. In addition, gluten and casein may prompt an opioid effect, a condition that occurs when morphine-like peptides cross the blood/brain barrier. Symptoms can include hyperactivity, moodiness, inappropriate giggling, poor memory, sleep problems, constant hunger, lack of urine/stool control, craving for only gluten- and casein-containing foods and extreme picky eating.
A growing number of establishments handle food allergies particularly well. Many restaurant chains now post the ingredients of their menu items online and identify those that contain some of the most common allergens. Fast food chains, such as Subway, Dunkin Donuts, Burger King and many others, now make their full menus available on their websites. In a pinch, chains are an option because menu items across a region are generally identical and prepared in the same waybut you still always need to ask and watch for cross-contamination!
Brace yourself. Changing your childs diet is apt to feel daunting at firstbut hang in there! Let us help you transform the challenge and ease into a new way to feed your family. These changes are more unfamiliar than difficult and help is on the way. Once you learn your way around the grocery store and understand ingredient labels, this new way of cooking will become routinethe new normal.
Kenneth A. Bock, MD, a leading expert on the biomedical approach to treating autism and author of Healing the New Childhood Epidemics: Autism, ADHD, Asthma and Allergies, talks with editor Alicia Woodward about the critical role of diet for children with autism spectrum disorder.
More restaurants than ever are addressing the needs of special-diet customers with targeted training programs for staff, better awareness and greater availability of ingredient lists. Yet dining out remains one of the most challenging experiences for families with food-allergic and celiac children. Venturing out of the kitchen and into a restaurant can be nerve-wracking, if families do it at all. Even if parents can ensure that a particular menu item is safenot often an easy
Here are some great safety tips to help your child when dining at restaurants. Practice restaurant skills at home. Its never too early to start. Use real menus to role-play with your child. Teach proper questioning and instruct about safe ingredients and problematic dishes. Make it comfortable and fun.
Carol Chaisson learned that her second child, Krista, had Down syndrome shortly after the babys arrival into the world on July 24, 2001. The news came as a shock to the family from upstate New York. There had been nothing remarkable about Chaissons pregnancy. If anything, itd been easy. A special blood test confirmed the diagnosis. Individuals with Down syndrome have an extra copy of the 21st chromosome in each cell. Not a disease, Down syndrome