Of the many issues affecting Autistic individuals none is more prevalent then the gut issues. In my son's case it was diagnosed as malabsoption. I was given this diagnosis when he was five and sent home with no information that could help him.
I had an immune panel done and found out he had an Immunoglobin A deficiency and high inmunoglobin E. I took the results to a gastroenterologist who told me that due to his high IgE could not have any dairy and that his immune deficiency made him prone to gastrointestinal infections.
I remember that I took him off milk and cereals. That diet change, stopped the chronic diarrhea,which he had suffered with, since his first birthday. I thought that would be the end of that, but no. He then developed constipation, which caused him a lot of pain.
For eight years my Mickie woke up during the night, giggling, crying screaming or running through the house. During the last three years or so, he has slept very little. He could not lay flat on the bed, but slept sitting up. To me this was the most troublesome part of his issues.
He stimmed constantly and had horrible tantrums or meltdowns.
While networking with other parents I learned about a special diet called SCD diet or Specific Carbohydrate Diet. This diet is described in detail in the book "Breaking The Vicious Cycle" Intestinal Health Through Diet, by Elaine Gottschall. The reason behind this diet is simple. It is supposed to starve the yeast in the stomach, by depriving it of fermentable carbohydrates.
I heard from other parents of the benefits of this diet had brought to their autistic children's health. I decided to implement the diet with Mickie about one month ago. At about two days into the diet, while I was dressing him, he gave me a spontaneous hug. I remember just staying really still. Up to that point this kind of behavior meant that he was going to pull my hair or tug at my clothes and try to hurt me, but his big sister that could see his face said.....___It's Okay mom, he's smiling. I think he just wants a hug. So I hugged him back and proceeded to dress him once more, then he did it again.
The last time Mickie gave me hug was so long ago, I had forgotten how it felt.
A few more days went by and he stopped stimming, seemed more aware of his surroundings, started to notice our pets and even attempted to talk. By the 15 Th day he was sleeping through the night. He was no longer sitting up, but was laying flat on the bed.
I have not seen change like this in him since I took him off Casein and Gluten five years ago. Slowly but surely.........
British Medical Journal, Lancet, The American Journal of Gastroenterology (Wakefield) 95:2285-2295.
Hovarth, K., 1999. Gastrointestinal abnormalities in children with autistic disorder. Journal of Pediatrics 135:559-63
Ashwood, P., S.H. Murch, A. Anthony., A. A. Pellicer, F. Torrente, M.A. Thomson, J.A. Walker-Smith, and AJ. Wakefield. 2003. Intestinal Lymphocyte populations in children with regressive autism: Evidence for extensive mucosal immunopathology. Journal of Clinical immunology 23(6):504-517 Buie, T., G. Winter and R. Kushak. 2002. J.O. Hunter. 1991.