Autism Limelight: The GFCF Diet

Autism has no known cure. Over the years, a lot of behavioral treatment and therapies as well as medical prescriptions have been given to children with autism but, still the idea of a cure seems farfetched. Apart from having no known causes, Autism Spectrum Disorders can be as complicated as it gets.

Autism Limelight-The GFCF DietHowever, recent studies and personal observations from parents, family members and caregivers presented the GFCF Diet to be an effective method in managing autism.

GFCF diet stands for gluten-free and casein-free diet wherein children and adults with autism removes two groups of proteins from their diet completely – with no cheat days! Casein is found in all milk and dairy products, while gluten can be found on wheat, rye, barley, and some oats. Some of the most common foods usually consumed by children are milk, yogurt, ice cream, bread, cereal, pasta, hotdogs, and bottled and jarred sauces or salad dressings are known to contain gluten or casein.

The GFCF diet revolves around the idea that children with autism cannot fully digest or break down gluten and casein. With leaky guts, some of these undigested or partially digested proteins can leak through the intestinal walls and passes through the bloodstream into the brain leading to heightened issues with speech, social, and behavioral skills. According to reports, kids with autism on a strict GFCF Diet tend to have less temper tantrums or meltdowns, hyperactivity, speech and eye contact issues, and sometimes, physical diseases like seizures, allergies, and skin rashes. Kids with autism eating gluten-free and casein-free foods are known to be more relaxed and have the tendency to sleep better than those who are not.

Though the fame of the GFCF Diet is rising over the years and half of the kids with ASD suffer some kind of gastrointestinal issues, it is important to note that it does not work for everyone. Working closely with an accredited health practitioner (see LivingAutismNow’s accredited nutritionist and dietitian) and a physician with hands-on experience on the GFCF Diets can be of great help. These two can assess your child’s gastrointestinal condition and current diet, assess if there’s a need for other nutritional supplements, and help prepare meal plans for your child. Be aware that by eliminating both protein groups- casein and gluten to your child’s diet can compromise his other nutritional requirement so delving into this diet requires expert assistance. Not only will this ensure your child’s progress but also to guarantee that he is in tip-top shape.