Over the years, I've leaned things regarding diet and children with autism, ADHD, ADD, etc. Having a son who is on the spectrum, this piqued my interest.
Since my son doesn't have major tummy troubles or other significant symptoms of Celiac Disease, and reading articles stating that there's no definitive evidence to link gluten intolerance with autism or other behavioral problems, I moved on.
But according to Lisa Lewis, author of Special Diets for Special Kids,"Studies have shown that many children on the autism spectrum lack
the enzyme responsible for effectively breaking down gluten and casein
(DPP-IV)." (pg. 20). She also goes on to explain how mercury can play a role in this problem.
After reading the introduction of Special Diets for Special Kids many times, and speaking with several friends who saw great results with their own children, I thought it wouldn't hurt to give it a try.
Before our school day, I made sure that my son's diet was gluten-free. It was amazing what a difference we saw. He seems to take a long while to organize his thoughts, and I witnessed quicker responses and improvements in his spelling assignments.
We enjoy using Essential Oils every day in our home, and since we focus on revving up his brain, we diffuse lemon, peppermint, and a couple of other energizing blends. For those looking for a calming effect, Gernanium, Clary Sage, Bergamot, Lavender, and Frankincense are recommended.
You can also blend these together with a carrier oil, such as olive oil, for massage.
Important note: I've read in several places not to use these oils if there are serious negative emotions at the time. Aromatherapy is a powerful tool, and the child may start to associate the fragrance with the negativity.
And don't leave out physical activity! Since our young man needs input, we'll sometimes ask him to spin around a few times, hop on one foot, or simply run around the back yard. He'll return ready to work!
New books and discoveries come out frequently, as new information is available, so continue reading and doing your own research. The above are just a few things we use as a whole-person approach and what works in our family.
Each child is an individual, so please contact a Naturopath, Master Herbalist, or Holistic Health Practitioner for specific dosages and items that will help your child.
Sara Elizabeth enjoys writing about her family as they discover the joys of homeschooling, natural living, and strengthening their home through Biblical principles. Learn more by visiting her blog, A Mama’s Story, to see how her family is “creating culture and breaking tradition.” Join discussions regarding the blog’s topics by liking A Mama's Story's page on Facebook.