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autism is treatableI thought since I do work with kids on the autistic spectrum that I would weave some of my experience with that in to my posts.  So I’m starting with an overview of what the biomedical approach to autism actually is, and what it can offer.  It burns me when pediatricians tell parents with newly diagnosed children that they can get therapies for their child, but that there is no real treatment or cure for autism, so just go home and learn to live with it.  That’s simply not true and it’s doing a massive disservice to both the parents and the child.  I have seen kids go from autistic to neurotypical using the biomedical approach.  In other words, I have seen plenty of kids “recover” from autism, and every kid I have worked with has had significant gains.

The biomedical approach simply means finding and correcting the underlying imbalances in the child’s physiology and biochemistry.  There are things in autistic kids that we find “out of whack” – their immune systems are challenged, their gut is usually a mess, they have nutritional imbalances, they’re reactive to certain foods, and they typically have trouble detoxing.  Those elements are going to vary within each individual, but the bottom line is that these kids have nutritional and biochemical imbalances that are impacting their cognition, behavior and emotional states – and that these imbalances can be corrected through nutrition, targeted supplementation and detoxification.

Some people say, “but autism is genetic, there’s not much you can do about that”.  Well, there is usually a genetic component, yes.  I believe that methylation has a lot to do with autism – methylation is a series of metabolic pathways in the body that impact neurotransmitter production, and detoxification, to name just two.  Kids can have genetic mutations passed down from Mum, Dad, or both, which can make it harder for them to stay biochemically balanced.  However we know now, and this is backed up by the developing science of epigenetics, that we can influence how genes are expressed by changing our nutrition and our environment.  We are not victims of our genes.

There are a few key elements that are a part of the biomedical approach to autism – changing the diet especially removing gluten and dairy but also any other food sensitivities, supporting the body through supplementation of specific nutrients such as zinc, essential fatty acids and calcium, looking at gut function and imbalances such as Candida and Clostridia overgrowth and correcting those with probiotics and antifungals, examining a child’s heavy metal status and chelating high levels of metals if appropriate, and supporting methylation pathways.  These are the main things that I look at when working with autistic kids, and the results of dealing with those things can be astounding.

In future posts I’ll extrapolate on all of these individual elements and go into more detail.  This is a huge area, and given that the rates of autism continue to increase each year, it is crucial that we get more kids into this kind of treatment.  I love therapies – speech therapy, occupational therapy, ABA – they’re all helpful, but they don’t address the underlying cause of the problem.  The biomedical approach does.

I worked with a little boy many years ago – when I met him he was stimming all the time, his digestion was a mess, he had poor eye contact, he was emotionally volatile, and he was diagnosed with moderate autism.  Now, ten years later, he’s graduated college, has traveled internationally with a master’s level program in international relations, and is set up to have major successes in his life.  He’s a high achiever and is already very accomplished.  Granted, he still has a certain diet and regimen of supplements that he continues to take, and might do forever to support his physiology, but he is a different person to who I met all those years ago.  He’s smart, eloquent, happy and has a bright future ahead.

If you or someone you know has a child with autism, please pass this along to them so at least they know about this therapy option.  There are many good doctors around who practice this way, and in my opinion, it gives our spectrum kids the very best chance at a normal, happy and productive life.