Monday, September 10, 2012

10-Step Plan for Improving Nutrition and Feeding for Children with Autism

1) Transition to a healthy diet: Avoid food additives, pesticides, refined sugars, processed foods, and trans fats
2) Get enough basic nutrients: Water, Macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates, and fat), Micronutrients (fat soluble vitamins and water soluble vitamins)

3) Take a multivitamin and mineral supplement: Containing 100-300% RDA of fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E, K), vitamin B complex (B1, B2, B3, B5, B6, B12, folic acid, biotin), vitamin C, minerals (calcium, magnesium, zinc, selenium, manganese, chromium, molybdenum); Avoid multivitamins that have artificial colors and flavors, potential allergens and herbs

4) Increase Omega-3 fatty acid: Eat fish and other foods that contain Omega-3 and/or with a supplement.

5) Improve feeding problems: Enroll in the feeding therapy program if: Restricted repertoire of foods (less than 20 foods), Foods lost from diet due to burnout, and foods not regained into the diet, Persistent refusal of novel foods, Refusal of entire food texture groups.

6) Heal the gut: Signs of gastrointestinal (GI) disorder include abdominal pain, bloating, gaseousness, diarrhea, constipation, reflux, vomiting, food refusal, limited variety of foods, mealtime tantrums, irritability, self abuse, sleep disturbances. Treat by modifying the diet, eliminating problematic foods, and/or taking supplements, including probiotics, antifungals, digestive enzymes, therapeutic levels of Omega-3 fatty acids, and glutamine

7) Identify food allergies and implement treatment: Foods responsible for 90% of allergic reactions include milk, wheat, soy, egg, peanuts, tree nuts, fish, and shellfish

8) Try an elimination diet: Most popular is the Gluten Casein Free Diet (GFCF)

9) Try high dose vitamin B6 with magnesium

10) Consider additional supplements: To enhance immune system: dimethylglycine (DMG), iron, magnesium, selenium, zinc, vitamins A, C, D, and E. To enhance cognitive function: carnitine, choline, coenzyme Q10, iron, zinc, ginkgo biloba. To enhance detoxification system: alpha-lipoic acid, glutathione, N-acetylcysteine, selenium, trimethylglycine (TMG), vitamin C, milk thistle

-Courtesy of Elizabeth Strickland

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