Thursday, May 17, 2012

The Autism Myths (ASD) - Twelve Reasons for the Autism Epidemic

1. The Cause of Autism is Not Known
It appears far more likely that they have not been able to identify a medical or environmental cause(s) for autism. There is no evidence that research over the past forty years has been directed at identifying the cause for autism or finding a cure. Obviously, what you don't look for you won't find! I believe the cause has been known for many years. To identify the cause would lead to prediction and over time, prevention.
2. Autism is a Medical Problem
Autism is being treated as a medical problem when there is clear evidence that the major risk factor for autism has been shown to be the lack of a proper diet. Nutrition is not considered a medical problem. For this reason the cause for autism has eluded research efforts.
3. Genes are the Cause for Autism
Genetic changes have been found in some children with autism. Fragile X is one example but the literature has not shown what causes these genetic changes. I would argue that these changes are the result of factors that cause autism rather than the genetic changes causing autism. Understanding the difference is critical to defeating autism. Billions of dollars have been invested in research on autism. It appears that more than half the autism budget has been for genetic studies while I have not found a single grant that considered nutritional inadequacy to be a risk factor in autism.
4. Nutrition Has Little or Nothing to Do With Autism
Autism has not been shown to be caused by any virus, bacteria, etc. but rather belongs in the category of chronic disorders. History has clearly shown that most all chronic disorders are caused by any one of several nutritional deficiencies. This would include the vitamins, minerals, amino acids, fatty acids, and cholesterol to name a few. A few examples of disorders prevented or cured by these nutrients include scurvy, spina bifida, pellagra, rickets, goiter, various birth defects, skin disorders, pernicious anemia, etc. Nutrition or the lack thereof has almost everything to do with autism!
5. Vaccines are the Cause for Autism
The basic question that should be answered is what is different about the children that experience autism shortly after being vaccinated compared to those who do not experience the symptoms? There are far too many children vaccinated that do not develop the symptoms and that makes it difficult to blame vaccines as the cause. The level of resistance to factors in vaccines may well depend upon the adequacy of the diet. The small percentage of children that develop symptoms following vaccinations may share common nutritional deficiencies, but to my knowledge this has not been evaluated or studied.
6. Environmental Toxins are Causing Autism
Environmental toxins are without a doubt a risk factor for autism but common sense says that this must be a very low risk since research efforts have not revealed a smoking gun in fifty years. I consider this to be nothing more than a diversion that makes for interesting headlines and is a good concept for seeking research grants, but in the end is like "The Bridge to No Where." In the meantime children are suffering and families are left to live with the problems of autism.
7. Older Parents Increase the Risk of Autism
Recent studies have suggested that older dads pose an increased risk of the child having autism. The problem that I see with this research is that it did not consider the dietary practices being followed by those individuals. Neither were their attitudes on "healthy foods" included which could have a significant impact on the foods their children would be offered. Age for either parent would appear to be a very minor risk factor.
8. Older Siblings With Autism Increase the Risk for Newborn Children
Recent studies have reported an increased risk (25-35%) for newborn children developing autism if they have an older sibling with autism. The variable that will dictate the level of risk is believed to be in their respective diets. If the dietary practices are identical for both, I believe the risk is more than 90% because the one with autism is lacking an adequate diet. If the newborn eats a different diet that is nutritionally adequate, the risk would be less than 2%.
9. Applied Behaviour Analysis is the First and Best Treatment for Autism
There are several types of therapy for children with autism such as physical, speech, occupational, and behavior. The ABA therapists recommend 25-40 hours of therapy per week starting as soon as the child is diagnosed. Medications or the many forms of therapy provide nothing for the nutritional deficiencies present in children with autism. Nutritional therapy to confirm the adequacy of the child's diet, should be the first step taken to ensure the diet provides for proper brain development. When the diet is right, one needs a lot less therapy or medications.
10. Medications Are the Best Way to Treat Autism
Most medications simply treat the symptoms, not what is causing autism. The best way to treat autism is to eliminate that which is causing it. If, as with other chronic disorders, the cause is poor nutrition, then the best treatment is to eliminate the deficiencies. This may or may not cure the problem. There is no known medication that will cure autism.
11. There Is No Way To Predict Autism
To accurately predict if a child will develop the symptoms of autism is a challenge. Recent studies have shown that a poor diet is the greatest risk factor for developing autism. By identifying those risk factors very early in life, before symptoms are present, will afford an opportunity for an early intervention to totally eliminate the risk identified.
12. There is No Way To Prevent Autism
There is no known or proven way to prevent autism at this time. However, it appears that prevention will be possible through early prediction as described above. Proving the prevention of autism with the elimination of known risk factors is not an easy task. This will require thousands of individuals for adequate proof which may not be possible. It is expected that the incidence of autism among newborn children will be significantly reduced as prevention becomes possible. This will require testing for these risk factors in the early months of life and where risks are identified, intervention is used to eliminate the risks. There is always hope.
It appears that these twelve myths block the path to eliminate autism and other neurological disorders. So long as the association of adequate nutrition is overlooked or avoided in autism research, we can expect the results of research to continue to go in a circle with no real progress that benefits children or parents. We will simply continue the escalation in the number of children affected and a significant growth in the professions providing services for these children. Of necessity this will place a greater financial burden on tax payers to provide for these services, the cost of which would bankrupt most families. These costs have been estimated to be $50,000-$250,000 per child per year with many families having multiple children being affected.
Dr. Rongey is a Food Scientist & Nutritionist. His niche is in identifying the cause of chronic disorders. Parents of children between 0-5 months of age, with or without an older sibling diagnosed with autism are asked to contact Dr. Rongey if interested in his free screening test for risk factors. The cause of chronic disorders has been researched for the past sixteen years and autism for almost five years. Several books concerning the cause of autism or other chronic disorders are available in ebook or paperback format. For more information on his research or the availability of the books on autism or healthy living, you can contact him as follows:
Harold Rongey, Ph.D. email: Phone: 858-740-7272 or his web site at
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