Researchers have found that people with autism who eat gluten products regularly have a hard time breaking down the protein and found high levels of peptides with opiate in the urine. Opiates are similar to the drug known as morphine and affect the brain function. The two main problems have been linked as gluten (which is the protein found in wheat, barley, oats and rye) and casein (the protein found in milk.) Would you knowingly give your child morphine? Allowing a child who has autism to eat gluten products could be doing as much harm.
Now that you know the facts, where should you start? How can you possibly remove gluten from the diet? It will not be easy at first but will be beneficial in the end. It will take perseverance and research. At first it will take a lot of time because you will need to read labels and rule out all foods with gluten ingredients. You may even want to consult a dietician to work with you the first few weeks. They can come up with healthy meal plans based on the person's likes and dislikes. There are also many online resources to help. There are even" Gluten Free Bibles" which are guides to a full gluten free life. There are even gluten free cookbooks and foods you can purchase online.
You are probably saying right now, "This seems like too much work, I don't have the time for this." That may be the case first but once you understand and start shopping gluten free it is quite easy. Also, you must look at the long term benefits of the gluten free diet. You must realize that for many who have autism, foods with gluten are toxic to their brain and avoiding them is necessary. It will be challenging at first but with a little effort and a few good gluten free cookbooks your autistic child/friend will see improvements in behavior. I have read reports that after three months of gluten free living autistic children have been able to make eye contact and actually play calmly with other children. Now, doesn't that sound worth giving it a try?
There are so many resources and online products to help you with your new journey. It will require sacrifices and endurance. Remember this adjustment will take time but the results are so valuable. Start today and begin to live free!