Parents of children with autism and other disabilities quickly discover that traditional wisdom with regard to education, medicine, diet and nutrition does not necessary work well for them. They search for and are more willing to try less mainstream alternatives in the hope that their children may be helped. Consequently, food allergies and their affect on childhood development and behavior have become a growing interest.
Many children with autism have multiple food allergies. Casein sensitivity and gluten intolerance are two of the most common. Casein is a protein found in dairy products. It is also used as a binding agent in many other types of foods and some medicines. The digestive systems of children with autism are not able to fully break down this protein. It has been suggested that the residual partially-digested substance has a negative effect like a drug would on these children’s bodies and their behavior. Specifically, it could reduce their desire for social interaction, block their brain’s pain receptors and increase confusion.
Gluten is a protein found in grains like wheat, barley, rye and oats. For people with gluten intolerance, ingesting gluten destroys the cilia in the small intestine that absorb the nutrients from the food that they eat. People with gluten intolerance respond to it’s presence by having an immune reaction which can manifest itself as diarrhea, fatigue, anemia, malnutrition, failure to thrive or weight loss, weight gain and muscle cramps. You can see why eliminating foods that contain casein and gluten may have a profound effect on children with autism. When they feel better they will do better!
Some of you are probably thinking, “This is all well and good but my child is already a picky eater. I’m afraid that if I eliminate milk and bread from their diet they won’t eat enough or nutritionally.” Others are thinking that their child will not be able to enjoy a birthday cake again. This is not necessarily so. As awareness of these food allergies has increased so have the choices available to sufferers. Chain grocery stores and health food stores continue to expand their gluten-free and casein-free selections.
Sugar Kisses Bakery, located at 2688 Coolidge Highway in Berkley, Michigan, is a little gem for those that have casein and gluten allergies. Brian and Lisa, owners and proprietors, have created a charming natural pastry shop that caters to those with these and other food allergies. They use all natural ingredients and as many organic ingredients as they can find. They offer delicious gluten-free/casein-free baked goods including cakes (which can be decorated and personalized for a birthday), pies, cookies, cupcakes, muffins and more. Please visit www.SugarKissesBaker.com for more information. You also may contact them directly at (248) 542-5622 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. Tell them Warner sent you!
Tags: casein, chidren with autism, food allergies, gluten