For any of you with dietary restrictions, you will be happy to know that this Blog has been 100% GLUTEN FREE for almost 3 weeks, now! So eat it up and enjoy!
When you enter the no-longer-so-secret society that is Autism, you pretty quickly come upon two pervasive topics. One is the Gluten Free/Casein Free diet (GFCF) – which is the topic of this post. I will keep you waiting until the letter V for the other topic. [Okay, l will give you a hint, it rhymes with back seens].
I am not even close to being an apprentice to an expert, on the scientific theory behind the GFCF diet. So, I wouldn’t insult you by copying and pasting the Wikipedia summary of it here. If you are interested, here is a link: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gluten-free,_casein-free_diet. But, from my understanding, it is pretty common for those affected by Autism to give the diet the old college try.
However, in our case, there is a BIG PROBLEM.
The Little Man is skinny. And by skinny, I don’t mean “I envy that physique” skinny. I mean dangerous Calista Flockhart skinny. Like, my wife and I panic whenever he gets a stomach bug skinny. Add to that the fact that he is a very, very picky eater and that he is lactose intolerant and you have two parents who are afraid to eliminate anything from his diet.
[As an aside, the phrase “picky eater” sounds a little to serene for what he is, so I hereby coin a new phase: he is a Combatively Restrictive Eater. Try to introduce something new to his diet, and you get an arm flailing, head shaking, whirlwind of a response, combined with a screamed: “NO, FUNNY!”]
But, yet again, I have something to be thankful for living in this day and age. There are so many people out there with Gluten sensitivities that a competitive market has developed for Gluten Free foods. Heck, I have seen that they are even now marketing a Gluten Free beer. So, we decided to introduce the GF portion of the diet slowly and to just replace what he would normally eat with a Gluten Free variety of the same food. There was a little trial and error at the outset where we tried to find the better Gluten Free products, but we have finally gotten to the point, where we have him 100% Gluten free – waffles, pizza, cookies, cake, cheese puffs, pretzels, chicken nuggets, etc. So far, it’s a little hard to quantify if there has been a measurable impact on him, but we see some hints of positive changes – more clear days than others. Stay tuned.
Now that we have the Gluten out of his system, public enemy number 1 is Casein. I don’t even know what Casein is, but its days are numbered!