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Gluten Sensitivity and Autism

The following is a new video from Dr. Vikki Petersen of HealthNOW Medical Center, sharing information she recently learned from the renowned celiac researcher, Dr. Alessio Fasano, regarding gluten sensitivity and autism.

Do you have a child with autism?  If so, have you tried implementing a gluten-free (or gluten-free/casein-free) diet?  If you have, did you notice any improvements in your child?  Please consider sharing your experience in the comment section below, everyone’s story is a very important piece of the puzzle.


  1. Thank you so much for this information. I am not a parent of a child with autism because my son got better– but I am the parent of a child who recovered from a regression at 18 month through dietary intervention. I am passionate about this issue and letting parents know that dietary intervention really works. Here is a link to the article published in the Journal of Child Neurology.

  2. While autism is definitely characterized by gluten sensitivity and gluten causes many problems for those with autism (and all other autoimmune disorders), the beginning of autism is not, in fact, gluten. It is mercury or other heavy metal toxification, mainly beginning during gestation. And then continued poisoning occurs through vaccinations, which still contain mercury and (this is the big one)… MSG – monosodium glutamate. (Helping create an allergy and autoimmunity to gluten.) The fetus is exposed to mercury and/or other metals in the mouth of the mother (by fillings, dental implants or other 'silver' metal work. Mercury causes autoimmune reactions in humans (and tested rats, as well), as do other toxic metals. Mercury is the second-most toxic metal on the face of the earth, second only to plutonium. It also creates an environment in the body in which the necessary "good flora" cannot thrive in it's normally heavy-metal-free environment, giving opportunity for parasitic bacteria (like yeast) to proliferate and take over the immune system and digestive tract (and the organs, as well). Yeast thrives and takes over, becoming parasitic, causing fatigue, depression and a myriad of other symptoms.

    We are currently detoxifying our son from whatever metals are in his system. I recently found out that the culprit for my illness, and I believe my son's, lies with a dental implant I received 5 years ago. So long as we keep every bit of gluten away from him (including inulin, maltodextrin, carageenan, all processed foods, detxrin, yellow prussiate of soda, citric acid and plenty of other preservatives) and take away cane or refined sugar every so often, his body naturally goes through a detox every month. We also fresh juice for him (all veggies, romaine lettuce, fruits) and give him natural supplements (ASD multivitamin, Now Foods vites and supplements – but watch for those with citric acid or soy). Each time he goes through a detox, he improves greatly. He is finally maintaining normal and regular eye contact, expressing affection, consistenly practicing speech (single and sometimes two words). Only for the past two weeks now I feel like I have my son and he's really present with us. I feel like I have our family for the first time.

    It is also very important to get each child thoroughly allergy-tested. Our son was allergic to sunflowers and sesame seeds. (Virtually every cracker, cookie, cake, etc., is make with sunflower/canola/safflower oil.) Allergies go hand-in-hand with ASD and pose a huge roadblock in the body's attempt to detox and get rid of the the true cause of the problem – heavy metals.

    These kids can be detoxed. Absolutely. The body is absolutely phenomenal at detoxifying itself, as long as you remove all of the 'bad stuff' and, somehow (like I said we do it by juicing with our little Jack LaLanne juicer), getting good stuff into their bodies. (My son also eats bacon as he's extremely texture-sensitive and bacon is crispy.) The key is finding the hidden gluten and casein (and soy, which acts the same as casein in their systems) in any and every one of these products and finding the ones that are without them and work for our kids. (Google is my best friend.) I also juice cilantro with some of his juices, a natural detoxifyer (or chelator) and give him HMD (heavy metal detox), which is virtually just cilantro and chlorella, a blue-green algae. I give his body breaks every once in a while, as I believe that's the body's natural detoxing method. I don't belive in any drugs or especially any shots, as these go straight past the body's natural defenses – skin, mucous membranes, etc., and in my opinion, confuse and mess up the immune system even more (helping cause allergies.)

    Sorry for the lengthy post, just want to share our son's gradual but definite recovery with as many as possible, as the burden of all the children and everyone with this condition weighs very heavily on my heart. Even my son's teachers and speech pathologists at school are amazed at his rapid progress. Every time I pick him up, they go on and on about how much better he's doing just in the few wks he's been there.

    I would be more than happy to share with anyone what supplements and things we feed our son.


    Morgan Pocorobba

  3. My son has Asperger Syndrome, and is a brilliant young man (almost 10!). We first pulled gluten (and casein) when he was three, for digestive reasons–it finally dawned on me that normal 3 year olds didnt have runny stools 5 times a day, along with a bloated tummy. The digestive issues were immediately solved. About 3 months later, after an "oops", I realized the effect that gluten also had on behavior. When he had a little gluten, he suddenly looked very Autism. Without gluten, he still had some areas we worked on, but he was functional. Needless to say, we kept him off. He was only casein free for about a year, though, before we introduced it again,

    I am not sure what effect gluten would have now, but everyone is happy, so we change nothing. In fact, I myself am allergic to rye and barley (allergy tests) and intolerant to wheat (elimination tests). So I cook all gluten free anyway. Someday I am sure he will choose to try gluten again, and we will both watch closely for any effects.

  4. My daughter has autism and it had been suggested when she was about 3 years old to try the gf/cf diet. The dr who had suggested we try this said he had witnessed a family in a near by town who had 6 children ALL were on the spectrum and the mother had researched the diet. He said he would have never believed it if he hadn't seen it himself. But, after going on the diet all 6 kids were almost cured of the autistic behaviors.

    So with this in the back of my mind I wanted to try it. But, financially we couldn't afford it so it was put out of our minds. It wasn't until 3 years later we decided to take the plunge. We went completely gf/cf with her diet and products in our home. The outcome was amazing! She was completely non-verbal. No words at all! She would dance with her shadow and was obsessed with all reflections. This proved dangerous in grocery story parking lots! 🙁 Within a matter of 3 weeks she was saying hi, bye, mommy and daddy. The behaviors completely stopped. This has been a red flag to us since. If she starts dancing with her shadow and running around like she's being run by a motor….we know now she's had some cross contamination somewhere. Several months later she had an IGg food panel and it confirmed she was allergic to gluten, casein and several other foods. We were able to remove these foods and then saw more growth. It's been an experience… but I'm grateful for that dr who suggested this years ago!

  5. My 6-yr. old son has been diagnosed with PDD-NOS and is doing just great! In fact I'm not sure he would even test in the spectrum if we had him re-tested he's doing so good! We have been on a strict gluten, casein, food coloring, artificial sweetener free diet for 2 1/2 years, along with intense therapy. Every time he has even gotten an accidental trace of gluten we could immediately tell the difference. A few weeks ago my grandma accidentally gave him some gluten and we were expecting the worst… but nothing. Since then we've given him a bread stick from the Olive Garden and 1 breaded chicken wing from Mazzio's… and again nothing!!! I have no idea what's going on and why all of the sudden we aren't seeing a reaction. In the past if he's eaten gluten he will start flapping and rocking more, be harder to deal with, and be even more "in his own world". The only thing I can think of are some new vitamins we started taking??? It really weirds me out but I'm happy he's doing so well.

  6. Elizabeth Ragsdale says

    My oldest son has Asperger's and my youngest son has PDD-NOS (they are 15mon apart). My oldest has LOTS of intolerances including Gluten, Lactose, and Corn. After eliminating Gluten and Latose out we noticed that his behavior/agression was way down and also that he was able to process more clearly. He also has behavior intolerance to strawberries and oranges. My youngest son was non-verbal until about 2 1/2 when we eliminated Gluten and Lactose out of his diet. Now we can't get him to STOP talking :). He still has anxiety and other autism re-lated issues, but at least we can somewhat work through those.

  7. My little sister has autism and I have done a lot of research on the affects of gluten and autism. She will soon be going on a gluten-free diet and I cannot wait to see the results. I have read so many positive things about children with autism who have taken these steps and I look forward to the future with my little sister 🙂