By Donna Pessin
“The answer to autism lies in the gut,” say many scientists, researchers, and well-respected health care practitioners. But is it really that simple, and how, exactly, do you heal your child’s gut?
For the last 18 years I have been studying gut, or bowel health. My entire nutritional practice has focused on healing the body by healing the bowel. I’ve been on “this bandwagon” for a very long time, and I have acquired an enormous amount of information and experience about how to heal the bowel, heal the body, and heal disease. The results have been remarkable.
My experience with children with autism is that they indeed have very unhealthy bacterial environments in their bowel. As it relates to autism, for example, a healthy bowel increases vitamin B-12 levels, as the bacteria in the bowel play a key role in the absorption and creation of this nutrient. Vitamin B-12 is needed for neurotransmitter production and neurological function. Additionally, there is a growing sense among autism researchers that infectious exposures may be a major contributing factor to autism and its related disorders. A healthy bowel prevents yeast, parasites, fungal infections, and bacterial infections, like staph, strep, Lyme’s. etc., from invading the body and creating toxic, nerve-damaging side-effects. A healthy bowel digests lactose, gluten, and other foods without allergic reactions. A healthy bowel eliminates acids (which hereby also refers to toxins/heavy metals/pesticides/chemicals, etc) from your child’s body so they are not re-absorbed, where they trigger damage to his or her nervous system/brain, and create numerous symptoms.
A healthy bacterial environment can be created in your child, but my experience is that due to many misunderstandings, current protocols are failing to accomplish this.
Some select and keys concepts that I have uncovered that will help you attain success in healing your child’s bowel are:
- Probiotics, which are recommended for improving bowel health, cannot quickly heal your child’s bowel. It takes time—usually two to three years—to create a healthy bacterial environment in the bowel. And this only occurs if very large amounts are administered (in my practice, we routinely use upwards to 900 billion or more organisms/day.)
- Probiotics do not immediately improve symptoms of autism. Rather, they are a healing agent that eventually eliminates these symptoms. My autistic clients are given “crutches,” like very large amounts of methyl vitamin B-12 and colloidal silver (a natural antibiotic/anti-fungal) to “lean on,” as these can improve neurological function while they heal. Many programs rely solely on these crutches, and failure is very high with this approach. Additionally, I routinely advise very large, and therefore effective, yet extremely safe, amounts of crutches. I find this is a necessity for results.
- Your child’s stools should never be soft, mushy, loose, skinny, green, yellow, less than 1x/day, or worse, more than 2x/day. Many of you have observed chronic intestinal problems and/or diarrhea in your children. Some experts suggest that autism causes diarrhea, but I insist that it is just the opposite; that diarrhea (i.e. an unhealthy bowel) causes autism.
My experience, as well as that of researchers, is that children with autism have very high levels of acidity, stored both in their organs, and free-floating in their blood. Un-eliminated acids are dangerous, and your child’s body reacts to protect him or her from these. One example of a reaction to these acids is the utilization of oxygen to buffer them. When oxygen is used to protect your child from the imminent danger of an overly acidic bloodstream, the resultant lowered levels of oxygen deprive their brains this necessary element for proper function and development. Some studies have found that over 85% of children with autism have low blood oxygen levels. Another response to un-eliminated acids is the release of inflammatory chemicals. These too buffer these acids and reduce the imminent danger of their presence. A neurologist at John’s Hopkins found neurological inflammation in 100% of the patients he tested with autism.