Kids With Autism Can Benefit From Gluten and Casein Free Diet

According to a study, a gluten and casein free diet can result in behavior and physiological symptom improvements in certain children that have been identified as having an autism spectrum disorder. The study used survey data from parents to record the success of a gluten and casein free diet on kids with autism spectrum disorder.

Research shows that children with autism spectrum disorder generally have gastrointestinal symptoms. A number of experts have indicated that gluten and casein derived peptides trigger an immune response in kids with autism spectrum disorder, while others have suggested that the peptides might cause GI symptoms and behavioral problems.

The researchers discovered that a gluten and casein free diet was better in improving autism spectrum disorder behaviors, social behaviors and physiological symptoms for those kids with GI symptoms and also with allergy symptoms than others not having these symptoms.  When the children followed a strict gluten and casein free diet, parents specifically observed improved GI symptoms in their kids in addition to an increase in their kid’s social behaviors like eye contact, language production, engagement, requesting behavior, attention span and social responsiveness.

The researchers discovered that those parents who removed all gluten and casein from their kid’s diets noted that more of their kid’s autism spectrum disorder behaviors, social behaviors and physiological symptoms improved after starting the diet in comparison to kids whose parents didn’t do away with all gluten and casein. The researchers also discovered that parents who applied the diet for 6 months or less noted that the diet was not as effective for reducing autism spectrum disorder behaviors.

According to the research team, several of the parents who completed the surveys had removed only gluten or only casein from their kid’s diets, but the study results indicated that parents who removed both gluten and casein completely from their kid’s diet noted the most benefit.

Autism Spectrum Disorder and Music Infographic

Autism Spectrum Disorder and Music Infographic

Image Source: B&B Music Lessons

References: DOI: 1179/1476830512Y.0000000003