Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD)

I have seen two boys within days of each other diagnosed with ASD.  I found both of then are deficient in iodine and sulphur.  Interesting, I thought, so that made be go back and check my records.   I found that there is, as I suspected a pattern. Many years ago Rosemary Waring wrote about a link between sulphur problems and the autistic spectrum

It is also well known that iodine is important for production of thyroxin, which in turn is vital for brain development.  It is also well known that the UK is borderline to deficient in iodine so that deficiency is common see this commentary on a study of 15-16 year old girls in the major cities of the UK:

Rosemary Waring suggests that the sulphur problem is more likely to be an enzyme fault than an actual deficiency but that in increasing sulphur either as a supplement or in baths from Epsom salts can help.

So has my regime of increasing the levels  iodine and sulphur helped the children I have seen on the autistic spectrum? I hear you ask.

Matt (not his real name) age 17 struggling at college.  Found to be deficient in many minerals including iodine and sulphur.  Main problems were lack of energy, poor motivation, social difficulties.  Aged 18 went to university and I lost touch with him for a while.  Came back to see me ages 21 having done very well in computer graphics at university.  Made many friends but now has eczema and is again lethargic.  Found this time to be deficient in selenium which was having a major impact on his ability to breakdown and excrete both his own and environmental chemicals so that they were building up to toxic levels.  Soon after treating this deficiency he started his own business with friends and is the major salesman of the team.

Nigel (also not his name) aged 6 struggling at school both with academic work and social skills.  Behaviour often erratic.  Deficient in iodine and sulphur which was again affecting his biochemistry.  This is because the B group vitamins cannot be used in dietary form they have to be “activated”.  This process of activation is driven by enzymes, as are all processes in the body.  These enzymes need minerals plus other activated B group vitamins.  Iodine is essential to activate vitamin B2, Active B2 is essential to activate B6 and folic acid, active B6 is essential in the activation of B5 and folic acid.  This means that due to the iodine deficiency Nigel was not activating enough of these very important B group vitamins.  Nigel became a more active member at home and at school, a loving brother to his younger sister.   Mum says there are now no longer any symptoms of ASD

But it’s not as simple as iodine and sulphur deficiency.  Selenium deficiency is a common finding and the UK is also borderline to deficient in selenium.  Owen developed normally till aged 15 months when he became withdrawn, his behviour was frequently very difficult for his parents to manage.   Mother was convinced that this had something to do with the MMR vaccine and Owen was treated for several years by homeopathy.  His symptoms did improve but when he came to see me he still had many difficulties and was not managing at school.  He was really only able to learn from one to one tuition but this was not always possible.  Owen is now 10 and a well adjusted boy, doing well at school and in many sports.  Mum says you can no longer pick him out on the sports field due to his funny posture,  movement and lack of involvement.  Rugby is his favourite sport befitting of a Welshman.

My belief that ASD is multi-causal is supported by the number I see who had a problem with dairy;, another well documented finding:

Another who had always displayed signs of ASD, though never diagnosed, was found to have coeliac disease and following a diet completely wheat free he became much more sociable and able to chat freely.  Talking to any one other than his immediate family was so difficult for him, that away from family he was almost mute.

I’m not saying that these treatments are a cure but from experience treating all likely causes can help tremendously.  All of these children are now adults and leading successful lives.

Diabetes management the natural way

I have just heard from a long standing client that her blood sugar levels are within normal limits having come off her prescribed medication.  This lady developed a raised blood sugar in her second pregnancy, which settled after the baby was born.  The same thing happened during the third pregnancy, when she came to see me and we controlled the blood sugar levels with zinc, magnesium and cinnamon.  After the baby was born the levels became normal again.  During her 4th pregnancy it was more difficult to control the blood sugar and after the baby was born the levels remained high.  At that time I wasn’t sure if this very busy lady continued with the supplements and she was eventually prescribed metformin by her GP.  Sometime later she came back to see me and we resumed the zinc, magnesium and cinnamon, adding vitamin D this time.  Hey presto blood sugar levels now within normal limits and the GP has not re prescribed any medication.  This lady’s mother has been diabetic for 30 years plus and both are over weight.

Indigestion and antacids #heartburn #protonpumpinhibiters

Many people routinely reach for antacids as a solution to indigestion.  Drs prescribe what are called proton pump inhibitors (PPI) but there is a problem with routinely taking bicarb and with PPI’s.  Digestion within the stomach requires acid, so by reducing stomach acid you are making digestion worse.  It could be that acid isn’t the problem, the stomach after all is used to being acid; should be acid.  Maybe the problem is lack of acid and leakage of bile into the stomach.  Bile is made by the liver and enters the top portion of the small intestine.  Bile is very alkaline.  The small intestine needs to be alkaline for the digestive enzymes that are secreted here to work.  Strong alkaline in the intestine does not result in symptoms but in the stomach it does.

As well as neutralising stomach acid bicarbonate of soda contains sodium and can result in an imbalance of the levels of potassium and sodium.  Too much sodium in the body will cause water to be retained resulting in pressure on the heart as it struggles to pump this extra volume.  To prevent this the kidneys have to work harder.  In the short term this is probably not a problem but when taken in excess over extended periods it can.

PPI’s work by reducing the production of acid by the stomach and as previously stated this acid is required to enable the stomach enzymes to work.  Acid in the stomach has another important function, it acts as a disinfectant; it literally kills ingested bugs preventing them from reaching the intestines and even into the blood.

For adequate digestion in the stomach the body needs magnesium, zinc and activated B6.  Activation of vitamin B6 needs magnesium and zinc.  So indigestion maybe a deficiency of the vitamin  but is far more likely to be a deficiency of one or both of the minerals.

Heartburn is more than  indigestion its probably caused by reflux.  Reflux is when some of the stomach contents are regurgitated into the esophagus (gullet).  The esophagus is used to a mild alkaline state so whether its acid or a strong alkaline the esophagus won’t like it.  Reflux should be prevented by contraction of a ring of muscle called a sphincter at the top of the stomach, where it joins the esophagus.  The sphincter may not keep tightly shut because the pressure behind is too strong, the stomach is too full, or gravity is working against it.  So keep meals small especially before bed, keep the head higher than the stomach when sleeping.  Wear loose clothes, so that the stomach isn’t under pressure and if its a cause lose some weight as abdominal fat will increase the pressure from outside the stomach.  Sleeping on your left side helps too because the esophagus enters the stomach toward the right side with greater capacity of volume of content to the left; sleeping on the left keeps the contents in this greater area minimising the risk of reflux.  And, although magnesium is a muscle relaxant its needed for energy, and holding that sphincter shut requires energy so a magnesium deficiency could also be a cause.

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Antibiotic Resistance

We have all heard about infections that have become resistant to antibiotics, yet still people are asking or expecting antibiotics for virus infections even though they know that antibiotics are not effective against virus.  The trouble is that the more we expose bacteria to specific antibiotics the faster they can become resistant.  There is a lot of publicity about medical exposure but far less about the amount that we obtain from food.  Intensively farmed animals are routinely given antibiotics to prevent infection because they are  so closely packed together. Bigger animals such as cows are also routinely given antibiotics as growth enhancers.  Whenever we eat animals that have received these antibiotics we are also eating them too.  And, these animals frequently harbour antibiotic resistant bacteria, which we are also eating.  See Dr Mercola’s article 

So the preferred option has to be free range chickens and pork and wild caught fish.  We also need to demand that the government do more to stop farmers using antibiotics.  Garlic is a very good anti organism natural food, best eaten crushed and raw.