To be honest, Autism Spectrum Disorder or ASD is a mystery. We do not have any idea about the particular reason that causes this particular condition. Also, no cure has been found till now.
But, over time, several conventional therapies are developed which might help individuals with ASD. Almost every therapy needs a fairly consistent effort over a considerate period of time because an individual with ASD always learns new habits and coping skills.
A lot of individuals also have turned to complementary or non-traditional treatments with the hope that things will become easier for them.
Non-traditional treatments for autism spectrum disorders include several things like changes in diet, exercise, massage, and nutritional supplements.
Non-Traditional Treatments For Autism- Supplements For Children Diets
Here in this article, we will talk about one of the most popular non-traditional treatments for autism, and that is supplements for children’s diets. As they say, we become what we eat. It means diet and nutrition have a considerable effect on us.
Although autism is not a health condition that is the result of poor diet, after all, it is a type of development condition. And when it is about development, nutrition will always be there.
Usually, it has been seen that different supplements have played a crucial role in managing some core symptoms of ASD and helping the individual lead an almost normal life. Here is the list of supplements for autistic children.
- Vitamin D.
- Vitamin C.
- Vitamin B6 and magnesium.
- Methyl B-12.
- Omega-3 fatty acid.
In most cases, children with autism avoid some particular food group, and as a result, they suffer from different types of nutritional deficiencies. All nutrients are essential for the proper development of the brain and body, along with maintaining proper functioning.
In order to fill those gaps, several supplements, such as vitamin B, melatonin, l-carnosine, folic acid, and many more, are added to the regular diet of autistic children.
There are also some supplements that can be neuroprotective, and some studies state that they might help with ASD. However, there is not enough evidence to support this fact. And a lot more clinically proven results are required.
A lot of doctors advise an autism diet to those children who are suffering from autism spectrum disorder ASD. The autism diet mainly focuses on eliminating or reducing both casein and gluten from the diet.
Gluten is basically the protein that is found in the seeds of wheat along with some other grains, like rye and barley. Gluten is present in a number of food products and also becomes the reason for digestive problems.
On the other hand, casein is a particular type of protein that is present in milk products and might be another source of digestive issues. It is thought that both casein and gluten can be inflammatory, and reducing or completely eliminating them from the diet might help in improving overall behavior and health. As per the University of Florida Department of Pediatrics, as peptides of casein and gluten bind to opioid receptors in the brain, they significantly affect behavior. This also can mimic the effects of illicit drugs, like morphine or heroin, and cause the following.
- Zoning out or inattentive behavior.
- Self-abusive behavior.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
This is a type of particular good fat that is present in fish oils and also in supplement form. They always assist in brain development and functions. Including omega-3 fatty acids in the child’s diet can improve repetitive behavior and hyperactivity in those children with ASD. Some studies also state that omega-3 might assist in improving social skills in autistic children. Whether some studies support the use of omega-3 in treating autism, some other studies do not agree with the fact that omega-3 can be really effective for ASD.
Melatonin And Sleep
A lot of children with ASD also suffer from persistent sleep problems, like the following.
- Wake up early.
- Having poor sleep quality.
- Having difficulty falling asleep.
This sleeplessness can exacerbate a lot of the autism symptoms, and you should never ignore that. As per a recent pilot study, the natural melatonin supplement helped individuals with autism spectrum disorder sleep a lot better and show decreased symptoms during the day.
But here, you need to remember that in case of autism is the reason behind sleep problems. In that case, only melatonin supplements can help. In case any other thing is resulting in sleeping issues, it is best to address the actual underlying cause.
You can always opt for supplements and dietary changes for your autistic child, along with medications and therapies. But we will always advise you to choose the best supplements and consult with your doctor before providing any supplement to your child.