If indeed, my son isn't tolerating wheat, what will he eat? Will I be forced to become some weird health nut or celiac type of person. I will complain about diary another time. I don't think we can give up dairy. Casein. Dairy. Wheat. Gluten. Why are these so bad? God made all things for us to freely enjoy - right? My mind could justify anything, even sin. It's easy and convenient and I can get pretty good at it. But - my heart tells me otherwise. I know that if going gluten-free and casein-free could help Nick, then I know I would at least try it. But - what does it have to do with my parenting or why he is the way he is? I would have to know in my deepest part of my heart and in my soul, that before I would turn him over to someone else, that I had done everything that I could possibly do. And, I haven't. I've only tried discipline. I have read so many stinkin' books on parenting now that I could... well, scream. No more parenting books. I am done.
The theory is that many if not all autistic kids have a damaged intestine/gut - the damage may be there from birth but more likely comes from some immunological injury like a bad reaction to an immunization. Autistic kids seem to have weaker immune systems, and a lot seem to have digestive problems. Anyway, this "leaky gut" allows some food proteins to pass through into the bloodstream only partially digested - particularly the gluten from wheat/oats/rye/barley, and the casein from milk and other dairy products. These partially digested proteins form peptides which have an opiate-like affect (opioids is another term for them) -they can bind to the receptors and cause harmful effects in the brain (just like a regular opiate) - which either cause or magnify autistic symptoms. The opiates are a type of narcotic - there are receptors in the brain that they bind with to reduce pain, induce pleasure, but they also have harmful side effects. An example of an opiate is morphine or heroin.
So until we can figure out how to heal the "leaky guts" out there, many folks are going on the gluten free/casein free diets, and have reported good success with their kids.
Why? Why not? My mind goes back and forth. We'll see.