Autism Spectrum Disorder
General History and Prevalence of AutismDoctors say they do not know what causes autism, and there is no cure, and have no idea why autism rates are sky-rocketing.
30 years ago, autistic children in the USA were just 1 in every 100,000.
In 2008 the rate was 1 in 88, and in 2013 the rate was 1 in 50 and getting worse.
Autism increased 5-fold in the 1990's in both the UK and the USA, and increased by 78% between 2002 and 2008 in the USA while levelling off to some extent in the UK since 2004.
These figures come from CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) statistics, and are for the USA population.
Boys are around 5 times more likely than girls to suffer with autism, for reasons unknown.
If we add in the cases of ADD, ADHD, hyperactivity and other "brain impairment" conditions, the chances of having a child with some form of mental disability is 1 in 10!
I have to admit that decades ago, many of these children were simply diagnosed as "naughty" and were never diagnosed as autistic unless the cases were extreme.
However, many cases today are still undiagnosed, and lack of diagnosis can not account for the enormous rise in cases.
Of course, some children diagnosed as autistic are successful people with exceptional abilities that we "normal" individuals do not posses.
Others may be so badly behaved that it is difficult to live in today's society, unable to communicate, dress themselves or function positively in modern society.
Asperger Syndrome was at first thought to be a mild form of autism, but has now been shown to be a different condition, even though there are similarities.
SCD - Social Communication Disorder is yet another separately diagnosed condition.
DiagnosisThere is no simple medical test that can give an official diagnosis of Autism.
Autism is diagnosed by the doctor looking at specific behavioural patterns.
Parents are often the first to notice something is wrong when they notice these signs:
- Failing to make eye contact
- Not responding to his/her name
- Playing with toys in unusual, repetitive ways
- No smiles or joyful expressions by 6 months of age
- No back-and-forth sharing of sounds, smiles, facial expressions by 9 months
- No babbling sounds by 12 months
- No back-and-forth gestures such as pointing, showing, reaching or waving by 12 months
- No words by 16 months
- No meaningful, two-word phrases (not including imitating or repeating) by 24 months
- Loss of speech, babbling or social skills at any age
Brains of autistic people process information in a different way, but many "normal" people are also different.
- Visual thinkers excel at visualizing objects, but are poor at algebra
- Pattern thinkers excel at music and maths, but may be poor at reading
- Those with excellent verbal language skills may be poor at drawing pictures
- Auditory thinkers have fragmented visual perception
This imaging technique indicates that many cases of depression or anxiety may be symptoms of brain dysfunction, often the result of exposure to toxins.
Other factors include diets lacking nutrition and lack of exercise.
SPECT imaging has the ability to identify toxin damage in the brain.
What causes Autism?There are many possible factors that increase the risk of autism.
Gut flora is paramount for the immune system. The gastrointestinal system, often referred to as our "second brain," contains 100 million neurons.
This is more than the spinal cord or the peripheral nervous system. The gut, brain and immune system relation is complex but each part depends on the other.
As research shows most autism patients are low in vitamin D, have damaged gut flora, and have a compromised immune system, it follows that lack of immunity may increase the risk substantially.
Vaccinations are be a factor in the development of autism.
Many cases are diagnosed after a vaccination, but there is no explanation of why some children are affected and some are not.
The riskiest vaccinations appear to be those with additives such as thimerosal (mercury), aluminium, and others, proven to be toxic to mitochondria (the powerhouse in every body cell we need for energy).
The Panadol/Paracetamol/Tylenol/Acetaminophin/NyQuil/Percoset/Vicodin ConnectionAcetaminophen, known as Panadol or Paracetamol in Australia, and Tylenol in the USA, has been marketed for decades as "safe and effective" for pain and fever.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
Other medications such as NyQuil, Percocet, and Vicodin all contain Acetominophen.
In 1978 a study was published linking aspirin to Reyes syndrome, although studies since then have found no link. Since 1978, acetaminophen (Panadol, Paracetamol) has usually been given with vaccinations to prevent fever and pain. 1978 is also when autism cases started a serious trend upward.
A Californian study shows that autism rates elevated alarmingly when acetaminophen was given to children instead of aspirin. Doctor William Shaw, Director of Great Plains Laboratories, looked at Cuban autism rates, finding that only 2 cases in 100,000 had autism, compared to USA rates of 1 in 88, many hundreds of times the rate of Cuba.
The vaccination rate for Cuba is 99% of all children, more than the USA at around 85% so it does not appear that vaccinations cause autism.
However, there is one important difference: In Cuba, acetaminophen is a prescription-only medication, and is never given with vaccinations. Cuban doctors rightly believe that fever is a normal side effect of vaccinations, proving that the immune system is correctly responding to the vaccination. They only give medication if fever is very high or lasts too long. An elevated temperature is the way the body helps identify, destroy and eliminate foreign substances from the body, so why prevent this from happening?
This difference in autism rates by a factor of many hundreds to one, allowed Dr Shaw to conclude that it was not the vaccinations, but the acetaminophen causing autism in the USA and other countries like Australia that use the same products. When Dr. Shaw investigated further, he found that as acetaminophen breaks down, several toxic metabolites are produced. The enzyme called Cytochrome p450 2E1 breaks down acetaminophen into a very toxic metabolite called NAPQI, which attacks glutathione.
Glutathione is central to the immune system, and after the vaccination, the immune system is meant to build antibodies, but without glutathione the immune system is severely compromised.
No wonder so many autistic children have a poor immune system, and more allergies and intestinal problems.
Further evidence comes from many children who were given acetominophen about 5 days before the jab, and started autistic regression even before the vaccination.
Acetaminophen reduces pain by engaging cannabanoid receptors in the brain, the same receptors affected by marijuana use, producing the analgesic effect. However, this analgesic effect comes from the breakdown of acetaminophen, and some children eliminate acetaminophen better or worse compared to others, leading to an unintentional overdose in many children, which not only clobbers the immune system, but also impairs brain development. The particular parts of the brain affected are the neural networks which process social and emotional information and the networks that modulate inhibition. Sometimes speech is also affected. All of these brain problems relate to the typical symptoms of autistic children.
The Dosage DifferenceInfants are often given Tylenol liquid in doses high enough for toxic reactions and liver liver damage when doses are repeated over a few days.
Liver damage from acetaminophen is so common that about 9 out of every 10 patients on the liver transplant waiting list are there because of an overdose.
In the USA, the standard dose is 325mg per tablet with 10 tablets maximum in 24 hours (3250 mg daily), and the extra-strong versions are 500mg and up to 6 tablets (3000mg daily).
But in Australia, our regular Paracetamol/Panadol is 500mg and 8 tablets (4000mg daily) is fine, and the extra-strength versions such as Panadol Osteo is 665mg and 6 tablets (3990mg daily), many of our fine doctors say that 8 of these a day is OK (total dose 5320mg per day).
The USA and UK reduced dosages in 2011, but in 2013 the Australian TGA (Therapeutic Goods Administration) made a statement:
"The TGA has considered these changes and recommends that there should be no change to recommended paracetamol dosing regimens in Australia."
It is easy to see why liver damage is so prevalent in Australia.
Yes, there are warnings on the packet about liver damage, but there is no "black box" warning where the warning is very clear: Black text on a white background with a black rectangle surrounding the warning. Typical warnings are in a thin font with low-contrast lettering.
If a person is suffering from severe pain, will they take notice of a daily limit warning? I think rarely, as they will usually assume there is a margin of safety, but with acetaminophen there is no margin, especially in Australia where even the recommended dose for Panadol damages the liver and affects the brain, especially those of children.
Will the drug companies spend millions of dollars on a study to see if one of their biggest money-makers causes thousands of young and old lives to be ruined? I am not holding my breath.
Other ToxinsMicrobial toxins, such as mould (from the environment or food) may also play a part.
GE (genetically engineered) food, chemicals, additives, antibiotics, sugar, inadequate nutrition and food processing methods all contribute to destruction of gut flora which is essential for immunity, brain function and development of a growing child.
Vitamin D deficiency has a proven link with autism. Mothers who have low vitamin D during pregnancy have a higher risk of having an autistic child. Vitamin D receptors are present in brain tissue early in the foetal development, and once activated with vitamin D, allows normal nerve and brain development.
Vitamin D is also essential for the detoxification of mercury, so low vitamin D combined with a shot of extra mercury from a vaccination may just trigger autism.
Electromagnetic radiation from microwave ovens, cell phones, cell towers, Wi-Fi, satellites, ham radio, commercial two-way radio, emergency services radio and other sources are believed to trap mercury and other heavy metals inside nerve cells, causing toxic damage, especially when there is not enough vitamin D.
GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome)Children learn by using sight, sound, taste, smell, touch, etc to collect environmental information which is then processed in the brain.
In children with GAPS (a term coined by Dr. Campbell-McBride), gut toxicity clogs the brain with toxicity, preventing normal processing of sensory information.
Children born with damaged gut flora have a higher risk of vaccine damage.
This may indicate why some children develop autism after receiving one or more childhood vaccinations while others do not.
Other children at risk from vaccinations are siblings of children with autism, severe hyperactivity, obsessive compulsive disorder, mental conditions, and type 1 diabetes.
The MMR vaccine does not contain thimerosal or aluminum but the measles virus in the vaccine may contribute to chronic bowel inflammation, causing harm to the brain.
Apart from autism, GAPS may cause a range of symptoms that can be diagnosed as autism, ADHD, ADD, dyslexia, dyspraxia, OCD (obsessive-compulsive disorder) or many other conditions.
GAPS can also cause digestive issues, asthma, allergies, skin problems, autoimmune disorders, psychological or physiological issues.
Gut flora acquired during vaginal birth is dependent on the mother's gut flora, so any pregnant woman should maintain gut health before, during and after pregnancy.
GAPS can be diagnosed within the first weeks of a baby's life by analysing the stool for gut flora, then a urine test for metabolites to indicate the state of the immune system.
Dr. Campbell-McBride has a book explaining GAPS and the tests available.
Gut and Psychology Syndrome. Dr. Campbell's website: www.GAPS.me, and blog: www.doctor-natasha.com.
InsecticidesIn areas where annual aerial spraying of pyrethroids (larvicide that kills mosquitoes) is carried out, children have a 25 percent higher risk of autism or developmental problem, compared to children living in areas without aerial spraying.
Pregnant women exposed to pyrethroids in the third trimester are more likely to give birth to autistic children. Animal studies show damage to neurological, immune, and reproductive systems. Some pyrethroids disrupt the endocrine system by mimicking estrogen, possibly increasing risk of estrogen-sensitive cancers like breast, ovarian and prostate cancers.
Apart from aerial spraying, thousands of domestic insecticides like roach sprays, flea bombs, and dog flea or tick collars and medicated shampoos contain pyrethrins. Bifenthrin, permethrin and cypermethrin, are all pyrethroids.
Preventing AutismPanadol - Never give children Panadol, Tylenol, etc, especially for fever-related conditions.
Vaccinations - Research every vaccination properly, and do not be intimidated by threats of no job, no school, no child care, etc if your child remains un-vaccinated.
It is not only every parent's right, but also their responsibility to ensure the best health outcomes for their child.
LeanMachine does not claim that every vaccination is bad, however we should avoid multiple vaccinations at any one time, and we should ask for a data sheet listing all ingredients.
If ingredients include any mercury or aluminium, we should ask for a vaccine without those ingredients.
Vaccines exist with less harmful ingredients and may cost a little more, but compared to a child's death or life-long affliction - what price do we place on that?
Ask for large, double-blind, independent studies, not carried out by any drug company, proving that the product has never resulted in sickness or death. They will not be able to give you one.
Ask for a written guarantee that your child will not suffer any serious illness or death after the vaccination, and will compensate you if this happens. No one will ever sign this.
Vitamin D - in Australia, we have a multi-million dollar advertising campaign "Slip, Slop, Slap".
Slipping on long sleeved clothing, Slopping on sunscreen, and Slapping on a hat. Later extended to Seek shade or shelter, Slide on some sun glasses.
This advertising campaign running for 30 years, has resulted in a small reduction of less harmful skin cancers, but significantly increased the deadly melanoma form of skin cancer.
Many people get melanomas where there has never been sun damage, such as the soles of feet or under armpits, etc.
In the same time, average vitamin D levels for Australians has dropped significantly due to lack of exposure to sunlight.
School children are forced to wear hats, all playgrounds are covered, parents smother them in sunscreen at the beach or sporting events, and now our children have the lowest vitamin D levels since time began
No wonder "modern" conditions like autism, aspergers, ADD, ADHD, cancers, diabetes 1 and 2, Alzheimer's, heart attacks, strokes, obesity etc have all become epidemic diseases, where a hundred years ago they almost never existed.
Mothers should get 1000 IU daily of vitamin D3 (not D2), and 2000 IU daily if pregnant, and 5000 IU daily for anyone over 45 unless they get significant sunlight 2 or 3 times a week, on a day with a clear blue sky.
Sunlight on a cloudy day or through a glass window is damaging, as only the harmful UVA radiation hits the skin, blocking all UVB, preventing vitamin D formation.
After birth, children should also take a D3 supplement as soon as they stop drinking milk of any sort.
Note that cow's milk does contain vitamin D3, but it is poorly absorbed in the human gut after the age of two.
Baby formula is always fortified with vitamin D, but usually D2, not D3, which does not do the same job, and blocks D3 from sun and food from getting in.
I would suggest that in addition to supplementation of vitamin D3, an extra dose of 1000 IU daily for 2 weeks before any vaccination may be advisable.
Increased supplementation is also advisable in winter months, especially in cooler latitudes, as healthy UVB radiation is unavailable when the sun is at low altitudes or on cloudy days.
Note also that vitamin D from sunlight has several stages:
7-dehydrocholesterol is made in the liver from cholesterol and migrates to the skin to be altered by UVB to become pre-vitamin D3, then carried back to the liver to be mediated by 25-hydroxylase to become 25-hydroxyvitamin D, then mediated in the kidneys by 1-alpha-hydroxylase to finally become calcitriol, or the active form of vitamin D3, known as 1,25 dihydroxyvitaminD3.
If we shower every day, we "wash off" most the 7-dehydrocholesterol, preventing any pre-vitamin D from forming in the first place.
In addition, as we age, we lose the ability to synthesise vitamin D from sunlight, and those on statin medication (half the aged population) cannot make 7-dehydrocholesterol in the liver.
Also as we age, we generate less stomach acid, losing the ability to take in B12, folate, vitamin K2 and other nutrients that vitamin D requires to do it's job.
Those who dress fully covered for cultural reasons or those with dark skin always need more vitamin C.
Annual blood tests for vitamin D3 are advisable. For adults, toxic levels for vitamin D3 are not seen unless we take in some 40,000 IU daily.
Supplement values vary, and the RDA (recommended Daily Allowance) of 60 IU was alarmingly too low, and changed to 400 IU, originally determined as the minimum amount to prevent rickets.
Conservative studies determine that infants less than one year old need 400 IU daily, 1 year to adolescents need 400-600 IU daily, adults need 400-600 IU daily, and adults aged over 70 years need 400-800 IU daily.
I recommend everyone past adolescents take 1000 IU daily, over 35 take 2000 IU, over 50 take 5000 IU, over 70 take 8000 IU daily.
Small doses are fine for strong bones, but for a strong immune system to ward off all disease, high doses are a must.
LeanMachine has taken 5000 IU daily for 7 years, and has zero colds, flu or any other illness, not even a headache, and allergies disappeared!
More info on vitamin D and sunlight here.
Treating AutismWe must understand how autistic children process information, to better design education and activities to improve outcomes.
Children with autism invariably have low vitamin D, and this was thought to be because they spent more time indoors, which obviously could be part of the problem.
However, studies show time after time that vitamin D is essential for balance, coordination and muscle control, which are all old-age symptoms, but often appearing in afflicted children.
All items below may help:
- Vitamins A, D3, B-Group, K2
- Non-processed foods
- Organic foods
- Fermented foods
- Baths with Epsom salt, sea salt, seaweed powder, apple cider vinegar, baking soda
- Avoid antibiotics
- Avoid genetically modified food, invariably contaminated with weedkiller (Glyphosate or Roundup)
- Avoid foods high in sugar, especially fructose
- Avoid grains - cereals, bread, cakes, cookies, pretzels, anything made from flour
- Avoid pasta and other high-carbohydrate foods
- Avoid pasteurised milk, whey, cream, yoghurt, ice cream and any additive containing casein.
- Avoid mouldy environments and throw out any mouldy food
- Avoid tap water or treat water with Reverse Osmosis to reduce fluoride, chlorine and heavy metals
- Avoid pesticides, herbicides, mercury, aluminium and fluoride
- Avoid heavy metals, aluminium, preservatives, MSG, artificial colouring, flavourings, in food, soap, shampoo, anything going into or on the body
- Reduce exposure to electromagnetic radiation from wi-fi, mobile phones, electrical wiring, etc
- Reduce emotional stress (difficult to do) as a violent reaction to violent behaviour trains the child to repeat that behaviour
Vitamin D and Cholesterol During PregnancyVitamin D and cholesterol during pregnancy can help protect children from autism.
Cholesterol is a building block for the brain, and vitamin D is essential for development of the brain and the CNS (Central Nervous System).
If mothers have low vitamin D, they cannot pass enough vitamin D through the placenta for correct foetal development.
Autistic and Asperger's children have been found to have low cholesterol levels as well as low vitamin D levels.
Pregnant women need vitamin D levels above 50 ng/ml or 125 mmol/L for development of the brain and central nervous system in the foetus, which can help prevent autism.
SummaryPrevention is always better than treatment for any condition.
There is no magic bullet to cure autism, but science has been too busy looking for such a cure, science has ignored the main preventions:
Gut Health, vitamin D3, toxic environments.
These recommendations are all good for children and adults alike to maintain physical and mental health right through to very old age.
For more information, email email@example.com
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DisclaimerLeanMachine is not a doctor, and everyone should consult with their own health professional before taking any product to ensure there is no conflict with existing prescription medication.
LeanMachine has been studying nutrition and health since 2011 and has completed many relevant studies including:
Open2Study, Australia - Food, Nutrition and Your Health
RMIT University, Australia - Foundations of Psychology
Swinburne University of Technology, Australia - Chemistry - Building Blocks of the World
University of Washington, USA - Energy, Diet and Weight
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA - Health Issues for Aging Populations
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA - International Nutrition
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA - Methods in Biostatistics I
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA - Methods in Biostatistics II
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, USA - Principles of Human Nutrition
TUFTS University, USA - Nutrition and Medicine
TUFTS University, USA - Lipids/Cardiovascular Disease I and Lipids/Cardiovascular Disease II
Technical Learning College, USA - Western Herbology, Identification, Formulas
Bath University, England - Inside Cancer
WebMD - The Link Between Stroke and Atrial Fibrillation
LeanMachine has now read thousands of studies, journals and reports related to health and nutrition and this research is ongoing.
Updated 16th January 2017, Copyright © 1999-2017 Brenton Wight and BJ & HJ Wight trading as Lean Machine abn 55293601285