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  • Jefferson Adams
    Jefferson Adams

    Would You Feed Your Child Bleach to ‘Cure’ Celiac Disease?

    Reviewed and edited by a celiac disease expert.

      Some parents are using a bleach-like concoction, misleadingly called miracle mineral solution or master mineral solution or MMS, to ‘cure’ autism. It is not only doesn’t work, it is dangerous.

    Caption: Image: CC--Dr Mary Gillham

    Celiac.com 04/12/2018 - Some parents are are apparently feeding their children a dangerous bleach-like concoction in an effort to ‘cure’ autism. The concoction, misleadingly called miracle mineral solution or master mineral solution or MMS, has been around for many years, with proponents claiming it can cure multiple illnesses and medical conditions. It cannot. There is currently no cure for autism, just as there is currently no cure for celiac disease. 

    While researchers have found no direct link between autism and celiac disease, studies have confirmed a strong association between autism and the presence of antibodies to gluten. There is also at least one case of celiac disease presenting as autism. In fact, the most commonly requested dietary intervention for Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a gluten-free and casein free diet. Among medical professionals however, the top treatment choice for autism still remains Applied Behavior Analysis

    Still, those medical realities don’t seem to stop people from making dangerously false claims about the alleged benefits of MMS, including the false claim that MMS can ‘cure’ autism.

    Those false claims have led to well-meaning, if misguided parents from using the concoction in the desperate belief that it will ‘cure’ their children of autism. Most recently, an Indiana mother recently gained media attention after allegedly using MMS on her autistic daughter in an effort to ‘cure’ her autism. According to the mother, she got the idea from a Facebook group.

    MMS is an unlicensed product that is basically a concoction of sodium chlorite and citric powder, known to make up chlorine bleach. It is potentially dangerous and offers no cure for autism, celiac disease, or any other medical condition. MMS is medically useless and dangerous.  High doses of the product could lead to nausea, diarrhea, vomiting, and dehydration. 

    In fact, in 2010, the FDA released a warning that describes the mixture as a potent bleach used for stripping textiles and industrial water treatment. In the warning, FDA recommends that consumers stop using the MMS immediately and throw it away. "There is no proper scientific evidence of any kind that any products 'cure' autism and these products are dangerous," says The National Autistic Society.

    If you or a loved one suffers from autism, or from celiac disease, please consult a medical professional. Do not use potentially dangerous home treatments, especially those you learn about online.

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    Guest Samara Hamilton


    I agree that autism is not caused by celiac disease and should only be treated by a physician. But you are mistaken about sodium chlorite being "bleach." Sodium chlorite (NaClO2) is a powerful oxidizing agent but can be ingested at very small amounts--I believe the thinking in these desperate parents is that they are removing the metals from their child's body, which they believe caused the autism. (A lot of them are anti-vaxxers, who believe that the mercury compound in vaccinations is the same as the mercury compound in their house thermometer.) As this can be explosive at the higher amounts, I concur wholeheartedly that it should not be ingested at all, especially by children.

    What we know as "bleach," though, is called sodium hypochlorite, and its chemical composition is NaClO. You may not think there is a lot of difference with one less atom of oxygen per molecule, but there is. 

    In fact, take off the oxygen atoms entirely and you have table salt. Take off the chloride atom, too, and you have elemental sodium, a volatile metal that explodes on contact with water. Don't put that in your mouth--EVER!

    The conclusion I have is really the same: If you have an autistic child, look to real science and seek an MD to treat him or her.

    Some interesting articles on what sodium chlorite is versus laundry bleach, its uses, etc.:









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  • About Me

    Jefferson Adams is Celiac.com's senior writer and Digital Content Director. He earned his B.A. and M.F.A. at Arizona State University, and has authored more than 2,000 articles on celiac disease. His coursework includes studies in science, scientific methodology, biology, anatomy, medicine, logic, and advanced research. He previously served as SF Health News Examiner for Examiner.com, and devised health and medical content for Sharecare.com. Jefferson has spoken about celiac disease to the media, including an appearance on the KQED radio show Forum, and is the editor of the book "Cereal Killers" by Scott Adams and Ron Hoggan, Ed.D.

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