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So many of you have autistic kids. What's up with that? Are there environmental elements to blame for an increase in autism? Does having celiac have something to do with it? I don't know a single autistic adult and a quick survey of my nearby coworkers says they don't either, but everywhere I go I hear about it in kids.

Makes the idea of having kids a whoooole lot scarier.

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There are a lot of possible reasons for Autism. And yes I can see that a person who's system is already fighting gluten will be less able to successfully fight other enviornmental badies like mercury preservatives in the flu shot or hormones in milk, soy and meats. That said.... I have three fairly healthy kids, much healthier when they are not ingesting gluten. If I had this knowledge then....I would have stopped eating gluten before having children. But I wouldn't have chosen not to have them. They are the best things about my life.

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^^ What she said!

I think I feel insanely guilty about my child's autism. Like, I'm the one that caused his food allergies because of my own gut issues. But I didn't even know about them, so there's nothing I can do. His immune system is ALWAYS on high alert (b/c of his allergies, etc). Maybe if I'd learned about my gluten problem before I got pregnant, I could have healed first. I will never know, but he is starting to heal some.

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There does seem to be a bit of a link. We have seen that the Gluten-free Casein-free diet has helped a lot of kids with the condition. There are autistic adults but since they haven't been diagnosing autism except in it's most extreme forms for real long many of them are not diagnosed. For some in the autism spectrum the effects are severe but for others with milder forms such as those with Aspergers it can have it's good and bad points.

There are always risks and worries when we have kids. And those continue until the day the parents are in the ground. But they are worth it.

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^^ What she said!

I think I feel insanely guilty about my child's autism. Like, I'm the one that caused his food allergies because of my own gut issues. But I didn't even know about them, so there's nothing I can do. His immune system is ALWAYS on high alert (b/c of his allergies, etc). Maybe if I'd learned about my gluten problem before I got pregnant, I could have healed first. I will never know, but he is starting to heal some.

I know the guilt feeling all too well. Please don't beat yourself up over something you had no control over. It is not like you knew and ignored it and I bet you are doing a great job learning to deal with it. I am glad to see in your sig that your little one is doing better so you must be doing things right.

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This is something the CDC is actually worried about, and studies are being done on why autism is on the rise. I think a lot of people are on this board *because* they have autistic children who are on the Gluten-free Casein-free diet, and they want to learn more about it. There was a study done in Denmark (I think) that might have potentially maybe linked celiac to autism a little bit, but I haven't gotten my hands on it (it was published in Pediatrics, which I don't get, but my mom does, so she's sending me a copy of the study). From what I read, it looked like a bad study, and that was Mom's quick analysis too, before she read it. It didn't appear to explain causation, just correlation. When I get the study I'll write about it here. I'm not optimistic as to its quality, as I said. That doesn't mean there's no link, but there do need to be more studies on this. One study doesn't tell us anything if it isn't repeated, anyway.

Science seems to be pointing to genetics as the cause of autism.* If someone starts doing studies on this - good ones, with repeats and peer reviews and large sample sizes and so on and so forth - that would be very interesting.

But regardless of what causes it, my heart breaks for the parents who say they feel responsible. You aren't. You've done nothing wrong. I won't get all philosophical on you, but if I could, I would give you a hug. *Virtual hug*

*

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