0

votes

Autism and vegans

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created April 08, 2013 at 3:22 AM

Lets say I had a friend that was a vegan who had an autistic son, and wanted to give her some advice on diet without forcing paleo on her. How do I coach a vegan to help her son? She's defensive and believes in vegan nutritional and ethical principles very strongly. Thanks.

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 16, 2013
at 04:43 AM

better than having irreversible stunted growth.

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 12, 2013
at 02:55 AM

that wasnt what i was getting at, but at least you agree vegan parents are horrible people.

Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

(7370)

on April 12, 2013
at 01:47 AM

Really? Have you seen the state of the foster system? Or how many children there are waiting to be adopted?

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 12, 2013
at 12:38 AM

parents who force veganism on their children deserve to have them taken away.

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 12, 2013
at 12:35 AM

vegan parents deserve to have their children taken away.

D426e8ad762258b14001c0f0098569d1

(114)

on April 09, 2013
at 06:35 PM

Hi. Yes, he struggles with seizures as well.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on April 08, 2013
at 05:51 AM

I would add that if she is inclined to listen to you, you should be careful to describe a change in diet as POTENTIALLY helpful with SOME of the problems her son has. If she interprets your comments as exaggerated promises about a "cure" for autism, then she'll either get justifiably angry, or set herself up for serious heartbreak.

F5a0ddffcf9ef5beca864050f090a790

(15515)

on April 08, 2013
at 05:41 AM

http://vimeo.com/10507542

  • D426e8ad762258b14001c0f0098569d1

    asked by

    (114)
  • Views
    7.4K
  • Last Activity
    1427D AGO
Frontpage book

Get FREE instant access to our Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!

9 Answers

best answer

12
Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

on April 08, 2013
at 05:24 AM

Do you have some expertise in this field? Because if you don't, do not counsel her at all. My child is special needs, and it is hugely offensive to have people, especially those with no experience at all, give me advice about her. At most, I would say you should help her get some support from others with autistic children. Otherwise, no matter how good your intentions, you will just alienate her.

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 12, 2013
at 12:35 AM

vegan parents deserve to have their children taken away.

72cf727474b8bf815fdc505e58cadfea

on April 08, 2013
at 05:51 AM

I would add that if she is inclined to listen to you, you should be careful to describe a change in diet as POTENTIALLY helpful with SOME of the problems her son has. If she interprets your comments as exaggerated promises about a "cure" for autism, then she'll either get justifiably angry, or set herself up for serious heartbreak.

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 12, 2013
at 12:38 AM

parents who force veganism on their children deserve to have them taken away.

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 12, 2013
at 02:55 AM

that wasnt what i was getting at, but at least you agree vegan parents are horrible people.

Cc3ce03985eac5ebcbb95fc2329f13b0

(7370)

on April 12, 2013
at 01:47 AM

Really? Have you seen the state of the foster system? Or how many children there are waiting to be adopted?

2e6e673ce3eb647407d260d4d57a731b

(1021)

on April 16, 2013
at 04:43 AM

better than having irreversible stunted growth.

best answer

1
90bcfafd2ef73fea5398c483c593349e

on April 08, 2013
at 08:48 PM

I'd say the following: "Vegan Friend, I was chatting with a woman at work the other day who had great success putting her child on a gluten free, sugar free diet. Have you tried this?"

Saying it this way would be minimally offensive to the mother because her child could still be vegan while following this advice. Just don't mention meat or eggs. It would be counter-productive. In this situation you'll probably have to settle for a partial victory under the best of circumstances.

Also, consider that she wouldn't be interested in hearing the advice at all. I don't even have kids and I know that special diets are effective at reducing autism symptoms, so it's possible she's already tried a special diet.

One way your paleo skills could assist her is if she's daunted by cutting gluten and sugar out of her child's diet. Us paleo types are experienced at learning to thrive in the absence of ubiquitous substances such as grains, sugar, soy, and seed oils. She might just need a little help getting rid of gluten-containing grains and sugar.

Good Luck!

4
7e1433afbb06c318c4d90860d493c49d

(5959)

on April 08, 2013
at 01:19 PM

I have this exact situation in my own family, and I wouldn't even waste the time trying to talk sense to them. It would be like trying to convince devout Christians that they're idolatrously worshiping a pagan, false-messiah man-god.

3
3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on April 08, 2013
at 03:26 AM

Don't expect success. A vegan is programmed NOT to believe you, even when her current approach is clearly not working.

If you CAN. Talk her into trying something, make it Omega 3 fats (fish oil capsules are a good place to start) and coconut oil.

1
F6ce9302d62d8b4a1ef2fc813c294770

(510)

on April 11, 2013
at 10:19 PM

I can't believe no one has mentioned this yet!

There are several recent scientific studies that link autism (especially certain types) to a lack of dietary cholesterol.

Cholesterol is an integral component of every cell membrane (humans have ~3 trillion cells)...especially the membranes found in nervous tissue. It is also the building block of many important hormones.

A vegan diet is COMPLETELY DEVOID of cholesterol. Cholesterol is only found in animal foods.

Cholesterol is just one of several essential nutrients that are deficient in vegetarian/vegan diets. (Vitamin B12/cobalamin is another common one).

1
8292546789ca48c32ead34c6e884d059

on April 09, 2013
at 10:24 PM

I'm going to echo above what crowbar said. I have an autistic child. Child rearing advice from anyone only comes across douchey.

Vegan eh? I really hope that kid is getting enough b12. B12 deficiency can look like autism in children.

http://www.pernicious-anaemia-society.org/phpbb/viewtopic.php?t=11131

0
D426e8ad762258b14001c0f0098569d1

(114)

on April 09, 2013
at 06:37 PM

Thanks for the input everyone - it's a frustrating situation.

0
048dd52752c45129c1212bfffb37ca72

on April 08, 2013
at 09:20 PM

I have been ovo-lacto-vegetarian in the past also for ethical reasons. As suggested by the other comments, trying to make change someone's mind when he/she is very concerned about animal welfare it's a pretty difficult task.

My case was a little bit special because I always believed that animal products were nutritions and good for an optimal health, just made a compromise because I didn't like the idea to live thanks to other animal sacrifices and thought that I could do well with most plant-based foods (in the end the variety is HUGE) and also eggs and dairy.

The thing that make me change my mind was not anyone's advice, but myself realizing that grains weren't doing me very good. So I started to have less of them and started to feel better so In the end I dropped them totally, alongside with legumes and soy. But then I realized I got really really limited... so In the end I gave up with the idea because it was so much a pain in the %$"/ to keep going.

In the meanwhile, I always seek to have very nutritious and clean food that is compliant with my beliefs, so stocked on a lot of super foods: linseed oil, avocados, garlic, spices, curcumin, berries, macadamias, algae, hemp seeds, chia... also AVOIDING SUGARS AND TOO MUCH PROCESSED FOODS... this all maintained me in a more or less good position although I couldn't say I think it was optimal, in fact even then I didn't believed it. So maybe you can pass on here some of that 'positive' advice that is aligned with her way of thinking.

So for me, what worked best was realizing what it was better not to eat and then realizing that maybe it would just be more natural to eat like it is supposed to be. So if you could via any mechanism lead her to think that grains are not so good for the gut, and that saturated fat is not really that bad... and that too many fructose maybe it's not so good idea also, and that greens are amazing but also too many goitrogenic ones could have a negative impact... maybe she could turn the tide some day. But she will have to realize it on her own to allow the change to happen, unfortunately it may come when some harm is already done.

0
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on April 08, 2013
at 03:27 AM

The SCD has a good amount of info on autism in the book and it's beneficial connection to a diet with animal products. You could say you heard about the book and thought she should take a look. Is the son struggling right now with symptoms?

D426e8ad762258b14001c0f0098569d1

(114)

on April 09, 2013
at 06:35 PM

Hi. Yes, he struggles with seizures as well.

Answer Question


Get FREE instant access to our
Paleo For Beginners Guide & 15 FREE Recipes!