When did you see GFCF results? - Mothering Forums

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Old 06-05-2012, 04:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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We recently started DS on a GFCF diet even though he doesn't have many signs of being intolerant to dairy or gluten. We are trying it because I read how it can be so helpful to kids with ASD- like night and day in some cases. 

It hasn't been very long but I haven't noticed any changes. 

 

If you started your kid on GFCF, when did you notice positive results? Was it very obvious all of a sudden, or was it gradual?

 

I'm very committed to sticking to the diet if it does in fact make a difference, but we're also very into cooking and eating all sorts of different foods around here and we'd be ecstatic if we could rule this out and go back to eating "normally"!

 

If I don't notice changes in a while, should I reintroduce gluten or dairy and see if it makes a difference that way?

 

What are small changes that I might not notice as someone new to all this?

 

Thanks again...


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Old 06-05-2012, 11:42 AM
 
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Hi.  I read your question and wanted to respond.  My son is 10 and has been on and off the diet since he was 15 months.  Most recently, he has been on it for a year and a half.

 

When he was very young, the first time he was on the diet, I noticed an improvement within two weeks.  His language development exploded. 

 

When he was older, and had been off the diet for a very long time, he could describe the changes he went through and it is cool to hear his perspective.  He will say that the diet helps him think clearly, he has no more "temper tantrums" (his way of saying he'd get super emotional before about small stuff) and he feels strong and healthy.

 

His other health problems have also cleared away over time.  He has had reactive airway when he would get sick.  He no longer has any trouble making it through infections.  He has suffered with allergy symptoms in the past...itchy eyes etc...and these have virtually gone away.  He also would complain of having poor stamina...no more.  He has great energy for sports and other activities.

 

Look around the web for information on biomedical approaches for children on the spectrum.  Amy Yasko has an interesting explanation about why gluten and dairy are so difficult for children on the spectrum to metabolize....has to do with glutamate/gaba receptor imbalance due to a vitamin b12 deficiency soon after birth.  That's why gfcf as a diet is not the only thing to try.  Look around the web and find things that make sense to you. 

 

I don't believe everything, or use every approach.  I've been at this for a long time trying to find things that help my son.  The gfcf diet is one approach that I would recommend whole heartedly.  Stick with it.  My one regret, over all the years, is worrying that he'd feel different at parties, and I also felt sad he was closed off from a whole host of yummy foods.  I am just grateful now, after a few rough school years, that he is HAPPY, HEALTHY and back on track developmentally looking incredibly "normal" ;)  If there is even such a thing!

 

Good luck...and give it time.  I hear from some people that it can take 3 to 6 months to clear gluten from your system.  Look first off for small changes....better mood, more words, more eye contact, connecting with other children...it will build over time.

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Old 06-10-2012, 03:31 PM
 
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Hi i found gluten had a greater impact on my sons health-there is hidden gluten everwhere so you would need to be vigilant. Caesin had a lesser impact-just blocked up his nose and he had trouble breathing but gluten made him have v bad mood swings-i noticed this after being off gluten about 2-3 weeks. i know it is a pain trying to find nice tasting food and having to change cooking practices, food storage etc!

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Old 06-21-2012, 09:24 PM
 
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We saw major improvement in sleep, communication skills, and eye contact within 2 weeks, but we probably ate less gluten than most US families, as we are big rice eaters anyway. So damage to his intestines was probably not so extensive.

He had had severe stomach aches every 1-2 weeks (probably when our diet was more gluten-heavy?), and those magically disappeared. smile.gif
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Old 06-21-2012, 10:02 PM
 
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DS (4 years old) was GF, CF, soy and corn free since birth. He only got it in my breastmilk for the first few months of his life and with his reflux and colic symptoms, I quickly realized it needed to be out of my diet (for as long as I was breastfeeding) and his diet.

 

From time to time, we have tried to feed him gluten or dairy, to see if he has outgrown his sensitivity to it. The symptoms he experiences are:

 

- lack of focus - hard to get interested in anything but TV, Computer or his latest obsession

- lack of direction - seems to wander around jumping from activity to activity

- hyperactive / lots more stimming

- easily overwhelmed

- easily goes into sensory overload

- more meltdowns - *lots* more meltdowns

 

The symptoms are so noticeable, that when his grandmother tries to feed him something off of his diet, I immediately can tell. And they last for about 2 weeks, depending on whether he's had gluten or dairy or both. Dairy seems to detox a little faster than 2 weeks for us.

 

I'd say if you try the diet, go cold turkey immediately. Some people try to do it gradually, or decide they can cheat here and there, but I think that makes it harder to see any real effect. And keep a journal. Sometimes it's easier to tell if they are improving if you can look back and see things on paper.

 

And plan to spend a little more on groceries. GF/CF can be expensive, but if you see a change, so worth it!


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Old 06-21-2012, 10:14 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for the replies. We still haven't noticed any big changes.

It's so hard to tell though. DS's ups and downs are frequent. His sleep is unpredictable but mostly cruddy anyway. I don't think the diet is making any difference- the only way for us to really tell would be to reintroduce I guess. We've been strictly off gluten and dairy for over 3 weeks now. I'm thinking of reintroducing dairy soon and paying close attention to any reactions. I've read that gluten takes months to completely eliminate from one's system, so maybe I'll give that more time. 

Also read some info that says gfcf diet doesn't make a difference on people who aren't obviously intolerant and allergic anyway. I take this to mean that if DS wasn't showing obvious physical or allergic reactions to dairy and wheat before, he won't show any slight behaviour changes from their elimination.


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Old 06-22-2012, 09:07 AM
 
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Hi.  My dd has been gf/cf for over 2 weeks.  We have noticed improvements right away.  Namely; better eye contact, more speech, more babbling, more interest in surroundings, more interest in playing with toys or on playground, noticing other people, etc etc.  On top of that, physically her keratosis pilaris (chicken skin) drastically improved as well as her extensive perspiration and b.o (she would wake up from naps with soaked hair, soaked shirt, soaked pillow. Now she wakes up in a heatwave! just slightly damp).

 

I also think that the diet won't really benefit people who are not sensitive to gluten or casein.  I would give it a couple more strict weeks (no cheating!), keep a log and if you don't notice results then you will know you tried it and didn't work. Good luck
 


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Old 06-25-2012, 06:22 PM
 
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Thanks for posting this.  I have really been considering trying GFCF with my oldest son.

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