Autsim Awareness

Autism and Nutrition

There have been several studies on how diet affects autism and whether autistic individual should follow a guided diet. None of these studies were, however, conclusive and though suggestions are plenty, none of these are backed by strong evidence. However, autistic children are found to have certain food habits. And nutrition, some say, can affect autism.

Picky Eaters

Picky Eaters

Children with autism are picky about food. They have sensory aversion to certain smell, taste or color of foods. They usually do not like fruits, vegetables and anything that has a slippery or soft texture. This can result in nutritional deficiencies because of the tendency to stick to only certain types of food.


Child Tantrums

Autistic children may display tantrums on the dining table. This results from their preference for only some types of food and resistance to be forced-fed. A lot of them have very short attention time span and as a result, sitting at the dinner table for long is difficult for them. They are restless and irritable.


Autism Gluten Free

Some researchers have pointed out that introducing a gluten- and casein-free diet (GFCF) can help reduce symptoms of autism. While gluten is a type of protein found in wheat, barley and rye, casein is a protein found in milk. There is no evidence to prove that GFCF diet does have a positive effect on autism. Neither have scientific studies confirmed this. But many believe that individuals with autism have a “leaky gut” and gluten and casein from the food is leaked into the bloodstream from where it impacts the brain and central nervous system. This, they claim, can lead to autism or increase symptoms in those with autism.

Vitamin Deficiency

Child vitamins

Vitamin deficiency has been found in children with autism and this maybe a result of their restricted diet habits and for being very choosy about what they eat. Some studies claim to have found that vitamin deficiency may affect their thinking and communication in school and worsen behavioral symptoms. There are suggestions that including supplements in the diet of autistic children with noticeable nutritional deficiencies may help. But this should be done only after consultation with a doctor or a qualified nutritionist.

All of the above mentioned are mere suggestions based on ongoing research and assumptions. There is no hard finding to corroborate these beliefs. Meanwhile, more research continues into whether food can actually help improve symptoms in autistic children.