Daily Kos: The Story of Julian (goodbye to autism)

The Story of Julian (goodbye to autism)


First, the Before picture

Here is my son Julian, at four years old: he couldn’t play with toys; he scowled most of the time; he had explosive, violent rages; had little or no recognition of danger; panicked easily; aggressive; little to no tolerance for changes of any sort; intolerant of light, loud noises, anyone touching him; constantly sick with asthma, ear infections, virus after virus after virus.

Julian would compulsively rub his head all over me and want to put his hands and head under my shirt. He made strange noises a lot of the time, something like the sound dolphins make. His outbursts of rage seemed most of the time to come out of nowhere.

How I found the way out, after the fold. It gets worse before it gets better.

He never played with his little sister, but rather could not tolerate her presence at all, and we couldn’t leave the two of them alone because Julian could unpredictably become aggressive. He never expressed empathy for people or animals. He was not developing any capacity to play by himself. At times he seemed not to be able to think clearly, although he was very intelligent. No pretend play whatsoever. At school he was self-contained; he didn’t explode, but made no friends and did not become actively involved in what was happening. He watched. He never waved hello — he didn’t seem to understand the point of greetings at all.

Our home life was, as you might guess, a disaster. My husband and I were deeply stressed out and my little daughter was routinely very frightened. We pretty much stayed home all the time because crowds made Julian so upset, but home was no place of calm no matter how much we worked at making it that way. On his third birthday I invited three kids and their moms over, people he had spent a lot of time with, and his reaction, when the first child arrived with a smile and a present, was to scream, “I HATE OTHER PEOPLE!” and run upstairs to his room and refuse to come back.

It’s also true that Julian could be extremely interesting to talk to. He invented his own terminologies, he asked questions such as “Who invented language?” while fighting the carseat buckle, he could draw pictures from perspectives that were absolutely his own, unique and strange and lovely.

At that point I was a nearly total believer in mainstream medicine. He got every vaccination on time, he went to every well-visit, I gave him fluoride drops because the pediatrician told me to, round after round of antibiotics because the pediatrician told me to. I followed directions. But I had a child who was a wreck, and sick nearly all the time. When I suggested that something might be wrong, she reassured me that he was fine (a story many many parents of autistic kids can tell). Julian was my first child, my mother died before he was one, my other relatives thought he behaved badly because I was a crummy parent — so I relied on the pediatrician’s observations.

But then Julian fell off a cliff. He spiraled into a meltdown that wouldn’t quit. Hours and hours of crying every day, violent, vicious hissing talk about how he wanted to chop me up into little pieces and put me in the trashcan, how he wanted to kill people, how he wanted to die. He was FOUR……..

via Daily Kos: The Story of Julian (goodbye to autism).

Sulfur Exclusion Diet

Cysteine is an essential amino acid and helpful for many body processes including (along with glycine and glutamic acid, the formation of glutathione (essential for detox).  Sulfur foods are rich in the amino acids methionine and cysteine.  Some children need to be fed more sulfur rich foods while others have to much free cysteine and need to restrict dietary sources.

Sulfur is a monothiol meaning that, when in excess, it can attach to heavy metals and “bounce them around” without actually causing them to exit the body in any significant amount.  This creates some behavior issues and lots of yeast issues.

Unfortunately there is no longer any lab testing available to evaluate plasma cysteine status .  This has nothing to do with cysteine status, plasma sulfate status, or liver sulfation status.  These can be independently high low or normal.  The only effective way of determining whether your child would benefit from high or low dietary sulfur intake is through a sulfur exclusion diet trial.

Difficulty controlling yeast even with large amounts of anti-fungals and probiotics.  Yeast seems to acclimate to any anti-fungal used within a short period of time (this does not apply to Rx anti-fungals).  A lot of hyperness, poor behavior, meltdowns, self limiting to sulfur foods, etc…

The sulfur exclusion trial is done as follows:

All high sulfur/thiol foods and supplements containing thiol groups (see list below) are strictly avoided for a 5-7 day period to allow the effect of the last ingestion to wear off. The negative effects of sulfur occur over a 4-7 day period after the last sulfur ingestion, which means you need to exclude all sulfur foods AND sulfur supplements for at least a week before you know what is going on.

Then, after 5-7 days the high sulfur/thiol foods are added sharply back to your diet and you eat a lot of them for a week, noticing what happens to your health over this time. If you feel worse soon after introducing sulfur foods, you do not need to do this for a week as it indicates you are better off eliminating sulfur foods.  (http://livingnetwork.co.za/chelationnetwork/food/high-sulfur-sulphur-food-list/)

If your health improves while off the sulfur foods and regresses after adding them back, you have an intolerance to them and should avoid them.

(To make the most of your diet trial and test for a dairy intolerance too.  First reintroduce general sulfur foods, but not eggs, dairy, or soy.  Next bring back eggs. After a few days bring back dairy, and finally soy).  If your child reacts negatively to the general foods there is no need to continue.  If you child does fine on the general foods but reacts negatively to eggs, remove them for a few days then reintroduce dairy separately.  By this you should be able to determine if your child has a sulfur sensitivity or a casein intolerance.

This list is copyright Andrew Hall Cutler Phd, reproduced with permission.

For more information get the book:

Amalgam Illness Diagnosis and Treatment


Foods/supplements high in sulfur/thiols:

artichokes, Jerusalem but not French
bakery products containing whey, cysteine, eggs or enzymes
bean curd/tofu milk
bean sprouts
beans of all sort
bok choy
brussels sprouts
cheese of all sorts
collard greens
dairy products
green beans
lentils of all sorts
milk from any animal
miso soup
papaya (slightly)
pineapple (slightly)
turmeric (though not high in thiols, it  is really good at raising thiol levels)
yeast extract
NAC- N-acetyl cysteine
bromelain and papain
methionine (converts down into cysteine)

Foods low in sulfur/thiols:

acorn squash
almond milk
artichokes (french)
nuts – almonds, cashews, walnuts, etc.. (not peanuts or soy they are legumes)
brown sugar
grains – wheat, rice, corn, bulgar, buckwheat, barley, oats
Poultry dark meat/ liver
coconut dried/fresh
cod liver oil
corn (sweet)
cottonseed oil
ginger root fresh
herbs fresh – basil thyme, rosemary
lettuce – but not other greens
seeds – sunflower, linseeds, pumpkinseeds, flax (not sesame)
sesame oil , but not  seeds
spaghetti squash
squashes – acorn, butternut, spaghetti, summer, winter, yellow crooked neck, zucchini
sweet potato
vinegar (white)
whole-wheat flower
winter squash

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Not Another Autism Diet…..uggg

A diet rich in soy and whey protein, found in ...

But this one is easier than many of them.

We were GFCF for almost 2 years.  We saw such amazing changes when we removed diary it was like he just opened up.  Eye contact and socialization increased night terrors disappeared, he looked so much less “autistic” than before.

The we removed wheat and we weren’t sure if we really saw a difference but we kept both as that is what you should do.

My kiddo was a huge yeast/gut guy.  We were always struggling with keeping things under control.  When we started to chelate it just got harder.  We acclimated to every antifungal we tried after a month or two.  We had to use high doses and give it 4 times per day just to keep going, but we did it and we kept going.  Still I was always afraid that we were going go acclimate to everything and then we’d be out of options and the thought of having to stop chelating terrified me as we were seeing such profound changes in our son.

My son was a huge self limiter.  He only had a handful of foods that he would eat and I couldn’t help but think there must be some connection in his food choices as they were somewhat odd for a child, but I had never heard of cysteine or sulfur foods at this point so I couldn’t find the connection between peanut butter sandwiches, broccoli, and beans (he loved re-fried beans, foul, dahl, etc….).

When I first read the high sulfur food list the connection was immediately clear.  I pulled the high sulfur foods and never needed to do the “challenge” meal as the change was drastic.  The wild, loud, hyper, meltdown, spaced out kid was replaced with a calm reachable boy.  We never again needed uber-doses of antifungal and could manage yeast with normal amounts.  He no longer acclimated to the antifungals and we seldom had to switch.  It was nigh and day.

There is no test for high cysteine so no way to know if going low sulfur is going to be for you without doing a diet trial.  However, I think that the wow we saw after going casein free was related to the GFCF diet being initially low sulfur.

Cysteine is an essential amino acid and is helpful for many body processes so there is a lot written about increasing sulfur in the diet.   Sulfur is a monothiol, meaning that, when there is too much of it, it can attach to heavy metals and “bounce them around” without actually causing them to exit the body. This can create both behavior problems and a lot of yeast.

Andrew Cutler has suggested that a large percentage of children who benefit from the GFCF diet may actually  be benefiting from the low cysteine aspect of the diet.  An opiate or autoimmune reaction to gluten and casein require strict adherence, however, children differ in the amount of sulfur they can tolerate.

For more information on doing a low sulfur diet see: http://onibasu.com/wiki/Cysteine_status