Friday, November 20, 2009

Bio medicine, just for the autistic?

I'd like to talk a little bit about bio medicine and something that tends to confuse many parents. Right now, much of the biomedical research being done is on the ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder) community and the results achieved with biomedical treatments. Why is that? Probably because they are the most effected and we are reversing what was once considered a purely genetic and irreversible condition known as autism. But do I think these are the only people who would benefit from bio medicine? Absolutely not! We are seeing more and more research on bio medicine effecting those with autoimmune disorders like Lupus and Arthritis, Lyme Disease, and they are even reversing cancer! The rise of ASDs is an epidemic, so it's drawing attention and rightfully so. Twenty or so years ago, ASD afflicted 1 in 10,000 kids. Now? 1 in ONE HUNDRED at best! In the UK, it's 1 in 60!

So what is bio medicine, you ask? Well, let's dissect the word, it pretty much makes, like biology and medicine, hmmm, ok so here is the medical definition:

  1. The branch of medical science that deals with the ability of humans to tolerate environmental stresses and variations, as in space travel.
  2. The application of the principles of the natural sciences, especially biology and physiology, to clinical medicine.
So we are treating illnesses with nature, it's that simple. Anyone, wait no, EVERYONE can benefit from that.

Where we seem to get hung up, as parents, is hearing the term autism used in conjunction with this form of treatment. We conclude that, if we need to use bio medicine to help ourselves or our kids, it MUST mean they are autistic, right? WRONG! I think the only reason we see this connection is, because this disorder is single-handedly bringing bio medicine to the forefront of medicine. When we were first looking for natural ways to address what was going on with Grayson, I would see the word autism and turn around, change my path, just to come back to this dreaded word yet again. I kept saying, " but I don't get this, he's not autistic"....and no, he has never been diagnosed as being autistic, but why do I keep ending up here? Because it's working for kids of ALL degrees. Because it's basic biology people!! Remember, something as common as ADD is actually on the autism spectrum, and I repeat "spectrum".....there are all degrees of illness associated with this particular disorder. Label or no label, what it comes down to is there is a set of "symptoms" that come with the illness we are dealing with and whether they put your child on the spectrum or not is not what is important. What IS important is that you recognize these symptoms as something that needs attention. So is my child autistic? No, he's not. He's social beyond words, he's funny and he reads body language better than some adults I know, he is bright and very aware of his surroundings. Did he have symptoms of an autistic child? He sure did! He hand flapped, he started to loose eye contact at the worst of it (and still does when his health takes a turn for the worse), he has tantrums that aren't reasonable, he used to line up cars incessantly, he was and still sometimes is a sensory seeker (when his gut dysbiosis flares), he bounces off the walls and couches, he traces outlines of our cabinets with his hands, he has moments sometimes DAYS of being highly emotional....does any of this sound like it could be your kid? They sound like normal childhood behaviors, but what really is normal? Are we becoming accustomed to these behaviors over time, because they are more common and because the child isn't "autistic"? And when you clump all of these "behaviors" into one child, do they take on a different definition? Yes, they become symptoms of something that is very hard for parents to grasp. It's not necessarily autism, because what is going on inside of an autistic child's body can also go on inside of a neuro-typical child, which will then cause the very same symptoms that are often seen (to a more severe degree) in autistic children. I truly believe that the severely inflicted children who are at the far end of the autism spectrum are just the most fragile kids alive. Everyone handles things differently. Just think of how you handle a cold, your neighbor might have completely different symptoms with the same cold strain and allergies, you have one to mold and your cousin reacts to dogs, your child might react to milk!....These kids can't handle toxins, they cannot handle the pesticides, the heavy metals, the plastics, the cleaners and bleaches, the injections, the viruses, the EMFs, the radio frequencies, the chemicals in mattresses and fire retardant pajamas, the parabens in soaps and lotions and even TOOTHPASTES.....they are breathing, absorbing, eating....toxin after toxin and what is the one common thread they all have? More than 90% of these kids have low glutathione. This is a naturally occurring peptide in the body, a natural antioxidant. It drives our ability (or lack thereof) to detox these toxins that we encounter increasingly every day. You might be interested to know that Tylenol (our teething best friend at one point, right?) reduces glutathione. So a child who might have already been on the brink of low glutathione, give him or her Tylenol and you have just enabled his or her body to hold onto more toxins. Is it that simple, no it's not, there is a lot more that goes into this vast system, but this is one of the many things we are seeing more and more often with children these days. Do parents realize this when they reach for the Tylenol, because they just want their poor achy child to be comfy, no they don't! Do they realize that the reflux and ear infections are commonly from dairy allergies, probably not! Do they know that colic and loose stools often accompany gut dysbiosis and that their children probably need probiotics, I bet they don't!

So I am going on and on, and it's so easy to do once you get into the biology of it all, because it's all so connected, but my point is that every child could be effected to some degree. I see children in grocery stores and I think...."I wonder, if his parents know that those behaviors mean something more than "he's a boy". Having a child inflicted with a weak immune system that allowed him to accumulate more toxins than he can handle has made me hyper sensitive to those signs. They are universal and I believe that at some point, knowledge will expose the truth about our children's health. I honestly believe that we are at a state of emergency with our kids. If we don't start eating differently, cleaning our homes differently, reading the ingredients we put into our children's bodies, using water filters, washing produce, buying organic meats, we are going to see an incredible increase in autoimmune diseases in this generation and the generations to come. It is a documented fact that babies today are born with over 500 identifiable toxins already in their system, as tested in the umbilical cord fluids. So I encourage you, when you see a behavior that troubles you, or a rash that a doctor can't tie to an illness, or even a continuing sleep disturbance, consider this possibility. It's time to learn what we can do for our kids and their futures.

So now you are probably thinking, ok this is crazy, YOU Are crazy and what do we do about it anyway?! Well there are some really basic and simple things we can all start doing, like always washing your produce thoroughly, even thick skinned produce which will likely infect the protected inside when you slice through the dirty bacteria laden skins, you can shop organic as much as financially possible, you can clean with something as simple as vinegar and water, it's so safe you could drink it! And what about nutrients, get your kids tested for nutritional deficiencies, supplement with things like probiotics (always) and omega 3s. Switch to natural toothpastes without fluoride (you do NOT need fluoride for dental hygiene even though successful marketing schemes will have you believing that), replace your soaps, shampoos and lotions with natural and organic products to avoid the nasty chemicals our bodies don't know how to process (your skin is the largest organ of your body and you shouldn't apply anything to it that you wouldn't be able to eat), eat a healthy wholesome food diet and watch for reactions to foods (which isn't always easy since you can react up to FIVE days after ingesting a food), avoid ALL preservatives and colorings. If you can't pronounce an ingredient, avoid it! These things are simple, they take some time and thought, but the health of your child is a stake. If this doesn't fix the concerns you might have, keep searching for your answers. They don't call us Warrior Mothers for nothing!

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