Hi Guys, Has anyone tried the GF-CF Diet? Just reading Jenny McCarthy's book and want others feedback

Brooke - posted on 02/18/2009 ( 21 moms have responded )

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I have started to read Mother Warriors by Jenny McCarthy and how the children Healed by going on the GF-CF diet. I noticed in the book that the parents all mentioned that there children had been Physically sick so i can understand how the diet helped to heal there sick tummy but my children are not physically sick, they are very healthy with there main trait speech delay. Im wondering if anyone else has tried it and there opinions?

I do believe everything she has said and it cant hurt to change there diet providing they eat all the food i guess.

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Jenn - posted on 03/04/2009

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I actually started my son on the diet about a year and a half ago. We are not on it 100%, only because he has a very picky list of foods that he will eat. And just food he adores.



You chould talk to your doctor about it to make sure of a few things, but it really isn't that radical of a diet change. Our body's are not naturally made to have the abillity to consume a mass amount of processed/enriched flour products. There for it does "gunk" up all of our systems. If you look at other societies as a whole with much better health then the US you will see that majority of them do not consume even half the amount of processed foods that we do. Plus we do not eat as much fruits and veggies as we should be.



I can give you some suggestions though, that worked with my son. At least things we tried as a family. Corn pasta leaves a funny after taste, but rice pasta is actually really good. Rice bread does not keep well and tends to be a heavier bread.



Rice chex instead of sugar cereal is a great choice for breakfast along with Buckwheat pancakes and waffles with honey. ((I know but amazingly Buckwheat is a good thing, even with the whear in the title))



Like any diet start slowly, a little here and there to see what the child likes and doesn't, many children with Autism have an oral sensation thing, at least my little boy does.



I will say thing. Drake's behavior, verbal skills and all around development has improved, not to mention we also try as a family to eat less processed foods and have all noticed and felt an improvement in ourselves.



The diet is NOT a guarantee, and takes a while to see any difference. However from a nutritional stand point it can help.

Colleen - posted on 03/03/2009

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Hi Brooke,



My son is almost 3 and still awaiting a formal diagnosis, when autism was first mentioned i started researching determined to find something that would help.  My sons main foods of choice were dairy and grain based, we have been on a casien free diet for almost 4 months now and he has made enormous progress since we started.  i have cut down his gluten intake but as a fussy eater i am having difficulty getting substitutes that he will actually eat. 



his paediatrician said diet changes couldnt hurt but didnt hold much faith in them, having seen the results of taking my son off casien i would recommend diet change and daily vitamin supplements if a fussy eater.  my son was not physically ill, his main problems were in speech development and social skills.  since changing diet he is affectionate, interactive and more vocal than before.  i dont completely understand the brain gut connection but i am convinced it is a major component in some autism cases, ours in particular.



good luck with the diet change, let us know how it goes

Jennifer - posted on 03/03/2009

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YES! Ive had my son on the diet along with taking the supplements and seeing the DAN! doctor only for about 4 months now and I have already seen major improvements in fact he was reevaluated and fell on target with everything except expressive language, although he uses sign language to communicate. I do know that there are DAN! doctors in australia and i also heard that in Australia you can get vouchers to cover the cost of the diet, unlike here in the U.S. I think I saw this when i googled info on gluten-casein free diet for autism. Good luck!

Nicole - posted on 02/24/2009

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i read that particular book looking for answers to some questions and was not particularly impressed with the information provided in the book. I felt many of the changes they were asking a person to make were unrealistic for someone facing a tighter budget then what she is.

Mary - posted on 02/24/2009

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I think the GC-CF diet is great, but it isn't a miracle cure. My son is much better on the diet, but not perfect. Each child is different and you have to try it to know if it will help. I highly suggest working with a doctor that understands the diet and the reasons why people use the GF-CF diet. Most regular pediatricians don't believe in it and don't have any idea what it is all about.

Alejandra - posted on 02/24/2009

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Quoting Brooke:

Hi Guys, Has anyone tried the GF-CF Diet? Just reading Jenny McCarthy's book and want others feedback

I have started to read Mother Warriors by Jenny McCarthy and how the children Healed by going on the GF-CF diet. I noticed in the book that the parents all mentioned that there children had been Physically sick so i can understand how the diet helped to heal there sick tummy but my children are not physically sick, they are very healthy with there main trait speech delay. Im wondering if anyone else has tried it and there opinions?
I do believe everything she has said and it cant hurt to change there diet providing they eat all the food i guess.



Hi



I read that book and i also tried thre GF AND CF DIET, it works it really does, just see your doc before starting the diet, and also don't go cold turkey start slowly slowly there is a website mentioned in the book about how to start the gf and  cf diet, follow it. I did and it has worked wonders for my little grl...



Hope this helps...

Renee - posted on 02/23/2009

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Hey Brooke-

First every child is different, just because it worked for Jenny McCarthy's kid doesn't mean it is going to work for yours. Our DAN doctor is actually one of the few that can't stand that diet. My son only eats what his doctor calls whites and yellow. He is on soy, but other then that he is not on a special diet. He has been in therpy and is in kinergarden and out of special ed and according to his teacher is one of the smartest in the class. You need to have your child tested. You never know you might not be able to do the diet for health reasons.

Crystal - posted on 02/22/2009

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I am a firm believer of the all natural food diet. We seen a huge change in our daughter's behaviors, speech, and etc. We was told when she was 14 months old she had autism, and age 3 1/2 she went on all natural food diet, now 6 years old she is doing wonderful no out bursts, once in awhile a temper but easliy she is redirrected.

Angel - posted on 02/22/2009

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Gabe was diagnosed with an ASD in April of '03. Because of when his birthday was and the way the schools work up here - he wasn't going to get treatment until September of that year. I was in a panic - of course. I had read about the GF/CF diet and decided to try it for the summer. I am a dietitian so I was reluctant - I had never heard of this diet for the treatment of ASD's before.

We decided to go CF for one month. We started it June first of '03. That was the first night my son slept for more than 2 hours. It was also the first night he didn't have night terrors. Over that month his sleep improved DRAMATICALLY! He was less anxious (Gabe had a lot of strange feers), he was able to focus more, he was less self abusive. We started the GF portion in July. That was a more subtle change. From July to September his stool solidified, his rash went away, he began to answer questions appropriatley (Gabe always had speech, but it wasn't two way - it was just the regurgitation of facts), he hugged us for the first time, he began to tell the difference between hot and cold, hunger and tired, you could put a shirt on him without in vomiting. By the time he was tested again in September he went from a diagnosis of Autism to PDD-NOS (he was too young to be diagnosed with Asperger's Syndrome). Because of his increase in function he has NEVER qualified for special education.

Please know - the diet has been THE ONLY FORM OF TREATMENT MY SON HAS EVER HAD! I believe for so me kids this diet does make a huge difference. I am a pediactric dietitian and I work with lots of families who try this diet - my son has been the only one that I have seen who has pretty much gone off the spectrum because of this diet. 1 child I have worked with went from profound autism with retardation to high functioning autism (not up to Asperger's but still high functioning). About 2/3 of the kids I work with show some benefit - usually and increased ability to focus and less agitation. 1/3 show now changes. The kids who have the softer stool to start with are usually the ones that show the most benifit.

My son DID NOT test positive to celiac disease. We took him off the diet for one month in '04 so we could test him - man that was horrible. He slid back to having the major sensory problems that month and it took us 6 months of being back on the diet to get him back to himself.

Trying this diet really shouldn't hurt anything. You can get the vitamins and Calcium from other sources - you pretty much eat meat, fruit, vegetables, rice, and potatoes.

Let me know if you need help or menus. We have been on this diet for 5 years on - my son is in a regular classroom and has friends. He does not qualify for special ed. For my son - this diet did take him from a child beating his head on the wall and trying to dig his eyes out to a lovely, smart, funny 8 year old boy with quirks.

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I hae a neuro typical and an Aspie(Jack). My NT is allergic to all milk protein and has been since birth.  After reading Jenny McCarthy's first book about her experience with Autism and her son I suddenly realised that it would be really easy for me to do CF diet for Jack.  It showed instant change.  I also had a friend that I have been trying to convince to go CF  for two years.  She finally did it and it has made signifigant improvement in her child's life.  We also limit our gluten bu it doesn't seem to make as much of an impact so e allow small amounts occasionally.



DAN doctors?  have found that there are varying levels of copetence amoung DAN doctors. The doctor we trust most ended up being a local one that just truly listened to our concerns and wanted to be involved in the solution.

Annette - posted on 02/21/2009

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I was readn above...you can find a DAN doc by goin to www.georgianainstitute.org....or it was with 2 N's in georgianna

I wish you all the best!

Annette - posted on 02/21/2009

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I've been doing it for 5yrs now & my child who has autism didnt seem sick,yet she began to finally gain decent weight after 18months on the diet & as I had read.....she reacted to one after I accidentally gave her pepperoni with Lactic acid starter culture(another term meaning Dairy/casein-unless otherwise defined what its made of). By that I mean, I had read a child can have hidden allergies, yet once that allergy foods removed & if somehow reintroduced then for a first ever there can be outward visible reactions. The GF-CF is harmless to try & we had our child tested while beginning the diet. Try the book,"Facing Autism.."by Lynn Hamilton as she goes over a lot & I found it to be very useful. My child began talking again within a month of startn this diet,which she hadnt for 5&1/2 years once signs of autism began. I wish I could remember the books titles I read about children/people having only inward allergic reactions to foods(hence called Hidden reactions,one example being lookn "spacy") until taken off an allergic food & it being reintroduced.

Hope this helped some!

Yvonne - posted on 02/20/2009

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Absolutely!!!! Our son is on his way to recovery with the diet in place for almost a year now!



I agree with other moms get a DAN doctor. Wishing you luck. Glad you are researching for avenues for your baby.

Angela - posted on 02/19/2009

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Ive tried the diet, and was very sucsessful with it, mt daughter is 8 and we started her at about 4 or 5 and its like night and day, saige had no language, would rock or flap now shes great still has some behaviours but nothing like it was she also talks, has alot of words.

Saadya - posted on 02/19/2009

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My son is also heavy metal toxic. You have to get blood,hair, urine and feacl testing done!!! You can order them yourself without a Doc!
xo

Saadya - posted on 02/19/2009

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Okay... DAN!'s are hard to find sometimes. Ask around, besides your pediatrician, and look on line. :) Your pediatrican probably isn't going to be of much help for you now. He will disagree and not support what you are now going to try. He might even try to talk you out of it. Like most of us ASD parents, you will be doing most of this on your own.Have you been to the TACA website... they normally keep a list of DAN!'s. Not sure if they keep a worldwide list or not. But they also do LIVE web chats, sign up to be a member of their site and they will send you emails to update you on the next live chat. It has been very helpful for my family. We have to travel out of state just to see our DAN! doc. You also might want to have your environment tested. The air, soil and water you could have an environmental toxin effecting your children. We just had to move because our home was effecting our son terribly.

And YES the GFCF and SF(soy) diet changed our life. Our son went from almost mute to full of life. Still full words but everyday we get closer!!!!!
Your children may look healthy but MOST on the spectrum aren't. Have you done metabolic testing??? Tested for heavy metals??? If not you cannot be sure on their health. I thought my son was healthy too... he looked fine. But that was not the case. He had EXTREME overgrowth of yeast, bacteria and fungus. As well as many food alllergies. Like Naomi said I am always here to help you on your healing mission!!!
I also have a Autism Awareness Kentucky site on facebook, join it I post lots of helpful info.
Best of luck momma!

Brooke - posted on 02/18/2009

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Hi Naomi, no i dont have a Dan, im not sure if that exists in australia, i know they speak alot about dan in the book. i seen my paediatrician yesterday and asked him about it and he put his head down and said nothing is proven and you cant heal autism and tried to change the subject. it is exactly how she says it in the book its like they dont want to know about it and wont even discuss it. i am buying a few products to see if he likes them first before i change his full diet. I have 2 children now diagnosed ASD, so if it can make any difference it would be worth it.

Naomi - posted on 02/18/2009

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Yes I have and we would never consider eating G or C again we have also cut out sugar due to yeast. Let me tell you it made a world of difference in my son. He first had sound sensitivity then that went away and he started to really look at things and for the first time ever about a month into the diet he looked up into the shy to see a plane. We have had lots of gain on the diet. If you would like more input or anything drop me a line. Do you have a DAN Dr??

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