Become a healthy family! What is that? Well, a family, who knows that using holistic methods such as chiropractic adjustments, massage, herbs, essential oils and anything else natural that helps, fits the definition.
When my son was first born, I prayed for miraculous healing of my child’s genetic syndrome, but God’s answer was Go natural and organic with what you can. I thought, Seriously? Am I hearing that right?
Traditional medical knowledge sometimes says, Special needs children cannot be healthy. Just fix the symptoms, give them pills, inhalers and medical procedures to make them comfortable—even if they aren’t dying. It seemed like many say to us as special needs parents: Accept that you will be spending quite a bit of extra time at the doctor for the least little symptom.
Only, for our family, that meant 3-4 days a week, especially in the beginning. I was exhausted and emotional before my son turned one year. It took me three more years to finally figure out: There is a better way!
Then, I learned that food can make autism worse
As if I needed to add that to my son’s list of issues. Autism was already showing its ugly head in my son and the rates of it are quite high in my son’s genetic syndrome. So, I looked for anything to help us. Health was not my son’s only issue.
You may or may not know that environmental toxins and factors increase the risk of autism. Factors such as infections during pregnancy, birth complications, such as oxygen depletion, parental age of both parents, an addicted parent, or not taking prenatal vitamins. (reference) Of course, many are divided on this issue, but no matter what, what is done is done. Right?
After all of these and more issues, a child’s food intake can also make autistic symptoms worse. Many studies and personal testimonies have found that removing gluten and cow’s milk can clear a child’s thinking. Doing so, can stop allergy symptoms, autistic behaviors, and even other behaviors such as ADD and ADHD.
So, okay, I was sold on the idea. There was a lot to be gained by looking at food allergies.
I took the leap and worked on healthy.
While that seemed like a novel idea, it wasn’t when I got up with my son several times a night. I was a wife, and raised and homeschooled my oldest son and tried to attend to my duties around our home. Taking care of my special needs son became like 2 or 3 other children. Something had to give, because there is only one me.
So, I changed my son’s diet. I gave him natural remedies. Gluten-free, dairy-free meal, fresh veggies and dinners made from scratch became our new healthy lifestyle. We avoided peanuts and sugar.
Guess what? It worked. My son grew healthier, stronger, and dropped all nine of his medications. We went to the doctor fewer times and further, my son simply did not need to go all the time. Even my typical son dropped his asthma medications and his ADD behaviors dramatically improved.
Health-wise, both of my sons soon stopped getting sick all the time and even to this day, my special needs son rarely becomes ill.
Make lemonade out of lemons.
There are ways to make your child’s autistic symptoms better, and for that matter, any symptoms that cause extra illness in your special needs child. Is that a guarantee that it will work? Well, no, but I would be surprised if you did not see any improvement at all in changing your child’s diet.
But, what these things will do for your child (and your family) is bring health.
Eat organic produce.
Shop for organic produce at you local grocery or health food store. Or, plant an organic garden. You can also find a local farming resource, or go to a farmer’s market. You can even find some companies that will ship you organic produce.
Buy and eat organic food.
Azure Standard trucks in organic food around the country, if you are like us and can’t always get good prices for good quality food. Costco, if you have one near you, has an actually surprising large selection of organic produce, pantry foods, including organic oils, and grains. They also carry organic meat, wild caught fish, and grass-fed butter and cheese.
Look for raw milk: goat or cow.
The new buzz word is A2, which digests much better than store-bought. The nutritional benefits far outweigh not drinking milk. Supplement with lots of calcium and vitamin D if you simply can’t. You can search locally here. If you just can’t tolerate milk (like our family) then drinking almond or coconut milks far outweigh the effects of dairy on your gut.
Get off of gluten.
While this may be only temporary, avoiding wheat may give your family a health boost. Read 7 Reasons Why You Should Lose the Wheat to learn why.
Don’t skip this. We did at first, and I know it took us longer to heal. Whether your child has taken far too many antibiotics, or inherited your poor gut bacteria, replenish your family’s gut bacteria with probiotics, yogurt, fermented foods, or all three.
Use paraben-free lotion
There are tons of studies about the parabens used in many lotions and skin creams, and the effects they cause on your gut. You don’t have to buy expensive lotions, but read the labels on the bottles. I use one lotion from Dollar Tree which works great.
Try paraben-free shampoo
Again, the parabens and other chemicals can create problems in your body. Issues with eczema, which begins in the gut, are exacerbated with some shampoos and soaps. White Rain has a paragon-free shampoo & conditioner you can pick up at the dollar store.
Skip the fluoride
Flouride is another divided issue. Some places have too much natural fluoride in their water that it turns the children’s teeth brown in their community. Check your local water company to find out just how much fluoride is in the local water. In smaller amounts, I have found it to prevent cavities.
Tom’s is a good natural toothpaste that does work, with and with out flouride. Redmonds is another good natural alternative, and is a clay toothpaste that works well, providing minerals to help your teeth heal. Research which alternative works best for your family.
All-natural household cleaners
Using natural or homemade all-pupose cleaners lowers toxins in your home. Vinegar mixed with dish soap and cinnamon oil cleans really well and deodorizes. Whether you make your own cleaners or buy them, removing those toxic cleaners our mothers used are not healthy.
Fire your bug man
I fired mine when my special needs son was little. He gave me some line about how his spray was made from chrysanthumums (which is partly true), but glossed over the very real fact that he was spraying toxic pyrethrins on my floor where my baby crawled!
Raise your own chickens
I have learned a lot about chickens. Try raising backyard chickens, feed them right and collect your own farm-fresh eggs. You can easily raise pastured eggs right in your own yard. Just check your city laws about chickens.
Can these ideas help anyone with health challenges?
What if they are ADD, ADHD, Oppositional Defiance Disorder, Bipolar, etc? Can this kind of diet help? Actually, yes. If you struggle with health problems, or your children are on multiple medications, good health can always help.
Any change from high fructose corn syrup, gluten-based pre-packaged products and genetically modified corn diets of our American diet, can help anyone. Finding the foods that trigger allergic responses in your family will help your special needs child, and your family jump into health and wellness.
Does that mean that you don’t use traditional medicine? Probably not. There are some things that traditional medications and all of their knowledge and research can do better than natural. In fact, frequently, their medical knowledge can enhance how we effectively use natural methods.
What no one professional can give your child on a daily basis is health and wellness, unless it comes from a bottle. However, you, as a mom, can make lemonade out of lemons and give your child good health.
Just make one. jump. at. a. time.