Fighting Autism: Nutritional Supplements Making a Difference

October 22, 2022

Autism spectrum disorders (ASD) are a class of chronic and severe conditions, including core symptoms that result in a deficit in communication, social interaction, and behavioral issues and can potentially be treated with spectrum vitamins and supplements. 

There is a significant limitation in the treatment of autism. Autism spectrum disorder needs an effective treatment strategy because there is no direct medication available for the core symptoms. 

People suffering from autism have a tendency towards food selectivity. This issue is seen mostly in children and young adults who suffer from inadequate nutrition. 


Thus, it is important to maintain a nutrition-rich diet for the autistic child in order to maintain a nutritional balance in the body. Various dietary supplements, vitamins, and minerals intake can significantly help autistic children to regain nutritional balance in their body. 

What Is Autism? 

Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a developmental disorder caused by differences in the brain that results in behavioral deficiencies such as challenging social skills, repetitive behaviors, problems with speech, nonverbal communication, and learning disabilities.

Which is why it has always been imperative to consider the various benefits from including nutritional supplements in your autistic child’s diet. 

According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), autism can be seen affecting approximately 1 in 44 children in the United States. 

There are subtypes of autism influenced by genetic and environmental factors. The expression of autism in each person is not similar. Some autistic children can concentrate on a certain skill and learn it easily, while others face difficulty learning the same skill set. 

Factors of autism can be sensory sensitivities and medical issues accompanied by gastrointestinal disorders, seizures, or sleep disorders. Autistic people can have moderate to severe mental health challenges such as anxiety, depression, and attention deficiency. 

How do Nutritional Supplements Help In Autism?  

Nutritional supplements and spectrum vitamins can affect positively to a person suffering from autism spectrum disorders. According to the study conducted by Allison E. Golnik and Marjorie in 2009, states that vitamin and mineral supplements pose to be beneficial for autistic children. 

Around 539 physicians said that supplements were highly recommended medicinal interventions for autism, and are suggested by 49% of physicians for children with autism.” 

A number of clinical studies state that some children benefit from a certain type of supplements while others might not. So, regulating which supplements they will intake is also necessary. Vitamin supplements have been proven to be good for improving depression, anxiety, and the overall mental health of autistic children. 

Some key vitamins and minerals such as vitamin B, antioxidant vitamins A, D, C, and E, and omega-3 fatty acids, minerals along with iron, magnesium, and calcium are effective in autistic children. 

Some dietary interventions or supplements have eased certain core symptoms of autism. Dietary interventions such as camel milk with antibacterial properties containing beta-casein and beta-lactoglobulin enhance immunological activities in autistic children. 

What Are The Helpful Nutritional Supplements For Autism?

The nutritional supplements and their benefits that can ease the core symptoms of autism are as follows:

Methyl B12 and vitamin B12  

Methyl B12 is a vital cofactor that stimulates the production of methionine from homocysteine, an amino acid that functions as a building block for making protein in our body. 

The deficiency of methyl B12 could lead to increased production of homocysteine and decreased levels of methionine. A high level of homocysteine may result in not enough folate, vitamin B6, or vitamin B12 accumulation in the body.  

According to the studies, children suffering from autism usually have metabolic deficiencies due to having less plasma methionine. 

In that case, supplements of vitamin B12 have been proved to increase methylation capacity. Methyl B12 supplements can improve certain metabolic symptoms in autistic children. 

Also, Read: 12 Things to Know About Divorce & Autism

Vitamin D 

Vitamin D has been observed to regulate brain functions by acting as a neuroactive derivative. Vitamin D has anti-inflammatory properties, and it also helps the release of serotonin in the brain, elevating the causes of depression.

Autistic children have significantly decreased levels of vitamin D in their bodies. In that case, vitamin D supplements can help in reducing the core symptoms of autism spectrum disorder. 

A study conducted on 109 children aged between 3-10 years shows the importance of vitamin D supplements in autistic children. Researchers increased the dose of vitamin D starting from 300 IU/kg a day for a number of children. 

While other children were given the placebo. The number of children who received vitamin D supplements showed behavioral improvements and scored more on intelligence coefficient tests.

Omega-3 Fatty Acids

Omega-3 fatty acids are a group of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids that help in promoting growth and neural development. 

The omega-3 fatty acids have two major components that can not be synthesized by the human body, such as eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Both the EPA and DHA are necessary for the fundamental growth of the human brain structure. 

Omega-3 fatty acid supplements have been proved to increase brain development in autistic children if given at an early developmental stage. 

Without the presence of omega-3 fatty acid supplements, autistic children might show neurodevelopmental disorders, which can lead to severe mental disorders such as schizophrenia, ADHA, and mood disorders in the later stages of life.  

Probiotics And Digestive Enzyme

It is very necessary to keep a healthy gut for autistic children. Usually, their metabolism is hampered due to digestive issues. In that case, probiotics can boost metabolism and increase digestion if taken as supplements. Probiotics are microorganisms living in the intestinal mucosa, increasing the expression of mucin, a macromolecule responsible for killing various protozoan parasites, fungi, bacteria, and viruses. In this way, probiotics induce mucosal immunity and help to synthesize antioxidants. It is also responsible for regulating the normal biome of the gut system by regulating the production of digestive enzymes. Probiotics have proved to improve normal gut-brain axis association in autistic children by improving metabolism and good gut health. 

Gluten And Casein Free Supplement 

Gluten and casein-free supplements exclude all types of foods containing cereals, flour, bread, milk, yogurt, and more. 

Digestion of gluten and casein has been associated with the production of exogenous neuropeptides that creates an opioid-type effect and breaks the balance of the core symptoms related to ASD. 

9 out of 10 Children and young adults suffering from ASD will invariably have gastrointestinal disorders. Due to the gut condition, more autistic people tend to have inflammatory bowel syndrome called ‘leaky gut.’ 

This happens when the large peptides can not be absorbed through intestinal mucosa to the blood-brain barriers. 

Autistic people tend to suffer from gastrointestinal disorders due to excessive gluten and casein intake, which also hampers their normal brain functioning. Thus, gluten and casein-free supplements are required for people suffering from ASD.   

Conclusion 

Nutritional supplements are of utmost necessity in people suffering from autism. A compact nutritional supplement will ensure proper nutrition and maintain healthy brain functioning. However, not all supplements are helpful.

Nutritional supplements containing no gluten, casein, GMOs, nuts, soy, or dairy products, with no added preservatives, artificial ingredients, and sugar, are to look for. You can consider supplements that will improve cognitive abilities in autistic children and ensure good gut health.





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