Autism and Yeast Overgrowth
Natural Autism Help
At the age of two and a half, Jenny McCarthy's son, Evan, was diagnosed with autism. The story of his diagnosis in her best-selling book, Louder Than Words: A Mother's Journey in Healing Autism (Dutton, 2007), is gripping, but McCarthy's trials and victories after the diagnosis are even more so. She earns her Ph.D. in "Google research" as she pieces together the big picture of her son's disease, and struggles to find out how to help him heal. The tactics she ends up using to help her son are successful, and by the end of the book, Evan no longer fits the diagnostic category of autism.
Key to Evan's healing: a combination of intensive early special education, a gluten- and caseinfree diet, nutritional supplements, a protocol designed to boost the function of his immune system, and a protocol designed to eradicate a massive overgrowth of fungal yeast that had taken hold in his small body.
The Role of Fungal Overgrowth in Autism
Evan made some progress when his mother removed all gluten and casein from his diet and got him into an intensive therapy program. When he was placed on an intensive fungal yeast eradication program, which included antifungal medication, a probiotic, and a special diet designed to avoid feeding the yeast, Evan-according to McCarthy-"went full-blown Exorcist on me." Because she had done her homework, she knew that his extreme fits of rage and the enormous quantities of yeast being eliminated from his body (it was visible in his urine and in his bowel movements, and he was even vomiting yeast) meant that this was the right treatment for her son. Over the following months, Evan continued to break through-to function, interact, and communicate more and more like a child without autism.
Yeast Overgrowth -The Big Picture
According to Defeat Autism Now! (DAN!) doctors and to parents of autistic children who have tried yeast-busting protocols, yeast overgrowth is a major aspect of autism-an aspect that can be controlled. Yeast overgrowth is also implicated in a large number of other conditions that affect both children and adults. Many of these conditions persist until the issue of fungal yeast is addressed.
In a healthy body, yeast cohabitates in a friendly balance with probiotic bacteria-the "friendly" bugs like L. acidophilus, B. bifidum, and L. rhamnosus. Adequate probiotic populations are essential for overall health; they promote good digestion and immune function and improve resistance to infections, allergies and eczema. Antibiotics, birth control pills, and other prescription drugs knock out the friendly bugs, allowing yeast to grow out of control. Diets high in simple carbohydrates and sugars feed the yeast, while a lack of fiber-rich vegetables and whole grains deprives remaining probiotic populations of the foods they need to thrive.
Yeast releases toxic substances into the gastrointestinal tract that can damage the wall of the small intestine, leading to leaky gut, food allergies, and gastrointestinal dysfunction. As seen in Jenny McCarthy's son, yeast overgrowth can affect mood and energy levels. It may also contribute to menstrual problems.
Adding a supplemental probiotic to the diet and reducing consumption of simple carbohydrates and sugars may be enough to maintain balance for some. Research suggests that restoring these beneficial bacteria with a high-quality supplement can reduce irritable bowel symptoms and improve immune function. Symptoms suggesting more extensive yeast overgrowth may call for a more comprehensive nutritional yeast eradication program. For both children and adults, a complete antifungal kit may be crucial.
BioActive Nutrients' Antifungal Kit
BioActive Nutrients (Spooner, Wisconsin) has developed an antifungal kit that comprehensively addresses yeast overgrowth and the restoration of probiotic bacterial populations in the body. The kit is most effective when coupled with a diet that gives yeast nothing to grow on. For full information on the anti-candida diet, go to Doug Kaufmann's web site, www.know-the-cause.com. Doug is a world-renowned expert on this subject, and has written many informative books and articles that will help you eat to beat yeast.
Although it can take from four to six months of use to restore the proper balance of yeasts and probiotics in the body, those who have done so know how worthwhile this process is. (Be sure to work with a qualified health professional, especially with young children.)
The kit includes:
BioPLUS-Guy Evans, BioActive's president and CEO, emphasizes the importance of excellent overall nutrition for anyone who is about to enter into an intensive yeast-eradication program. As yeast dies off and is excreted, the body undergoes significant stress, and good overall nutrition can help reduce the impact of this dieoff process.
Probiotic-CSP, with cranberry seed powder- BioActive's probiotic formulation contains three billion live organisms at the time of manufacture. Its blend includes several lactobacillus strains (L. acidophilus, L. rhamnosus, L. reuteri, L. fermentum, L. casei) and Bifidobacterium bifidum (B. bifidum). Cranberry has been found to reduce the ability of infectious agents such as yeasts to "stick" to mucous membranes in the urogenital tract, sinuses, intestines, and mouth.
UGN (undecylenic acid, grapefruit seed extract, and neem)-Each component of this antifungal combination works in its own way against fungal overgrowth. Undecylenic acid is an unsaturated fatty acid that inhibits yeast and mold growth. Grapefruit seed extract (GSE) inhibits fungal, bacterial, viral, and parasitic overgrowth. Neem is an age-old Ayurvedic medicine with many medicinal uses; here, it is used for its antifungal and antioxidant properties.
Caprylic acid-This fatty acid is rapidly absorbed by the body and promotes better absorption of minerals, vitamins, and essential fats. It is especially effective at eradicating Candida albicans, as it directly interferes with this yeast's growth and replication.
Olive leaf-Extract of olive leaf contains oleuropein-a phenolic compound that, when broken down in the body, directly inhibits growth of fungi, viruses, parasites, and "bad" bacteria. Olive leaf is currently used as a natural therapy for many conditions, including sinusitis, irritable bowel, psoriasis, and vaginitis-all of which may be related to yeast.
Apple cider vinegar and odorless garlic-Both of these are traditional home remedies for infections. They have antifungal, antibacterial, and antiviral action in the body, as well as powerful detoxifying effects. Garlic can slow the growth of or kill off more than 60 different strains of fungi and 20 strains of bacteria, and has also been found to protect against cardiovascular disease.
Fiber: Green Sweep, Flaxium, or PsylliumChoose one or more of these fiber supplements to round out your BioActive Nutrients antifungal kit. Fiber acts like a gentle broom in the intestinal tract, sweeping toxins and yeasts out and promoting total emptying of the bowels. All of these fiber supplements are useful for blood pressure and cholesterol control. When you add these high-quality, gluten-free fiber supplements to your program, it's easy to reach the standard goal of 25 to 40 grams of daily fiber.
How to use the BioActive Nutrients Antifungal Kit
The Probiotic-CSP, BioPLUS multi, and fiber supplements are designed for long-term, daily use. As yeasts may begin to develop resistance to caprylic acid, olive leaf, UGN, and garlic/apple cider vinegar, the experts at BioActive Nutrients advise that you rotate your use of these agents. This will help to ensure that they each maintain maximum potency.
Conditions That May Be Related to Fungal Yeast Overgrowth:
- Recurrent vaginal yeast infections
- Recurrent bladder infections
- Chronic sinus congestion
- Digestive disorders, including heartburn, irritable bowel syndrome, and chronic constipation
- Itchy scalp
- Ringing in the ears
- Unexplained joint soreness
- Chronic fatigue
- Skin fungus (ringworm, athletes' foot, psoriasis, mysterious rashes)
- Toenail fungus
- Thrush (fungal infection in the mouth)
- Halitosis (bad breath)
- Foot odor
The Kit includes BioPLUS, Probiotic-CSP, Caprylic Acid, Olive Leaf Extract, UGN (Undecylenic Acid, Grapefruit Seed Extract and Neem), Apple Cider Vinegar & Odorless Garlic, and Flaxium, Psyllium Powder capsules or Green Sweep.