logo
g Text Version
Beauty & Self
Books & Music
Career
Computers
Education
Family
Food & Wine
Health & Fitness
Hobbies & Crafts
Home & Garden
Money
News & Politics
Relationships
Religion & Spirituality
Sports
Travel & Culture
TV & Movies

dailyclick
Bored? Games!
Nutrition
Postcards
Take a Quiz
Rate My Photo

new
Dating
Reading
Women's Fashion
Small Office/Home Office
History
Tennis
Holiday/Seasonal Cooking


dailyclick
All times in EST

Full Schedule
g
g Autism Spectrum Disorders Site

BellaOnline's Autism Spectrum Disorders Editor

g

Dietary Challenges for Children with Autism


For many children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), diet can be a huge challenge. Some children on the spectrum have medical feeding issues. Others are more 'picky' eaters who have strong preferences and bias toward or against certain foods. Even children who seem to have few issues with food preferences may have focus or behavioral issues due to the way their bodies and brains process certain foods.

Gastrointestinal issues such as reflux can prevent a child from being able to eat or process foods. Allergies to gluten or casein, for example, are common among children with autism. Even among children without an allergy, many are sensitive to some of the ingredients found in breads, pastas, and dairy products. Parents who suspect a food allergy or sensitivity should consult their child's pediatrician, dietician, or a natural or holistic medicine practitioner for advice, testing, or food alternatives.

Children may have oral-motor deficiencies that make feeding difficult. Pediatricians are an ideal first contact for parents who believe their child may have a feeding problem due to an oral-motor issue. Occupational therapists and speech therapists can work with a child to help determine if poor muscle control, swallowing dysfunction, or sensory issues may be causing poor feeding or limiting diet.

A lot of children with ASD are 'picky' eaters who have strong preferences and bias toward or against certain foods. When medical feeding issues have been ruled out, parents may still be frustrated with meal time and the struggle to help their children eat balanced and healthy diets. Sensory sensitivities are a challenge for many children when it comes to eating. Taste, texture, smell, and appearance can all affect a child's willingness and ability to try or enjoy a variety of foods. Oftentimes, parents will adopt a wait-and-see approach to dealing with the stress of picky eating. A lot of children go through picky-eating phases and grow out of it over time. If problems persist, however, the same professionals who work to resolve feeding issues are also excellent contacts for suggesting ideas for picky eaters.

Many parents seek dietary changes when they are looking for alternatives to other therapies or medications for behavioral challenges. Despite not having 'true' allergies to certain foods, parents often see improved behavior speech, and focus after removing gluten, casein, artificial food dyes, additives, and sweeteners from their child's diet. The Feingold diet, gluten-free/casein-free (GF/CF) diets, and other elimination diets aim to identify food sensitivities and intolerances that may be affecting mood, behavior, and other mental and physical issues.

Parents who are interested in learning more about feeding and diet challenges can contact their medical and dietary professionals or can research elimination diets online or at their local library. Whether there is a complicated medical issue involved or a desire for drug-free, low-cost ways to improve a child's diet or behavior, resources are abundant for families seeking assistance.
Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to Twitter Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to Facebook Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to MySpace Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to Del.icio.us Digg Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to Yahoo My Web Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to Google Bookmarks Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to Stumbleupon Add Dietary+Challenges+for+Children+with+Autism to Reddit




RSS | Related Articles | Editor's Picks Articles | Top Ten Articles | Previous Features | Site Map


For FREE email updates, subscribe to the Autism Spectrum Disorders Newsletter


Past Issues


print
Printer Friendly
bookmark
Bookmark
tell friend
Tell a Friend
forum
Forum
email
Email Editor


Content copyright © 2015 by Tara O´Gorman, MSW. All rights reserved.
This content was written by Tara O´Gorman, MSW. If you wish to use this content in any manner, you need written permission. Contact Tara O´Gorman, MSW for details.

g


g features
Preparation for a New School Year

Structure, Routine, and the Summer Collapse

Services Not Required

Archives | Site Map

forum
Forum
email
Contact

Past Issues
memberscenter


vote
Poetry
Daily
Weekly
Monthly
Less than Monthly



BellaOnline on Facebook
g


| About BellaOnline | Privacy Policy | Advertising | Become an Editor |
Website copyright © 2015 Minerva WebWorks LLC. All rights reserved.


BellaOnline Editor