Mothers looking for the answer to better health for your family and, especially if you have a child with an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) but any health issue, can feel overwhelmed by what path to take and how big a change it can be.
And that’s completely understandable, it can mean a massive change to your lifestyle. And if autism is in your family, you’ll know exactly how challenging change can be.
But, if your family is impacted by autism, you’ll also understand that it’s often the things that make our children (and us) feel the most uncomfortable that bring about the biggest gains in the long run.
Take their therapies for example. By challenging our kids, bit-by-bit, they start to make inroads and soon we’ve shifted to a new normal – a better normal that, at the start, we didn’t think possible.
The same goes for our changing your family’s diet. And, perhaps the key to making the change is to think that starting the GAPS Diet as just another necessary therapy needed on your path to better outcomes for your child.
For our family, starting the GAPS Diet didn’t feel like a choice, it felt much more like a necessity. Life had gotten so bad we needed to take a drastic change.
Our eldest child’s behaviours had been challenging, even when he was tiny and long before his ASD diagnosis. And it was early on that we began to realise that foods were impacting on his little body and his behaviour.
I had worked in the organic health food industry prior to having children, so I felt I had great knowledge about foods and health. But even foods that I had previously considered healthy, like carrots, were causes obvious tummy upsets, and I was at my wits end. Gaps Diet help fix food intolerances and allergies over time by healing the gut.
It was only after months of research and trying different approaches at home did we land into the world of GAPS. We had already removed gluten and dairy and seen great improvements in William’s health and behaviour, but still we faced the daily tummy upsets, as well as challenging behaviour and reactions to his environment.
But when we came across the GAPS Diet and learned more about the ‘leaky gut’ syndrome, it all started making sense. We then made a choice, and for our family, the GAPS Diet has been the best choice we could have made.
But – I know for some it may seem too hard, too restrictive and too much work. Let me reassure you, while the first weeks starting the Introductory Diet, are tough, once you discover your routine – both preparation and tastebud wise – it gets much, much easier. I think nothing of taking our flasks of soup, casserole or fermented foods to the pool, shops, kids parties or beach. The boys take their food to day care and kinder without an issue.
And you don’t have to go cold turkey. You can start by ‘crowding out’ the unhealthy foods and replacing them with healthier options. That way, you can make the change little by little. Start with full gaps and work toward intro stage as your goal.
So before you put the GAPS Diet in the too hard basket. Think about the possible outcomes – healthier children and who begin to calm as the diet starts to heal the gut and toxins are eliminated from their bodies. And how much better their other therapies or concentration at school will be once you lower their bodies’ toxic load.
And isn’t that the whole point? Isn’t that what you’re looking for? A healthy child that has the emotional space to live, learn and experience life?
That’s what I was searching for, and I’m proud to say that’s where we’re headed now.
Theres no limits to what you can achieve if you keep fighting for them.