We occasionally get letters or comments from parents that have seen improvements in health with diet. To help provide hope to so many still in the trenches, I’ve decided to make more of an effort to share some these comments (with their permission, of course). Many of us don’t have it all figured out, but we cling to the hope and words of progress. Everyone’s journey is different, diet changes may not reap huge changes for all, but it is absolutely helping some. Like this family, glutamate and diet have been a huge piece to our puzzle. Thank you for giving us hope…

“When my son was just four months old, I was sitting in my room holding him when the thought “this child has autism” went through my mind. I had no clue what autism was but I was sure my son had it. Even that young, he was disengaged, received no comfort from his us holding him (would push off of us and want to be put down), and was in so much pain that he couldn’t sleep. He would get up at 6 a.m. and stay awake until 8 p.m., with no naps. After feeding him he would claw at my chest and scream for hours in pain. It was the most desperate I’ve ever and will ever feel in my life. No doctors could help him. My pediatrician was horrified when I showed him the video of the pain he was in after eating. Looking back, I feel God was whispering in my ear to prepare me for what inevitably came at age 2 when he was diagnosed with severe apraxia and autism.

When specialist after specialist could provide no help, we turned to an “alternative” pediatrician who suggested we try the GAPS diet. This diet is the only regret I have looking back on our long journey out of autism. During the time on the diet, he was lethargic, hyper, and obsessive. We kept pushing because we were told these symptoms were normal as the body was healing. It didn’t feel right to me and so we eventually stopped. The diet is based on making many long-cooked soups and broths. I wanted to get a better understanding of why my son reacted the way he did to the diet, and in doing my research, I found Dr. Reid on the internet. I sent her a message and we exchanged emails about free glutamate being released through long cooking of the broths. Long story short, when the REID group was formed a year later on FaceBook and a friend connected me, I was already aware of Dr. Reid’s work and so we decided to fully adopt the diet. We instantly saw improvements and our lives became stable for the first time in our journey.

We aren’t like some REID families who are supplement free and have been able to heal without many interventions. My son had/has suspected cerebral folate deficiencies and mitochondria issues. We have and will always be on medication for this. However, these medications come with side effects and what I will always say is that this diet gave us the foundation to not only lessen these side effects but to also promote enough continued healing that we’ve been able to taper off or down almost everything he was taking.

Within a year of strictly adhering to the diet, we graduated from doing ABA full-time and my son’s diagnosis was removed. Today, no one who doesn’t know his history would ever know that he was any different than his peers. He is funny, creative (started writing books starting at age 5!), inventive, and makes friends so quickly. Behind closed doors, we still have our ups and downs, but we can manage everything better because of REID. We do everything as a family, so my husband and I have greatly benefited from the health and well-being this diet promotes as well. I will always be incredibly grateful to Dr. Reid for her research and advocacy and for Andi who took the time in her life to share their story so she could help others. We have been blessed by these two amazing women and thank them for doing God’s work and helping to heal hundreds of children along the way. “