Kaitlyn Fieseler (MS OTR/L) is Jovan's occupational therapist at Cortica, Advanced Neurological Therapies for Autism. Today she sent me an awesome video of Jovan using the slackline at the clinic (Cortica). We are so proud of Jovan!
Proprioception and the vestibular system are key components in understanding the benefits of this specific type of occupational therapy for Jovan. Proprioception is the sense of the relative position of one's own parts of the body and strength of effort being employed in movement. Here is another great medical definition of proprioception. The definition of vestibular is interpreting stimuli from the inner ear receptors regarding head position and movement. A key feature of slacklining is the balance and proprioceptive awareness.
This is another great article about slacklining from Psychology Today called, "Can Slacklining be Good for the Brain?" Although the article focuses more on team sports and the benefits of the team practicing slacklining techniques, it's a great resource into understanding what our brains might need to thrive.
"Oxalates control is a major new factor in autism therapy," according to an article published on the Great Plains Laboratory, Inc. website about test implications for yeast and heavy metals by William Shaw, PH.D. To view the entire article, please click here.
Oxalates and Autism
Oxalate and its acid form oxalic acid are organic acids that are primarily from three sources: the diet, from fungus such as Aspergillus, Penicillium, and possibly Candida, and also from human metabolism.
Oxalates in the urine are much higher in individuals with autism than in those who do not have autism. As a matter of fact, 36% of the children on the autistic spectrum had values higher than 90 mmol/mol creatinine, the value consistent with a diagnosis of genetic hyperoxalurias while none of the children who did not have autism had values this high. 84% of the children on the autistic spectrum had oxalate values outside the normal range. None of the children on the autistic spectrum had elevations on the other organic acids associated with genetic diseases of oxalate metabolism, indicating that oxalates are high due to external sources.
A brand new diet is being extensively used to treat children with autism and other disorders. Researcher Susan Owens discovered that the use of a diet low in oxalates markedly reduced symptoms in children with autism. For example, a mother with a son with autism reported that he became more focused and calm, that he played better, that he walked better, and had a reduction in leg and feet pain after being on a low oxalate diet. Prior to the low oxalate diet, her child could hardly walk up the stairs. After the diet, he walked up the stairs very easily. Many hundreds of children with autism throughout the world are now being placed on this diet with good results.
Benefits Reported by Parents Using Low Oxalate Diet
High Oxalate Food List
This is a short list of high oxalate fruits and vegetables. The foods below contain more than 10 mg oxalate per serving. A more detailed list is available online from the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences website.
A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism whose genome has been altered by the techniques of genetic engineering so that its DNA contains one or more genes not normally found there. Note: A high percentage of food crops, such as corn and soybeans, are genetically modified. Other names for the process include Genetic Engineering (GE) or Genetic Modification (GM), which are the same. Most of the research used to claim that GMOs are safe has been performed by biotechnology companies. However, there is an evidence-based study called GMO Myths and Truths that examines the claims made for safety and efficacy of genetically modified crops and foods.
Roundup link with modern diseases suggested: (Page 213 of the study GMO Myths and Truths) A review published in 2013 (Samsel and Senef, 2013) hypothesized a mechanism by which glyphosate herbicides could be contributing to modern human diseases that are on the increase worldwide. The authors focused especially on celiac disease and gluten intolerance, but also drew potential links between glyphosate toxicity and a broader range of diseases, such as ADHD (attention defcit hyperactivity disorder), autism, Alzheimer’s disease, infertility, birth defects, and cancer.
This means that the GM and Roundup Ready (RR) foods available for purchase are likely contributing to the struggles faced by our children with autism. We don't want to feed that to our son Jovan as we are trying to heal him, not add to his list of autism-related issues to overcome. Please research and buy non GMO-free, organic foods not touched by Roundup.
Arguments that Roundup replaces more toxic herbicides are false: (Page 214 of the study GMO Myths and Truths) GMO proponents often argue that Roundup has replaced more toxic herbicides and that GM Roundup Ready (RR) crops therefore reduce the toxic burden on humans and the environment. But this is false. GM RR crops have not only increased the use of glyphosate herbicides but have also increased the use of other, potentially even more toxic herbicides, due to the spread of glyphosate-resistant weeds (see Myth 5.2). Farmers can no longer control weeds with glyphosate alone and add other herbicides to their spray mix. Also, as we have seen, the presumed safety of Roundup is a marketing claim that does not refect the scientifc facts. (Source reference: Samsel A, Senef S. Glyphosate’s suppression of cytochrome P450 enzymes and amino acid biosynthesis by the gut microbiome: Pathways to modern diseases. Entropy. 2013;15:1416-1463).
Claims that the Roundup used on GM Roundup Ready crops replaces even more toxic herbicides are misleading. First, the toxicity of Roundup has been underestimated. And second, the failure of Roundup Ready technology due to resistant weeds has resulted in the industry developing GM crops that tolerate other, potentially even more toxic herbicides, such as 2,4-D, an ingredient of Agent Orange.
This excellent article called Glyphosate May Be a Contributor to Creating Autism references a recent informative study linking glyphosate to autism: Study: Reducing Herbicide Glyphosate in Diet Reduces Autism Symptoms.
Hello my name is Stephany and I want to share my story. I am a mother of an autistic child. My son is Jovan, and this is his journey.
Brotherly Love: Jovan adores his big brother.