Resources Autism/Diet

Resources for Researching Diet and Autism

This is not medical advice. It is for research purposes only. It is not my intent to promote any particular diet. This is also a working rough draft and will be updated from time to time.

Where to Start: General Information on Diets

Highly Recommended:

The Autism Revolution: Whole-Body Strategies for Making Life All It Can Be, by Martha Herbert MD, PhD. Dr Herbert is a Harvard neurologist and top autism researcher. This book will not tell you which diet to do, however, it will tell you how the diets work to improve cellular function. This book covers complex area of cellular, gi, and brain function in a very easy to understand way.

The Kid-Friendly ADHD & Autism Cookbook, by Pamela J. Compart, M.D. and Dana Laake, R.D.H., M.S., L.D.N. Includes information on the various diets, how to implement diet, the importance of nutrition for ASD and recipes.

The Encyclopedia of Dietary Interventions for the Treatment of Autism and Related Disorders, by Karyn Seroussi and Lisa S. Lewis, Ph.D. Includes useful information on the various diets, issues encountered, nutrition, bowel health, digestive enzymes, etc….

Breaking the Vicious Cycle, Intestinal Health Through Diet, by Elaine Gottschall. Understanding the role of intestinal flora in cronic intestinal disorders and the gut-brain connection.

Digestive Wellness for Children: How to Strengthen the Immune System &; Prevent Disease Through Healthy Digestion, by Elizabeth Lipski, P.h.D., C.C.N. Very comprehensive, covers nutrition and numerous digestive issues in general (not just for autism). This book will help you understand the importance of digestion and health.

Gut and Psychology Syndrome, by Natasha Campbell-McBride, M.D. (Neurology and Nutrition) A deeper and fascinating look at the role of bacteria, yeasts and their role GI damage and ASD.

GAPS Article by Natasha Campbell-McBride from Wise Traditions.

On the Web: Developmental Delay Resources “DDR is dedicated to meeting the needs of children with developmental delays in sensory, motor, language, social, and emotional areas. DDR is the ONE resource network integrating conventional and holistic approaches for parents and professionals who support children with special needs.”

Also Helpful:

On the Web: Autism, an extreme challenge to integrative medicine. Part II: medical management - Autism - Brief Article by Parris M. Kidd Ph.D

On the Web: The Sunderland Protocol: A Logical Sequencing of Biomedical Interventions for the Treatment of Autism and Related Disorders by Paul Shattock and Paul Whiteley written in 2000 but still useful.

On the Web: Food and Behavior Research Information and research on diet and behavior, ASD, autoimmunity. Etc.

Changing the Course of Autism: A Scientific Approach for Parents and Physicians, by Bryan Jepson, M.D. A look at medical and genetic issues and research in ASD.

On the Web: Autism Research Institute Loaded with information and research on biomedical approaches and autism

Children with Starving Brains, by Jaquelyn McCandless, M.D. Very clinical but full of various research on autism and diets.

Feingold Diet:

On the Web: Feingold Association of the United States Research.and info on the role of artificial food additives and behavior.

On the Web: Food Intolerance Network News and information on the dangers of artificial additives and diet

The Gluten-Free Casein-Free Diet (GFCF):

On the Web: Talk About Curing Autism: A very comprehensive website Autism topics, research, the latest news, resources, the GFCF diet, recipes and more.

On the Web: ANDI (Autism Network for Dietary Intervention) “Providing Help and Support For Families Using a Gluten & Casein Free Diet in the Treatment of Autism and Related Developmental Disabilities. “ Also includes links to autism research.

Also Helpful:

Special Diets for Special Kids I & II, by Lisa Lewis, Ph.D. Research and recipes for the GFCF diet and Autism

Unraveling the Mystery of Autism and PDD – A Mother’s Story of Research and Recovery by Karyn Seroussi A mothers story with research and information on implementing a GFCF diet.

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD):

"We must never forget that what the patient takes beyond his ability to digest does harm."
Dr. Samuel Gee

“…Research shows that fungi and bacteria in the GI tract cause gastrointestinal problems and neurological problems such as autism. Studies also indicate that starches and certain sugars feed these fungi and bacteria. SCD eliminates the foods that feed these microorganisms, starving the pathogens so that they leave the body. The child is no longer a hostage to billions of pathogenic invaders that poison the gut and brain. “

Required Reading: Breaking the Vicious Cycle, Intestinal Health Through Diet, by Elaine Gottschall.

On the Web: Digestion-gut-autism connection: the Specific Carbohydrate Diet by Elaine Gottschall, BA, MSc

On the Web: Pecan Bread: This site is all about the Specific Carbohydrate Diet for children with ASD and children with severe GI problems. It is full of useful information including recipes, implementing, troubleshooting, links to research and other helpful information. There is a yahoo support group with over 5000 members and experienced moderators to help you with your questions.

On the Web: Breaking the Vicious Cycle

Food Allergies, Intolerances, and Rotation Diet

The Ultimate Food Allergy Cookbook and Survival Guide: How to Cook with Ease for Food Allergies
and Recover Good Health by Nicolette Dumke Is a very comprehensive and helpful guide for anyone following a rotation diet. Ms. Dumke has also written numerous other allergen cookbooks. You can view more on her website

A Deeper Look at Nutrition

Highly Recommended: Nutrition and Physical Degeneration by Weston Price “An epic study demonstrating the importance of whole food nutrition, and the degeneration and destruction that comes from a diet of processed foods.” Loaded with photos. Written in the 1930’s and yet very “mind blowing”.

Know Your Fats : The Complete Primer for Understanding the Nutrition of Fats, Oils and Cholesterol by Mary G. Enid, Ph.D. Written by one the world's leading lipid biochemists on dietary lipids.

Dangerous Grains: Why Gluten Cereal Grains May Be Hazardous To Your Health by James Braly M.D., Ron Hoggan M.A. Discusses research on the many medical issues where gluten has been implicated as a culprit.

On the Web: The World’s Healthiest Foods A great resource for a whole foods diet. is the link to the recipe box, you can put which foods you need to include or exclude and it will show you those recipes. is the link to the nutrients. You click on a specific nutrient and it will tell you which foods are a good source. is the link for the 100 World’s Healthiest Foods . Click on the food and it will give you the nutrient RDA supplied by that food

On the Web: Whole Health Source A alternative look at nutrition by professional dietary researcher Stephan Guyenet, Ph.D. Neurobiology Covering current dietary research that many times contradicts current U.S. policy and teachings on nutrition.

On the Web: The Harvard School of Nutrition Food Pyramid Believe it or not, even Harvard School of Nutrition is critical of the U.S. Government’s Food Pyramid policy.

A Deeper Look at Health

On the Web: The following are articles by Leo Galland, M.D.: The Effect of Intestinal Microbes on Systemic Immunity . An in-depth paper on the role of gi flora and immunity, AN INTEGRATED APPROACH TO GASTROINTESTINAL DISORDERS , LEAKY GUT SYNDROMES: BREAKING THE VICIOUS CYCLE A Role for Food Intolerance in Childhood Migraine And more can be found at:

On the Web: Gut Micro Organisms and Autism: The Latest Research Discussions and links to medical research on the subject.

Good Germs, Bad Germs: Health and Survival in a Bacterial World by Jessica Snyder Sachs A fascinating look at the protective role of our bacterial residents and how their loss is contributing to modern diseases. “Sachs also presents evidence suggesting that an epidemic like rise in autoimmune diseases and allergies may be attributable to our misguided frontal assault on the bacterial world.”

Severe Picky Eating


On the Web: Mealtime and Children on the Autism Spectrum: Beyond Picky, Fussy, and Fads by Marci Wheeler, M.S.W.

On the Web: Addressing Feeding Disorders in Children on the Autism Spectrum in School-Based Settings: Physiological and Behavioral Issues

Sacred Appetite A blog covering many topics with eating issues

Looking for Lunch in all the Right Places

There are many GFCF and SCD cookbooks available, just check them out at the library, local bookstore or on Amazon. The best thing about the following list is that they are free. There’s a world of tasty and gluten-free recipes on the web. Many of these websites and bloggers are dealing with other food sensitivities as well. Most will also have a list of links to their favorite GF sites.

(GF, GFCF, Allergen) Living Without Magazine

(GFCF) The Spunky Coconut

(GF) A Year of Slow Cooking

(GFCF) Delectably Free

(GFCG) M.A.G. Adventures in ASD and Gluten-Free Living

(GF) Gluten-Free Mommy

(GF) Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen

(GFCF, Allergen)  Lexie’s Kitchen

(GFCF) The GFCF Experience

(GF, SCD) Comfy Belly

(Multi-Allergen)The Sensitive Pantry

(Multi-Allergen) The Food Allergy Mama

(Multi-Allergen) Kids with Food Allergies

(GF) Simply Sugar and Gluten-Free

(GFCF) The Food Outcast

(Grain-Free, GFCF) Elana’s Pantry

(GF, GFCF) Gluten-Free Cooking School

(SCD, GF) Mrs. Ed’s Research and Recipes

(GFCF, SCD)Z’s Cup of Tea

(SCD, GF) Comfy Tummy

(SCD, GF) The SCD Girl and Her Kid

(SCD, GF) SCD Recipes

(SCD, GF) PecanBread

(GF) Life, Gluten-free

(GFCF) The W.H.O.L.E. Gang

(SCD, GF) No More Crohns

(GFCF) Gluten Free by Nature

(GF) Ginger Lemon Girl

(GF) The Gluten-Free Goddess

Making Food Fun

Special Diets do not have to be boring. There are many ways to make food kid-friendly and appealing. The following websites are not gluten-free, however, they are loaded with fun ways to present food to youngsters:

Happy Little Bento This site is addictive!

Another Lunch

Maisie Eats Bento

Other Helpful Links

Gluten-Free play dough is available at Discount School Supply We have been using them as a source for two years and are very happy with it. They also carry lots of other educational toys.

Autism 360"Autism360 is a unique tool which provides an accurate report that captures the details of your child's or your own individuality and offers treatment options that have worked for others with closely matching records"

Teach 2 Talk These are videos to help with play skills and language skills developed by a therapist and produced by Jenny McCarthy. They have really helped our son and helped us to help him.