With nearly one-third of U.S. adults obese — including over 60 percent of women of childbearing age — and with many aspects of our contemporary diet including high fructose corn syrup pointed to as culprits, it is not surprising to see these under study as the the latest possible causes of autism. Researchers have previously considered how drinking alcohol, watching TV, having the flu and being stressed during pregnancy may make a child more likely to be at risk to be diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
High Fructose Corn Syrup, Autism, ADHD
A study published in a journal called Clinical Epigenetics links the increase in the number of children ages 6 to 21 in the U.S. receiving special education services under the autism disability category with consumption of high fructose corn syrup. The authors connect high fructose corn syrup with a lessening of the body’s capacity to uptake zinc and other minerals. According to the study, high fructose corn syrup affects the absorption of zinc, which lessens the protein’s effectivity, which lowers the amount of protein in a body, which leads to an ”increased heavy metal load in the body” that is said to ”start a chain of genetic disturbances that affect development.” Along with an inadequate intake of calcium and magneiusm, ”a HFCS zinc-depleting diet” may increase “the risk of developing autism and ADHD,” says the study.
Since my son was diagnosed with autism in July of 1999, I have read study upon study about possible causes (so that one of this study‘s authors, neuropharmacologist Richard Deth, was familiar as he has been a proponent of the discredited claim that vaccines contribute to autism; has published a paper funded by the anti-vaccine organization Safe Minds; and was a paid expert witness in the vaccine litigation omnibus proceedings of a few years ago). Any parent (and there are more of us, as more children are being diagnosed with ASDs now) who comes across a study mentioning a potential cause of autism, cannot but help read it and wonder, was this the reason, all while reviewing high fructose corn syrup consumption in her young, pre-ASD-diagnosed child.
I can’t vouch for Charlie’s exact consumption of such. Commercial baby food does contain high fructose corn syrup but the baby food I fed him was all made from fresh vegetables and fruits. Eager to give him a good start in life, we avoided processed and store-bought foods in general and certainly something like soda.
Maternal Obesity, Diabetes, Autism
The research about maternal obesity as a possible risk factor for autism was published in Pediatrics, the Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, and undertaken by scientists from the UC Davis MIND Institute. (Personally, maternal obesity was not a cause in my son being autistic.)
Scientists examined demographic and medical records for 1,004 mother/child pairs in the Childhood Autism Risks from Genetics and the Environment Study (CHARGE) study.
Photo by planetc1
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