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Thursday, 22 June 2017
 
 
Biomedical Print
Many parents find that diet and bio/med approaches can have a profound impact on not only their children’s physical health, but on their psychological health as well.

Dawn Rossi, an adoptive mom, has become a champion for children everywhere through her Yahoo group, adoptbiomed. She has done extensive research into why our kids might be prone to having the same kinds of medical problems that children with Autism Spectrum Disorders have, and might be well-served by some similar interventions. In addition, bio/med approaches often appear to have a behavioral impact on our children who do NOT have any medical issues.

Dawn writes, “I believe that the medical approaches of DAN! (Defeat Autism Now!) doctors can help many of our kids who have behavioral problems, ADHD, OCD, ODD, etc.

Early on, my feeling was that the DAN! medical approaches would mostly apply to those children with obvious Gastro Intestinal problems. My feelings were based on my own daughter's serious GI problems, observations that were made by 2 ATTACh professionals that GI problems were commonly found in kids with RAD (reactive attachment disorder), and the knowledge that GI problems are a very big part of the ASD (autism spectrum disorder) picture. Now we're finding on the attachasd list that children with and without obvious GI symptoms have been helped with the DAN! approaches. I am not claiming that medical treatments will be THE 100% answer for all of our kids. I am very much aware that some adopted children on these lists have suffered unbearable neglect and/or abuse and they may have no medical issues at all. My heart truly breaks for those children and their families and I sincerely hope they can be helped through attachment therapy or other means. For the children who do have underlying medical issues (that may or may not be obvious), my hope is that once those medical issues are resolved that they will be able to get much more out of attachment therapy and other therapies so that they can reach their maximum potential and thrive in much happier families.

So, why are our kids at risk for medical problems that can severely affect their behaviors & ability to function in many different ways?

Dr. Kenneth Bock, a DAN! doctor from New York asks us to imagine a big bucket. Once that bucket gets full and overflows, the child has some kind of a diagnosis. The things going into the bucket are: genetic predisposition, nutritional deficiencies, allergies & sensitivities (environmental & food), infectious agents, hormonal imbalances (testosterone, thyroid, and adrenal), environmental toxins, and stress/psychological factors.

He was addressing kids with ASD who are born into loving families.

For our kids, the level of each individual factor may be quite different from the ASD kids, but the result can be somewhat the same. For some of our kids, their genetic ability to excrete toxins may be pretty good, but they had so many other strikes against them that their bodies just couldn't keep up. How many of our kids had HUGE nutritional deficiencies, massive exposure to infectious agents in their orphanages, exposure to things like lead in their cribs or in the air, double vaccinations in their birth country and here, ramped up vaccine schedules once they arrived home, and ENORMOUS amounts of stress as they were hungry, cold, uncared for, and faced multiple living situations and moves?

Stress, illness, malnutrition & being on antibiotics all make it much harder for your body to excrete toxic metals. Whether those metals come from the environment or vaccines, the more your body is struggling, the less able your body is to clear those things. Once those metals are in the body, they act like magnets and other toxins that we are all exposed to every day (and hopefully excrete) are more likely to stay in the body.

Once you have these heavy metals and/or toxins in your system, your immune system can become very disregulated. Once that happens, it can go into overdrive trying to fix everything that is wrong. While it is in overdrive, it can appear as though the child is very healthy. The child might never get sick with standard colds & viruses, because the immune system is so ramped up that those invaders are killed off.

Unfortunately, an overly active immune system also creates other problems. A child may develop food or environmental allergies or even asthma because the body is viewing benign things as dangerous. The domino effect can then impact hormones, adrenals, thyroids, or neurotransmitters. Each child may have a different impact or combination of impacts based on her genetic make-up and other factors. Those impacts will translate into varying behaviors, learning disabilities, sensory problems, etc.

Also, having the immune system in overdrive means that every time the child is exposed to something that the body thinks is dangerous, that it will attack that substance, causing irritation & inflammation. This is often the case in the gut, and the intestines get more and more damaged over time. 90% of serotonin is produced in the gut, for example, so the gut problems lead to brain & behavioral problems. Dr. Martha Herbert, a neurologist from Harvard, speaks in regards to the brain being downstream from the gut. Meaning that what happens in the gut has a huge impact on brain function, behavior, etc.

The whole thing is pretty complex, and it is critical for parents who are pursuing this avenue to find a qualified doctor who knows how to take a very good medical & behavioral history so s/he will know what lab tests to run. The good news, though, is that if you can figure out what the underlying medical problems are, then you have treatment options available that will hopefully open new doors for your child to heal.

I am especially hopeful for children who have been in attachment therapy for years with little progress, or even worsening of behavioral symptoms. If you look at it from a medical perspective, this would make sense for some kids. The longer the body goes on attacking itself, the sicker the child will become, and the worse the behavioral symptoms will become.

I am so grateful that these concepts have helped my daughter and some other adopted children. I hope that this will help some of your children, too.

With best regards, Dawn Rossi



Articles

A New Look At The Medical Aspects Of Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD), And of Other "Behavioral" Issues In Adoptive Children
Compelling article by Dr. DeMio about adoption and the use of biomed as one form of treatment for reactive attachment disorder (RAD) and other behavioral/ developmental issues including ODD, OCD, ADD/HD, Asperger's, PDD, and autism.

Consulting with Clinical Nutritionist Maile Pouls, PhD
Maile Pouls, PhD is a clinical nutritionist who has helped many chidren through biomed/nutritional intervention.

Nutrition Deficit Disorder
Think your child may have ADD (attention decifit disorder)? Consider NDD--nutritional deficit disorder--in this interview with Dr. William Sears

Pyroluria!
Pyroluria is a condition affecting many children, causing behavioral and emotional issues.


Books

Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, MD, MmedSci (neurology), MmedSci (nutrition), published by Medinform in the United Kingdom, 2004.

Dr. Campbell-McBride helps both the lay person and the medical professional to understand how the health of our gastrointestinal system can have a profound effect on our psychological well-being. She connects the dots between the surge in autism, depression, dyspraxia, attention deficit (both ADD & ADHD), mental health disorders and the changes in the human diet. She details the problem and provides specific solutions as to how to heal the gut and in turn, the brain. Several children from A4everFamily have benefited immensely from her suggestions. Here is one family's story.

Available through Amazon UK.

Available in the U.S. through
Body Ecology or
Developmental Delay Resources

Websites

http://www.adoptmed.org/topics/nutritional-supplements-in-adoption.html
"Nutritional Supplements in Adoption" from The Center for Adoption Medicine. Many of us are seeing benefits from the addition of essential fatty acids, particularly omega-3.
 
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