Using the SCD for Autism: Tale of Two Tots

Wow, the big news! We implemented a new diet called the Specific Carbohydrate diet. I will right a separate post explaining more of what it entails. However, now I will say our life has changed dramatically. When we first started biomedical I saw the beginning of my sons healing. It has been a slow progress until now. Now that we have started SCD, I can say my son is almost recovered. I would say another 6 months to a year and I will be confident in saying he is completely recovered. There are a few things I want to try in ridding his body of the viruses and heavy metals from the effects of the vaccines but aside from that this diet is curing my son. He is a totally different kid from just a few weeks ago. We now have no stims, no compliance issues, no tantrums, and the jibberish is limited. He is now speaking more spontaneously and conversationally rather than repeating words or phrases back. His speech therapist was blown away after not seeing him for a month during the Christmas break when we started the diet. She called me into her office in amazement to show me how he was talking with her. I am no longer worried about Mickey in school because he has adapted so well. His personality is now pleasant, sweet, funny and charming. For the first time ever I can see my son and not glimpses of him through the autism.

A Year Without Bread: Mother and Daughter Follow-up

Several posts have mentioned Beth and her daughter Amy--Amy started the specific carbohydrate diet for Crohn's disease and Beth also followed the diet to give her support.

Although Amy has "thrived" on the diet, tapering off of medication and having a healthy baby, Beth's experience has been more mixed, especially with almond flour products.

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CCFA's SCD article revisited - Misleading Legumes

In late 2005, the CCFA wrote a tricky article about the specific carbohydrate diet. The article subtly dissuades people from trying the SCD while not-quite-telling-the-truth.

Since the CCFA's SCD article is still quoted today, this is one of several posts to examine the article. I was going to start at the beginning of the article but let's start with legumes.

Also, allow me to introduce one of several assistants, "Joe Colitis", or JC. He's a longtime sufferer, in so-so condition, always interested in new ways to make the disease easier to live with. He gives his impressions of the article.

Excerpt on legumes.     Misleading: YES
original article:

Let's start with this excerpt on Legumes:
Arthur D. Heller, M.D., a New York City gastroenterologist who is certified by the American Board of Nutrition, points out several inconsistencies in the diet. "Foods are excluded," he says, "because of their purported inability to be digested well. But of the foods allowed, legumes are known to contain certain carbohydrates that are not well digested by humans."
Joe, what did this paragraph say to you?
JC: It says the SCD has a lot of legumes--a lot of beans. I don't do to well with beans. Everyone knows they don't digest well. What kind of diet is this?
Actually, Breaking the Vicious Cycle, the book about the specific carbohydrate diet, says the following about legumes:
"Dried legumes may be added cautiously after being on the diet for three months."

In other words, legumes are attempted slowly after three months--and if they don't digest well, then they're not used. In addition, all legumes used on the diet are soaked overnight to reduce the starch.

What do you think now?
JC: Well, if the person is feeling for several months, then I guess they could try the legumes. The book does say "cautiously."
Right, the diet is very cautious and incremental.
JC: It's not a bean diet?
No. You can be on the diet with no beans.
JC: OK. Let's hear some more.

(narrator had to get back to work . . .. )

Cookbook Winners!

Today, five people were selected to receive a free cookbook!

The winners have been e-mailed and their names will be posted after they respond.

Thank you!

(Note: One winner will be selected each month until the end of the year)

Tysabri and Melanoma

Barely three weeks after being approved for Crohn's disease, the multiple sclerosis (MS) drug Tysabri is under the spotlight again. The February 7, 2008 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine contains a letter from three doctors reporting the occurrence of melanoma (malignant tumors) shortly after giving Tysabri for MS:

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SCD One-Year Anniversary!

Amy who has been on the SCD for one year, including having a healthy baby, has written a nice blog post today:

Today is my one-year anniversary of being on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) for Crohn's Disease. I guess it's kind of a big day! This morning, while eating some yummy homemade yogurt, a lemon poppyseed almond-flour muffin, and a very ripe banana, I got to thinking about it. A year. A whole YEAR. You know, this diet may end up being . . . . (more)
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Recipe Book is Launched! (Thank You)

In the late 2006, Fair Winds Press contacted us and asked if we would like to write a recipe book for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. By the time January came, we were spending much of our time in the kitchen, working diligently on testing recipes we had collected (and being careful not to repeat recipes from any other SCD books).

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mice, low-carb, tumors

No-Carb Diet May Curb Prostate Cancer

(WebMD) Forgoing carbohydrates may slow the growth of prostate cancer, according to preliminary lab tests in mice.

The researchers aren't making dietary recommendations for men. But they say the topic deserves further study.

"This study showed that cutting carbohydrates may slow tumor growth, at least in mice," Duke University urologist Stephen Freedland, MD, says in a news release.

"If this is ultimately confirmed in human clinical trials, it has huge implications for prostate cancer therapy through something that all of us can control, our diets," says Freedland, who plans to start such trials next year.

Freedland's team split 75 mice into three groups: # Low-fat diet: 12 percent fat, 16 percent protein, 72 percent carbohydrate

# Western diet: 40 percent fat, 16 percent protein, 44 percent carbohydrate

# No-carb diet: 84 percent fat, 16 percent protein, 0 percent carbohydrate

The no-carb diet was modeled on a special diet sometimes given to prevent seizures in children with epilepsy, Freedland's team notes.

After 24 days on the diets, the mice got an injection of human prostate cancer cells.

The mice on the no-carb diet outlived the mice on the Western diet. The no-carb mice also had tumors that were a third smaller after 51 days than the mice on the Western diet.

Tumor growth and survival were similar for the mice on the low-fat and no-carb diets.

"One could argue that the [no-carb] diet provides no advantage and future studies should focus on a low-fat diet," the researchers write in today's online edition of The Prostate.

But they suggest that the no-carb diets may have other advantages, such as greater weight loss and lower levels of a tumor-promoting chemical.

The study's limits include the fact that it only involved mice and its relatively short time span.

Whether the findings apply to people -- and the long-term effects -- remain to be seen.

As Freedland's team notes, the no-carb diet used in their study was very high in fat, and high-fat diets have been linked to greater risk of prostate cancer, heart disease , and other health problems.

The type of fat may make a difference. For instance, Freedland and colleagues got different results in a past study that used corn oil as mice's main source of fat rather than milk fat or lard.

Other researchers have shown that intensive diet and lifestyle changes may slow prostate cancer without requiring anyone to give up carbohydrates.

New Specific Carbohydrate Diet Recipe Book - Available February 2008

In the Fall of 2006, we were asked by a publisher if we'd like to work on a recipe book for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. After spending much of 2007 in the grocery store and kitchen:), the book Recipes for the Specific Carbohydrate Diet will be released February 1, 2008 (two weeks away!!)

In the coming weeks, more posts will talk about the process of making this cookbook, including weekend grocery trips and recipe testing, uncovering more history on the diet, attending a food photo shoot, and much more...!

You can find out more about the book by visiting