Thursday, March 27, 2014

San Francisco-area chemist says autistic daughter cured by MSG-free diet


By Deborah Hastings

(NY Daily News) San Francisco Bay-area chemist Katherine Reid says cutting out monosodium glutamate, or MSG, cured her daughter of autism.

She tried a gluten-free diet. She tried supplements including fish oil and B complex vitamins.

But it was only when Katherine Reid cut monosodium glutamate, commonly called MSG, from her autistic daughter’s meals that she saw a staggering difference in the girl's behavior.

Seven-year-old Brooke seemed to be completely free of autistic symptoms such as temper tantrums, hypersensitivity to light and seizures.

“We’re getting an abundance of MSG,” Reid told the San Francisco Chronicle. “It’s in 95% of processed food. And we don’t need it in our diet. Ever.”

The additive normally associated with Chinese food is rarely included in food labels, the Northern California mom said.

There are no studies to document her claims, but parents of autistic children are increasingly focusing on restricting diets from processed foods as a way to treat the disorder.

Chinese food is commonly associated with monosodium glutamate, or MSG. San Francisco Bay-area mom Katherine Reid says removing the additive from her daughter's diet cured the girl of autism.
AP

Chinese food is commonly associated with monosodium glutamate, or MSG. San Francisco Bay-area mom Katherine Reid says removing the additive from her daughter's diet cured the girl of autism.

Reid and her husband first noticed problems with their youngest child when she was 2.

Brooke couldn’t tolearate eye contact, threw tantrums that lasted hours and had severe stomach problems.

Reid hoped her daughter would outgrow the disturbing behaviors. Then she started experimenting with limiting Brooke’s diet.

Eventually, she stumbled upon an Internet posting from a parent who had eliminated monsodium glutamate from an autistic child’s meals.

Reid says she believes the food additive, which is used to enhance taste, floods the body with too much glutamate, which then acts a neurotransmitter and creates neurological chaos.

Brooke is now functional in social situations, her mother said. She’s no longer in special education classes and attends kindergarten.

About the author:

Deborah Hastings is veteran journalist who traveled the country as a national writer, as well as doing overseas reporting from Pakistan during the Afghan war and from India during the Indonesia tsunami. She was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize in 2007 for her stories on the Amish school massacre. At the Daily News, she writes national news stories and enterprise features for the web site, with a special interest in issues relating to Mexican drug cartel issues.

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