Food Allergy vs Food Sensitivities/Intolerances. What's the Difference?


Food sensitivities or intolerances and food allergies are often confused. One of the main differences between the two is that food sensitivities and intolerances are quite common and do not involve an immune system response. Food sensitivities/intolerances develop in the digestive tract in response to food and can trigger irritation of the gut. 

This occurs when the gut struggles to properly digest food that is consumed, oftentimes causing certain amounts of undigested food to linger in the intestinal tract, leading to an inflammatory response as well as digestive discomfort that reflects a sensitivity and intolerance to that particular food [1]. Low levels of digestive enzymes, sensitivity to naturally occurring substances in food (e.g., lactose), or reactions to additives (e.g., preservatives, artificial colors, etc.) may lead to food sensitivities. The symptoms include: nausea, cramping, constipation, diarrhea, gas, bloating, and may even cause behavioral responses such as...

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Covid-19 Immune System Support for ASD and ADHD


Getting kids to eat a healthy diet can be challenging in the best of times, and now that we’re facing the coronavirus pandemic, a diet rich in vitamins and minerals is more important than ever. Our immune systems depend on micro- and macronutrients that we get from our diets to protect us from infection and to speed recovery from illness.

Both autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have been associated with dietary deficits that affect immunity, and correcting these deficits improves symptoms.1,2 Several of the deficient vitamins that are observed in both disorders are important for a strong immune system, including vitamin D, zinc, and selenium, among others.3 

Inflammation and immune dysregulation are known contributors to ASD, and more recent evidence links them to ADHD as well.4,5 Since diet affects immunity, making sure that kids with ASD and ADHD are getting all of the nutrients they need is critical to protecting them...

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Picky Eating vs Problem Feeding


If your child only eats certain foods and often refuses to try new types of food, you may be wondering if your child is a picky eater or has a feeding problem. Here are a few ways to know the difference. Typically, the majority of children who are picky eaters and do not have a more serious feeding problem demonstrate a normal growth pattern [1]. Normal growth and development as well as the absence of physical symptoms (e.g. trouble swallowing) are factors that healthcare professionals often look for when determining whether a child is a demonstrating picky eating or problem feeding [1].

Common signs of picky eating include [2-4]:

  • Eating a limited amount and type of foods
  • Refusing certain foods, especially fruits and vegetables
  • An unwillingness to try new foods
  • A strong preference for specific foods
  • Preferring to drink milk or juice instead of eating
  • Snacking instead of eating proper meals
  • Preferring fatty foods and sweets

Feeding problems, on the other hand, may be due to...

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Gluten/Casein Free Pumpkin Spice Pancakes

I LOVE pumpkin season!!! And who doesn't love pancakes? This recipe is super simple and definitely delish! Top this scrumptious gems with some grass-fed Ghee and drizzle with some real maple and it will taste like heaven ;)
  • 1 1/2 Cups Organic Coconut Milk (or your favorite dairy-free milk)
  • 1 1/2 Cups Organic Pumpkin Puree
  • 1 Egg
  • 2 Tbs Coconut oil (melt if solid)
  • 1 1/2 tsp Gluten-free Vanilla Extract
  • 2 Cups Gluten-Free Flour ( I like Bob's Red Mill 1 to 1 Gluten Free Flour Blend)
  • 1Tbs Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 1 tsp Aluminum-free Baking Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Pink Himalayan Sea Salt
  • Whisk together milk, pumpkin, egg, oil, and vanilla in a large mixing bowl
  • In a separate bowl, combine flour, spice, baking soda, and salt
  • Stir dry ingredients into the pumpkin mixture until just combined
  • Heat a lightly oiled griddle or pan over medium high heat. Pour or scoop the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4...
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4 Tips to Surviving a Holiday Gathering When Your Child is on a Restricted Diet

Gluten-free, Casein-free, Soy-free, GAPS, SCD, Low Oxalate, Low Salicylate, Low Allergen, can be overwhelming! Now add to that a holiday gathering with foods that you have been trying to restrict all around. 
I remember when my son was young and we were first starting out with diet restrictions, a holiday gathering or party would come up and I would just panic and stress. I didn't really know how to handle it.
Not everyone in my family or inner circle was knowledgeable or supportive about his food restrictions. In fact, there were a few times that a family member literally gave my son candy behind my back and told him "Don't listen to this nonsense, kids should be allowed to have treats". This is the mindset of many people who are misinformed.
You are child's best advocate and the best line of defense is to have a plan.
Here are my 4 tips for surviving a holiday gathering.
1. Be Prepared
  • Bring food items that...
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Link Between Autism and Mercury Toxicity


 One of the most frustrating things for parents of children with Autism Spectrum Disorder is the lack of knowledge we have about the causes of ASD.

Autism awareness organizations have done an exceptional job raising awareness in the general population about autism, including what it is, what is isn’t, and how it affects children differently. As a result, there has been a greater demand for scientists to carry out significantly more research related to the causes of ASD, and how it impacts children so that they can live their best lives – their strengths emphasized, and their less-strong points understood and supported.

Among the many topics of interest is how elements in our environment can increase the risk of autism or aggravate its symptoms. Over the past decade or so, researchers have found that one element that could potentially influence the risk of autism is prenatal exposure to mercury. How certain is this? Do all researchers agree?

In this article, I...

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Lemony Garlic Grilled Chicken


Don't you just LOVE super simple recipes, especially in the summer? The key to awesome chicken is the marinade. It is so easy to just put the oil and spices in a ziploc bag and place the chicken in it, then leave in the fridge while you're at work, running errands. or at home accomplishing a honey do list. Top that ease with using the grill, which leaves you with no pans to clean up. Can I get a "heck yah!"?

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Is Your Salad the Caloric Equivalent of Burger, Fries, and a Shake?


How many of us have chosen a salad when eating out because we thought it was the best choice for our diet. I know that I have, many times. But, just because there is lettuce, doesn’t make it healthy. In fact, most salads are made with iceberg lettuce as the base, which has little nutritional value. Then it is topped with a wide range of ingredients that could add up to the caloric equivalent of a burger, fries, and shake. Pretty sure most of us would have chosen the burger if we knew that the salad was just as bad of a choice, if not worse, than other more appealing items on the menu. Let's discuss some of the worst salad ingredients and then we’ll talk about better options.

 Iceberg lettuce base

 Although I wouldn’t say that iceberg lettuce is bad for you, I would like to stress that there are far better, more nutrient-dense lettuce options. For example, kale is consistently making headlines as a superfood. Packed with health benefits and nutrients, it...

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8 of the Worst Ingredients Hidden in Your Food

Walking down the grocery isle looking for a healthy snack can make your head spin. So many products with seemingly legit health claims lure us into deception. Some great examples include terms like Whole Grains, Heart Healthy, All Natural, and the, oh so out of style, Low fat. How’s a healthy snack seeker supposed chose?

 For starters, READ THE INGREDIENT LIST! I can’t stress this enough. Don’t be fooled by a well-written and beautifully designed sales package. That Heart Healthy granola bar isn’t all that awesome when you see the very commonly used carcinogenic neurotoxic preservative Butylated hydroxyanisole (BHA) or butylated hydrozytoluene (BHT) in the ingredient list. I know what your thinking. “What the heck is that and how do you pronounce it and why in the world would they put this harmful stuff in my healthy snack?” Well, the short answer, to increase the shelf life in order to make more money. Yep, I said it, MONEY. ....

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Simple Summertime Kabobs

Kabobs are such an easy and fun meal to make. Get the kids involved, they love the assembling part. Experiment with different ingredients. Got veggies in the fridge that are on their last legs? Throw them into the mix. The key thing to remember when making kabobs is that different foods have different cooking times. So, cut the ingredients that take longer to cook smaller and the quick to cook ones larger, that way they you won't end killing your kabob

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