Friday, March 29, 2013

Candida: The Yeast Beast, Plan of Action

This is for all vaccine injuries!

We all know what yeast is. We've heard of yeast infections and thrush in babies. But what does it have to do with vaccine injured kids? Just about everything! Here is a very basic overview. To really get into this topic, you need to sit down and do hours of research and decision making.

What is Candida overgrowth? describes it as:

 "Candida (technically called Candida albicans) is a microorganism in the category of yeast, fungi and mold.  It is normal for it to live in small amounts in the digestive system and on other body surfaces.  However, under certain circumstances it will invade into deeper tissues and organs where it doesn’t belong, such as the liver and kidneys, and become very abundant.  Once it gets that far, it entrenches itself as fungi do (think of how hard it can be to get rid of athlete’s foot or a fungal toenail).  The yeast produces certain chemicals and affects cell functions in ways that create many symptoms, some of which can become serious.
The term “Candida” refers to the general overgrowth of various fungi and yeasts in the body, which flourish under certain circumstances to the point of causing illness.  Candida albicansappears to be the most prominent of these microbes."

Candida overgrowth is a common problem in most of the population of the United States. It is linked to everything from depression to thyroid issues. Many studies have shown that children with autism and ADHD have high levels of yeast in their gut. This is a problem for them because it can trigger OCD, meltdowns and other behavioral issues. It is also linked to that pesky study from Dr. Wakefield regarding "leaky gut." He found vaccine strain measles in the linings of the inflamed intestinal tracts of many children with autism. His work has since been recreated many times. He was not crazy and he was not wrong. And it makes sense when you think about how hard it can be for so many of our kids to pass regular bowels movements.  

So how do we stop the yeast from growing and spreading? We stop feeding it. Yeast feeds on sugar and gluten. This is why so many of us follow a gluten free diet. Overgrowth is also connected to taking too many antibiotics. Got an ear infection? Put some garlic oil drops in and infection will be gone within a day or 2 and you'll smell like a salad dressing :) 

There are a lot of great resources out there regarding this topic. This is a great place to start your research about yeast overgrowth. There are a ton of books about combating yeast and other dietary tips for kids with Autism, ADHD and other disorders. If you have a child with severe allergies, chances are, you're already following a yeast free diet. If your child has asthma, it might be worth looking into as well; there have been links made to asthma and gluten intolerance. To put it simply, we can pretty much treat all vaccine injuries in much the same ways.  

Personally, we have been doing a poor job of fighting the Yeast Beast. I thought we were doing so well with just cutting sugar and gluten from our diet. Technically, this should help a lot, and it did. However, let's be real. He is a 4 year old kid with autism and sensory issues. He only eats so much and I can get pretty desperate just to make the kid eat. We slip up a lot. A LOT. We need more help.

So here is our new challenge and I want to document it with you all as we go with weekly updates. We will be trying some new methods of yeast prevention and killing. Killing the yeast and bad bacteria in the gut is not a fun process. It will make meltdowns, OCD, etc. get worse before it gets better. The road can be a very long and exhausting one for the entire family. I am praying our stubbornness and willpower will survive this journey. I am starting with all gluten free food and cutting out dairy and sugar. I will also be using probiotics and grapefruit seed extract. So here we go!

Do you have any tips or advice that have worked well for yourself or your child? Please share in the comments or write out a guest blog post and email it to me at If you have things to share, we want to hear it.

Wish us luck! We will need it!


Disclaimer: I'm not a doctor. Ask yours if yeast killing is right for your child. 

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Lost at Sea

Have you ever felt "lost at sea?"  - I mean, your brain is lacking all sense of direction.

That was me, for a solid week now and counting.

It started with a dear friend of mine interviewing me for her college class.  She wanted to hear what a typical "day in the life" of an autism mom was like.

I thought hmm.. piece of cake!

UNTIL that is, it came time to explain autism.

Sure, I can tell my son's story and what life was like after his diagnosis, and how a day usually unfolds for me.

But when she asked me specific questions about autism, I sorta felt paralyzed.  It's very hard to generalize a child with autism, as for me, I think no 2 are the same. Sure, they may have similar communication, social and behavioral challenges - but, underneath it all, my son is sick. He is medically sick.

When he was a baby, about 12 months old, he started to eat all sorts of baby foods that you would introduce at that stage. Mashed bananas, puddings, rice, steamed broccoli with fish, oatmeal... all kinds of textures and flavors. Then his MMR vaccine (and a flu shot shorty after) changed all of that.
He never wanted to eat much again. I mean, not just those foods, sadly, most all foods.

I have been immersed in the world of biomedical therapies for autism ever since. Yet, my son hasn't responded the way I had hoped he would. He still struggles with so many things, eating, his language, his hyperactivity, and his OCD seem to be getting worse, and that controls alot of his neurological breakdowns.

I am NOT giving up though. I am still working on healing his gut 24/7. We are seeing a Natropath and hope to resume CEASE Homeopathy when we can financially afford to.

But, what really happens in my "typical day" is alot of frustration, anger, sadness and isolation for my son, his sister and myself.

I was given respite funds for him from DDD (Department of Developmental Disablilites) but, the trick is to find someone who is reliable and makes a good connection with your child.

I would love to get my typically developing daughter in sports or extracurricular activites, but, with my husband gone for work, and no extended family in the area I live in, and still no reliable helpers for him, it's been unsuccessful. My wish would be for them BOTH to have arts or sports to look forward to weekly, but, Keanu is still unable to follow along with any type of organized sports. He is good at swimming, but I've yet to find something that fits his abilities.

So, a whole weekend of feeling this disconnect from the outside world took it's toll on me emotionally.

Non-autism families -- can wake up in the morning, and get their kids off to their games' and gatherings with friends and family, I am just, well, lost at sea.

Don't get me wrong, I know I am blessed in so many ways. I never want anyone to think that I am not grateful for the life I have, my children or husband. But, it gets emotionally draining trying to tune out what everyone else is doing and the fact that we aren't.

In May, I will be attending a huge autism conference in Chicago, "AUTISM ONE" -- I hope to gain more insight of therapies which may help my son. I have an open mind and will always try things that I think may help him - I hope to connect with other parents of children who are like my son. All I want is to know that he is getting better.

regards, Dana

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

New Numbers

Last night, I logged onto Facebook and found that the CDC would be releasing new autism numbers this morning. My outrage, despair and helplessness has been almost paralyzing. I have been working on a blog post this week regarding yeast and Candida. Instead, I must face this issue before it consumes me.

Our newest number is now 1 in 50 school aged children with an autism spectrum diagnosis. At this exact time last year, we were just given the 1 in 88 number. The year before that, they gave us 1 in 150. They are changing so fast, its getting hard to keep up. The first thing that came to me was complete outrage. I am still shaking with unvented rage. 2% of our population under the age of 18 is suffering from autism and NO ONE SEEMS TO THINK THIS IS AN EMERGENCY. I'm absolutely sick with anger at the complete and utter lack of concern from the people telling us these numbers. "Nothing to see here, folks! Just know the signs and make your April donation to Autism Speaks!" Lightbulb!! April is Autism Speaks Month (Autism Awareness Month). They dropped the 1 in 88 numbers right before April last year, too. Good timing for lining their pockets, isn't it? You can rest assured that your $5 donation will go directly into someone's paycheck or into a fund for studying genetic links to autism. Yay!

Now, where did the numbers come from? How were they compiled? The 1 in 88 number came from a study done in 2008 on 8 year olds in only 14 states. I'd say that is not an accurate representation of the entire country, wouldn't you? These current numbers were compiled from a survey done over the phone with 95,000 parents. Hmm. Probably not the most accurate representation again. So, what are the REAL numbers?! Some believe it's closer to 1 in 29. In some states, that IS the number. At what point do we start, you know, giving a shit?

Autism is real. Autism is medical. Autism is treatable. Autism is not 100% genetic. Autism is preventable for many.  For some reason not a single one of these statements is recognized by our pharma or governmental officials. Why not? Why are our children being pushed into the spotlight for fundraising campaigns and news updates on the growing need for special education services but when we ask the questions of  "why" and "how," they are pushed back into that dark corner and labelled as medical mysteries? They are here, they need help but we aren't going to truly do anything beyond "awareness." What gives, guys? Oh yeah. The truth is scary and forbidden. The billions of dollars to be lost, the complete crumbling of public trust and compliance. I guess their livelihoods and peacekeeping would be at stake.

If these numbers were applied to anything else, can you imagine the pure panic? Imagine if 1 in 50 children right now had the flu, measles, chickenpox, etc. All temporary diseases that are treatable with low chance for long term effects. But here we are with 1 in 50 children suffering with bowel issues, inflammation on the brain, speech problems, OCD, anxiety, seizures, frustration and on and on and on. Real pain, real suffering, real lives halted or stopped completely. 

Now, I have to share an experience I had with someone a few days ago. A friend of a friend and I got into it on FB a little over the "over diagnosing" of autism and ADHD. There seems to be this stereotype of us from outsiders that we are lazy parents who look for the easy way out by getting a diagnosis of autism or ADHD. Ok. Let me tell you something. This is exactly what I told her:

 I am getting quite tired of seeing the assumption of outsiders generalizing all of us as "taking the easy way out" by getting our kids these "overused" diagnosis'. You think we are finding these doctors who just hand them out willy-nilly without evaluations and testing? Nope! Pediatricians and school specialists cannot diagnose these disorders. You have to get on a long waiting list with a specialist and go through several evaluations (most insurance companies don't cover) and essentially pay out a few thousand bucks. Then if you get a dx, you go through this giant list of therapy and treatment options, again, insurance doesn't cover ANY of. So you realize, damn, you aren't going to be able to afford these therapies and just pray your local school district can give as much support and resources as possible to help your child. Then you realize how much diet plays a roll in treatment and find yourself dropping $200 a WEEK in organic, gluten free foods not to mention the hundreds of dollars in supplements to help regulate their bowels and inflammation. And this does not even skim the matter of biomed treatment options. Yeah, easy way out.

I have met hundreds and thousands of parents here on FB who are in this world. They are all the most hardworking, educated, passionate people I've ever met in my life. They not only take on their personal battles with it, but they put in hours and hours and hours into fighting the government, medical facilities, insurance companies, pharma, etc for the future generation. They are real warriors and they suffer daily from the stress and heartbreak of their stories and the stories of people who support them. I don't know how most of them get the strength to wake up in the mornings and face the same day on constant repeat. They are the hardest working moms I've ever seen and it repulses me to see them labeled as "lazy, ignorant moms with no clue." They are far, far beyond that.

If you are a person reading this without an autistic child, without a vaccine injured child, or without children at all, thank you. You are taking time to read and support a growing population of struggling families. If you think this epidemic doesn't concern you and hasn't touched you, you are so wrong. This effects every single American. The long-term financial repercussions of autism and the ever growing numbers will devastate our economy and our healthcare system. 1 in 50 children will be 1 in 50 adults sooner than you think. And by then, the numbers for the children could be 1 in 20, 1 in 10? Who is going to take care of them? With what money and what resources?

We NEED you. We have made a whole hell of a lot of noise in just our little community, but they can barely hear us. We need unity. We need each and every American on board to raise some hell and demand some answers and action to fight this epidemic. It is not just our children who are being left behind and lost, we all are. Please. Whether you have a child on the spectrum or not, spread the word. Demand some attention and action from our leaders. Our children cannot wait. Where is the outrage?


Friday, March 1, 2013

Dear Dr. F

First off, welcome back! Thank you for all the views and love. We are excited to see we've been viewed not only here in America, but in several other countries as well. Thank you, thank you!

It is March, which means we are one month away from "Autism Awareness Month." I'd like to defy the crap out of this month and light it up yellow! Forget blue! Let's make this a month of action! Let's don our yellow Canary Party colors and represent!! More on that topic later. Now, let's get to business!

This is a letter I've been dying to write for over a year. It feels so good to let it out, even if she never actually reads it. So here I am, please indulge my little piece of therapy. The last post of Elijah's story tore me up. I need this ;)

Our upcoming posts will start becoming more outward driven and less "about me." I have some guest bloggers lined up to share some information and stories as well.

Dear Dr. F (abbreviated out of what little respect is left for her),

Thank you.

Thank you for showing outstanding ability to fit right into your niche profession as a westernized pediatric doctor. You are a stellar representative of everything the AAP stands for, they really should give you an award or something.

The day we met (I'm sure you won't remember this, as it was 4.5 years ago and lord only knows how many hundreds of patients you've been with since that day), was my son's first day of life. We were still at the hospital and you came to visit, nice and early to make your rounds with your new little patients. I was so excited to meet you and very eager to entrust his health to you. All you had to do was smile and make small talk and bam! I was you new biggest fan! By the time we met, Elijah had already had his first vaccine after his less than safe entrance to the world. I think you looked him over for about 3 minutes and declared him perfectly perfect, aside from the strange birthmarks on his leg that no one could identify.

Our first well child visit was only a few days later. I had more time to really think about the "whole vaccine thing" and you quickly dismissed my reservations with the memorized "it's perfectly safe, absolutely nothing can happen, autism and vaccines are not linked" spiel. Thank you for putting my mind at ease.

Thank you for continuing to put my mind at ease over the next year and a half when I brought up my reservations and concerns about his regression. You made me feel much better every time we shot him up. Thank you for helping me sleep better during those long nights.

Thank you for finally recognizing Elijah's issues at 18 months old. Thanks for shrugging it off as a common issue and scribbling down a number at the school district to get him enrolled with Early Intervention. Thank you for making it all someone else's problem immediately. Thank you for putting us on a 9 month waiting list with Seattle Children's to get screened for autism. Autism. The scary word I mentioned before that you scoffed at. The word you couldn't even help me understand. Thank you for addressing the issue just long enough to get it off your own shoulders. Thank you for making us wait 9 grueling months of little answers, little help and little hope.

Thank you for finally showing your true colors. Thank you for leading me away from modern pediatrics. It was actually quite a relief to walk into that naturopath office knowing I'd never be pushed to vaccinate, medicate, fluoridinate, or lose complete control of my children. Thank you for paving the way to this new lifestyle before you maimed both of my children. Thank you for helping me realize Dana was right. The things she taught me on the side. The "crazy conspiracy" stuff. The gateway into the world of biomed, healing, community and most importantly, TRUTH. The vaccine injury world has saved my sanity and it will save my son.

Thank you for not even noticing we left. Thanks for not ever calling to check in on us when we didn't show up for several months. Or for checking in when Seattle Children's accidentally sent you Elijah's results instead of the new doctor. Thank you for your support, your concern and your care.

Truly, Dr. F. Thank you for the vaccine injuries, the lost faith in modern medicine and for the autism.

Thanks for nothing. Thanks for everything.



Elijah a few weeks after his official diagnosis