How do I know if my child will respond? I'd love to do some testing before starting the diet.

Posted in ANDI FAQ

How do I know if my child will respond? I'd love to do some testing before starting the diet.

We are all looking forward to the day when reliable peptide testing is available. Remember, this is not an allergy. Allergy testing may be useful for other reasons, but not to determine whether the child needs to be off dairy and gluten because of developmental delays or autistic behaviors. Until that time, it is imperative that you take your child off of these foods for a trial period of at least three months. And this means completely, or it is doubtful that you will see a change.

If your child craves or self-limits to foods containing dairy and/or gluten, we can tell you that in all likelihood your child needs to be on this diet. We have never heard of a child with those symptoms who did not respond. Although starting the diet seems daunting, waiting may hurt your child. Try imagining that foods like macaroni & cheese are actually a dose of autism. If your child's delays are being caused by these foods, this could be the case.

If you are unsure about your ability to commit to this diet without medical testing, there is some peptide testing available. Contact one of the labs that does urinary peptide testing, such as Antibody Assay Labs, Great Plains Labs, etc., for more information. Please be warned however, that these tests often give a false negative and thus, you cannot be sure that your child won't benefit even if the test is negative. We hope that in the not too distant future, more sensitive testing will be available.


The content on this website is not to be taken as medical advice. We have gathered information here so that you can make an informed decision in partnership with your medical practitioner.

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Lisa S. Lewis, Ph.D.

Lisa S. Lewis, Ph.D. Lisa S. Lewis, Ph.D. is the author of Special Diets For Special Kids I & II, the foremost books on gluten and casein-free diets for children with disabilities.

Karyn Seroussi

Karyn Seroussi Karyn Seroussi is the author of Unraveling the Mystery of Autism and PDD, the story of her son's autism recovery through dietary and other biomedical interventions.

Helping since 1995

Together Lewis and Seroussi created the Autism Network for Dietary Intervention (ANDI.) Since 1995, ANDI has been helping and supporting parents using dietary and biomedical interventions for autism spectrum disorders. Last year, Lisa and Karyn again joined forces and put the sum of their knowledge in a new book, The Encyclopedia of Dietary Interventions. They continue to write and speak on the topic of dietary intervention, and to support other parents around the world.