Nutrition guide

Autism and children: a nutritional guide

Autism is a neurobiological and developmental disorder that affects 1 in 160 children. Characterized by difficulties in social interactions and verbal and non-verbal communication, it also affects children’s educational performance. Repetitive behavior, difficulty adjusting to a modified routine, an inability to learn different skills, anxiety, unusual responses to sensory changes, and sleep disturbances can be seen in children with autism.

What is its impact on overall health?

Autism negatively affects a child’s health, especially if he follows unhealthy eating habits. The inclination to junk food or overconsumption of high-energy foods and sugary products leads to weight gain and, subsequently, metabolic disorders. Children with autism primarily suffer from nutritional depletion due to their behavioral changes and eating problems. Poor diet leads to the risk of developing different metabolic diseases in the last years of their life. Calcium and protein deficiencies can easily be seen in these children, which further affects their cognitive development and physical growth.

Food allergies are also common in children, allergies to seafood, eggs, peanuts, gluten, casein, tree nuts, soy and fish are common. In case of a food allergy, the food in question should not be part of their diet, but their nutritional content should be replaced by another food that is equally rich in nutrients. A good meal plan is very important for a child with autism.


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