Fall is finally in the air in Atlanta, and our patients’ calendars are full with the season’s celebrations, including our office Halloween Bash (this Friday, 10/26/18). For many, these parties mean fun treats of all kinds ranging from sweet cupcakes to crunchy chips to savory dips. For those with food sensitivities, however, celebrations can be challenging because what may be a fun treat for others can create a slew of negative side effects including abdominal pains, inflammation and brain fog to name a few. Or, these celebrations can feel empty if everybody else is eating but they are not since there is nothing gluten free or dairy free for them to snack on! We want our patients to see how easy it can be to include tasty foods, so our Halloween Bash is gluten-free and dairy-free!
Gluten sensitivities were once considered obscure, but recent research now estimates that gluten-related disorders could affect an astounding ten percent of Americans. For some, cutting gluten out of the diet can come with big benefits including extra energy, reduced inflammation, and relief of digestive symptoms like gas, bloating or diarrhea. For others, going gluten-free could even be the key to reducing behavioral issues and improving symptoms of autism and irritable bowel syndrome. A study in Nutritional Neuroscience found that strict adherence to a gluten-free, casein-free diet led to improvements in autism behaviors, physiological symptoms and social behaviors, according to parents.
Casein can be found in dairy products. Cow’s milk is often one of the first foods introduced to an infant; it is also one of the first and most common causes of food allergy in early childhood. It’s reported that 0.6 percent to 2.5 percent of preschoolers suffer from cow’s milk allergy and must follow a dairy-free diet. Additionally, between 30 to 50 million Americans are lactose intolerant. Like gluten, casein and dairy can create inflammation, poor digestion and low energy if eaten by those who are sensitive or allergic to foods containing those ingredients.
With growing awareness about food sensitivities and the problems some ingredients may cause, gluten and dairy alternatives are more widely available and easier to find than ever before. We are looking forward to offering fun, tasty treats at our Halloween Bash that all our patients and neighbors can enjoy without the bothersome side-effects that gluten and dairy can cause. If you’re in the Atlanta area, we invite you to join us on October 26th and see how easy it can be to provide your family with a healthy, happy Halloween!
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Pennesi CM, Klein LC. Effectiveness of the gluten-free, casein-free diet for children diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder: based on parental report. Nutr Neurosci. 2012;15(2):85-91.
Hochwallner H, Schulmeister U, Swoboda I, Spitzauer S, Valenta R. Cow’s milk allergy: from allergens to new forms of diagnosis, therapy and prevention. Methods. 2014;66(1):22–33.