It was Tuesday afternoon and I opened my inbox to a few emails from our contact at the publisher and from Jennifer Huget looking to interview me for her "Eat, Drink, and Be Healthy" Column in the Washington Post. Typically, I am actually one to be shy of the media and interviews and my first inclination was to ignore the request (terrible, I know - but need to be honest!).
But...I have been working on this...So, I got brave and quickly called her back before I could chicken out! She was a delight and I talked with her for a little while about how we decided to participate in our GF CF Cookbook. She asked me a few questions and we chatted about the role that diet can play in the treatment for autism. Here is our opinion, in a nutshell...
My stance on this diet has always been open. I believe that the science behind the GF CF diet and it's role in autism is still emerging and is difficult to complete accurately. I also know that people are very polarized about the diet and its role in therapy. However, I do know many, many families who decide to give it a try. I decided to participate in this book for those families.
I am not here to claim that this is the cure to autism or will even help your child. Every child's experience is unique. Some families might see some dramatic changes in their children when on the diet, some might see a few small changes, and some might see no changes at all. But, there are so many families who are interested in the diet and are looking for recipes to try to initiate and success on a GF, CF diet which is a very difficult and restrictive diet to follow.
Kim and I work so well as a team to adjust and modify recipes for different restrictions so we decided to go for it. Our entire goal was to provide safe and reliable information as well as kid friendly recipes that would be able to be enjoyed by whole families.
When I hung up the phone, I got nervous about how I sounded, did everything I say even make sense? What if she got it all wrong and I would have to hide from this article? ;)
My fears were relieved when I read her article... So...Here is the link to the article:
Autism and Diet: Many questions to digest!
Overall, I think that she took my message and correctly described my position! There are only 2 things I would change, and except for other dietitians, not sure that anyone else would care!
I wish I was called a pediatric dietitian instead of nutritionist. Anyone can call themselves a "nutritionist" but only a registered dietitian can be called a "dietitian". The only other statement that I wish was changed was that anyone on this diet should be followed by a physician and a dietitian to monitor for adequate calories and growth on this diet and monitor for potential micronutrient deficience, specifically bone health.
Other than that...it was great! I am no longer afraid of the media...bring it on ;)
And thanks to Jennifer Huget for taking it easy on me!
Megan Hart MS, RD