Quack Myth Exposed: Candida and Autism

 
What is Candida?

According to the CDC, candida is a common yeast, a type of fungus, that normally lives on the skin and inside the body. It can be found in the mouth, throat, gut and vagina without causing any problems. 

It can cause infections, called candiasis,  if it grows out of control or if it enters deep into the body in places such as the blood stream or internal organs. The treatment for these infections are anti fungal drugs. 1 in 4 patients die from this infection.  

Most people who have an candiasis infection are sick from other medical conditions. 

According to the Harvard Medical School, the symptoms are:
  • Thrush- curd like white patches inside the mouth
  • Esophagitis- painful swallowing, chest pain
  • cutaneous candidiasis- patches of red, moist weepy skin, with small pastules nearby
  • Vaginal yeast infections- vaginal itch/soreness, thick discharge, burning discomfort
  • Deep candidiasis- fever, chills, shock and organ failure

This is because there are two strains:
  • Candida albicans. This type is usually taken care of by anti fungal medication. This is the most common type. 
  • Candida glabrata. This type is mostly drug resistant and can be very deadly. 

What does this have to do with Autism?

When the quacks want to make something legitimate about autism, it always starts with the gut. According to TACA, there are physical signs and behavioral signs.They do not list all the physical signs.  If there were behavioral signs, the CDC would have mentioned it. 

A lot of the "symptoms" can be explained by a lot of other things. Some are just normal autistic behaviors. Some of these should never be pathologized. 

The behavioral symptoms according to TACA are:

  • headaches
  • inappropriate laughter
  • sleep disturbances
  • unexplained intermittent crying episodes
  • belly aches
  • constipation
  • bedwetting
  • gas pains
  • fatigue
  • depression
  • fogginess
  • inattention
  • hyperactivity
  • anger, aggression
  • increased sensory defensiveness
  • increased stimming
  • high pitched squealing
  • climb/jumping off things
  • sugar cravings
  • confusion
  • lethargy
  • inability to potty train or loss of this skill
  • self limiting foods
  • plateauing in skills

Treatment for Candida Infections According to TACA

They state that medications are only a stop gap measure. They are pushing a restrictive diet. They say that "dietary changes, IE removing carbohydrates is the true treatment. . . As long as you feed your child too many carbs, the yeast will keep coming back. Over and over. You must cut off its food supply, boost the immune system and heal the gut to stop it. " 

The words HEAL THE GUT is a red flag. 

According to a pediatric endocrinologist Midays Palau, children need carbohydrates to grow and thrive. 

No/Low Yeast Diet According to TACA

Yeast thrives on sugar. A low/no yeast diet is one that limits or removes sugar, and food that breaks down into simple sugars such as corn, rice, and Fruit. They would eliminate juice, candy and all sugars. TACA says that the Specific Carbohydrate Diet plus Casein Free is the "single most effective, and highest rated dieted used with the ASD population, because it combats not only the issue of GFFSF but also carbs, processed foods, preservatives and other toxins. 

Dietary changes:

  • gluten casein and soy free died
  • low to no sugar diet
  • low to no carbohydrate diet
  • SCD-CF (Specific Carbohydrate Diet plus Casein Free)
  • Regular use of carbohydrate targeting enzymes 

Negative reactions to this "treatment"

TACA calls it a "die off." They describe it as the "rapid dying of gut bugs, leading to excess release of toxins" They call it a herkshimer reaction. TACA does not list it but it was found on another quack site. 

Symptoms of Die off include:

  • loose bowel movements
  • constipation
  • bloating and gas
  • nausea
  • headaches
  • flu like symptoms
  • muscle or body aches
  • fatigue
  • joint paon
  • brain fog (wasn't it supposed to "cure" this?)
  • skin rashes, hives, itching (it was supposed to "cure" this too)
  • acne, eczema or psoriasis flares
  • oral thrush (it was supposed to cure this too)
  • menstural cycle changes
  • heaviness in the legs. 

Once again, the quacks take something legitimate and twist into a "cause" for autistic behaviors. They trivialize the experience of actual people experiencing candida infections. Many professionals do not take it seriously unless there are laboratory results from tests. 


IF YOU THINK YOU HAVE A LEGITIMATE CANDIDA INFECTION, SEE YOUR DOCTOR IMMEDIATELY FOR LABORATORY TESTING!



Sources:
https://www.cdc.gov/fungal/diseases/candidiasis/index.html#:~:text=Candidiasis%20is%20a%20fungal%20infection,vagina%2C%20without%20causing%20any%20problems.

https://www.health.harvard.edu/a_to_z/candidiasis-a-to-z

https://alimillerrd.com/pages/coping-with-a-candida-cleanse

https://tacanow.org/family-resources/what-is-yeast-overgrowth/


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