Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Autism and Other Things I'm Pissed About...

I recently, in less than a two-week time span, had the opportunity to have an autistic boy in childcare at church and then later have a discussion with a mom of an autistic son (the two mentioned are not related). This was my first up-close-and-personal experience with autism on either side of the coin- a child and a parent. Call it a God thing, but the two experiences stirred me a bit.

It got me to thinking about what you ladies know to be a passion of mine- FEEDING OUR KIDS. But then it went deeper than that- FEEDING OURSELVES. I got to thinking about all the crap in food now. The dyes, the additives, the preservatives, the artificial sweeteners, the artificial flavors, even the literal mold, saw dust, carcinogens and animal bone morrow in our food. Did I just get your attention? I thought so. I wonder if all of this has anything to do with fetal development? Surely you would think so....

Or I wonder if a child, already hereditarily predisposed to autism can't handle all of these chemicals in their systems, much like immunizations but these come from our own food!

Now I have no idea if immunizations cause autism. I don't know because I've really never taken the time to look into it. I do, however, trust the many, many moms with autistic kids that DO think that maybe the immunizations didn't cause their child's autism, but most definitely contributed to it. See, I don't need to hear this. Why? Because immunizations piss me off. I mean really, really piss me off. But the pharmaceutical companies have for more money than I do and a far greater political base than I. It's a money game, but one our kids are paying for.

If you look at different diets the autistic kids are put on, the parents are told to cut this and eliminate that. But the question should be WHY? Why gluten? Why milk? Why dyes? Why all the other numerous items? If they shouldn't eat it, why should we? Why should "typical" kids? I need to know this. And if you have one autistic child, since research shows that you have a much higher percentage of having another autistic child, should the mother avoid eating all of these things while pregnant? If so, this is a disturbing thought.

This is where I have to say it ladies. It's time to be "label whores." That term USED TO BE used to describe women who loved Gucci and Prada and Dolce and Gabbana. But no longer. Fortunately, the label has taken on some substance. It refers to being so scrutinizing while grocery shopping in reading every label before something goes into your cart. If you don't know what it is, put it back. I know this sounds extreme, but that's what we've come to.

Allow me to tell you two stories. The first is about me. I had this rice brand that I loved. Bought it for years. I felt pretty good about myself that this rice blend (whole grain mind you) had only five ingredients in it: whole grain rice, garlic, dried tomato, sea salt and %*&#@. I don't even know what it was. But I figured it couldn't be too bad, right? It was in the "Natural" section. It only had five ingredients. But one day, I popped into my study while making dinner to look this ingredient up. ONE OF THE TWENTY OTHER NAMES FOR MSG. Awesome. I was furious, but it was no one's fault but my own. I should've looked it up a long time ago. Way before I fed it to my family. Way before I fed it to my infants!

I had a mom telling me about how much her kids love Danimals (that nasty yogurt). She went on and on as if she really hit the jackpot with a healthy dairy. I didn't at the time have the heart to tell her about the dye in it. Why didn't she just buy Stoneyfield Farms? Yeah, it's a little more expensive, but 100% real. READ THE LABELS. All the dyes, etc. in foods? No wonder dyslexia, ADD and ADHD are on the rise. And no one out there but God himself could convince me that there is not a link in the two. And childhood obesity? It's all connected.

Recently, while watching the news which I rarely do before bed, there was a very, very interesting segment on. I still think about it quite often. Now open your mind a bit because this is going to sound like a stretch. There is a group of war veterans in our country that are convinced that the childhood obesity epidemic in our country is an act of TERRORISM. That terrorist strategists are counting on the fact in the near future, America will NOT HAVE A STRONG ARMED FORCES because we will have a nation of fat, lethargic, diabetes-ridden, out-of-shape men. WOW. I just layed there. My husband blew this notion off. I, however, did not.

I also, as of yesterday, decided I would no longer have my house sprayed for bugs. The smell was atrocious. "This can't be good," I thought. So, bring it on bugs. I'd rather have you than cancer. Per this decision and posting it on Facebook, I had several friends reply back that they not only have already nixed the bug spray, but they use all organic lawn care products and green/natural chemical-free cleaning products. Good for them I thought! I dig me some visionary friends! And per their insistence and cases they made, I will be doing the same.

That being said, there is a whole daunting world out there of chemical-laden foods and environmental products we are subjected to. There is no way any one of us can ever learn all there is to learn about the long-term effects this is going to have on us in our old age and our children. So, hooray for blogs and Facebook, etc. where we can all start to share information. Who knows, maybe if we all work together, we can make a difference. 'Cause the way I look at it, if a bunch of mad mommas can't do it, no one can.