Yeast = Head Banging and Other Autism Mannerisms

I used to think that when my daughter places her hand over her ears (see above picture) she is being sensitive to the sounds around her or she is not comfortable with the new environment (have you seen Something About Mary, kind of like that thing). The first reason I agreed sending her for a hearing test was this habit and the thought that she might have hypersensitive ears or worst deaf (Thank God she is not!).

But then through my readings and studying more about my daughter’s condition; being diagnosed for the third time that she has mild autism (on the classifications of Autism Disorder Syndrome, my daughter is a high functioning autistic because she can do so many things on her own and is really smart and learns fast); the habit of covering her ears, the excessive drooling some of the time, giggling for no apparent reason, poor sleeping habit, banging of wall and the stim, were all symptom of yeast imbalance.

According to the Autism resources I read, a book called Biological Treatments for Autism and PDD, those with autism have yeast imbalance. “The healthy gut contains both yeast and good bacteria, in balance with each other. In many AS, however, one or the other can be out of balance. For example, yeast can overgrow and be too prevalent. Bacteria can overgrow, or there can be a complete lack of bacteria. Also, bad bacteria can develop, rather than good bacteria.”

It was said to be similar to phenol symptoms. Aside from the gut, brain yeast could also be present and would cause other symptoms as admitted by some parent who experienced this. “ When he had “brain yeast” [yeast in his brain, not his gut], it would cause other symptoms, like visual stims and sexual behavior [humping objects, playing with himself, etc].”

Aside from the above mentioned, yeast can also cause red ring around the anus, “spaciness”, anger and aggression, headache, head banging, sound sensitivity [holding the hands over the ears], climbing on furniture and jumping off, vestibular sensory issues, and other similar issues. The bowel can also be affected from being firm and solid, to looking “airy and fluffy”, similar to sponge cake that looked like it had strings of melted cheese in it. But for those who has brain yeast the bowel wouldn’t be different than normal.

For bacteria overgrowth or “bad” bacteria, parents report their child had poor eye contact, tantrums, hand flapping and stimming, frequent [5-10 per day] and nasty bowel movements ranging from real soft to liquid. Bacteria behaviors are commonly aggression and “being mean”.

There are several different types of yeast, including candida, which appears to be the most common variety. There are also several different types of “bad” bacteria, including clostridia and Citrabacter F.

Some reported that yeast wasn’t an issue until use of chelating with ALA, because ALA was known to excrete metals thru the gut, it does tend to increase the possibility of a yeast issue in yeast-sensitive children. Some people also report an increase in yeast issues when using DMSA for chelation.

There is also an increased tendency to develop a yeast issue if your child has to use antibiotics for ear infections or other issues. So if you choose to give your child antibiotics for something, be sure to use one of the OTC remedies indicated below, or ask your child’s doctor for a prescription for an anti-fungal medication to use along with the antibiotics.

Anti-virals [Lauricidin, olive leaf extract, Virastop enzyme, even vitamin C] can also cause yeast. With chelation [removal of heavy metals], my son’s tendency toward yeast was entirely eliminated for about a year, until I started anti-virals.
Yeast can be in other places besides in the gut. Yeast can be in the mouth [thrush], or on the skin [diaper rash area or feet/toes or other skin area]. Some can have yeast in his ears and sinuses, and in his brain. See ideas under OTC methods for addressing these yeast issues.

Testing for these issues can be performed at any competent laboratory, altho many parents report that “standard” laboratories did not detect their child’s yeast and/or bacteria issues. Here are two laboratories with sites on the internet for your information. The Great Plains Laboratory — Testing and Genova Diagnostic Laboratory

Dietary treatment options
During the “die-off” phase, when the excess yeast and/or bacteria is dying off, toxins released by the dying organisms can [altho not necessarily so] cause very severe negative reactions, so it is best to progress slowly, to minimize this die-off effect. Giving activated charcoal about 45 minutes after any yeast treatment can help absorb the toxins of die off.
The first thing to do is consider reducing the consumption of yeast, sugars, carbohydrates, and starches. This includes using yeast-free breads and other baked goods. Sugars include cane sugar, fructose, honey, molasses, fruits, maple syrup, high fructose corn syrup, and other sources of sugars. Check supplements, especially chewables. A “little” sugar is okay, but you need to be aware of, and monitor, the total sugar intake.
For reduced carbohydrates, consider your child’s consumption of wheat, rice, potatoes, corn, and other grains. There is a specialized diet called the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, which removes from the diet the carbohydrates which tend to feed the yeast the most [complex carbs], allowing the body to rid itself of yeast on its own. Here are some information on diets specifically for autistic.

Some kids need removal of these carbohydrates and removal or at least reduction of sugars as indicated above.

Over the counter treatment options
After considering dietary interventions, it is usually best to first try supplementing with probiotics, which is good bacteria and “food” for the good bacteria. This will not only help the good bacteria, but it also helps yeast issues because these good bacteria produce biotin, which is what the body uses to control yeast on its own. Some never really did well with probiotics and just added the biotin separately as a capsule. Sometimes it is difficult to determine if your child is not tolerating the probiotic, or it may be that the probiotic is tolerated, but is causing die-off effect.

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2 Comments

  1. Yikes Pie glad you got thru it.

    But the yeast infections in autism are sometimes undetectable especially the gut yeast, how do we exactly know right? and all we think is it’s just diarrhea or constipation… so it’s really hard, more especially if it’s yeast on the brain yikes!

  2. I battled with yeast infection that I had when I was pregnant. I hated it. Luckily it has cleared up.
    I drink oregano tea and take garlic capsules to avoid the growth of candida.

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