I discovered the BED from speaking with someone who had benefited from the diet herself. I have a very kind but somewhat disorganized therapist who has worked with Christopher since age three. What I started noticing was how much she had changed over about a six month period. She had started following many of Donna’s principles along with practicing yoga and other healing activities. She transformed into this calm, centered, focused articulate, and knowledgeable person from a disjointed and frenetic one. Food was healing her. The right foods. She knew a lot about how food affected her brain. She had felt all the feelings she was observing in Christopher in the past herself, but no longer did with her new diet. Just seeing the changes in her was enough for me to explore the Body Ecology Diet for Christopher in February of 2002 (A year ago!).
I set up a long phone call consultation with Donna, where she got me started on the Coconut kefir, cultured vegetables, Stevia, Vitality green, and YCK cheese. She told me I was the first parent of a child in the autistic spectrum child to contact her, and how excited she was to work with these children. Her extensive knowledge on healing and confidence got me really excited! Donna had an understanding of healing the gut that I have never seen from any doctor! We didn’t start the raw butter, immunepro, raw milk, cream or any other supplement at this time. I had a lot of time to play around with just the new foods listed above. I wanted to go faster, but in reality, what happened was that I had to first slowly wean Christopher from the foods he was addicted to. There was no BEDROK support group at that time, but I did correspond a bit with Diane.
It was kind of hard, because Thomas was so much younger and got better in only two weeks, and I wasn’t seeing those changes in Christopher at all. I didn’t even have a copy of the BED book because it was being printed and was unavailable in stores, so I read the website and spoke to Donna and got started. Once I got the book, it really helped, but it was hard for me to completely buy into everything at first because it is so different from how most of us have been eating our whole life, and so different from what many of the Autistic Spectrum Experts have been telling us for years. And most importantly, it was very hard to get Christopher away from his rice Crunchems, soy products, rice milk, and his gluten-free carbohydrates right away.
We had YCK all spring and summer, but weren’t doing any of the other products as often as we should have. He didn’t like the cultured vegetables. After drinking YCK for awhile, the problem foods became more apparent. Apples, any kind of fruit, were not working for him. He was addicted to any kind of French fries. He wanted potato chips, hot dogs, you name it. He was always “starving” and ate way too much food for his little body to digest. I gave him lots of good proteins, such as fish, chicken, beef, etc. He wasn’t getting better in focus, awareness of others, or behavior. He was quite often losing control and having temper tantrums, usually around food. All that happened was that he was getting more sensitive to more foods, and craving foods like a drug addict. But the bottom line is, I WAS NOT FOLLOWING THE DIET. I was only doing bits and pieces, and that did not work for him.
I was supposed to follow up with Donna two weeks after we started, but I didn’t have it together enough to call her at only two weeks, then we went on a long vacation in Europe, where we couldn’t follow the diet except for YCK cheese. When I came back, I was embarrassed with how I was not doing exactly what she had asked, but letting Christopher have a few of his favorite foods here and there. I was giving him way too much meat. I was not food combining. I was not giving him Food that was right for his blood type. He wasn’t eating the proper fats. We did start making our own green juice however at this time. Then in July, I got a call from BED that Donna wanted to know how Christopher was doing. I didn’t call back because I knew I hadn’t been successful in implementing the diet with Christopher as she had recommended and I felt badly about it. I got another call in August, and this time I did call back. By that time, even Christopher was ready to really start the diet the way Donna had designed it, with total integrity and no cheating because he could finally see what power addictive foods had over him. Donna helped me see where I had to make the most changes. She heard what our difficulties were, and even helped me give him his beloved French fries, but in coconut oil, instead from restaurants.
I implemented the diet exactly the way she wanted it, and Christopher just took off! He changed into a calmer, more organized and attentive child who started caring about others. He stopped craving foods. He started showing initiative and his social skills improved immensely. Even with these improvements, the last piece that was not working for him (or anyone else!) was that he had the most foul smelling flatulence, even with having bowel movements every day. I could see that something was really not right. I cold see that some of the vegetables he was eating was causing some of the problem, but Donna suggested that Christopher do a colonic to clean him out. She said it would be helpful to have me go first and try it and then be able to tell him what it was like, even bring him to the clinic to meet the therapist and discuss it. I did try it myself, and found it somewhat scary and uncomfortable as an adult, so I was very hesitant to have a nine-year old try it. Donna persevered!
She kept talking about it and telling me how important this would be for him, as this was a vital piece to take care of for him to heal properly. I still was quite nervous about it for him. Then, she told me about a wonderful woman named Pam Craig, a colonics expert who lives in the South and who is helpful at teaching novices about home enemas and how to do them comfortably for children. Donna called Pam and said I would be calling her that day. I did speak with her, and she told me what equipment to buy, how to learn to perform the enema on yourself first before trying to do one for your child. She made it sound like it was such a good healing opportunity for him. I was convinced. Now, I had to convince Christopher. I started talking with him about it, but always said, “I will not force you to do this, you tell me when you’re ready”. After two more weeks of horrible flatulence, he came up to me one night and said he like to try an enema. I got everything ready before he had a chance to change his mind, and before he knew it, he was done. IT WAS NO BIG DEAL TO HIM AT ALL.
He didn’t like it, but it wasn’t terribly uncomfortable for him either. Since then, I’ve given him at least one enema a week for months, with the exception of last week when he started on the Modliflian and was eliminating like crazy. It only takes about ten minutes. He no longer had smelly gas, his bowels movements are much healthier! If any of you have questions about doing enemas, I’d be happy to talk with you about it. I have to say, Donna has lots of patience and perseverance to get us to try it! But it really is helpful. I still think a colonic would be difficult for him in the office setting. The home setting is much easier for a child to deal with.
To close, I hope this helps put our entire journey with BED in context. We had a rocky start , even though I had the best of intentions, and I went
Through many of the doubts and concerns that you all are going through. After starting the diet correctly in September, all of Donna’s food and supplement recommendations have had no negative reactions and I’ve only seen great improvement, and continue to. I believe that each child is so very different however, so we will all have different journeys to healing our children.
Thank you Donna for your generosity and healing!