Going Gluten and Casein Free: The first couple days.
My wife and I decided to try the diet with our son and see if it would improve his behavior positively. Â Unlike medicating him, a diet is easily reversible if necessary, and doesn't have any adverse effects overall. Â Of course, it means looking for the right resources, and has far reaching implications if it turns out his behavior is caused or aggravated by gluten or casein. Â So, we thought we would try out the alternatives. Â For Gluten, we purchased some Gluten Free/Casein Free flour from our local grocery store. Â Smiths, Albertsons, and Harmons all had this same flour, all for about $5.00 a pound. Â It's expensive, but for a trial it is worth it. Â We also purchased (from the same makers) some gluten/casein free brownie mix, polenta, and chocolate chip cookie mix.Â The first one we tried was the brownies. Â They were easy to mix, and the batter tasted the same. Â The only thing I didn't add to it was the recommended vanilla, but other than that all was mixed according to the instructions. Â Once finished, I spread it out in a pan, and baked according to directions. Â I was amazed! Â They came out very moist, and have retained that moisture far longer than other brownies I have ever made. Â More cake-like than the traditional gooey brownie you may think of, it's been quite impressive. Â I was sold, and my son ate it with relish (and he doesn't normally eat anything but icing on cake-like products). Â It's still too early to tell, but I think we had a hit with these brownies. Â Next, dealing without milk. Â Casein is one of the primary milk proteins, making any milk-based product a problem. Â And a huge problem, as my son has almost an addiction to cottage cheese (though that may make sense if it's becoming an opiate in his system). Â So, how to break him of his milk kick?Â I started with the replacement milks: Â soy and rice. Â Now, I'm not a big fan of soy based products. Â Soy is another food high on the food allergy list, and it's not something I wanted to try on Jonathan at such an early age. Â So, I tested it myself. Â The soy milk we purchased was a small one quart carton of Silk, which was calcium fortified. Â I poured a small amount in a cup and tasted it: Â it was really sweet and surprisingly good! Â I gave some to Jonathan, and he drank it, and took more. Â A small victory, and no side effects. Â Next, I tried the rice milk. Â We could only find a two quart carton, so we purchased that. Â I poured it out, taking a small taste. Â It paled in comparison to the soy milk. Â It had less flavor out of the carton, and seemed more watered down. Â I tried it on Jonathan, and he took a taste and poured it out on the floor. Â Well, the verdict was out, he didn't like it. Â But I may try it again on him in another form, because he did try it just after tasting the Soy milk. Â So, that has been our experience so far. Â As it stands, the conversion hasn't been too difficult with Jonathan eating more fruits and almost no cheese (just need to continue to remind the in-laws of the new diet), and his behavior has improved noticeably. Â We are cautiously optimistic on this front.