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For the record

Diet and Autism, Daily Mail, 23rd June 2009

In an article entitled "I helped my son beat autism by making him give up Weetabix" Polly Tommey explained that she changed her child's diet and treated him with secretin, which she believes helped regulate his gut and improved his behaviour. She wrote: "there are amazing things being done to help autistic kids, particularly with biomedical intervention - detoxifying children through supplements and probiotics, diet, speech therapy and behaviour analysis."

Dr Michael Fitzpatrick, GP and author of "Defeating Autism: A Damaging Delusion" and "MMR and Autism: What Parents Need to Know", responds:

"Many in the world of autism are concerned that children are being subjected to tests and treatments that are possibly dangerous, and concerned that parents are being exploited by private clinics, laboratories and suppliers. Claims that autism can be 'beaten' by simple dietary measures raise false hopes and can make life even more difficult for already overstretched families. There is no coherent scientific rationale for unorthodox biomedical treatments for children with autism and scant evidence for their safety or efficacy."

Author: Sense About Science

Document type: For The Record

Published: 26 June 2009

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