The Links Between Autism, Folic Acid, and Toilet Difficulties
Certain digestive difficulties are common in children with autism, including constipation, diarrhea, and even itching surrounding the anus. If any of these occur, experts recommend that methyltetrahydrofolate (an active substance) be checked. This is related to folic acid (AKA vitamin B9), crucial to maintaining a healthy metabolism and build cells. Children on the autistic spectrum need to maintain normal methyltetrahydrofolate levels, to ensure healthy methylation processes continue.
This is a must for both the synthesis and breaking down of norepinephrine, dopamine, and serotonin — all critical neurotransmitters.
Testing to Identify Folic Acid Deficiencies in children with autism
There are various reasons why normal folic acid levels are so important in children:
● Folic acid facilitates the normal performance of the digestive system, helping to minimize the risk of constipation and diarrhea
● Folic acid affects the brain’s sleep cycles to cultivate consistent, effective rest
● Folic acid is critical in methylation, as low folic acid levels can boost the presence of toxins in the body
● Folic acid is necessary to reduce the danger of periodic infections, as well as for producing white blood cells
Folic acid is available in both a synthetic and natural derivative form: the former (Folacin) is found in dietary supplements, and the second (Folate) is contained in specific foods, as well as supplements.
Common Causes of Folic Acid Deficiency in Children on the Autistic Continuum
Various factors link children diagnosed on the autistic continuum with folic acid deficiency:
One cause of weak methylation processes that stop folic acid from being transformed into Tetrahydrofolate is defective biochemistry. Another is dietary, involving certain foods high in folic acid (spinach, broccoli, beets, lettuce, green peas, whole rice, lentils, etc.) being absent from the child’s eating routine.
Inflammatory bowel disease and celiac disease can also be to blame. These are known to disrupt the intestinal walls’ function and decrease the absorption of folic acid.
Additionally, folate deficiency may be the result of weak absorption of specific vitamins: niacin, riboflavin, and thiamine. Cobalamin (vitamin B12) deficiency is another possible cause, known to contribute to anemia.
Problems related to glutathione, which is an antioxidant capable of stopping damage to vital cell structure, can also be to blame.
For children experiencing diarrhea frequently, vitamin secretion — including that of folic acid — may occur. Additionally, mental strain and stress that decrease the body’s B vitamins can also be to blame.
Detecting a Folic Acid Deficiency
After a blood sample has been taken, a folic acid deficiency can be identified as large red blood cells (a sign of globular anemia).
Furthermore, high Uracil levels in urine tests for organic acids can indicate folic acid metabolism deficiency. This is because increased Uracil levels are a sign of deficiency in Dihydropyrimidine dehydrogenase (an enzyme), which can cause neurological problems.
How can Folic Acid Deficiency be Treated in Children on the Autistic Continuum?
The administration of folic acid must be performed only in alignment with test results. Doses must be controlled carefully, and be based on recommendations from a reputable body.
Overdosing on folic acid could lead to gas, bloating, kidney stones, and nausea.
Administering folic acid in a controlled manner can treat deficiencies and encourage the proper function of the nervous system. This can help to regulate the digestive system’s performance, enhance the immune system, and cultivate healthier sleep cycles.
Legal clarification – the statements herein are intended to expand personal knowledge and general understanding only. The foregoing is not to be considered an alternative to medical consultation or medication or treatment performed by a caregiver or physician, or constitute a recommendation for individual care in any way.