Power of Exile

The Power of Exile -
 Autism, A journey to recovery


Introduction: Sara’s Diet
and the IDEA


  1. Sara
  2. Sandra
  3. The Journey begins
  4. Sara joins our Family
  5. Journal Notes
  6. Impressions
  7. Influential People
  8. Center Stage
  9. I believe in Miracles
  10. Miracles in Abundance
  11. A Second Rainbow
  12. Widening Horizons
  1. World travel on a Wing and a Prayer
  2. Asperger Syndrome (Sam’s story)
  3. Autism: a Causal Theory and Treatment Option
  4. A Change in the Weather
  1. Second Timothy
  2. Turning Blue
  3. Food Intolerance in autism
  4. Sara’s Diet
    1. Introduction to the restricted diet
    2. Essential nutrients from foods
    3. Practical help with implementing a diet program
  5. What is Lutein?
  6. Autism, Pigments and the Immune System
  7. South Africa, World Community Autism Program
  8. Eating disorder in autism
  9. Autism, Origin – A Plausible Theory
  10. Autism, putting it all together

From: World travel on  a wing and a prayer
We arrived in the middle of the night, and it was hot. We were driven through Bombay past the people sleeping on the pavements and in their rickshaw taxis. I woke up in the morning and looked from our hotel window onto a market street filled with people, sacred cows, music, shoeless children, shrines, and the colours of spices, saris, and every kind of fruit and vegetable. We were picked up in the evening and taken to the school for a presentation lecture, and the next day we began to meet the children and their families. The variety of foods and spices available on the streets of India is unequalled anywhere in the world, and we still recommend the Indian cuisine as the best in the world for autistic children, with very little lutein in the food and a wide variety of grains, dahls, oils, fruit and vegetables; Indian autists are also among the healthiest we have met anywhere, although we haven’t yet been to South-East Asia, where the diet is also naturally low in lutein. We bought foods at the markets and spice stores and laid them out on the table to teach the parents how the diet works and what results to expect. After a few days, some parents were already reporting good results, but we weren’t to stay long enough to watch the recoveries happen this time. On the last day we were treated to a performance of Indian dance and music by pupils of Jai Vakeel School, and then we left, on another voyage of discovery to Kodai Canal, a resort in the jungle clad mountains of Tamil Province at the southern tip of India to meet the Spiritual Master Guru Sai Baba. On this, the first trip for both of us away from ‘First World’ privileges, we began to ask ourselves who is really blessed.

After a brief stopover in Europe, we got on a plane bound for Atlanta, Georgia with about 25 US cents in our pockets. We were homeless, but that didn’t seem to matter anymore. We had promised to help autistic children wherever we ended up. We used our last quarter to phone Ken who was, by that time, used to our little emergencies, and so thanks to Ken and Western Union we were solvent again, and spent the next few days in the airport lounge, eating Chinese food and reading the local newspaper in search of somewhere to stay.

Autism, Pigments and the Immune System
Ken bought us a computer, so while Sandra was serving at Denny’s, Max was setting up an Internet website and researching pigment disorders on MedLine in preparation of our first major paper – ‘Autism, Pigments and the Immune System’.
  Understanding the cascade of responses generated by an immune system response to lutein in the fetus, we had speculated that pigment disorders would be found to co-occur with autism. We knew that Tuberous Sclerosis, a commonly co-occurring condition was marked by typical pigment patches, we had seen pigment anomalies on the skin of autists we had met, and had heard the remarkable stories of eye color changes. Still, I was taken aback when a MedLine search pulled up Hypomelanosis of Ito, a pigment disorder considered rare, but with  a 10% co-occurrence rate with autism! We now felt certain enough to write our paper, describing the way the immune system would interfere with pigment dispersion in the autistic population, as well as interfering with serotonin and melatonin metabolism. We wrote: “As the full potential of an immune response to a pigment of this nature is elucidated, it becomes clear that the co-occurring disorders associated with autism may or may not involve the immune response. However, these disorders most often do have a connection to the pigment metabolism or genetic defects of the pigment pathways.” The full article is included in Part III chapter six.
  Later that year, we presented the paper ‘Autism, Pigments and the Immune System’ to the South-West Autism Center in Phoenix, Arizona, spending quality time with some of Phoenix’s autistic children and their families. We learned about Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome from Irlen Diagnostician and psychologist Dr. Gwen Moore, who also introduced us to some families with autistic children as well as fitting us each with our individually tailored Irlen lenses. We were contacted by many parents in Atlanta, including some of the DAN (Defeat Autism Now) doctors who wanted consultations for their own autistic children.
  Early in 1999, We were contacted by a group of families from the Middle East who said they were building an autism center and would we come there to oversee the program based on the results that some of their children had using the lutein-free diet. We eagerly waited for the paperwork to come through and were assured that the time was near. With a re-location of this magnitude impending we did not make any real plans for remaining in the USA. We did spend a lot of time answering their inquiries and preparing paperwork for the planning of the autism center. I was able to quit my waitressing job and devote all of my time to autism consultations. We didn’t advertise – people just found us by word of mouth. They came to our home or we went to their homes.