As a speech pathologist for 43 years and a raw vegan health coach for 22 years, I have had both professional and personal experiences working with people of all ages on the autism spectrum. I worked in a public school program called the Autism Continuum for the past 20 years. I’ve watched children being drugged and fed the kind of food that continues to add to their toxic load. I’ve worked with nonverbal students who use a visual support system called PECS (Picture Exchange Communication System) to ask all day for chicken nuggets, potato chips and corn chips, M&M’S and other processed foods loaded with glyphosate, acrylamides, high-fructose corn syrup, monosodium glutamate (a nerve poison and excitotoxin) and mold.
Karen Ranzi Helps Autistic Children and Their Families Enjoy Raw Vegan Foods
I have spent numerous hours setting the model of healthy eating for these students, ages 3 to 21, and focused language activities on preparing a fruit salad or green smoothie. Some teachers and therapists said I was wasting my time and just to give the students what they want. I saw, however, that the children would love to prepare food with these colorful fresh whole plant foods.They may not be willing to eat them initially, but, over time, I saw many of these children loving fruits and vegetables. Families I’ve worked with as clients outside the school setting have seen the most progress. I have their testimonials in my new book, Heal and Prevent Autism: Natural Solutions That Work. It’s been my passion to bring together my years of research and experiences to present a guide to begin turning around the symptoms of autism.
The Autism Spectrum Disorder Rate Is Projected to Soar to 1 in 2 Children by 2032
As a speech pathologist over 40 years ago, autism statistics were one in 10,000. Today, in my state of New Jersey, the autism incidence rate is 1 in 32. It’s expected that, by 2032, autism will reach up to 1 in 2 children, an alarming statistic. This number is shockingly high and really puts its widespread effect into perspective.
Autism has become increasingly more common in households worldwide, showing there is a need for the best treatment and care to help move us out of the autism epidemic. But are doctors and teachers researching health and nutrition? It’s right in front of our eyes but is often ignored.
Few Are Promoting Sound Nutrition As a Way to Curb the Rising Autism Spectrum Disorder Rate
Each child with autism is a unique individual and each has his or her own brilliance, often excelling in specific areas to compensate for speech, language and communication deficits. Although we want to respect the uniqueness of each individual and who they are fundamentally as a person, we also know that this is a major neurological health challenge that’s only been with us for 20 years, and environmental and epigenetic issues are at play. Lighthouse Autism Center says that prenatal doctors are starting to recommend that mothers-to-be change their diet to be 75 percent raw food. The idea is to increase the amount of vitamins and minerals in the mother’s food intake while reducing and eliminating the amount of toxins and preservatives in the prenatal stages to help develop the fetus’s brain functions. These doctors are recommending that mothers keep their children on a primarily raw food diet to increase vitamin absorption and digestion. Vitamins E and B3 are found in a lot of leafy greens and increase blood circulation to the brain.
Juicing is also recommended using chelating agents—beets in particular—as they help the digestive tract absorb nutrients. Gluten should be avoided in a plant-powered diet as it also causes digestive issues for the child with autism. Omega-3 fatty acids are recommended. It’s important to avoid fish and instead use chia and pumpkin seeds.
Even Picky Eaters Can Make the Transition to a Raw Food Diet
Introducing children to a healthy raw food diet at an early age is not as impossible as it seems. Even finicky eaters can begin to make positive nutritional changes if the animal food and processed food is cleaned out of the pantry and refrigerator. Motivated parents have cleared their home food environments and switched over to a mostly or fully raw vegan lifestyle while, over time, observing their child overcoming the symptoms of autism. These children don’t just overcome their developmental disorder; they also begin loving food in a new way and begin eating many new foods they had never been willing to eat before.
What some people may not realize is that pickiness can be easily swayed in children, as they have yet to be set in their own ways. Starting a healthy whole raw food lifestyle as early as possible will help them stay on the right track as they grow up into adulthood.
Parents Report Positive Improvements in Autistic Children on a Raw Vegan Diet
Often one of the very first improvements is digestion, followed by increased energy, focus and calmer behavior. I’ve received testimonials from parents stating that constipation was no longer an issue, there was improved eye contact and engagement, and their child was easier to be with.
■ Much more energy to run, play [and] climb.
■ Constipation fully resolved (nothing else could resolve constipation).
■ More language.
■ More connectivity with us and the world.
■ The insect bites on his skin seem to heal so much faster now.
■ Much less allergy.
We love this diet and are going to continue tweaking it for more and more healing from autism symptoms. Currently, we are adding some green juices and like what we are seeing. Thanks so much for your guidance and continued support! Your valuable experience with your own kids and others is helping us and so many! We will continue to work with you.”
“We are really happy to have Karen to turn to and work with because she has helped us not only in that specific area with our child but also with our whole family. We are all a whole-foods plant-based family. We feel really amazing and we have so much energy. Karen has also helped us with our marriage, helping us see on the same page, and it’s been a beautiful thing that I’m so grateful for. Thank you so much, Karen. We love you so much, and it’s great to have you in our lives and such an honor to call you our health coach and our dear friend.”
—Maria Victoria Daral
What Are Some of the Leading Autism Causes?
Let’s explore some of the leading autism causes: vaccination and mold. Both of the following sections are excerpts from Heal and Prevent Autism: Natural Solutions That Work, which details several more autism causes.
The Relationship of Autism and Vaccination
Mass vaccination, accepted without question for more than a century, has become a source of great concern for many. Originally, the word vaccine came from the word “vacca” (cow) in Latin because the first vaccine in 1796 was the smallpox vaccine, which was made from cowpox sores. “To vaccinate” means to produce disease in that person. Upon injection, the vaccine goes straight to the DNA.
Autism Symptoms Range From High Fevers and Lack of Speech to Cancers and Autism Spectrum Disorder
Acute symptoms such as high fevers, inflammations and physical and neurological problems have been reported in many children following the administration of vaccinations. The long-term effects of these vaccines on children’s developing bodies are finally being investigated and understood. Likely, much of immune system dysfunction, chronic fatigue syndrome, allergies, nervous system disorders, cancer and other illnesses stem from earlier vaccinations.
After the routine DPT (diphtheria, pertussis-whooping cough and tetanus), MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) and OPV (oral polio) vaccines were administered, children died or were stricken with debilitating seizure disorders, mental retardation, physical handicaps, learning disabilities or other chronic illnesses.1
A U.S. study found “one in 875 DPT shots produces a convulsion or collapse/shock reaction, which means some 18,000 DPT shots cause American children to suffer one of these neurological reactions every year.”2
Autism Is a Brain Disorder Caused by Vaccines and Other Factors
What is autism? Autism is defined in the Random House Webster’s College Dictionary as “a pervasive developmental disorder characterized by impaired communication, extreme self-absorption, and detachment from reality.” Classic autistic symptoms include lack of speech, repetitive behaviors, little or no social interaction, withdrawal from parental and sibling contact, jerky body motions of specific limbs, head-banging, hand flapping and strange individual obsessions. Half of autistic children will never speak.
Autism is a brain disorder of 2- to 3-year-olds. According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), about 1 in 59 school age children had autism spectrum disorder, or ASD. In November 2018, the estimate is one in 40 for prevalence of autism in children in the U.S.3 Forty years earlier, the rate was less than 1 in 10,000.
Many parents of autistic children have stated their child was developing normally until receiving a vaccination that devastated both the child’s and the family’s lives. The pediatrician’s response is often that the cause of their child’s autism was a “coincidence” rather than a vaccine being a “causal factor.” This response seems to be supported by the CDC and FDA based on their failure to address this serious problem. Mainstream medicine claims they don’t know the cause, yet they refuse to look for a cause.4
Children Are Getting More Vaccines Than Ever Before, Accelerating the Rise in Autism Spectrum Disorder
In the early 1900s, children received one vaccine (the smallpox vaccine). In the 1960s, children received five vaccines routinely (diphtheria, pertussis, tetanus, polio and smallpox vaccines) and as many as eight shots by 2 years of age. In 2002, children received 11 vaccines routinely and as many as 20 shots by 2 years of age.5
The CDC recommends 25 vaccines by 6 months old, 36 vaccines by 18 months old, 43 vaccines by 4 to 6 years old, and 68 vaccines by 11 to 12 years of age. According to much research in the past two decades, with the rise in vaccines, autism has soared. We have an epidemic.
Autism usually occurs in the first three years of life. Some children are predisposed to autism, but epigenetics can either foster that autism or keep it at bay. The vaccines bypass the body’s natural defense of purging and enter directly into the bloodstream. Vaccines contain glycerin, lead, cadmium, antibiotics, neomycin, streptomycin, antifreeze, pig blood, horse blood, rabbit brain, acetone, mercury, monkey kidney, dog kidney, chick embryo, calf serum, aborted fetal tissue, etc.6
Autism Spectrum Disorder Costs U.S. Citizens $250 Billion Annually
The monetary loss from autism is in the trillions of dollars. “Seventy-five percent of autistics will never be able to live independently,” according to Dr. Tim O’Shea in the 12th edition of The Sanctity of Human Blood: Vaccination Is Not Immunization. This places an extreme burden on society. Dr. O’Shea expresses: “Since the early 1990s, autism has certainly met the definition of an epidemic, although mainstream literature takes great pains never to use epidemic and autism in the same sentence.”7
Dr. O’Shea points out that two of the most likely factors that have a role in the autism epidemic come from the MMR vaccine and mercury used as a preservative. Independent research projects have shown some startling connections between autism and the MMR vaccine.
Often, drug companies say no causal factors have been established, but not enough time was put into long-term investigation. Do vaccinations have the potential to be harmful to the young developing child?
Autism Is Labeled The Fastest-Growing Developmental Disability
An estimate of numbers for autism was extrapolated from the U.S. Department of Education statistics on child disability. Autism increased rapidly in all 50 states from 1993 to 2006, according to charts. Average state increases in 2005 were noted at 1,700 percent. In 2010, the estimate was over 1 million autistic persons in the United States.8 The Autism Society quoted that more than 3.5 million Americans lived with an autism spectrum disorder in 2014.9 Autism was called the fastest-growing developmental disability. Autism costs U.S. citizens $236 billion to $262 billion annually, according to the CDC.
Let’s look at the connection between the MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccine and autism. The MMR vaccine was added to the mandated vaccines in 1978, used after only 28 days of study. No long-term studies of the effects of the MMR vaccine have ever been done.
In 1996, Dr. Andrew Wakefield, a London surgeon and gastroenterologist, reported parents of autistic children complaining that their child had a severe bowel disorder. The regular doctors had said, “Of course there is a bowel problem; the child is autistic.”
After much testing, Dr. Wakefield found that each child had a type of gut pathology that involved large nodular bleeding masses inside the colon. It’s very interesting that, in every autistic child’s intestines, they found the measles virus. However, this measles virus wasn’t from the measles disease but was instead identified as the measles part of the MMR shot. Because of these results, Dr. Wakefield made a suggestion to study the possible connection between autism and the MMR vaccine. He then watched his career fizzle very quickly as he was attacked by the medical community.
Dr. Wakefield questioned the link between the gut and the brain. Could there be this strong connection between the gut and the brain, and could the measles virus be the cause of a neurological disorder like autism? V. Singh, Ph.D., a specialist from Utah State who has researched hundreds of autism cases, points out that the neurological damage is a side effect of the mercury used in vaccines in addition to the measles vaccine.10
In his article “Mountain Views: Precipitous Increase in Autism Cases May be Tied to Childhood Vaccines,” John Hanchette writes: “Some vaccines contain an additive called thimerosol, a preservative that stops contamination of vaccines and preserves shelf life. Thimerosol contains mercury, a toxic metallic element that attacks neurons. In drinking water, the Environmental Protection Agency limit for human consumption is 2 parts per billion. In landfills, it’s 200 parts per billion. Lab tests on some baby teeth have shown a content of more than 3,000 parts per billion. Despite drug company studies from 70 years ago that concluded mercury-containing serum was not fit for cattle or dogs, and with all the huge, expensive federal agencies to protect us from just such a mistake—the Center for Disease Control, the Food and Drug Administration, the National Institutes of Health, the Institute of Medicine—not one had taken the time to total up how much thimerosal and mercury had been added to the average child’s intake with the new increased immunization schedule. The answer was about 120 times the amount allowed by the EPA for daily mercury exposure.”11
1. Blumberg DA, Lewis K, Mink CM, et al. “Severe reactions associated with diphtheriatetanus-pertusis vaccine: detailed study of children with seizures, hypotonichyporespontsive episodes, high fevers, and persistent crying.” Pediatrics. 1993 June; 91(6): 1158-65. PubMed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8502521/.
2. Cody CL, Baraff LJ, Cherry JD, et al. “Nature and Rates of Adverse Reactions Associated with DTP and DT Immunizations in Infants and Children.” Pediatrics. 1981; 68(5).
3. Kogan MD, Vladutiu CJ, Schieve LA, et al. “The Prevalence of Parent-Reported Autism Spectrum Disorder Among US Children.” Pediatrics. December 2018, Volume 142, Issue 6.
4. Miller NZ. “Vaccines, Autism and Childhood Disorders: Crucial Data That Could Save Your Child’s Life.” Santa Fe, NM: New Atlantean Press, 2003.
5. Offit P. “Addressing Parent’s Concerns: Do Multiple Vaccines Overwhelm or Weaken the Infant’s Immune System?” Pediatrics, January 2002.
6. Vacinfo.org (Vaccine Information Coalition).
7. O’Shea T. The Sanctity of Human Blood: Vaccination Is Not Immunization. Reno, NV: The Doctor Within, 2008.
8. CDC.gov/nchs/fastats/asthma.htm: Summary Health Statistics for U.S. Adults: National Health Interview Survey, 2004, tables 3 and 4, Appendix III, table V.
11. Hanchette J. “Mountain Views: Precipitous Increase in Autism Cases May be Tied to Childhood Vaccines.” Niagara Falls Reporter, February. 24, 2004.
Autism and Mold
There is a clear correlation between autism spectrum disorder and mold exposure. Aside from unhealthy eating habits and chemical imbalances from food intake, autism can be exacerbated by harsh environmental factors such as mold exposure and mold growth. This causes severe reactions and sensitivities to take place, especially among children with autism spectrum disorder.
Sources of mold exposure come from environmental surroundings and, most prominently, animal food supply. Oftentimes, animals will be heavily affected by mold exposure when consuming mold-contaminated feed. This can result in traces of mold that are found in secretions and animal products such as milk.
Various types of molds produce toxic substances known as mycotoxins. This is also commonly known as MSG, which is found in contaminated foods that are highly processed and contain large quantities of yeast. Avoiding a diet of highly processed foods during pregnancy and for raising healthy children is key, helping to avoid cognitive issues and autism spectrum disorder. Based on current studies and past research, toxins from processed foods are able to enter into the brain, producing inflammation and interfering with metabolism. Inflammation can stunt brain development. Common mold spores act as irritants and will cause great discomfort to the body and specifically the brain. Reactions to mold in the body can increase behavioral issues and delay cognitive function.
Mold is an issue not only with autism but other cognitive disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease and ADHD. According to researchers from the University of Central Florida, neurological cells are more prone to change when exposed to elevated levels of chemicals and mold found in processed foods. This mold connection is rooted in the diet of expectant mothers prior to giving birth. Those with autism spectrum disorder often experience gastrointestinal issues such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and chronic constipation. These mycotoxins and bacteria often live in the intestines but also dictate brain development. Consuming processed animal foods coated with toxic mold and straying away from a plant-based diet from a young age has the toxicity to disrupt overall development, therefore increasing the chances of autism.
Overall, food intake is a major factor in autism diagnoses. Understanding the causes and origins of toxic mold growth and the harmful effects of processed animal foods will hopefully spark a desire to improve lifestyle habits during pregnancy and when raising children. Which can have the enormous impact of preventing and reversing the symptoms of autism.
- “Can Mold Harm Your Brain?” Cognitive Vitality. Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation. May 21, 2020. AlzDiscovery.org.
- BAM Chapter 18: Yeasts, Molds and Mycotoxins. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. October 31, 2017.
- Glatter, R. June 28, 2019. “Spike In Autism May Be Linked To Preservative In Processed Foods, Study Suggests.” Forbes.