UPDATED: How Autism affects the Gut-Brain Connection

Updated: Apr 5

Update: I reached out to Sun Genomics, a company that focuses on customized probiotics. My sons and I provided a sample...a 💩 sample. It wasn't as gross as it sounds. You have to smear the stool over a few different pads and then seal it in a bio-bag. However, the stool can't touch the toilet water so you have to catch it in a hammock thingy that the company provides. Its a weird feeling to go #2 in a bag; it was near impossible to make Cameron (my ASD child) do it. It was weeks of closely watching every time he went into the bathroom so I could jump out of the shadows at the last minute to catch the poo. (The things I do in the name of health, smh). We all sent in our sample and the test results are very interesting. Turns out we have a decent gut biome, despite both Chris and Cam having very limited diets.

The company sent us a months worth of probiotics that meet our individual needs. I've taken mine for almost a month. No issues, but also I haven't seen a large up-tick in energy level or quality of BMs (man, I must really like you guys to tell you all this stuff).

Chris, took his and got a bad stomach ache the first day. Turns out the first 7 pills are more pre-biotics to get your body ready to ingest the pro-biotics. We are going to try again, but this time we are going to half the dose (a little in the morning and a little at night). Cameron hasn't received his batch yet. But I'm very excited for him to start because Sun Genomics is doing an autism study and some of the preliminary findings are very promising.

I interviewed the CEO of Sun Genomics, Sunny Jain. Very smart guy! Had tons to tell us about autism and gut health. Check out the interview here:

Warning: this post is long and sciencey.

So let’s sit back and work through this together…

A literary study (basically a study that goes through tons of other studies to see if there are themes connecting them) was done by the Department of Medicine at the University of Zurich (link to study). This study has some pretty amazing findings. Bottom line, autistic people have some elevated microbials and some decreased microbials in the gut, which affect the integrity of proteins that interact with the brain.

I’ve always known the benefits of gut-health. Your gut is the gatekeeper to all other bodily functions. But I generally assumed if you take a good quality probiotic then you’ll be ok. According to this study, that may not be true because you need a probiotic that has the RIGHT KINDS of bacteria for you! And for people on the spectrum that customize probiotic is even more important.