Although autism is primarily a developmental disorder that affects communication and behavior, some studies suggest there is an inflammatory component of the condition.
While there is no strong evidence to support any one particular diet for treating or curing autism, diet can have a significant impact on the body’s inflammation.
The Best Foods to Fight Inflammation in Autism
Certain foods are thought to increase systemic inflammation and some foods can help lower inflammation.
The most inflammatory foods are ones that are processed and contain many additives including lots of added sugar and oils. Usually these foods have been changed dramatically from their original form.
That means the healthiest (anti-inflammatory) foods are whole foods, ones that aren’t processed and that contain few added ingredients. These are your fruits and vegetables, fatty fish, many nuts and seeds, herbs, and spices like turmeric, cinnamon, and ginger.
The Best Anti-inflammatory Snacks for Autistic Kids
Veggie plate (broccoli, peppers, cucumber) with guacamole
Celery boats with almond butter and raisins
Zucchini pizza boats with tomato sauce (no added sugar), buffalo mozzarella, and basil
Green monster dip with veggie sticks (carrots, asparagus, zucchini)
Veggie chips and no sugar added salsa
Berry smoothie *can omit the protein powder
Olive oil roasted cinnamon chickpeas *okay to omit or reduce the sugar
Egg muffin with veggies (leafy greens like spinach or kale)
Trail mix with dark chocolate, dried cherries, raisins, walnuts, and almonds
More Healthy Snacks for Kids with Autism
For even more snacks and sensory categories for kids with autism, SPD, and texture preferences check out my Sensory Snack Guides.
The Sensory Snack Guide for picky eaters have kid-approved snacks for the most common sensory food preferences found in kids with autism and SPD:
high sensory snacks (big texture or flavor for sensory seekers)
Inflammation may be a component of autism. Certain foods can help less or exacerbate inflammation. Anti-inflammatory foods are the best ones to add to an autism diet.
Select 1-2 snacks to try. Add the ingredients to your grocery list if you don’t have them at home.
My autism nutrition program is perfectly designed for kids with autism who have limited diets and trouble trying new foods. If you worry your child won’t eat anything of those anti-inflammatory foods, sign up for a FREE coaching call to get the support you need to expand his or her diet.
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