PECULIARITIES OF PHYSICAL DEVELOPMENT AND OF LEVEL OF NUTRIENTS IN CHILDREN WITH AUTISTIC SPECTRUM DISORDERSJournal: I.P. Pavlov Russian Medical Biological Herald (Vol.27, No. 2)
Publication Date: 2019-06-30
Authors : I.A. Bavykinа;
Page : 181-187
Keywords : autism; autistic spectrum disorders; physical development; iron; calcium; nutrients; eating habits;
Aim. To study the state of physical development and the level of calcium and iron in children and adolescents with autistic spectrum disorders taking into account the characteristics of eating behavior. Materials and Methods. 64 children aged 2.5 to 15 years with autistic spectrum disorders were assessed for physical development according to WHO standards, and for iron and total calcium in the blood. Parents of children were surveyed on issues related to the peculiarities of eating behavior in their children. Results. In 21.9% of children and adolescents with autistic spectrum disorders, alteration of nutritional status was manifested by an increase in the body mass index and in 18.7% – by a decrease in it. 1st-2nd degree obesity was found in 12.5%, 1st degree protein-energy insufficiency in 6.2% of the examined children. Laboratory tests revealed a decreased level of serum iron in 37.3 % of children, and of total calcium in 45.1%. At the same time, in children being kept on gluten-free diet for a long time, iron level increased with age, in contrast to those who did not use diet therapy (p<0.05). The vast majority of children with autistic spectrum disorders exhibited a selective appetite (73.4%) with predomination of easily digestible carbohydrates in their diet. Conclusion. No significant alterations in the parameters of physical development of children with autistic spectrum disorders were found in comparison with the population. With this, in children with autistic spectrum disorders lower parameters of serum iron and calcium were observed that could be corrected by following a diet.
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