Thursday, May 14, 2009

A small digression

I have been asked about the supplements Samara takes, and also the Changing Minds Protocol I mentioned in an earlier post. The links for these are: and

The nutrivene is a combination of vitamins and minerals that has been especially formulated for children with Down Syndrome. It views DS as essentially a metabolic disorder, which causes our kids to be short on certain nutrients. It is these deficiencies that nutrivene seeks to alleviate. The theory is that a lot of the symptoms associated with Trisomy 21 are caused by this lack of nutrients. Things like intellectual disabilities can be caused/worsened by lack of (for example) zinc - which is something T21 people are low in. It also helps by building up immunity, hopefully reducing the number and severity of infections they suffer. The website sells this product, so may be biased in it's claims, but while I don't see it as a miracle cure, I think that it does help.

The Changing Minds Foundation was started by a mother of a DS boy, who went searching for answers. They promote the use of Prozac, Ginko, Phosphatidylcholine, Focalin XR and Fish Oils to help with IQ. Their results so far are very promising. The theory is that babies with DS lose half the neurons in their brains by the time they are 6 months (this is known), and that these products help to rebuild them. They promote cell growth, concentration, memory etc. There are no proven clinical studies at this point, but then, those of us with DS kids don't have the time to wait and see over the next 15 years or so. Personally, I can only go by what has been seen so far. They don't sell the products - in fact, some are only available on prescription. They have a printout you can take to your GP explaining it in doctor-ese. They do sell a DVD that shows some of their kids in action before and after starting the protocol. Apart from the DVD, and, now, a couple of the products, the fact that most of the products come from the local chemist or health food store lends a bit more credance to their claims. (well, to my way of thinking anyway)

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