Worth Reading – 12 June, 2015 Week in Review

Optimized-DiversityTreeEach week we summarize the research announcements and publish the recap on Sunday. We also send out an email to those who subscribe with the most popular articles from the previous week.  (If you would like to receive these recaps, please sign up here.) This is distributed on Tuesdays. But if you aren’t on that list, then you won’t know.

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If you only have time to read one story from Autism Daily Newscast this week then it should be this short research news in brief:

Opinion – Latest research on autism diets and parental age – are they really helpful?

While there is no scientific evidence that a gluten-free and casein-free diet helps alleviate some symptoms for autistic children, there are many anecdotal stories showing benefits. One of our Editors, Jo Worgan says the diet works for her son.  In this article Jo reviews two research reports that came out this week and questions how useful they are to parents with autistic children.

Our friend Linda over on wrote on her timeline at Speaking Autism:

“Unfortunately, there aren’t any recommendations that can be made at this point based on these findings,” said Rosanoff.

In other words, useless study that does absolutely nothing to help autistic individuals living in our society today. Let’s continue to inject more money in ridiculous studies like this while the waiting lists for diagnosis, early intervention, specialized education, keep rising.

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At Autism Daily Newscast we come across some wonderful pieces that have been written. If possible, we request reprints. Otherwise we share them on our Facebook Timeline, through Twitter and Scoop.it. Even though you won’t see them here on the Newscast in full, we would like to share them with you.

Here are three articles that we had wished we had the resources to write … but we are glad someone has.

Anti-Vaxxers Are Using Twitter to Manipulate a Vaccine Bill by Renee Diresta and Giland Lotan in Wired

“One small, vocal group can have a disproportionate impact on public sentiment and legislation. Welcome to Anti-Vax Twitter.

“Since anti-vax activists lose on the science and are small in number, they have increasingly begun to rely on social media to inflate their presence. Twitter hashtags are particularly powerful because they transcend organized groups and the standard friend or follower relationships. More than any other social network, Twitter helps citizens to connect and organize in the real world even if they aren’t part of the same physical communities—anyone can participate in a conversation simply by following and using a hashtag.”

Our Recommendation: #‎vaccineswork‬ This is a fascinating, well researched and rather scary article that I recommend reading this week. “Most of the material that the #‎cdcwhistleblower‬ accounts tweet are designed to erode confidence in vaccination. ” Be sure to take a close look at the  network graphs showing the relationship between anti-vax, conservative, and autism clusters on Twitter from Scale Model.

Autism and Hiring Help by Judy Endow on her blog Aspects of Autism Translated

First of all, I was typically never given a choice of whom I wanted to work with, but instead random people would be assigned to my case. Rarely was I thought of as a person capable of choosing whom I might want to work for me to accomplish what I wanted in my life. Instead I was perceived more like an object that needed to be worked on, a “case” that needed to be assigned a “worker.”

Our Recommendation: I am a great admirer of the work and writings of Judy Endow. She is another who I would love to have write for our newscast. I continually learn from her. This blew me away when I think about how we need to be sure that autistic adults need to have a “real” choice in planning their work and living arrangements.

Ten Things an Autistic Adult Wants You to Know by Lydia Wayman in the Wall Street Journal

“10. I’m different, not broken. Sometimes my needs make it look like I’m not capable… but I don’t know how most people function with such forgetful memories and lack of focus. Everyone’s brain has strengths and weaknesses.”

Our Recommendation: While this came out last month we just noticed it this week. It resonated with our readers as well who liked and shared it across Facebook. 

 

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