Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Fruit Lax

There are so many little things that Robin and I keep in the girls diet to help with constipation.  This is one of those wonderful recipes that Robin found and now the whole family eats it.  We use it in place of jelly.  We use it to sweeten thermo-cereal http://www.3of21.com/2013/03/emma-important-diet-item-2.html and oatmeal, we put it on crackers, peanut butter sandwiches and numerous other goodies.  EXTREMELY easy and so delicious.  Now I use to actually measure this out but not anymore.  I start with a large container of raisins, dates and prunes.  Dump all three into a large bowl and cover with a lid.

Next cover with equal amounts of orange juice and prune juice.

DONE for now!

Let mixure sit overnight.  The following day scoop mixture into food processor and mix.  Add a little liquid to get to the desired consistency.  I usually freeze half.


Saturday, March 16, 2013

BRAT Diet - help for diarrhea

  1. 1
    Drink clear fluids - broth, water and juices - for the first twelve hours of your diarrhea.

  2. 2
    After 12 hours of liquids only, follow the BRAT diet - bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast.
    • Green bananas are best for diarrhea.

    • Plain toast is a good idea as this will further dilute and absorb up the tainted fluids that are stored up in your stomach.

  3. 3
    Limit insoluble fibers. Insoluble fibers are called "insoluble" because they do not dissolve in water. Insoluble fibers accelerate the movement of food through the GI tract. Soluble fibers, such as pectin (found in applesauce), slow the movement of food through the GI tract by forming a gel when combined with water. Soluble fibers have a property called viscosity, and fibers with a higher viscosity are more beneficial for diarrhea.

  4. 4
    Eliminate foods that might be contributing to your diarrhea, such as high-fructose foods, sugar-free foods sweetened with sugar alcohols, and dairy products. Dairy products may worsen diarrhea in people who are not lactose-intolerant because food usually travels through the intestines more quickly during diarrhea, which may reduce the absorption of lactose. The unabsorbed lactose may then draw water into the bowels.
  5. 5
    After recovery, try some yogurt. If the diarrhea is not caused by antibiotics, yogurt with live cultures is often helpful to restore the balance in your digestive tract. Often the cause of antibiotic-related diarrhea is an overgrowth of the clostridium bacteria, and "good" bacteria often help keep that in check.

Non-BRAT Diet Method

Note that some believe that the BRAT diet is not a good idea to follow, as you do not want anything with sugar, such as a banana. If you do not wish to try the BRAT diet follow these steps.
  1. 1
    Drink only water for the first 12 hours of your symptoms. This is because the bacteria in your stomach feed and develop on any type of foods, especially sugars. DO NOT DRINK ANY OTHER FLUID BESIDES WATER!

  2. 2
    After your symptoms have cleared up, begin to drink broth, make sure not to have any fat or other substances inside the broth. Again, you can have toast with it. Plain green tea is also a good choice.

  3. 3
    Follow the method above and only until you start feeling better, and the diarrhea becomes less frequent may you start to eat more foods. Limit yourself to healthy foods such as vegetables, bananas, bland chicken, etc. Avoid dairy products till your symptoms are clear.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Meet TalkTools Sara and Lori

There are so many things that I thank God for every day.  There are so many things that I pray for every day.  My nightly prayers are ever changing based on the needs of my friends, family and the world around me.  As my children's mother I am very specific with my prayers to God.  My prayers are private and they are between me and God, but I will say this...I am always specific about one thing in my prayers for Emma.  I pray passionately for her speech. 

When people ask me what they can do to help, my response is simply to pray, pray for my Emma to have a voice.  Pray for her speech.  So far God has listened and I thank Him from the bottom of my heart.   Because I feel so strongly about speech and because Emmalin does well in this area I will share everything that we did and currently do regarding speech therapy. 

Now all of our children are strong in certain areas and this is Emma's area (God must get tired of me). Robin will have to write a series on physical therapy because little Presley has always been physically superb.   

I can not possibly expect God to intervene without me doing my part.  I work very hard on Emma's speech therapy and research everything I can to assist in her growth.  After a ton of research Robin and I realized that there is only one group doing everything right.  TalkTools is an amazing company.  They are easy to work with, always there to help via phone or email.  In my opinion they are the speech gurus and because of them many children will be ever changed. 

Sara Rosenfeld-Johnson, MS, CCC-SLP

Title: Founder, TalkTools

Sara Rosenfeld-Johnson, M.S., CCC-SLP has more than 35 years of experience as a speech and language pathologist. She has spent the last 25 years perfecting her unique brand of muscle-based(oral-motor) speech therapy with a high degree of success, even where traditional speech therapy has failed. Now she is
devoted to teaching others the methods so they can help their clients with difficult to-remediate articulation
Sara is the author of Oral-Motor Exercises for Speech Clarity, Assessment and Treatment of the Jaw-Putting it all Together: Sensory, Feeding and Speech, The HOMEWORK Book, the Drooling Program, Activities for Kids, Assessment and Treatment of the Jaw and other educational materials. She founded Talk Tools®/ ITI /
Innovative Therapists International in 1995 as a speaker's bureau and source for muscle-based (oral-motor) therapy tools. She has held seminars throughout the United States, as well as Canada, Italy, Germany, New Zealand, Australia, Ireland, England, South Africa, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Cyprus and Singapore.
Sara is the international spokesperson for speech, language and feeding disorders related to CHARGE Syndrome and Moebius Syndrome, a member of the National Down Syndrome Congress 'Professional Advisory Committee (PAC), and a nationally recognized presenter for Down syndrome and Cerebral Palsy associations.  Having worked with early intervention programs in Texas, New York, Connecticut and New Jersey, she has also become a nationally recognized speaker in the area of early
intervention. In addition, Sara regularly appears as a featured speaker for ASHA (American Speech-Language-Hearing Association) state and national conventions.
The Ithaca College and Columbia University graduate founded Sara R. Johnson & Associates, a clinic specializing in the diagnosis and treatment of clients with muscle-based (oral-motor) feeding and/or speech disorders.
Lori L. Overland, M.S., CCC-SLP, C/NDT

Lori Overland is a speech and language pathologist with more than 30 years of professional experience.

Lori specializes in dealing with the unique needs of infants, toddlers, pre-schoolers and school-aged children with oral motor, feeding and speech disorders. She has received an award from the Connecticut Down Syndrome Association for her work within this population.

Lori consults with children from all over the world, providing evaluations, re-evaluations, program plans and week-long therapy programs. Lori also provides consults to local school districts and Birth-to-Three organizations. Her goal in addressing feeding and speech challenges is to improve the quality of life for both the children she serves and their families.

In addition to her private practice, Lori is a member of TalkTools speaker bureau. Lori has lectured on sensory motor feeding disorders across the United States and internationally. Her classes, "Feeding Therapy: A Sensory-Motor Approach" and "Developing Oral-Motor Feeding Skills in the Down Syndrome Population" are approved for ASHA and AOTA CEUs.

Lori is the author of "A Sensory-Motor Approach to Feeding", Perspectives on Swallowing and Swallowing Disorders (Dysphagia) (October 2011) and "Food for Thought", Advance for Directors in Rehabilitation Magazine (May 2001).

She holds degrees from Hofstra University and Adelphi University and has her Neurodevelopmental Treatment certification (NDT).

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Green Enzyme Drink

Green Enzyme Drink


2 cups spinach

1/2 cucumber, 1/4 head of celery, 1/2 bunch parsley, 3 carrots

2 apples, 1/4 orange, 1/4 lime, 1/4 lemon

1 bunch mint, 1/4 pineapple, and any additional fruit you may want.

Add all ingredients to blender with juice of choice.  I like apple juice for all of it lovely benifits.
Apple juice is particularly high in the soluble fiber pectin, which is cleansing for your colon, according to nutritionist Cherie Chalbom, M.S., author of "The Complete Cancer Cleanse: A Proven Program to Detoxify and Renew Body, Mind and Spirit." Pectin slows absorption of food and binds to toxins and heavy metals, removing them from your body. Use unfiltered apple juice, which contains the most pectin.

Read more: http://www.livestrong.com/article/522692-apple-juice-detox-diet/#ixzz2NScErDkL

Now sometimes I will make a whole container and we will all drink it or I will just make a small version of this green drink and blend my magic bullet.  Sometimes I add other fruit to taste.


Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Ideas for Constipation

When Presley was born, she experienced episodes of low heart rate and apnea.  She went home on a low dose of caffeine and a apnea monitor.  We quickly weaned her from both and by 2 months she stopped taking the caffeine.  The day after we discontinued the caffeine though, she developed constipation.  This is fairly common in children with Down syndrome due to various issues such as low tone of the abdominal muscles, potential thyroid issues making everything in the body sluggish, and those requiring heart surgery may not have the ability and strength to take in sufficient liquids or to be physically active enough to maintain regular bowel movements.  In rare cases, Hirschsprung's disease must be ruled out, which is a disorder when the lower portion of the large bowel is missing the nerve cells so it does not function properly.  This blog entry is to show you some of the things we have had success with and some of the things we have read about that may possible help someone else in their struggles to keep their child healthy and regular. 

First of all, Miralax is not a good solution.   It was recommended by a GI doctor for Presley, however after researching it before I gave it, I noticed that it is NOT approved by the FDA for use in children and there are no studies to assess the side effects of long term use.  Read the infamous NYT article here that brought it to many parents attention.

This is what Dr Aviva Romm had to say about Miralax:

"In 2012 the Empire State Consumer Project, an environmental consumer action group in New York, petitioned the FDA to more aggressively investigate the use of Miralax in children. Should we be concerned about this medication?   I think so! The FDA admits to years of reports of tremors, tics and obsessive-compulsive behavior in children given laxatives containing PEG 3350, the active ingredient in Miralax. A 2014 FDA investigation into the safety of Miralax discovered that tiny amounts of ethylene glycol (EG) and diethylene glycol (DEG), the main ingredients in antifreeze, were found in all batches of the drug they tested.
Furthermore, an FDA spokesperson admitted that “many of the reported adverse events were classic symptoms of ethylene glycol ingestion.” Some children regularly using Miralax had blood acidity when tested, according to the FDA. This is another known effect of ethylene glycol poisoning.  In spite of this, small amounts of these toxic contaminants are actually considered acceptable in the final product, and are, according to FDA standards, and considered “safe.” However, this is when used in adults, and only for up to 7 days at a time.   There’s still no data on what happens in kids, whose nervous systems are developing well into their teens, when they chronically ingest these toxins.  While a new research group, funded by the FDA, is convening at Children’s Hospital in Philadelphia to investigate the safely of these substances in children, it is disturbing that anyone would ever think it’s okay to consciously include antifreeze in a children’s medication – particularly one that is used daily over a long period of time."

So, what are you supposed to do?  Here is a list of ideas that you can discuss with your child's physician about what would be right for your family. 

Aloe Vera
Outside of the United States, aloe is considered a fast and effective remedy for gastrointestinal complaints. Drs. Joseph Pizzorno and Michael Murray, naturopathic physicians and authors of the "Textbook of Natural Medicine," claim that aloe juice is a potent and effective stimulant laxative. Its fluid is drawn into your stool, making it softer. Additionally, small doses of aloe juice, contained inside the skin of the plant's leaf, help the digestion of protein and strengthen your body's intestinal musculature, easing constipation and irregularity. In comparison to other herbal stimulant laxatives, however, such as senna or cascara sagrada, larger doses of aloe juice draw less fluid into your large intestines, making it less likely to cause dehydration, diarrhea and cramping.
For more information and dosage check here.

Ginger - some people have used ginger tincture with success.  We use some regular ginger powder in the girls smoothies each morning.   (Please consult with your doctor for questions, concerns, and further advice)

Milk of Magnesium (magnesium hydroxide) - see Tricia's previous post about "surprising results about Magnesium" to learn how most people are actually deficient in Magnesium: http://www.3of21.com/2013/01/surprising-results-from-magnesium.html  We had Presley's constipation under control with the natural methods until we began using Iron supplement for her low blood levels.  After discussing with our Pediatrician, we gave the recommended dose of 1/2 tsp orally twice a day for 3 days, then 1/2 tsp orally once a day as needed.  This began to work immediately and we will continue to use this while we are using a higher dose of iron to replenish the iron stores.  At this time, Presley is 21 months and weighs approximately 25 lbs. Milk of mag is a slightly alkaline antacid also, which may help our children with other issues such as indigestion or heartburn.  Read more about Milk of Mag at: http://www.buzzle.com/articles/milk-of-magnesia-ingredients.html

Epsom salt baths -  Espom salt is comprised of Magnesium and is another great way to boost your child's magnesium intake as it is well absorbed through the skin.  Read about all the great benefits of epsom salts at: http://www.saltworks.us/salt_info/epsom-uses-benefits.asp  We use 1-2 cups each bath with at least 15-20 minutes of exposure time.

Yogurt, probiotics, and kefir - children with DS may not have a strong immune system, so replacing and encouraging the normal gut bacteria will assist the body in helping itself by strengthening the immune system.  The following was taken from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Human_gastrointestinal_tract

"The gastrointestinal tract is also a prominent part of the immune system.[11] The surface area of the digestive tract is estimated to be the surface area of a football field. With such a large exposure, the immune system must work hard to prevent pathogens from entering into blood and lymph.[12] The low pH (ranging from 1 to 4) of the stomach is fatal for many microorganisms that enter it. Similarly, mucus (containing IgA antibodies) neutralizes many of these microorganisms. Other factors in the GI tract help with immune function as well, including enzymes in saliva and bile. Enzymes such as Cyp3A4, along with the antiporter activities, also are instrumental in the intestine's role of detoxification of antigens and xenobiotics, such as drugs, involved in first pass metabolism.  Health-enhancing intestinal bacteria serve to prevent the overgrowth of potentially harmful bacteria in the gut. These two types of bacteria compete for space and "food," as there are limited resources within the intestinal tract. A ratio of 80-85% beneficial to 15-20% potentially harmful bacteria generally is considered normal within the intestines. Microorganisms also are kept at bay by an extensive immune system comprising the gut-associated lymphoid tissue (GALT).

Fruit Lax - aka "fruit laxative",  there are a variety of different recipes called "Fruit lax" online, this is the one we use.  We mix it with almond butter and the thermos cereal.   Read more about it here from a previous post.

1 cup pitted prunes
1 cup raisins
1 cup pitted dates
.5 cup orange juice
.66 cup prune juice

For even more fiber add 1 cup of natural wheat bran to the fruit mixture.  Do not if avoiding gluten.
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and soak overnight in the refrigerator.
Blend in blender until smooth and serve.

Coconut Oil - sometimes we mix 1/2 to 1 tsp of organic coconut oil in Presley's morning smoothie.  The following article was taken from:   http://www.poopdoc.com/articles/virgincoconutoil.html

"So how does virgin coconut oil provide relief from constipation? The reason why virgin coconut oil eases constipation is because it is fibrous and it cleanses the colon very effectively. It also increases your metabolism rate letting your system break down food faster and effectively which can lead to increased bowel movement and weight reduction.
Virgin coconut oil is also an anti-bacterial, anti-fungal, and anti-viral agent. The fatty acids found in virgin coconut oil can also boost your immune system and equips it with the tools it needs to fight off bacteria, diseases and other infections.
Most people wouldn’t believe this just because virgin coconut oil is oil and as we all know oil is bad for the health for numerous reasons. The distinctive characteristic that sets virgin coconut oil apart from other harmful oils is that it doesn’t turn to fat. It is incredibly safe and it can actually lower your cholesterol."

Digestive support essential oils - we use essential oils for a lot of issues and love the results.  The wonderful smells are a bonus.  The owners of Hopewell essential oils have a child with Down Syndrome, so they have a vested interest in finding oils to help them with potential issues.    When you massage your child's abdomen/stomach, go in a clockwise circle which will follow the large intestine as it goes toward the end of the colon to push the gas/stool and stimulate the muscles to move.  I also follow up with a few downward strokes across the entire abdomen.
Digestive support Ingredients: Tarragon (Artemesia dracunculus), Ginger (Zingiber officinale), Peppermint (Mentha piperita), Juniperberry (Juniperus communis), Anise (Pimpinella anisum), Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), Lemongrass (Cymbopogon flexuosus) and Patchouli (Pogostemon cablin) .  These oils are blended to assist in relieving digestive problems such as upset stomach, belching, heartburn, bloating, and to abate the stomach virus, diarrhea, and constipation.

Thermos cereal - this was recommended to us by Dr Jullian Neil who is the nutritionist for the National Assocation of Child Development (NACD), the neurodevelopmental program we use.  http://nacd.org/health/thermos.php.    Check out Tricia's great post here for more information and pictures.

Fruits, vegetables, and water -  Adding fruits and vegetables is a good idea for the entire family.  Most of us have already tried the pear, prune, or apple juice as well as many pureed vegetables to help with constipation.  Sometimes combining items as in some of these recipes.  I put an entire apple without the peel into Presley's smoothie each morning.  We mix strawberries, lemons, oranges, blueberries or whatever type of fruit we have on hand into a gallon jug of water to make our own vitamin water also.  Water is re-absorbed as stool moves into the end of the large colon.  The longer it sits there, the more water is re-absorbed creating hard uncomfortable stools. So, you must stay hydrated to be able to go regularly.   More fluids, more fiber!

Fig water - this was also recommended by our nutritionist, Dr Jullian Neil (http://drjulianneil.com/), who has a child with Down syndrome.  While I did not see this on his website, he recommended soaking figs in purified/filtered water overnight and having Presley drink the water the following day.  We did not personally try this because the thermos cereal worked so well for us.

Digitally assist - yes, this means putting on a glove and stimulating the rectal area with your finger.  When you are a parent and your child is in pain, you do what you have to do.  I am a Physician Assistant, and previously a Registered Nurse before that, so I am actually "trained" to do this.  Please discuss this with your doctor and learn how to help your child.  I simply put on a glove with a lubrication such as coconut oil and insert my smallest finger into her bottom to loosen the grip of the sphincter.  Within minutes, the impacted stool is free and she gets instant relief.  We utilized this when Presley was an infant when she was breastfeeding and not taking in solids yet.

Chiropractor - aligning the spine properly has many benefits and encourages the body to function optimally.  I read the following from www.yourspine.com: "Chiropractic adjustments (particularly in the lower spine) may help relieve constipation in certain individuals. Muscles in the intestine push stool to the anus, where stool leaves the body. Special nerve cells in the intestine, called ganglion cells, make the muscles push. These nerves connect directly to the celiac ganglion, which also innervates the stomach, liver, gallbladder, spleen, kidney, small intestine, and the ascending and transverse colon. The celiac ganglion, in turn connects to the spinal cord (and the brain) through nerve roots that exit the spine in the lower thoracic and upper lumbar region. Pressure on these nerve roots caused by misalignment of the vertebrae in this area may interfere with the normal function of the bowel as well as other organs of the digestive system."  We are fortunate to have a pediatric chiropractor here in Little Rock and visit him every 3 weeks.  Initially though, we went twice a week.  Watch his video at : http://www.chenalchiropractic.com/ to learn exactly how much having the proper spinal alignment can help.  Presley's sphincter tone changed from a "death grip" to normal after the first week.

Glycerin suppository - we have use this only twice.  It had limited usefulness for us, but may help others.  They make these suppositories for infants to stimulate the distal bowels to move.

Goat's milk - also recommended by our nutritionist.  We switched from breastfeeding at 11 months old to goat's milk due to the smaller size of the proteins in comparison to other types of milk.  The smaller size allows for easier digestion.  Presley had 1-3 goat milk smoothie's with fruit and some spinach added in each day.

Exercise, physical activity - this is a simpler task when they begin crawling and walking. Here is what www.webmd.com has to say:  "Exercise helps constipation by decreasing the time it takes food to move through the large intestine, thus limiting the amount of water absorbed from the stool into your body. Hard, dry stools are harder to pass. In addition, aerobic exercise accelerates your breathing and heart rate. This helps to stimulate the natural contraction of intestinal muscles. Intestinal muscles that contract efficiently help move stools out quickly". 

Ask your therapist for some core strengthening ideas.  Here are some ideas specifically for children.   We spent some time on a large exercise ball and follwed some exercises from "How to Teach your Baby to be Physically Superb" by Glenn Doman.

Vitamin C cleanse and maintenance dose as suggested by Dr Russell Jaffe.  Read the protocol here.

*  Elimination diet:  avoid dairy, gluten, processed foods.  Increase fiber.

*  Probiotics :  also consider prebiotics.  Some of the good probiotics that I personally have liked are Seeking Health Probiotia powder, Prescript Assist, Dr Mercola, and most recently is Visbiome.

Check the thyroid.  Constipation can be a side effect of a low functioning thyroid.

Potato peeling broth with frozen fruit to make smoothies.  Potato peeling broth recipe here.

Magnesium oxide- many moms within the DS community use this.  I have not used this yet.    It says to give with a full glass of water.  Please read more about it before giving.  

Magnesium citrate:  Per Dr Aviva Romm: 
"is an osmotic laxative — meaning it works the same way as Miralax, by pulling water into the intestines. It is safe in moderation for even young children. A typical dose range is as follows:

  • 1–3 years 65 mg/day
  • 4–8 years 110 mg/day
  • 9–18 years 350 mg/day
I recommend taking it before bed, which will often lead to a soft BM in the morning. It can be purchased in powder form and mixed into a small amount of almond milk or water and taken in a cup with a straw, which is easy for young kids."

Fruit eze - I have not personally used this, but have seen others recommending it.  The website says this: "Fruit-Eze™ fruit blend is a safe, effective, all-natural alternative to laxatives made of prunes, raisins, dates, and prune juice."  Warrior Mom Melanie Duncan suggested it and had this to say "Fruit-eze has been wonderful for my son. It is like a jelly (all natural prunes, dates & raisins) and blends easily with his feeds. We started with one teaspoon twice daily, and now (he's 11) we give him one tablespoon in the AM & PM. His BMs are productive, and once or twice daily. With Down syndrome and a fundoplication, he has lower motility, too. Retching/gagging and "leaking" g-tube reduced GREATLY since using it. We now have family members and multiple people online that have also started using it, and everyone has had success with no side effects that has updated me. We blend it with my sons feedings, others blend it with smoothies, add it to yogurt, spend it on jelly, or my mom just eat a spoonful every morning.  In addition to Fruit Eze, vitamin C, a small amount of magnesium, my son also takes this probiotic (Klaire Labs Saccharomyces Boulardii Veggie Capsules) daily. Amazingly productive BMs after years of miralax and still having issues."

Castor oil packs - "A castor oil pack, when placed on the skin, is thought to enhance circulation and promote healing to the affected area and therefore, when placed on the stomach, can improve digestion and may relieve constipation symptoms. There has been one small study that looked at the effects of castor oil packs on elderly patients who suffered with constipation, some of whom had been affected for at least 10 years.  They monitored the results over a period of seven days and found that, in short, castor oil packs may be used for controlling symptoms of constipation such as reducing the need to strain and the feeling of complete evacuation after a bowel movement." as seen here in this article.

Wellness mama shows how to make castor oil packs here.

Senna:  (such as in Smooth Move herbal tea)  Dr Aviva Romm:
"Senna is approved by the FDA for children 2 years old and older. It is a strong stimulating laxative so I don’t recommend it for daily use, but it does come in handy in a pinch. To cut down on the belly cramping that sometimes comes along with using senna, use a tea bag combination that contains ginger and fennel seeds, or peppermint leaf. Smooth Move by Traditional Medicinals is a good example of a tea blend you can use. Gaia Herbs Natural Laxative Tea is another."

Flax seeds - per Dr Aviva Romm: 
"up to 1 tsp. ground twice daily for children aged 2-7, and up to 1 TBS ground twice daily in children over 7, is an effective bulk laxative that can be mixed into a smoothie, mixed into nut butter and spread on an apple of crackers, or mixed into a 4 oz. of water or juice." 

RECIPE: Fruit Balls
Rich in nutrients, fruit balls are a healthy treat for kids of all ages and a great laxative. They are really sticky, so get kids to brush their teeth after eating them to prevent cavities.

  • ½ cup raisins
  • ½ cup prunes
  • ½ cup almonds
  • ½ cup shredded coconut or almond meal
  • ¼ cup flaxseed
To prepare: Slowly grind all ingredients except the coconut or almond meal in a blender or food processor. Add a little water as needed to form a slightly sticky dough. Form into 2-inch balls and roll in the coconut or almond meal. Have fun creating your own variations. Kids love making these, too.
Chia seed is also mildly laxative. There are some wonderful chia seed puddings online. Chia seed should be used in a ratio of 8 parts liquid to 1 part chia seeds, otherwise it can absorb water from the intestines and add to, not fix, the problem!

Psyllium or plantain seeds can be mixed into smoothies or a small amount of juice, similarly to ground flax seeds."


(Caution with bulking items like chia, flax, psyllium.  If you do not increase fluid intake then it can potentially cause blockage as stools will harden even more)

Additional advice from other websites:

Please read Dr Aviva Romm's entire article here.  She is a medical physician, mid wife, and herbalism.  She believes in trying natural ways in treating her patients first.   She has many excellent articles about women and children's health issues.

Andi Durkin has helpful information  found here on how serotonin levels in children with DS affect constipation and additional suggestions.

Down Syndrome and constipation: http://www.ds-health.com/constip.htm

Learn more from the Einstein Syndrome webpage about things like senna tea: http://einstein-syndrome.com/health_medical/constipation/

Super Down Syndrome: https://sites.google.com/site/superdownsyndrome/gastrointestinal-issues/constipation

Please feel free to add things that have worked for your family in the comment section below.  Remember this information is not intended to be a substitute for medical care from your physician.  Please discuss which option is best for your family with your physician.  

Many blessing to you,
Robin Tolliver

Thermo Cereal

  1. A short wide-mouthed thermos, and a coffee/nut grinder.
  2. Four organic whole grains (no grains that are rolled, processed, or flaked):
  3. Millet, Brown Rice (I use quinoa), Rye (I do not use-Emma is gluten free), and Flaxseeds (Even though this is a seed we will treat it like a grain)
  4. Organic raw Sesame, Hemp, Pumpkin and Sunflower Seeds, I add Brazial nuts.
  5. Dr. Bernard Jensen’s Rice Bran Complex.
  6. Dr. Bernard Jensen's Black Cherry Juice Concentrate (Jensen's Grape or Apple Concentrate may be substituted).
  7. Raw Goat Yogurt or applesauce
  8. Almond butter
  9. Fruit-lax (raisen, date, prune, oj and prune juice mixture)

Mixture to last seven to ten days and to be stored in the refrigerator.

  1. Grind seven tablespoons of each grain.
  2. Grind four tablespoons of each of the seeds
  3. Mix ground grains and ground seeds together well.
  4. At night, place one to two Tablespoons of ground mixture in wide mouth thermos per child.
  5. Add boiling water to mixture in thermos while stirring with spoon. Mixture should be soupy in consistency, as the grains and seeds will absorb it.
  6. Seal thermos and let stand overnight.
  7. In the morning remove cereal from thermos and add:***
    1. Two fruits of your choice (no citrus except kiwi). If you use dried fruits you will need to use more water, as they will reconstitute in the mixture overnight.
    2. One tablespoon of rice bran complex
    3. One tablespoon of black cherry juice concentrate
    4. Add cinnamon or spice to taste - No sugar or honey. If you need it sweeter please use more syrup.
    5. Add to raw goat yogurt or applesauce (optional)
    6. Add additional ground flax and hemp seeds if needed for healing.
    7. See specific supplementation guide for other additions.
  8. Cereal should be eaten every morning. The nutrition will be cumulative in balancing the hormones, rebuilding bowel function, strengthening the nervous system, and purifying the blood.

I will mix this up all the time. Add bananas, fruit-lax, almond butter, peanut butter, fruit or whatever sound good.  I will put this in our smoothies too.  Letting it "cook" in the water overnight is key.  Get those enzymes nice and ready.

NOTE: For infants to start it may be important to just use brown rice & flax seeds as the grains and all the seeds. Then introduce rye for one week. Then, continue by adding millet the following week to complete the recipe.
*Recommended especially for special needs.
**See acid-alkaline chart
Do Not use a microwave

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Breathing Control App

Dan Zoeller has a four year old son, Bear who has Down syndrome and he has actually done very well in all of his different therapies to this point in his life. He has really taken off as far as his physical development in the past year. He's running all over the place now! :)

One area that he has struggled with a little is his speech; particularly when it comes to controlling his breathing. I'm sure some of you know what Mr. Zoeller is talking about - he uses all of his breath in the first syllable of what he is trying to say. Mr. Zoeller asked his speech pathologist (Luanne Devries) if there were any iPad apps that could help with this but to his surprise there weren't any good ones that she could recommend. Being that he is a software developer, he decided to take matters into his own hands and create an app that would help his son with this part of his speech therapy.

Luanne and Mr. Zoeller formed an LLC and created an app called - Hot Air: Breath Control, which I'm proud to say is available in the AppStore as of today! Mr. Zoeller says he is particularly proud of it because the app has made a noticeable difference in Bear's breath control over the past couple of months and he is now attempting to make longer sentences! He couldn't be happier! All this time Bear had so much to say and just couldn't get it out :)

To see what the app has to offer, you can visit

Apple has given Mr. Zoeller a bunch of promo codes that he can do what he chooses with and he wanted to offer some of them to the DADS group since it has been such a great resource for him. If you would like a free copy of the app, send an e-mail to
support@readyfreddyllc.com and he will gladly send you a promo code if still available.