Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


48th Annual Convention; Boston, MA; 2022

Event Details

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Invited Paper Session #474A
CE Offered: BACB
Comprehensive Nutritional Interventions for Children and Adults with Autism
Monday, May 30, 2022
11:00 AM–11:50 AM
Ballroom Level 3; Ballroom East/West
Area: AUT; Domain: Applied Research
Chair: Erin B. Rasmussen (Idaho State University)
CE Instructor: Jim Adams, Ph.D.
Presenting Author: JIM ADAMS (Arizona State University)

Children and adults with ASD often have multiple nutritional and metabolic problems, including nutritional deficiencies, food intolerances, oxidative stress, decreased methylation, and impaired mitochondrial function. Many of these problems can be addressed by nutritional supplements and healthy allergen-free diets. A 12 month comprehensive nutritional intervention study was conducted to investigate the effect of combining 6 different nutritional interventions. The study found many benefits, including a 7 point gain in non-verbal IQ (compared to zero in the control group) and an 18 month gain in developmental age (vs 4 months in the control group). This suggests that many individuals with ASD can benefit from a comprehensive nutritional intervention to address underlying nutritional and metabolic problems.

Instruction Level: Basic
Target Audience:

BCBA’s and other professionals who work with children with ASD.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) learn the common nutritional and metabolic problems in children and adults with ASD; (2) understand the effect of comprehensive nutritional intervention on ASD symptoms; (3) learn which nutritional interventions were most important.
JIM ADAMS (Arizona State University)
James B. Adams, Ph.D., is the Director of the Autism/Asperger's Research Program at Arizona State University. His research focuses on the medical causes of autism and how to treat and prevent it including the areas of nutrition (vitamins/minerals, essential fatty acids, carnitine, digestive enzymes, special diets), oxidative stress, gut problems, gut bacteria, toxic metals, and seizures. He has published over 150 peer-reviewed scientific articles, including over 50 related to autism. He is also the President of the Autism Society of Greater Phoenix, the President of the Autism Nutrition Research Center, the co-leader of the Scientific Advisory Committee of the Autism Research Institute, and chair of the Scientific Advisory Board of the Neurological Health Foundation. He has an adult daughter with autism.



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