Dr. Reid started her interest in biochemistry with her first chemistry set in the 6th grade.
Much of her career has been spent in biochemical research, which didn’t afford her the best balance as the mother of 5!
Her youngest child, Brooke, created the opportunity for Katie to find her passion in life.
Brooke was diagnosed with Autism, and that diagnosis led Katie on the road to discovering how our current food production practices are impacting not just Brooke, and others with Autism, but all of us through our health.I got a chance to sit down and have a skype chat with Dr. Katie Reid, and found that we were on very similar paths, coming from very similar directions. Listen to our conversation here:
When Katie first received the news of Brooke’s Autism diagnosis, she felt completely overwhelmed, and thought, “What did I do?” This was four years ago, and the medical community provided only psychological, mental illness therapy, with no cause for symptoms.
So many of our health issues are really about the “Human Ecosystem” and the whole body, not just psychology or a particular organ in the body.
So, Katie started diving into brain science, especially as a biochemist, and reading so many parental blogs with millions of anecdotal accounts of the dietary connection to a gluten/casein free diet producing significant improvements in behavior and health.
When we made these changes in our family, when we cut out all gluten and casein, we saw a significant improvement in Brooke, and I had improvements in things I didn’t even realize were connected to food as well. Brooke was still considered Autistic, but her vocabulary was improving, and her growth was significant.
Dr. Reid wanted to know more, and wanted to know what it is about gluten, a class of proteins found in wheat and barley, and casein, a milk protein, that allows a significant amount of kids to improve their health when removed from their diets.
What Katie discovered was glutamate and casein are so highly processed in our current diet (unless you consume raw milk), they become “free.” Through enzyme modification or fermentation, glutamate is released as MonoSodiumGlutamate (MSG).
When I looked further into the scientific journals, there is no doubt that all kinds of health issues are caused by Glutamatergic Dysfunction, or an imbalance of glutamate…migranes, ecsyma, digestive issues, Autism, etc. All are related to excess glutamate in our system.
Dr. Reid, herself suffered from low-level daily headaches, and these difficulties also cleared up as a result of removing these “free” amino acids from the family diet.
This is how I personally became acquainted with gluten and casein, and their effects on those who are sensitive.
My husband has had psoriasis and migraines since his late 20’s, but it wasn’t until our youngest son was diagnosed with Asperger’s Syndrome that I got wind of the whole gluten free debate.
My B.S. degree in Nutrition and Food Science taught me to consume a diet that was the exact opposite of the foods I eat now.
In the late 80’s, I was taught that a high carbohydrate, low fat diet was healthy.
I now know that a diet of raw, unprocessed foods consisting mostly of complete proteins, complex carbohydrates and plant-based fats is best for overall health and high energy.
Since we eliminated all processed foods, all gluten, and all casein from our family diet, my husband’s migraines have vanished, right along with his psoriasis symptoms. My son has also been able to handle stressful, emotional situations without “melt-downs.”
The reason…Since free glutamate is not required to be tested, and the food manufacturing processes are not required to be revealed, Dr. Reid started to investigate all the additives, and processes to find out.
The bottom line – there is no scientific study saying that if you remove excess free glutamate in your diet, that this is a way to manage health.
She took the scientific evidence showing that there are health issues and diseases clearly caused by the imbalance of free glutamate, and did her own experiment.
Once Katie removed the contaminate by changing her diet, the horrible tantrums Brooke would have that lasted hours and hours completely stopped. Brooke never had one again.
Removing the cereal for the family was challenging, because the MSG is addictive, and used extensively to enhance flavor, and make us crave more.
Brooke’s communication, social skills, and her life was changed so considerably that I actually started thinking she could actually have a life of her own.
She is now the most social of all Katie’s 5 children.
It went beyond removing gluten and casein, it required removing as much processed foods as possible, because the free glutamate is pervasive – it’s in our lotions, toothpaste, medicines – and I went through the experiment with Brooke.We don't realize what might change until we change. #mom #dad #glutenfree @unblindmymind Click To Tweet
When I shared this, and found others who needed it, I needed to start the nonprofit, and spread the word.
There is clearly a camp out there that feels there is no link between diet and health, and those people won’t seek my information, but many others will.
These changes take discipline, but if you stick with it, the results are life changing.Mary: You are the embodiment of Parent Entrepreneur Power, because you have found a passion, and are creating a vehicle to help people with that passion! What was stopping you from becoming an entrepreneur before this passion?
Living in the San Francisco/Bay Area of California, and having 5 children, there were financial pressures, and it really took a team effort with my husband. I saved up some money.
We need to change the paradigm that nonprofits are not businesses…they are.
My husband saw the transformations, and supported the creation of UnblindMyMind.org.
This is what life is about…it took me over 40 years to find out why I was put on this earth, and I found it!
That’s when Dr. Reid started the non-profit, UnblindMyMind.org
She wanted to document the changes and experiments with her daughter and family, and wanted to start this nonprofit. I didn’t want to do that while also committing to a full time job, and jeopardize my reputation as a scientist, so I needed to end that chapter, and start a new one.
The paperwork is endless for starting a nonprofit!
The business details, and monetization strategies are still being determined, but we are focused on what is going to help people make this change in their lives.
At around 31:00 listen in for some recommendations for making this change in the diet of your family.
Get buy-in from your Teens, people!
What you do with a mission you are passionate about is incorporate the family with that mission.
In Dr. Reid’s previous jobs as a biochemist, when she was consumed by something it definitely felt like stress, but this UnblindMyMind.org, is a consuming passion that is just part of life, and she am more energized.My number one Power Tool is my passion, and the most important way to use that passion is through my communication.
With my teens, texting is the most used communication, so I am investigating all the social media available to spread my message for the business, and using the communication methods that are best understood by them to help them grow as well.
Face to face is still the most powerful way to convey the passion I have, and the best way to communicate with my kids.
Dr. Reid’s TedX talk has touched over 42,000 people thus far, so that works as a face to face as well.
You can find Dr. Reid here: