Chlorine tract and neurological functioning, we are

Chlorine dioxide is an organic
compound commonly used to decontaminate water, disinfect industrial food
processing plants, and sanitize fresh fruits and vegetables (NIH, 2018).  It is composed of a single chlorine atom,
double bonded with two oxygen atoms in a pyramid structure.

Chlorine dioxide (ClO2) is a
yellowish gas with a noxious odor that would be familiar to anyone who has
spent much time in a swimming pool!  As a
disinfecting agent, ClO2 does not overtly destroy microorganisms; rather it
oxidizes microorganisms (NIH, 2018).  The
oxidation energy of ClO2 comes from the halogen atom in the compound,
chlorine.  Halogens, being highly
electronegative, are always on the lookout for electrons to steal.  Therefore, when ClO2 gas is dissolved in
water, the chlorine will go on the hunt, and begin picking away at the valence
electron shells of any microbes or microorganisms in the water.  As the microbes break apart and die, the
water is purified (Tro, 2016).

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While chlorine dioxide has
been shown in studies to be harmless when ingested by healthy adults, it was
certainly never designed to be deliberately ingested (Lubbers, et al., 1980).  Deliberate ingestion, however, was exactly
what was touted by a man named Jim Humble, who in 2009 claimed he had found the
“miracle cure” for autism, and that by drinking his Magic Mineral Solution or
introducing it to a child’s body via enema, a child’s autism would disappear (Porter,
2018).  The problem was that Humble’s “miracle”
contained sodium chlorite and hydrochloric acid which – when mixed with citric
acids in fruit juice – turned into chlorine dioxide.  At Humble’s urging, many parents around the
world who are desperate to find the cure for autism are continuing to pour bleach
into their children’s bodies, causing severe and dangerous reactions in many.
(FDA, 2010).   

To date, chlorine dioxide has
been found to be a safe and effective industrial decontaminant and food
sanitizer, but it has not been empirically shown to have any physiological or psychological
benefit when taken internally (Lee, Costello & Kang, 2004).  As nutritionists continue to study the
gut-brain connection and evaluate the association between the health of the
gastrointestinal tract and neurological functioning, we are bound to see more research
in the field of dietary interventions for autism spectrum disorder.  It is doubtful, however, that highly reactive
and toxic halogens such as chlorine, fluorine or bromine will ever be a part of
such protocols.