Kelly Preston is speaking out for the first time about her late son Jett’s autism.
Her 16-year-old son with “Grease” star John Travolta died in 2009 after suffering a seizure in the family’s vacation home on Grand Bahama island.
Previously Preston attributed her son’s history of seizures to a number of medical conditions. It wasn’t until a recent episode of “The Doctors” that she confirmed that her son was autistic.
“[Jett] was autistic. He had seizures and when he was very young, he had Kawasaki Syndrome,” she says according to People.
“I strongly believe as a mother, as does my husband, that there are certain contributing factors that lead to autism and some of it is very much the chemicals in our environment and in our food,” she adds.
John Travolta reportedly acknowledged Jett’s autism in a Bahamas police report at the time of his death.
Preston and Travolta are high profile members of the Church of Scientology, which has drawn criticism for its perceived stance on autism. The church is openly suspicious of psychiatry and psychiatric diagnoses, and autism is described as a psychiatric disorder in the DSM-IV, psychiatry’s leading reference guide.
The 50-year-old mother of Jett attributes a number of factors to her son’s autism. According to People, Preston points to Kawasaki Syndrome, which can cause inflammation of the arteries. She also blames the use of antibiotics while breastfeeding, which gave Jett an infection of Candida yeast. Some studies have linked Candida yeast to the symptoms of autism.
Preston says that she hopes her story will encourage other parents to reduce the number of chemicals in their children’s lives. Her appearance on “The Doctors” is scheduled to air November 21st.
In the wake of Jett’s passing, Preston and Travolta have welcomed a new baby, two-year-old Benjamin, into their family.
The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.