Healing Intense Digestive Symptoms
I would like to share a little about the GAPS Diet because of its amazing healing properties. I am not suggesting that people who work with me need to eat this way. However, I thought someone might benefit from my personal experience.
First, I do not care for the word ‘diet’. It often brings to mind a ‘plan’ that someone blindly follows for a period of time without truly connecting to themselves and their body and then resumes their former eating habits. If I could rename this book by Natasha McBride, I would call it the GAPS Nutritional Protocol, but she did not ask me.
I have witnessed the amazing healing benefits of this nutritional program firsthand. My husband and I have been married for 5 years. Prior to meeting me, he ate corn flakes, hot dogs and cheap Chinese food. I wish I were kidding, but I’m not. After our marriage, he began eating the foods that I prepared and noticed improved energy, reduced cravings and he eliminated some health symptoms. However, he still consumed foods he was sensitive to. Even though, he experienced bloating, gas and diarrhea, he was not emotionally ready to remove them from his diet. However, in the fall of 2012, he experienced some severe health symptoms and was diagnosed with Hashimotos, an autoimmune disorder. Reluctantly, he began thyroid medication to stabilize his intense symptoms. His goal was to eliminate this pharmaceutical drug as soon as possible. After some research, I realized that the root cause of his illness was a leaky gut.
This brought me to the GAPS Diet and I realized it was imperative for him to begin this diet to heal the root cause of his thyroid disease. And since I struggled for years with a gluten and dairy allergy, I decided to try the GAPS diet and see if it would heal my gut, too. If you are not familiar with the GAPS Diet, it is a soup made from bone broth and non-starchy vegetables with plenty of high-quality animal fat. This combination heals and seals the gut lining. It takes a significant commitment to have this bone broth soup prepared and ready at all times since it is all you eat until you are symptom free. We made 3 large crockpots a week.
Eliminating symptoms takes different lengths of time for different people. We started the GAPS diet in January 2014 and in less than a month, my husband had well-formed bowel movements day-after-day with no bloating, gas or urgency. His energy improved and he began to absorb more nutrients. However, he was by no means ‘healed’. He still has this soup once or twice a day because he craves it and his body does very well with it. He is not ready to eat much else other than naturally raised animal protein, healthy fats and cooked vegetables. Recently, he has added small amounts of 100% grass-fed, raw dairy with no symptoms. It is important to note that he also does weekly acupuncture, tai chi or chi gong, standard process whole food supplements and a homeopathic remedy. This combination has allowed him to discontinue his thyroid medication and be 100% symptom free for many months.
I also experienced great results on the GAPS Diet .I had been unable to eat gluten and dairy since 2006 because I had severe symptoms. Now I enjoy 100% grass-fed, raw dairy and gluten. I choose not to eat much gluten because my body just feels better with animal protein, healthy fat and vegetables, but it is a delight to have the freedom to eat it occasionally. I choose to still eat the soup about once a day because I really like it and I continue to experience healing from this way of eating.
The GAPS Diet is like a spiritual experience, meaning it’s HARD. You must give up your attachment to food and simply eat soup. You can consume as much soup as you want (which by the way gives an intense feeling of nourishment). And remember over time you can add other nourishing foods one at a time as long as there are no signs of sensitivity. My husband and my #1 priority in life is spiritual growth so we were up for the challenge. Also, you need to be ready for the GAPS diet because it affects your whole life. We did not eat out, we could not eat at other people’s homes and we packed all of our own food when we traveled. It was a serious commitment and one that many people aren’t ready for yet. And that’s ok. Timing is everything. Also, it’s important to understand that the GAPS Diet is very detailed and specific. There are many things that Natasha McBride recommends beyond just the bone broth soup so I encourage anyone wanting to apply this way of eating to read her book in detail before beginning.
So even if you do not need the GAPS Diet, I highly recommend making bone broth regularly. I explain it in detail to my clients since it has incredible healing properties. And it is a delicious base for your favorite soups and sauces.
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