If you haven’t heard of the GAPS Diet before then here’s a little summary:
It is an elimination diet in which you eat only easy-to-digest foods that are rich in the elements your gut lining needs. By eliminating trouble foods and eating lots of helpful foods the gut is able to heal and seal, treating leaky gut. It also allows you to pinpoint any foods that you might be sensitive to along the way that you didn’t even know about. And, sometimes, the healing of the gut will allow you to eat said foods, assuming they are truly nourishing.
We’ve done the Full GAPS diet in the past, or at least my version of it, but had never gone all the way back to the introductory diet. We decided to give it a shot, but it is not easy seeing as how your diet consists mainly of stock, boiled meat, boiled vegetables, and sauerkraut juice.
The first two days were really rough. No one wanted to eat because it was just soup all day every day. After nearly pulling my hair out I changed a few things that have made this diet possible.
Here’s How We’re Surviving
- Place one person on the introduction diet and the rest of the family members on the full GAPS. Right now my husband is on the intro diet. This will help your budget and your sanity as there are more food items you can eat when you are not on the full diet.
- Make massive pots of stock and meat. This has been a life-saver for me. I have a 3-4 gallon stock pot that gets filled with chicken backs and two whole chickens from a local farmer. I simmer the whole lot for a few hours, remove all of the meat and let this simmer for a couple of days. This produces two gallons of stock and a 9×13" pan full of chicken meat that will feed us for days.
- Don’t just make soup. It’s the most logical conclusion of the diet, but soup three times per day every day is enough to make most people go mad. So we do soup once per day, he eats the boiled chicken with boiled vegetables and herbs for lunch, and then boiled squash with coconut oil and egg yolk for breakfast. He has stock in a cup with meals and loves it.
- Go really, really slow. He doesn’t have any major health concerns, but he wants to be sure that his gut is in good health. So he hasn’t had major die-off or transitional symptoms. That being said, we are going really slow… doing the sensitivity test before each new food, eating a couple of spoonfuls of the food, waiting a couple of days, and then introducing more of the food to be sure of no reaction.
- Use fresh herbs and tons of fat. I think this is the only thing that makes the food interesting. The recommended diet is truly nourishing, but can get a bit tedious. Using lots of fresh herbs and animal fats makes it tasty and helps you heal faster.
- Make GAPS your main project for a while. The past couple years it seems like we’ve always got a side project going on besides our daily responsibilities. With the amount of cooking, dishes, and healing you are doing there just is no time (or energy) for much else.
My Favorite GAPS Resources
Recipes & Ideas For What to Eat on GAPS Intro :: from Keeper of the Home
GAPS Intro: For Gut Healing & Sealing :: from Health, Home, Happiness
GAPS Guide :: This book is small and expensive, but so helpful. I am currently borrowing it from a sweet friend, but because of the fact that I look at this book just about every day I may purchase it soon.
Gut and Psychology Syndrome :: This is the book by Dr. Natasha Campell-McBride that explains everything.
So, that is how we are surviving. Notice I didn’t say thriving. I am washing a ridiculous amount of dishes. I spend more time than usual preparing and planning meals. It is harder on the budget than our usual diet.
But so far, I think it is worth it.