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About Me, Gut Health, Wellness

Finding A New Normal…GAPS

The past 3-4 months have been quite the blur for me, my health took a turn for…well lets say not so good, what happened? my journey to find healing, and finally a more permanent solution…

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My Ulcerative Colitis flared up more than it has ever been and lasted longer than it ever had. I was discouraged, I felt lost, I felt like I was doing everything right and yet everything was starting to go wrong VERY WRONG. I thought I had this under control, I thought I had a handle on it, but that wasn’t enough. It was like I was on a long road, with nowhere to go, but straight and the longer I was ill the more cloudy things began to get, I was tired, I was not thinking clearly, I felt like I was under water.

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I am fortunate that I have such good help from my family especially my husband and my older sister Alla who is so good at keeping me focused and on track. She is like my little voice of reason and helps me sort through what is helping and what isn’t. She was so helpful to me during this time, and i’m so thankful for her! oh and we also graduated together and both have interest in functional medicine, wellness, and nutrition and both work in a similar field of medicine!

My hunny and me in 2013, my graduation! Nursing CNS-APRN Master’s degree, he called me a master for a while after this hehe! He couldn’t help himself, this stud muffin!

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My Seeeeester Alla, same day just flipped the camera 🙂

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I started from square one, yes again…MY DIET, and tried to see if there was anything else I should be doing differently. I began researching, digging, investigating different options. On this journey I discovered Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride and her phenomenal work in the study of gut health and development of the GAPS nutritional protocol for physical, immunological, and psychological healing.

Finding Help

The GAPS diet is a comprehensive healing protocol developed by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, who is a neurologist and nutritionist who specializes in treating autism spectrum disorders, ADD/ADHD, dyspraxia, dyslexia and schizophrenia by treating the root cause of many of these disorders: compromised gut health. I listened to her lectures on Youtube and thats where this healing journey began!!

I’ve included them here, there are THREE lectures total, this is 1 of 3…make sure you listen to them all! your jaw will be on the floor by the time you’re finished.

Through her research, she discovered how to HEAL THE GUT, significantly impact autoimmune disorders, and decrease my patient’s pain by lower inflammatory markers and improving their mental health. It was a no brainer, a WIN WIN, how could I not move forward.

I quickly ordered her book and started reading about this method to heal the gut using the GAPS diet. GAPS stands for gut and physiology/psychology syndrome and is a rendition of the SCD (specific carbohydrate diet).

amazon link to buy this book: Gut and Psychology Syndrome

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This book is specific for psychology syndrome (the physiology syndrome book is not in print yet, but she’s working on it) despite this it has A LOT of very specific information for physiological disease healing as well as psychological, and definitely is applicable to both.

SOOOO what did I do? Well, I bought my instant pot and got to work making bone broth, I discovered it has fantastic healing properties and collagen to rebuild tissue lining, as well as proteins and essential amino acids which are building blocks of tissue regeneration. What could go wrong!? Being on the GAPS restricted diet put me back into remission within just days! considering I was bleeding, tired and miserable for 2 months this was AWESOME!!!

 

There are 6 different stages of this diet and for people who are really ill ( ike I was) it is recommended to start from the beginning, which is basically just broth and water! I will tell you though, IT WORKED!!!

Introductory Gaps Diet

  • Stage 1: Consume homemade bone broth, juices from probiotic foods and ginger, and drink mint or chamomile tea with honey between meals. People who are not dairy intolerant may eat unpasteurized, homemade yogurt or kefir.
  • Stage 2: Add in raw organic egg yolks, ghee and stews made with vegetables and meat or fish.
  • Stage 3: All previous foods plus avocado, fermented vegetables, GAPS-recipe pancakes and scrambled eggs made with ghee, duck fat or goose fat.
  • Stage 4: Add in grilled and roasted meats, cold-pressed olive oil, vegetable juice and GAPS-recipe bread.
  • Stage 5: Introduce cooked apple purée, raw vegetables starting with lettuce and peeled cucumber, fruit juice and small amounts of raw fruit, but no citrus.
  • Stage 6: Finally, introduce more raw fruit, including citrus.

You basically go through these stages slowly in steps based on tolerance. If you introduce a new food and it doesn’t go well…GO BACK A STEP for another week or two and try again. Once you’ve moved through all the steps you stay on the gaps extended diet which is a lot less restricting!

Because of the impact that this diet has had on my health, I am taking this blog in an even different direction and focusing on overall wellness with the diet and lifestyle I think to be the healthiest, cleanest, most GARDEN OF EDEN style, and the way we were intended to eat!

It is recommended to go through the INTRODUCTORY DIET FIRST before assuming the following food choices.

Heres a quick overview of GAPS EXTENDED diet by Dr. Axe!

GAPS diet food list - Dr. Axe

I hope and it is my deepest desire that this post will find someone that needs this as much as I did. I have learned so much from this new lifestyle and want to share that! I was desperate and just happened to stumble upon it! I truly believe that this is the way we were intended to eat and nourish our bodies. I praise God for that, and for sending me answers to prayers even when I don’t realize it until wayyyyy later. God is good, all the time, even when we are weak and try to find all the answers ourselves. God is good, faithful, loving, and giving.

 

Yours Truly,

Anna M.

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