The Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS diet) by Dr. Campbell-McBride, MD written in 2004 for a natural treatment for autism, ADD, ADHD, depression and more. This is a brief summary of important points addressed in the book. It is very important to read the sections devoted to these areas in the book for a clear understanding of each. Material was extracted from www.Gapsdiet.com
For many GAPS patients, the diet should be followed for two years at least. The book Gut & Psychology Syndrome will provide recipes and more explanation about the diet.
The best foods are eggs (if tolerated), fresh meats (not preserved), fish, shellfish, fresh vegetables and fruit, nuts and seeds, garlic and olive oil. Apart from eating vegetables cooked, it is important to have some raw vegetables with meals, as they contain vital enzymes to assist digestion of the meats. Fruit should be eaten on their own, not with meals, as they have a very different digestion pattern and can make the work harder for the stomach. Fruit should be given as a snack between meals.
It is very important to have plenty of natural fats in every meal from meats, butter, ghee, coconut (if tolerated) and cold pressed olive oil. Animal fats on meats are particularly valuable. Fermented foods (sauerkraut, yogurt, and kefir) are also a very important part of this diet in addition to homemade meat or fish stock. It is recommended to take a cup of warm meat or fish stock with every meal as a drink as well as soups and stews made with the meat or fish stock. The stock, kefir and fermented vegetables will over time restore the stomach acid production, which will improve digestion.
It is best to avoid processed foods (any packet or tinned foods). They are stripped from most nutrients that were present in the fresh ingredients used for making these foods. They are a hard work for the digestive system and they damage the healthy gut flora balance. On top of that they usually contain a lot of artificial chemicals, detrimental to health, like preservatives, colorants, etc. Try to buy foods in the form that nature made them, as fresh as possible.
The recommended diet for GAPS patients is largely based on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD). The main difference pertains to dairy products. SCD permits lactose-free dairy products. Lactose is a milk sugar. GAPS and people with digestive problems are unable to digest it and must avoid it. Fermented dairy products such as yogurt are largely lactose free as a result of the fermentation process where by the fermenting bacteria consume lactose. Apart from lactose, milk contains casein, which will absorb through the damaged gut lining and act as a toxin in the body.
Another problem with dairy is how it relates to food allergies and intolerances. A milk allergy is one of the most common allergies. Even in breast-fed babies where the mother consumes dairy products the child may develop colic due to sensitivity to dairy antigens being passed through the mother's milk.
For all of these reasons, GAPS children and adults should not consume dairy products until their digestive system is well enough to handle them. The diet's only exception to this is milk fat (ghee or clarified butter) because it contains virtually no milk proteins or lactose and is generally well tolerated.
Please refer to www.gapsdiet.com/The_Diet.html
section for a list of recommended foods and foods to avoid.
The essential supplements for GAPS patients:
· An effective therapeutic strength probiotic
· Essential Fatty Acids
· Vitamin A
· Digestive enzymes
· Vitamin and mineral supplements.
· An effective therapeutic strength probiotic
· GAPS children and adults should have a group of essential oils supplemented:
o A good seed/nut oil blend in the ratio of 2:1 of omega-3:omega-6 fatty acids.
o Cod liver oil to supply EPA, DHA, vitamin A and vitamin D.
o Fish oil with higher ratio of EPA to DHA, as more EPA seems to be beneficial for GAPS patients. There are no toxic levels for these oils.
As listed previously, vitamin A is recommended in the form of Cod Liver Oil (CLO). Vitamin A deficiency can cause digestive problems. Leaky gut and mal-absorption are the typical results of vitamin A deficiency. Unfortunately, due to digestive problems, GAPS children and adults usually cannot absorb or use many forms of vitamin A, commonly found in supplements.
A natural form of vitamin A found in CLO appears to be the best form for these patients.
People with abnormal gut flora almost without exception have low stomach acid production. Toxins produced from bacteria such as Candida and Clostridia have a strong ability to reduce secretion of stomach acid.
Stomach acid is the first barrier for huge numbers of microbes arriving with every bite of food or drink we consume. If the stomach is not acid enough, these bad microbes may have a chance of colonizing in the stomach itself. GAPS patients should supplement with stomach acid. The most
physiological preparation available is Betaine HCl with Pepsin.
These are the enzymes people generally think of when hearing the words "digestive enzymes". These enzymes are usually combinations of proteases, peptidases, lipases, amylase, lactase and cellulase. In a healthy digestive tract, these enzymes are naturally produced by the pancreas. If normal stomach acidity can be returned, these enzymes should work efficiently.
DETOXIFICATION AND LIFE-STYLE CHANGES
The first and most important thing is to remove the main source of toxicity, which means cleaning up and healing the gut. Since this alone will not rid the body of years worth of toxic build up in the system, juicing is recommended. Juicing provides very concentrated fruit and vegetable nutrients to the body in an easily absorbed form.
The General Toxic Load
An important part of the treatment is reduction of the general toxic load. Keep your house chemical free and avoid bringing anything into the home which will let off chemicals such as new carpet, furniture, and paints. Also remember that your skin absorbs just about everything it comes in contact with so be very cautious with the products you put on your skin.
Household plants are great at reducing the toxic air in our houses. They consume the toxic gases and replace them with oxygen and other beneficial substances.
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