Well after lots of thought and painstaking avoidance- I’m back to the intro phase of the GAPS diet. The intro diet slowly walks you through 6 stages of foods progressively, allowing you to proceed as your symptoms subside. You start with soup with boiled vegetables and meat only.
It’s been 1 week, and i’m in a much better place than I was earlier in the week. My emotional status wasn’t pretty.
We’ve felt great eating GAPS-friendly foods. We feel full, energetic, and are genuinely enjoying what we are eating.
While it had pushed me A LOT, I have loved the new opportunity to learn how to cook differently, and in one sense with more creativity and improvisation.
Maybe I was looking for the push that this grain-free, sugar-free, completely whole-foods diet has given me.
BUT——I didn’t want to be pushed BACK to the introductory diet. Nope. REALLY did not.
There have been lots of very positive changes, but one area of my body that still has a long way to go is my gut. On a daily basis I am still battling with stomach symptoms of pain and bloating after eating. Sometimes it’s worse than others, but it’s been very hard to determine which foods are causing the problem…..so I reluctantly accepted that the best way to pinpoint things further is to go BACK to the introductory diet. On top of clarity, I’m hoping for another round of even more intense healing one can find on intro that they might not find on the full GAPS diet.
The gut is the seat of our immune system, as 80% of the immune system resides in the gut lining. When the gut is not working properly, the immune system isn’t either. This can be disastrous.
Recently on my journey to health I unfolded the reality that I have had this ‘leaky-gut’ (AKA gut dysbiosis, bacteria/yeast overgrowth- the very thing the GAPS diet addresses) for A LOT longer than I had thought. I was under the impression that while my health wasn’t stellar as a child, it didn’t turn into this leaky gut until I became a young adult and that’s why I am having all these symptoms presently. WRONG. The body develops autoimmune disorders when gut immunity has been terribly compromised……my autoimmune disorder developed when I was 5. Meaning- my gut has been compromised, unsealed and leaking toxins into my blood steam, causing an autoimmune reaction…..since I was a very young child. This was shocking to me. Not sure exactly how this happened, but a few of the contributing factors were: lots of antibiotics for reoccurring ear infections, full schedule of vaccinations, environment toxins, a very apparent sugar addiction (a symptom and cause) and the Standard American Diet (sorry mom- you were a GREAT cook, but it would still classify as SAD! Luckily you’ve got the whole-foods fever now ;o) Seasonal allergies developed as well as intermittent headaches as a child. Surprisingly, I was protected from any significant bowel problems….and SO many other things that I could have surely developed. It wasn’t until my late teens that I developed GERD (reflux) intensely, then very frequent headaches (turning into 5-6 a week), fatigue, and very very uncomfortable stomach symptoms. (Two pregnancies in that process…causing me to become more and more deficient sure didn’t help my situation).
Onto the big news: I have noticed a lot of symptoms changing, so has Luke (the hubby). Our acne is virtually non-existent, headaches less frequent, energy is higher than it has been in years, cravings minimal, our kids are eating EVERYTHING I make (and gaining weight—good for them there on the small end) my random infections have gone away, our immune systems seem much stronger than normal (not getting much at all, and when we have it’s been mild)……
….and the coolest thing to date is my autoimmune disease is showing signs of reversal. Yes. I am very serious. My skin disease called ‘vitiligo’, causing white pigment areas on my skin, is actually filling in…..in amounts big enough that even people outside my family can notice. This has not happened since it ‘slowed’ or ‘went into remission’ as a teenager. It has not budged since then. This is a VERY encouraging sign. Autoimmune diseases are one of the scariest diagnosis’ possible, and I am very eager to prevent my body from triggering any further autoimmune diseases…..the best way to do that is HEAL THE GUT.
Despite the setbacks I have had, and the frustration in trying to figure out this massive puzzle piece of my health….it appears that there is wonderful change happening deep within my body.
Luke’s breakfast today (Full GAPS): Omelet, banana-nut muffin (coconut flour), veggie/fruit juice (I could have the eggs and juice)
Tessa sitting over the heat vent while eating her smoothie :o)
Carrot juice I introduced. Whoa-quite exciting.