Best starting time
When is the best time to start the GAPS program? The best time to start the GAPS program for a child is when they are out of school for the summer or during school vacation times. For adults, it is best to schedule beginning the GAPS program away from personal vacations and events such as weddings.
Chat room support
I have logged on to many chat rooms for the GAPS Diet. I am more confused than ever! Why are there so many different opinions? We agree that it is nice to have emotional support as you walk through GAPS program, however please remember that the chat rooms for GAPS consist mostly of families just like yourself who are trying to maneuver their way through GAPS program. Those in chat rooms are often full of questions and can be confused themselves. The best source for guidance is a Certified GAPS Practitioner with clinical experience.
The GAPS program seems to be a little confusing and overwhelming, do you offer coaching? Yes, as Certified GAPS Practitioners, we can walk you through the process of the GAPS program. Simply call our office to set up an appointment. We do offer phone and Skype consultations for those who reside outside of our area.
Can diabetics follow the GAPS Diet? Absolutely. In our experience, diabetics do very well on the GAPS Diet. Those who are insulin dependent must monitor their blood sugar levels and adjust their medication according to their doctor’s recommendations.
Different than other restrictive diets
I have tried other diets that restricted carbohydrates and gluten, however they didn’t work for our family. Why is the GAPS program different? The key to remember with the GAPS program is that you are actually healing the gut. With restricted carbohydrate diets, like the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, you are simply eliminating offending foods and placing a band -aid on the situation. The GAPS program will get to the root of the problem, which is the healing of the gut.
Can I put my entire family on the GAPS Diet? Yes. However, for some families it is best for the main caregiver or the person with the greatest need to start the diet first and then introduce the rest of the family to the diet. Keep in mind that each person will respond differently to the program and will move through the stages quite differently. This can become a bit overwhelming, particularly if you are dealing with issues that are a little more challenging to resolve. Start with one person, master the program and you will gain the knowledge and confidence you need to heal the rest of the family.
My child seemed to be doing really well and now it seems as though we are going backwards. What am I doing wrong? As you walk through GAPS Diet you will find that you become a detective of sorts! It is wise to keep a small journal of new foods that you introduce. Look out for and any noticeable reactions within 24 hours. If you find there was any type of reaction, either behavioral or physiological, you will need to locate the offending food item from your journal and eliminate it for a period of time.
Will I be hungry on the GAPS Diet? Ideally you should not be hungry on the GAPS Diet. There are no calorie restrictions. As you increase your consumption of animal fats you should find increased satiety. Eat as often as needed to eliminate hunger.
I tried to do the GAPS Diet on my own, however I stopped because my son seemed so lethargic and it scared me. You will find that your child will not be him/herself for the first few days on GAPS Diet. The body is going through a process of detoxification, which takes a toll on the body. It is important to hug your child often for the first few days and try to create a calm, soothing atmosphere. The first few days on the GAPS Diet should be spent at home and your full attention should be given to your child and the food preparation for the GAPS program.
Should I stop my medications before beginning GAPS? No. Consult a qualified health practitioner before stopping all medications. This is especially important in the case of anti-depressants, anti-anxiety and anti-psychotic medications. Weaning off of these medications must be gradual and supervised by a qualified health practitioner.
I live in an area where organic produce is not available. Will this sabotage my success? No it will not; however, your produce will not be as nutrient-dense as produce grown without commercial fertilizers and pesticides on mineral rich soil. Consider a small home garden. There is plenty of information on the web for resources in creating an organic garden. If space is a problem where you live, consider a Victory Garden.
My child would never eat the foods that are mentioned in the book. How do you handle picky eaters. You will be amazed how a child’s food preferences will change as you heal the gut. It is not uncommon for us to see a child whose diet consisted of pizza, bagels and pasta develop a taste and craving for vegetables, fermented foods and animal fats.
I have been taking probiotics for years. Can I continue to take my existing probiotic? All probiotics are not created equal. You can find a detailed explanation on this topic in the Gut and Psychology Syndrome book on pages 245-253. Please visit our store at this link (enclose link) to purchase probiotics, which are GAPS approved. It is important that you only use GAPS approved probiotics to ensure the success of the program.
My child has seizures. Are there any special considerations I should be aware of for her? Those with seizures, tics and Tourettes need to avoid plant and fish oils, including cod liver oil. While these oils offer many benefits, the omega 3 to omega 6 fatty acid ratio is not in a 1:1 ration and can exacerbate seizures. Concentrate of mammalian fats, such as butter, sour cream, egg yolks, goose and duck fat, lard, tallow and that of sea mammals, which have a balanced ratio of omega 3 to omega 6 fatty acids. Once the person has been seizure free for a year, cod liver oil can be introduced under the guidance of a qualified health practitioner.
Stock vs. Broth
I am confused as to the difference between stock and broth. Can you explain?
There is definitely a difference between stock and broth. Dr. Campbell-McBride recommends meat stock during the early stages of the Introduction Diet and for those who are sensitive to MSG and other excitotoxins. This most often includes autistic and ADD/ADHD children, schizophrenics, those with advanced gut issues and individuals with neurological conditions. Please see the attached Stock vs. Broth for more details.
Can I use alternative sweeteners like sorbitol, xylitol, or erythritol? Natural sweeteners such as raw honey, fruit, and whole leaf stevia are appropriate for those on the GAPS Diet. Sugar alcohols are highly processed additives derived from corn, fruit, and other plants or trees, as well as from seaweed. These alcohols can cause gas, bloating, and diarrhea in those with digestive challenges. These products are not GAPS-legal. Please see the attached Alternative Sweeteners for more details.
Time length of GAPS Diet
How long will it take for me to get through the GAPS Diet? There isn’t a set time frame for doing the GAPS Diet. You will get through the program as quickly as your body allows. Some individuals will see tremendous improvement within several weeks. Those with longstanding conditions will need patience as they heal. Each person’s progress, even within a family, will vary.