The GAPS Introduction Diet allows the gut to heal and recover more quickly. This is a six stage progressive diet designed to use very easy-to-digest foods and add new foods gradually over a period of days to weeks to months, depending upon your body’s response. Dr. Campbell-McBride recommends that one stay on each stage of the Introduction Diet for 3-5 days, although some individuals may move through each stage in as little as two days, while those with more challenged digestive disorders or psychological conditions may need to stay on the Introduction Diet for a longer period of time. This can best be determined through consulting with a Certified GAPS Practitioner.
As you move through the Introduction Diet, do not hesitate to return to a previous stage should your symptoms indicate. In the event of worsening of digestive symptoms upon progressing to the next stage, return to the previous stage for a few more days. Symptoms indicating that you are not ready to progress to the next stage would include diarrhea, bloating, abdominal pain, severe gas, constipation or appearance of a rash.
Your basic diet while in Stage 1 will consists of:
- Homemade meat stock (beef, lamb, bison, chicken, turkey, pheasant or fish)
- Stew or soup made with well cooked meats or fish and well cooked vegetables and meat stock
- Probiotic foods (homemade fermented vegetable juices and/or homemade fermented whey, yogurt or sour cream daily); those with constipation should use homemade sour cream and fermented vegetable juices while those with diarrhea are advised to use homemade whey or yogurt.
- Fresh ginger tea, chamomile tea with raw honey, if desired (and not dealing with candida overgrowth)
- Purified water
Continue with Stage 1 foods.
Keep eating the soups with bone marrow, boiled meats or fish and other soft tissues off the bones. It is important to continue drinking the meat stock and ginger tea. Keep adding some probiotic food into every cup of meat stock and every bowl of soup. These can include juices from sauerkraut or kim-chi, fermented vegetables or vegetable medley or homemade kefir/yogurt.
- Add raw organic egg yolks.
- Add stews and casseroles made with meats and vegetables.
- Increase daily amount of homemade yogurt and kefir, if introduced. Increase the amount of juice from sauerkraut, fermented vegetables or vegetable medley. Introduce fermented fish, starting from one piece a day and gradually increasing. Look for recipes in the recipe section of Gut and Psychology Syndrome or our menu service.
- Introduce homemade ghee, starting from 1 teaspoon a day and gradually increasing.
- Carry on with all the previous foods.
- Add ripe avocado mashed into soups, starting from 1-3 teaspoons and gradually increasing the amount.
- Add pancakes, starting from one pancake a day and gradually increasing the amount. These pancakes consist of organic nut butter, eggs and winter squash or zucchini.
- Egg scrambled with plenty of ghee, goose fat or duck fat
- Introduce the sauerkraut and your fermented vegetables (Their juices should have been consumed since stage 1.).
- Stage 3 or 4 is a good time for most to introduce a high quality, GAPS-legal probiotic, such as Bio-Kult or Ther-Biotic Lacto-Prime Plus. See our store.
- Carry on with all previous foods.
- Gradually add meats cooked by roasting and grilling (but not barbecued or fried yet).
- Begin adding cold pressed olive oil to the meals, starting from a few drops per meal and gradually increasing the amount to 1-2 tablespoons per meal. Introduce freshly pressed juices, starting from a few spoonfuls of carrot juice.
- Try adding the GAPS Milkshake (recipe is found in under GAPS Diet page on this site or in Gut and Psychology Syndrome.
- Bake “bread” with ground almonds or any other nut and seeds ground into flour. Recipe is found in Gut and Psychology Syndrome.
- Continue all previous foods.
- Add cooked apple as an apple puree, if all the previous foods are well tolerated.
- Add raw vegetables starting from softer parts of lettuce and peeled cucumber.
- If the juice made from carrot, celery, lettuce and mint is well tolerated, start adding fruit to it: apple, pineapple and mango, if Candida overgrowth is not a concern.
- Continue all previous foods.
- Introduce some peeled raw apple, if all the introduced foods are well tolerated.
- Gradually introduce raw fruit and more honey.
- Gradually introduce baking cakes and other sweet things allowed on the diet. Use dried fruit as a sweetener in the baking.
After successfully introducing Stage 6 foods for several days with no digestive disruption, you may move to the GAPS Full Diet.
Click here for access to our GAPS Core Recipes.