Thursday, April 3, 2014

GAPS, Day something or other,... and Why I'm Doing GAPS

So here we are, a good 2 weeks into the GAPS Intro Diet, and aside from a few early depressive episodes, some midway-through PMS pimples, and some late upper abdominal discomfort, it has been going pretty well, methinks!

Before I share what my current Meal Plan O' The Day looks like, I will back up and elaborate on what lead me to GAPS to begin with.

First, there was Paleo, otherwise known as the Primal Diet, the Caveman Diet, or, by those who would take issue with what other people eat while simultaneously knowing very little about the foods they themselves eat, the "Aren't You Worried about Your Cholesterol??!!" Diet.  Paleo just made perfect sense to me.  Of COURSE we should be eating meat and fish who live and eat the way God intended, not being force-fed grains and standing in tiny stalls all day, or fish being "farmed" instead of wild-caught in their true environment.  Of COURSE we should be loading up our plates with the freshest variety of all of the greens available to us.  Of COURSE we should utilize as much of all of our foods as possible, leaving no waste.  To me, this was a no-brainer.  And once I read Dr Mary Enig's Know Your Fats, (which was like a brutal crash-course AP Chemistry, by the by), it not only made logical sense, but physiological, too.

I wasn't as strict on Paleo for the past year and 1/2 as I was in the first 6 months.  I did "cheat," on other foods that were REAL Foods (also excellent books), mostly raw milk and raw milk products, and sprouted grain sourdough culture bread from the farmer's market, and the occasional Udi's muffin or bagel - but in general, I was adhering pretty closely to the Paleo diet.

It was only after 6 months of Paleo when I saw a D.O. who specialized in nutritional deficiencies, when I discovered through my first Spectracell testing that I was deficient in just about EVERYTHING my diet was rich in!  B12 vitamin, B6 vitamin, choline, for crying out loud - - with as many pastured eggs, meat, and offals I was consuming (yes, offals, and not just the internal ones!) - how could this possibly be??!!  I was stumped.

And that's when, after trying some crap-supplements (pun not intended, but certainly fitting), I went on to find THE supplement, and wrote this post.

So, yes, my poop was regular and I felt great about it.  But... you know me.  Or, maybe you don't.  If you don't, you should know... I'm never satisfied with a "quick fix," particularly if I don't know how or why it's working, and why what it's 'fixed' needed fixing to begin with.  So, I kept exploring.

I found a TON of information and researched to death.  Like, I've watched that video and taken notes about 5 times.  I now own stock in Seeking Health (best supplements, truly, I've ever taken).

In the meantime, I also met 2013.  A year of crap that I was not personally eliminating.  A year of depression and adrenal crisis.  Someday, I'll share more.  I know you can hardly wait.

Which lead me to a Naturopathic Physician, a Massage Therapist, and a Chiropractor.  My dream team.  Another Spectracell test now showed, now after having been on what I believed to be an AWESOME mix of supplements, deficiencies in chromium, iron, and still mildly low in B Vitamins.  Huh??!!  I was, of course, quick to blame everything on genetics.  I ran out and got the 23 and Me Testing to discover there were even more issues in methylation, particular as it related to serotonin and dopamine (hello, depression).  I also kept researching causes of the body's inability to properly digest foods and get the nutrients from them... and found...

SIBO:  Small Intestinal Bacterial Overgrowth

Now I was onto something!!  This was most definitely my issue.  I even invested in the breath test just to be sure (when I realized, wait, I don't need to bother with the test, because I'm going to be treating it the same way, regardless... with GAPS!)

I had already read some of the information floating around on GAPS and knew it sounded like a good idea.  For some people.  But I was already on a healthy diet, healthy supplement plan... so I didn't need it.  So I thought.

The latest deficiencies are being addressed, now, but most importantly, what I'm trying to do by working through the GAPS Intro and possibly staying on Full GAPS for about 6 months or so (to transition back to Paleo eventually) is to heal my minor gut issues, in order to better digest my healthful diet and no longer need a ton of supplements.

In the meantime, I'm going to be taking my Naturopath's advice:

Stress.  Stress stress stress.  And more of it.

I like how she says I *may* argue the chicken or the egg ;)  Um, I've been trying to PROVE the chicken for 2 years, now!!  But clearly, the egg of my chronic stress is a major culprit, here, that I can no longer deny.  Most days, I'm not quite sure how I'm standing, let alone working and cooking and everything else us childless folk do with our time.  But, the egg has cracked, and I need to suck it up and deal.

I'm feeling good on GAPS, but most importantly, I'm feeling good with my decision to do GAPS.  I am back on almost all of my supplements, now, and getting more energy by the day.

Now, for an envy-inducing, tantalizing look at my typical meals in Stage 3.  
{WARNING:  For those of you who are not yet blessed with food you need not chew, you may want to skip the following pics!}:

Ginger "tea" with honey, in my sea kelp detox bath.

A bunch of cra-..., er, stuff I threw into a pot together and boiled with chicken broth

Mama's first rendered tallow, saurkraut, and fermented fish

GAPS pancakes (I know, I feel bad even showing this picture, it's just not right to brag), and some kind of broth/soup with mashed up avocado

Snickerdoodle cupcakes for DH's 35th birthday.  Of which I had NONE, not even a lick of the homemade vanilla frosting that kept getting all over my fingers.  I am *that* disciplined.

Guacamole (seriously, even with only sea salt and cilantro, this was heaven)

Meet the master of gelatinous bone broth, ladies and gentlemen.  I don't think you're ready for this gelly.


Kat said...

Mmmm I love avocado. I wish my DH wasn't allergic/sensitive to it so I could justify buying more avocados. Stress sucks! I very much dislike the fact that it can impact our health so drastically. I really hope gaps helps you with your digestive issues and that there is a way for you to eliminate some stressors.

E said...

Glad to hear you are back on those supplement and feeling better. Oh stress...some of us are more susceptible than other. TYJ.

Sew said...

I admire your discipline. I'm thinking it's a gift from God because I have none!

Mike Brummond said...

That guacamole looks amazing!!!