What is the GAPS story? Where did it originate and how did it come about? What is it and what can it do for you?
These are the questions I continually asked myself when I first started on the GAPS journey.
The first time I heard about GAPS was when I was living in Hong Kong and I had a child who was ADHD, in high school, not doing great academically and desperate to fit in. I was desperate myself to help this child as I could see the potential and we did really well on GAPS. I saw huge improvements in school grades, behaviour and focus. Unfortunately, 14 is not the best age to do GAPS as you’re considered the weird kid for not eating the processed, junk food other teens are eating.
My child rebelled against having to take ‘odd’ food in a non conventional lunchbox to school and started buying food at school and not eating what I had provided for lunch. The results were dire, because all the symptoms that GAPS was helping came back and worsened – because if your child isn’t on board, you cannot get the results GAPS offers. I continued to try and feed my family GAPS meals at home and followed GAPS myself for most of 2013.
GAPS is much easier to implement with young children, especially children below the age of 5 who haven’t started school yet and where you can control exactly what they are eating throughout the day. GAPS is also easier for adults to implement into their lives, especially if the condition they are suffering from has a detrimental effect on their health and lifestyle.
Most clients will come to a GAPS practitioner as a last resort, after being to doctors, nutritionists, healers, naturopaths – with no real changes in how they feel and the condition they are suffering from. There are countless stories about people with conditions such as fibromyalgia, which the doctor says there is no cure for, or where they cannot help them any longer. The client starts the GAPS Intro protocol and starts to heal and manages to get out of bed in the morning with no pain after years of suffering. It is truly remarkable.
So, what is GAPS? GAPS stands for:
GUT AND PSYCHOLOGY SYNDROME (yellow book) – includes Mental disorders and learning difficulties such as ADHD, Autism, Dyslexia etc.
GUT AND PHYSIOLOGY SYNDROME (blue book) – includes chronic physical conditions which stem from an unhealthy gut such as auto-immune conditions, asthma, eczema, various allergies and intolerances etc.
GAPS was created by Dr Natasha Campbell McBride, who is a Medical Doctor, Neurologist and Nutrition expert. She created GAPS to heal her son who had autism as a child. Her life’s work has been dedicated to healing people through the GAPS protocol. She now lives on a farm in the UK, where she produces most of her own food and consults from online.
GAPS foods are foods in their most natural form and focused on highly nourishing foods such as eggs, meat stocks, stews, fermented vegetables and easy to digest vegetables and fruit. These whole foods are the easiest for our gut to digest.
Depending on the severity of a persons condition or gut health, they may need to remove all grains from their diet for at least a year and the only sugar they would be able to have is honey, in very limited quantities. The principle is to use the building blocks from amino acids in proteins to rebuild the gut wall and to nourish each cell in the body. This is why it is more heavily meat based. Fruit, vegetables and juices are used to cleanse the body, whereas the proteins and meat stocks nourish the body and heal the gut.
Some of the many conditions the GAPS protocol helps to heal:
ADHD/ADD, Autism, dyslexia, dyspraxia, depression, OCD, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, epilepsy, eating disorders, auto-immune disorders such as celiac disease, rheumatoid arthritis, type one diabetes, multiple sclerosis, systemic lupus, osteoarthritis, chrohn’s disease, ulcerative colitis, asthma, eczema, various allergies, food allergy and intolerance, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, menstrual problems, endocrine disorders, chronic digestive disorders such as IBS, gastritis, colitis.
After becoming a certified Health Coach through IIN and receiving my Diploma in Nutrition from Nature Care College in Sydney, I decided that I wanted to enrol into the GAPS Practitioner Course to learn how to help people heal their gut and recover. I am now a Certified GAPS Practitioner and am dedicated in helping clients heal their gut and heal their lives.
When the body heals, it heals as a whole. If you are suffering from any of these conditions or know someone who is suffering or desperately needs help and don’t know where to turn, please contact me for a 20 minute free telephone conversation. You can book a consultation through the link on my home page on my website here.
You can purchase the GAPS books from Amazon, they are also available on kindle.
If you are a nutritionist or interested in becoming a GAPS practitioner or a GAPS coach, you can sign up for the course here
You can find a great Meat Stock that is GAPS friendly here and it is a great place to start healing your gut.