Tuesday, January 7, 2014

GAPS: Day 11

After making the hard decision to stop into, I reached out to some of my vegan and similar friends who work in health--primarily using food to heal the body. I am somewhat in information overload. My kids were truly starving trying to manage on intro. While I realize healing will take time, sticking with such a restrictive diet just seemed like torture. Part of the issue is that we are also avoiding so many foods that are part of intro. Without those, our food choices are limited. I have been so convinced that vegetarian diets are healthier than carnivore or omnivore diets. After feeding my kids several pounds if extremely clean meat in a day, the remorse set in. I guess I'm just not convinced eating this much animal flesh can be healing. When someone tells me it's harder for the body to digest a green juice than pounds of boiled meat, I can't help but argue.

So for the last two days we have been staying on a Full GAPs approved diet but we have juiced or smoothied twice per day. We tried bone broth soup for lunch both days and filled up on tons of vegan recipes. The kids are finally happy again. Their palates have changed a bit too. They were dipping veggies in freshly blended spicy mustard. They also loved the vegan ranch dressing I made. It tasted nothing like organic Hidden Valley. Yet- they loved it.

10 more days of this and we will test a few of DD5's offending foods and reassess our healing plans. There is no doubt in my mind that she suffers from a leaky gut. It is fairly mild compared to others...at least for now. I don't want to see what happens when it gets worse. She could end up with really debilitating chronic illnesses later on. We may as well work on it now while she's still at home with me and it's easier to monitor her foods.

Sunday, January 5, 2014

GAPS: stopping intro!

If you were betting for or against us making through intro...the results are in! We are done. Not because we are done healing either. We are just flat out starving. GAPS die hards can call it die off and detox all they want. The way I felt last night was a step away from death. My kids are eating straight intro and I am supplementing full GAPs foods when they aren't looking. Yet, I was shaking, dry heaving, having burning in my stomach and some spotting with contractions. Not good! Intro would work right now IF we were not also trying to test DD5's offending foods. You simply can't do GAPs intro without at least eggs or kefir. You must have one or the other. Without grains or nuts there is very little to eat between meals or on the go when your kids can't stomach anymore broth or mushy veggies. I know many mamas say their kids come around but this is day 9. They have proven they would rather starve than stomach more of it. And honestly- I feel the same way. Just adding some eggs to something would add more texture. Or having some kefir/yogurt to make creamed soup or something would be more tolerable. And filling!

So for now- we will hover around stage 5-6 and full GAPs. We can't do anything new for 11 more days as far as dairy, eggs and nuts are concerned. I want to be strict with not adding sugar and trying to keep fruit to a minimum. We will keep up with all the other protocols, like broth at every meal and soup once a day. Breakfast is the ultimate challenge because I basically have to cook meat of some sort or else.

We could lock ourselves inside the house for a few more weeks to get through intro but I don't see the point until we complete our naturopath's elimination diet portion first.

While we are pausing on intro we are not giving up yet! Don't let me discourage you either! I have been reading about plenty of success on regular intro... But if you can't do the foods you simply can't keep up with your calories.

Friday, January 3, 2014

GAPS Intro: Day 7 Stage 2/3 ish

Pretty much the same ole thing around here. Add hungry grumpy children. DD5 still has her dark eye circles...but now I am reading how this is also a side effect of detox. She did develop tiny blood spots on top of the eye circles 3 nights ago. This was also said to be detox. We are all peeing a ton- and it is an urgent type of pee. This has been said to be detox too. Is it? I have no clue. I'm basically grumpy and cynical so I want to flip the bird at all things GAPs right now.

Because I have IgG results for DD5, we are holding off on introducing eggs and dairy--per the GAPs protocol, the egg yolks (raw) would have been introduced several days ago. Some GAPs enthusiasts (no really, they do exist) say intro the eggs anyway because they are important for healing. But then I argue that I have no way of knowing if she is having a reaction to the egg or not. We are fortunate not to have serious allergic reactions to any foods (that we know of) but this is yet another sign for me that DD5 needs true gut healing- not just to avoid the offending foods. Keep in mind, she is deficient in B12 and D...dangerously low in both of those. We normally incorporate plenty of those vitamins (D is a hormone but you know what I mean) into our diet. Yet, she's lacking it. So that is her leaky gut at play.

I got bored and frustrated on day 5 when we were basically ready for Stage 3 but by all GAPs people opinions we were going to fast. This could be true, but I refuse to sit on Stage 2 for another 14 days until we start introducing dairy and eggs What if we never want to eat dairy again? Eggs would be nice to have back....but still. I just don't believe these two food groups are requirements to gut healing. Surely adding some raw veggie juice would have its place here (That is stage 4 by the way). But I am not the expert creator of GAPs and if I keep mucking it up, I'll never know if GAPs worked for us.

So...I compromised. Stage 3 allows nut flour/butter pancakes made with squash. These puppies wont turn out without eggs so I just took almond meal and added hot water with a spot of coconut oil and honey. The kids lapped it up like mad. However, a few hours later DD5 had puffy eyes and a pink face...DH had also allowed her to use the iPad so I don't know if that was to blame. To be sure I tested almond flour again today- I mixed almond flour, coconut oil and a little salt with water and poured it into muffin cups and baked. No seriously- I did! The kids ate it up. I thought it tasted like a dry packet of cream of wheat poured straight into my mouth. But they each had 4 muffins. No sugar!

Finally made a beef broth that DD3 would eat. I added red peppers (which are Stage 1 but the 30 day What Can I eat on gaps doesn't say this! Tsk tsk!) and large chunks of celery during the cooking stage. I removed the celery (Stage 4) and served it with salmon broken up. DD3 slurped her bowl. DD5 scooped the salmon out and sipped a little broth. She's still hungry and has the same symptoms as yesterday post almond flour. So either she's still hungry (could be a possibility) or she's reacting to almonds. Almonds were NOT rated on her IgG so this is a bit of a shock. Back to Stage 2. Which is driving me crazy...DD3 whines nonstop- about everything and follows me around to whine some more. I have gotten to the point where I have to shut and lock my door so I can catch my breath. I don't know how much longer I can handle the starving.

Can't turn back now...onward we go. Hiding out inside the house so I don't have to deal with a DD3 meltdown. DD5 is just mopey and sluggish. I can tolerate that--it just pulls on my heart strings.