GAPS and Onwards
After completion of the GAPS program in approximately 2 – 2.5 years, Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride advises that GAPS patients need to continue taking probiotics indefinitely; however this does not need to be maintained with commercial sources. Probiotic can be supplemented in the form of homemade fermented preparations such as yoghurts, kefir and fermented vegetables.
Coming off the GAPS Diet
The strict GAPS diet should be adhered to for at least 1.5 – 2.5 years. Depending on the severity of the condition, some people recover quicker, others take much longer. Your patient needs to have at least 6 months of normal digestion before you start introducing foods not allowed on the GAPS diet. Do not rush with this step. Some people simply continue eating the GAPS food and find that they prefer this nutritional lifestyle, whilst others are ready to move on.
The first foods you will be able to introduce are new potatoes and fermented gluten-free grains (buckwheat, millet and quinoa). The recipe section at www.gaps.me will explain how to ferment grains.
Introduce one food at a time and always start from a small amount: give your patient a small portion of the new food and watch for any reaction for 2-3 days. If there are no digestive problems returning, or any other typical for your patient symptoms, then in a few days try another portion. If there are no reactions, gradually increase the amount of the food. These are starchy foods, so do not forget to serve them with good amounts of fat (butter, olive oil, any animal fat, coconut oil, etc.) to slow down the digestion of starch. Do not rush with the introduction of these new foods; it may take several months to do it properly.
Once new potatoes and fermented grains are introduced, try to make sourdough with good quality wheat or rye flour. You can make pancakes or bread with the sourdough. I would recommend a wonderful book by Sally Fallon “Nourishing Traditions” for a wealth of recipes. Once sourdough is well-tolerated you may be able to buy commercially available good quality sourdough breads.
At that stage you may find that your patient can digest buckwheat, millet and quinoa without fermenting them prior to cooking. Gradually you will find that you can introduce various starchy vegetables, grains and beans.
YOUR PATIENT WILL NEVER BE ABLE TO GO BACK TO THE TYPICAL MODERN DIET FULL OF SUGAR, ARTIFICIAL AND PROCESSED INGREDIENTS AND OTHER HARMFUL FOODS. USE THE YEARS OF FOLLOWING GAPS NUTRITIONAL PROTOCOL FOR DEVELOPING HEALTHY EATING HABITS FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE !