The GAPS Protocol is a three part program designed to heal the gut lining, restore the gut with beneficial flora and relieve the body of an excess toxic load. The program incorporates a nutritional program supported by specific supplements with an emphasis on detoxification and reduction of exposure to environmental toxins. The program requires persistence, perseverance and 100% commitment!
This information is not designed to replace the Gut and Psychology Syndrome book, but provide a simplified version of the GAPS protocol at a glance. Please read the GAPS book to fully understand how and why this particular intervention works, why other diets are inappropriate for GAPS patients and how to implement the protocol correctly.
GAPS Protocol is a three part program
3. Detoxification and life-style changes
The GAPS diet provides the most comprehensive approach in effectively cleaning up the digestive system. It is built upon the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) developed by Dr Sydney Valentine Hass in the first half of the 2oth century, and then followed by Elain Gotchall with Breaking the Vicious Cycle. The main difference identified between the SCD diet and GAPS diet is the use of dairy products. The SCD diet allows lactose-free dairy products from the beginning which is present in SCD yoghurts, sour cream and cheese.
The lactose in these products are consumed by bacteria during the fermentation process making it easier to digest. Dr N. Campbell McBride advises that whilst the lactose is consumed during fermentaiton, it is the milk protein casein that causes the problem. Casamorphins from miss-digestion of milk protein casein get absorbed through the gut wall into the blood stream and across the blood brain barrier which affect the functions of the brain. Dairy is also a concern with its ability to create allergies and food intolerance.
When dairy is completely removed from the diet of a child with autism or an adult with schizophrenia, the changes can be quite astonishing. Many report improved communication, eye contact, correction of eczema and asthma and improvements in social well-being. Dr N. Campbell-McBride’s book and the introduction diet goes on to discuss the correct measures to take when introducing fermented dairy and milk fats.
The GAPS protocol therefore, provides an effective approach for allergies, sensitivities, digestive disfunction and many other physiological and psychological conditions.
The GAPS diet is best implemented following the below steps:
Become familiar with the GAPS foods and explore with cooking.
Become familiar with your local health food suppliers, stores and markets.
Gradually wean off the GAPS unfriendly foods (for a full list of foods to avoid click here)
Introduce more GAPS friendly foods TIP: You can get a free copy of the GAPS Shopping list from our Free Ebook – Simply join our free subscription to download
2. The Introduction / detox diet
The introduction diet consists mostly of homemade rich bone broths and vegetable soups, boiled meats and stews with high fat content. This gives the digestive system the best chance to kick start the healing process. The 6 introductions stages should not be rushed and requires strict adherence and patients.
The free GAPS Getting Started Orientation E Book contains a comprehensive step by step process for the 6 steps in the introduction diet.
3. The main diet
Dr N. Campbell-McBride advises people with severe digestive disorders to remain on the GAPS diet for a minimum of two years before moving onto the next stage where new foods from Wise Traditions are explored. The full GAPS diet is found in the book.
4. After GAPS
Click here for more information on what foods to eat after GAPS
Please read the GAPS Supplementation Criteria to in the GAPS book to ensure that you select good quality and therapeutic strength supplements. We have compiled a Supplementation Guide EBook to help you learn how to select supplements that meet the GAPS Supplement Criteria. Click here for more information
- Essential fatty acids
- Vitamin A & D
- Digestive Enzymes in the form of HCl (stomach acid)
- Selected vitamin mineral and amino acid supplements
Detoxification and life-style changes
We live in a toxic world
Modern foods are processed and bombarded with pesticides, herbicides, and fungicides most of which stay on or in the food right through to the point that you eat it. Animal products are treated with hormones, antibiotics, and synthetic stimulants. Food in the supermarket is treated with preservatives to create longevity. To enhance their flavour and colour they are pumped full of other chemicals which have no place in nutrition. Your body needs a regular supply of essential nutrients which are missing in these modern foods. It needs a large and well balanced variety of minerals, vitamins, and other nutrients to combat these unwanted ingredients, and to strengthen the body against failure to function normally.
Unaware, we continue top up our toxic load with chemical contained personal care products, house cleaners and expose ourselves to traffic exhaust fumes. Paint, building materials, carpet and new furniture all leach toxic chemical gasses into the air that we breathe day in and day out.
Healthy people can manage to detoxify these toxins however a GAPS patient’s detoxification system is overloaded and overworked because they are deficient in the appropriate supply of important nutrients, minerals, trace elements, enzymes, amino acids and essential fats. In order for a GAPS patient’s detoxification system to function properly, there are several steps required to detoxify the system and reduce the toxic load.