For those of you following along, you know that I embarked upon the GAPS Intro Diet in early August. Things were slow going, but nonetheless I was seeing an improvement in my overall gut health and the severity of my ulcerative colitis symptoms. This was a huge relief as my gastroentonologist was supportive of my decision to forgo medications and steroids but had his doubts that GAPS would really be the cure-all that I needed considering the severity of my ulcerative colitis.
At the end of August, I entered into Stage 5 of the GAPS Intro diet. I decided that it was time to introduce dairy, mainly because my body seemed to be craving it, but also because I didn't “think” I had any issues with foods like yogurt, cheese, and butter in the past. (Milk had been a problem which seemed to be minimized when I began using Raw Milk over a year ago).
I was an idiot.
No, not because I decided to introduce dairy. It is perfectly legal to do so. I just didn't follow instructions because I got a little overconfident. You see, before introducing dairy you are suppose to do a skin allergy test. Had I bothered to do this, I would have learned, literally overnight, that dairy is a big no-no for me. But I opted to skip it and move straight to yogurt…another bad move. (You are supposed to start with milder dairy like butter or whey). Well…
I am starting the GAPS Intro all over again. Boo hiss. Dairy had an IMMEDIATE and very NEGATIVE impact on my gut. My ulcerative colitis symptoms reared their ugly way in a vicious way. In fact, because my gut had been healing, it actually seems like the ulcerative colitis came back with a vengeance. It wants to make sure that I am FULLY aware that dairy is at least one of the gigantic aggravaters of this disease. I'm listening. Dairy will no longer be a part of my food repertoire. The discomfort and the side effects are just not worth it. I am rather miserable right now.
The good news is that I have not gotten bored of the foods allowed on the GAPS Intro. This is in part to the fact that I have no problem eating plain, bland foods. I personally love the taste of foods in their natural state. Plain, boiled meats, fish, and poultry are just fine by me. Butternut and acorn squashes are typically something I eat with just a little butter anyway so plain has been no issue. Same with summer squash and carrots. I like a little butter and sea salt and that's it. The other reason that the GAPS Intro has been easy and pretty darn tasty is because of the GAPS Intro eBook from Cara over at Health, Home and Happiness. You can read my thoughts on her glorious book here but in a nutshell, she makes it foolproof to follow and ENJOY the GAPS Intro. She makes it easy not to mess up. Unless you are overzealous like me.
Side note – since the Giveaway for the Gaps Intro eBook ends tonight, you might want to hurry and enter. If you don't win, you can always purchase a copy by clicking here. Cara is offering a coupon code good until September 30th. You will get 30% off the GAPS Intro eBook and if you are interested in her Grain Free Monthly Menu Planning (complete with GAPS legal recipe) you can also use the code for 30% off of any membership. Just enter HRM30 at checkout!
So anyway, that is my tale of success and woe. I am back on Stage One and will be moving through the Intro at a slightly faster pace than before. I am sticking with the 5 days per stage plan as is laid out in the eBook. I am hoping that my gut can get itself back to the improved state that it was in. By no means was my ulcerative colitis cured (things like stress can also trigger it) but it sure as heck was better than it had been.
Any questions for me, please ask away! I want to help others who are interested in healing their guts through this nutritional lifestyle so feel free to pick my brain. I'll share with you whatever I can!
P.S. After having the reaction to dairy and knowing I would start the Intro over, I indulged in a gigantic handful of raisins. And gosh darn it they were yummy. And so was the chocolate coconut water (ok, waterS) I consumed.