Tuesday, August 30, 2011

How Do I Start GAPS?

I've had a lot of people ask me about how to get started on GAPS now that I have been at it myself for 5 1/2 months. Whoa! That's a long time! Anyways, I wrote an email to my friend, and it turned into this post. Hopefully you will find the links and structure inspiring so that you might take GAPS on for yourself.

GAPS Introduction and How-To
Let's start at the very beginning, a very good place to staaart! Okay, so first of all here's the basic overview of the diet: GAPS Diet Overview. Now you know where you're going, and it's time to prepare prior to starting Intro Diet:

  • buy GAPS books:
    • do NOT buy Gut and Psychology Syndrome unless you can afford it no problem and you would like to read it; it's not essential, it's haphazardly written, but it's also very interesting in a rambling kind of way!
    • DO buy GAPS Guide by Baden Lashkov, which is much more clearly written, shorter and cheaper :)
    • DO buy Internal Bliss, which is a spiral-bound book full of GAPS recipes
    • you can buy any or all of these books here more easily (and cheaper!) than on Amazon (which I linked to for review purposes, not price/ease): List of GAPS Books
  • buy cod liver oil: Green Pastures Cod Liver Oil
  • buy probiotics:
    • Bio-Kult is recommended and it really IS awesome; you can buy it here: Bio-Kult Probiotics
      • I would recommend buying in bulk since it goes from $42/bottle to $37/bottle.
    • The next best probiotic I have found is the Garden of Life Vitamin Code Raw Probiotics (it says 85 billion live cultures on the bottle), and it's a little cheaper: Garden of Life RAW Probiotics - Women
  • find bones/meat using this link: Eat Wild Directory or this link: Grassfed Beef Directory
    • find grass-fed beef, lamb (if stuck, Whole Foods has them, but they are pricey)
    • find pastured chickens (Whole Foods has a decent price on pastured chickens: the Mary's Air Chilled Pastured chickens; buy in a "box" and they will give you 10% off)
    • find wild seafood (this is easy to find, but harder to find with bones; try Asian markets)
  • make bone broth ahead of time, store in freezer (make sure to store in large glass jars or safe plastic like polypropylene)
  • buy/make sauerkraut, pickles, other fermented veggies
  • find good local eggs: How To Buy Eggs
    • ask if their chickens eat soy, you do NOT want soy in the feed
    • ask if their chickens eat bugs outside in the sun, since this produces dark yolks full of vitamin D and other nutrients
    • you may pay $5/dozen at farmer's markets, but people with backyard chickens tend to charge around $3/dozen, so keep your ears open for those opportunities
  • find raw dairy: Where To Get Real Milk
    • how to make raw milk yogurt:
      • buy some store whole milk organic yogurt and put 1-2 tablespoons in a quart mason jar and fill with raw milk, stir, cover with a cloth, and let sit at room temperature (around 85 degrees) for at least 24 hours; then you have yogurt!
      • OR you can make your own starter and then make raw milk yogurt from that; here's a how-to: GAPS Yogurt OR Homemade Yogurt
      • OR you can simply buy and use Strauss, Humboldt or Trader Joe's yogurts; make sure they are whole milk, organic, plain, and have a long list of different strains of bacteria in them (the longer the list the better!)
    • how to make sour cream:
      • recipe:
      • OR buy Daisy brand or any other sour cream that has only the ingredients: cream, milk, culture, salt (no skim milk, no milk powder, no thickeners)
    • how to make whey (from raw milk, yogurt, etc.): How To Make Whey
    • how to make ghee: How To Make Ghee
      • use Kerrygold or Humboldt butter (they are grass-fed), or other grass-fed butters you might find in your area
    • find raw cheese:
      • there are raw, grass-fed cheeses on Azure Standard
      • Rumiano is a grass-fed brand
      • Tillamook is grass-fed MOST of the time if you are in a bind (it's also not raw)
      • Organic Valley is raw, but I don't know if they are grass-fed
      • Trader Joe's carries some grass-fed cheeses
  • soak and dehydrate nuts for later in Intro Diet
    • How to soak: Soaking Nuts
    • then dehydrate out in the sun or in a dehydrator until crisp again
    • to use as "flour" just grind up in a food processor
  • find coconut flour, coconut oil, coconut shreds (unsweetened): all available at Azure Standard
    • virgin coconut oil tastes and smells like coconut, whereas the expeller-pressed kind has no flavor or taste
    • coconut flour is VERY handy for making treats, but has a lot of fiber so eat carefully
    • coconut shreds are tasty and filling, plus you can add them to yogurt bowls and things like that
  • make water kefir, milk kefir, or kombucha (all are allowed):
Okay, now you're ready to start.  You should have a fridge/freezer full of stock, yogurt, sauerkraut, whey, eggs, veggies, grass-fed meats, ghee and such (eventually in stage 6 of Intro Diet you can add nuts and fruit)
Below is a Google doc with all my recipes in it, both for Intro Diet and Full GAPS Diet.  It's a work in progress because I haven't transferred all the recipes over, plus I'm always finding new ones.  Feel free to check it out, and add more links in comments if you have them!
Also, I have two additional Google docs that go into more depth with real food and candida, both of which are very helpful:
I hope this helps (and doesn't overwhelm!) you as you get started.  I'm so excited to help you transition into this!


McDonalds said...

You are amazing...yep amazing. I love and miss you.

Robin said...

Great post! I'd love to hear how you've felt during this process and what results you are seeing! Way to go, k! You are awesome!!!

Cassidy said...

Thank you so much for this information! I actually found your blog through the Arizona chapter of the Weston A. Price Foundation site and was wondering where you purchase a lot of your items locally. Is there a butcher where you get your chicken feet/bones for broths and have you found a local resource for grass-fed beef/chicken/eggs?