GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) diet
There is no doubt that the way we eat has a profound impact on our physical and mental health.
But will a restricted diet work? Dr. Natasha Campbell – Mcbride says yes, it will work with promising results. She created the Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) diet and says it can help with everything from gout to depression to attention-deficit disorder (ADD). GAPS is also claimed to help with Autism in children.
What is the GAPS diet?
The Gut and Psychology Syndrome diet bases itself on the theory that many of our physical and mental ails come from a “leaky gut.”
In GAPS, a leaky gut is when toxins, chemicals, and bacteria leak into your intestines through the absorption phase of digestion. This happens because the intestines walls are more permeable than usual.
According to Dr. Campbell-Mcbride, leaky gut causes us to feel fatigue, and it leads to more serious conditions such as depression, ADD, and schizophrenia.
Structure of the GAPS Diet
GAPS is designed to be strictly followed over 1.5-2 years and includes several phases.
- Phase 1: Only consume homemade broth and cooked vegetables
- Phase 2: Add egg yolk, meats and vegetables, fish, and homemade ghee
- Phase 3: Add avocado, fermented vegetables, scrambled eggs, and GAPS pancakes
- Phase 4: Add roasted meats, olive oil, carrot juice, GAPS milkshake, and GAPS bread
- Phase 5: Add cooked apple sauce, raw vegetables, and fruit juice
- Phase 6: Add raw fruits and sugarless baked goods with dried fruit
After these phases, the only food you can eat are meat, fresh vegetables and fruit, eggs, nuts, and natural fats like ghee or coconut oil.
All phases also require the use of probiotics to maintain the right bacterial streams in the intestines.
The reintroduction phase of GAPS, when you are allowed to add other foods to the diet, happens after the six above phases and complete and you have maintained the last phase for at least six months. By then, you’ve been on the diet for a year and a half to two years.
Does the GAPS diet work?
Although the GAPS diet has been extremely popular over the last decade, the verdict is still out on whether it is scientifically sound. The “leaky gut” condition Dr. Campbell-McBride is referring to is still not an actual proven condition.
The GAPS diet and the leaky gut condition still needs scientific testing and review from the medical community.
However, GAPS has been so popular because many say they have experienced success and felt a big difference once they have tried the diet. Many have said that GAPS has helped them manage symptoms of autism for their kids and lessen their anxiety and depression. It has become so popular in fact, that many meal preparation companies often cater their meals to clients on GAPS.
Whether or not you are ready to adopt the GAPS diet, there is no doubt that altering the way you eat will influence your mental and emotional state of mind. If you’re looking for a way to start eating to improve your mental health, you may consider looking into the GAPS diet.