15/04/2013 by Katrina
All has been a bit quiet on the recipe front here on FKK. Bone broths and bulletproof coffee is nothing to write home about (but both delish!). Kirk and I have been given the boot in the backside to get onto the GAPS Diet wagon from our diligent and fabulous doctor. Imagine that, a GP at a normal medical centre up the road telling her patients to fix their gut (and all their other health problems) by eating GAPS! To say we were stoked to come across her (thanks to my mum) is an understatement!
So GAPS is basically a temporary, therapeutic diet that you follow with the goal to heal your gut and create an optimal environment for digestion and a plethora of good bacteria to thrive in. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride is the smart lady behind the GAPS Diet and has written a fantastic book called ‘Gut and Psychology Syndrome’. Sounds like an interesting title, but that is what GAPS stands for. The book goes into detail about how the brain and gut are closely linked – it is amazing! If you want the book in a nutshell, watch this Youtube series by a mum who did GAPS with her family. She basically sums up the book.
So to give you a REALLY BASIC overview of the diet, GAPS is pretty much how Kirk and I have been eating for the last-what-feels-like-forever. No starches and no sugar (no coconut sugar, no pure maple syrup, no agave, no stevia, no rapadura, etc) – only good-old-fashioned raw honey and dates. We’ve been fabulous with the elimination of starches in the past, but our sugars could definitely be improved 🙂 You also have to drink loads of gut-loving bone broths, fermented foods, ghee, homemade yoghurt, animal fats and fermented dairy.
According to Dr. Nat, if you have an allergy or auto-immune disease (me with the gluten and dairy intolerances and Kirk with the auto-immune disease) you can control and eliminate these problems by healing your gut….as a lack of good bacteria in your tummy is what usually causes these things to flare up in the first place!
Even though we’ve had AMAZING, 100% success with going starch-free for Kirk’s Ankylosing Spondylitis, we figured we should probably fix unhealthy guts while we are at it – so here we are on the GAPS.
GAPS is a huge commitment in food preparation, the detox symptoms (uhh) and absolutely no cheating! There are two sections of this diet:
- Introduction Diet – which has 6 stages within it. At each stage you introduce more foods. You can move through these stages as quickly as you like depending on the severity of your issues. The average person will usually spend 1 month on the Intro Diet, but it really depends on the individual. You can really tell when your body is not ready to go onto the next stage as you feel bloated and gross when you introduce a new food. When this happens, all you do is stay on the previous stage a day or so more and then try that food again. Usually you won’t have a problem. It is incredible how quick the gut heals.
- Full GAPS Diet – no sugar and no starch and to Kirk’s disappointment, no beer. You usually stay on this stage for 1.5 years.
SAY WHAT?? ONE-POINT-FIVE YEARS!!!!!…or did you say…SAY WHAT?? NO BEER!!! Hold your horses – there are some incredible recipes out there…the food is amazing! Kirk has gone through the Introduction Diet stages a lot faster than I and therefore these yummy GAPS Chocolate Fudge Squares are for him…not me. Yet.
GAPS Chocolate Fudge Squares
- 1 1/2 cups coconut butter (Thermomix recipe to make your own!)
- 1 cup cocoa powder
- large pinch of sea salt
- 1 Tbs vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup raw honey
- Mix coconut butter, cocoa powder, sea salt and vanilla extract together in the Thermomix or mixer. If your coconut butter is solid, you will want to melt it first.
- As the Thermomix/mixer is going, add in the honey until well combined.
- Pour the fudge mixture into a square tray that has been lined with baking paper or coconut oil.
- Place the tray into the fridge to set (ours lasted in the fridge for 20 minutes before Kirk got stuck into it).
- Store in a container in the fridge.