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I opened GAPS Intro Week Five with a wedding. (read about week four here)
Because of where I was in my healing journey – 4 weeks into GAPS and I had reintroduced roasted/grilled/baked meats – I decided to ask the bride about the food being served, rather than simply writing it off and bringing my own. If I had not been further along, I would have been the weirdo not eating, or eating out of a thermos. Because sometimes healing is more important than fitting in.
I let them know that I could not eat grains, legumes, dairy (except butter), nightshades, or sugar. The bride was very understanding and told me that the chef could take care of it. The night of, I avoid all the delicious looking hors d’oeuvres (there was bacon wrapped gnocchi…I cried a little inside) and the wine that smelled so good. When we sat down to eat, I was so excited to see the menu – there was a course of peasant and onion soup with pistachios and vegetables! Except that turned out to have a huge puff pastry on top and they brought me…a salad. I appreciated the effort, I did, but I can’t eat raw vegetables yet. What am I going to do with a salad? My mom didn’t want her soup, so I carefully removed the puff pastry. The soup looked clear and brothy – like the pastry was the only issue with it. So I ate it. I shouldn’t have, and I didn’t need to after seeing the main course, but I did.
For the main course, they brought me fillet mignon and green beans. It was absolutely amazing, and while I don’t know what was in the sauce, I felt confident that it wouldn’t be too bad. That steak though…wow. Oh, and I also ate 4 balls of butter. Because butter and healthy fats. I still drank some really gelatin-y broth when I got home to get myself back on track.
I didn’t notice any GI symptoms at all, which was great. The next day I was definitely a bit bloated, but feeling alright. Then I had my meltdown. I cried a lot, yelled a lot – it was bad. When it was over I realized it was 2:30 and I hadn’t had lunch, so I’m sure part of it was lack of food. But I began to wonder if a good chunk of that wasn’t due to something I ate last night. I was reminded that I have dysthymia (sub-clinical depression), and I began to reflect on this fact. This is not a myriad of symptoms that are defined as dysthymia, but it is actually a mental illness I have that causes those symptoms. I am completely on the right track with GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome), and I definitely need to be paying attention to these reactions. I also became filled with fear that I would never be able to eat nuts again or that I might find an issue with dairy (there’s my anxiety!). But this is a healing diet. Surely I will be able to conquer my dysthymia and even if I am sensitive now some day I will be able to eat those foods I love. I still made the decision to cut out nuts for even longer, though, in case it was the pistachios that triggered this. I slowly improved throughout the day and focused on having a lot of gut healing foods: gelatin in my soup, egg yolks, gelatinous broth, and a ton of butter.
One Month of Healing with GAPS Intro
As I recovered from my reaction, I felt really great during week 5. I passed the one month mark on GAPS Intro with a good amount of energy. I was experiencing some minor symptoms (a small amount of acne and minor constipation I’ve been dealing with for quite some time), but overall I felt great. I was excited and inspired to get work done and I was incredibly productive. I started incorporating more movement into my lifestyle, and I was even sleeping better a few nights this week. I began to recognize that I still have work to do before I will be fully healed, but I was feeling so great in the second half of this fifth week, that I have been incredibly hopeful. The amount of healing I have experienced on GAPS Intro truly is amazing, and I am so thankful to have found this diet.
During week 5 I added in sauerkraut and olive oil. No reactions, and it was nice to broaden my probiotic and fat options.
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