Monday, April 11, 2011

GAPS Intro, redux

I wasn't intending to do it.

When Baden (of "GAPS Guide", and the GAPS Guide book) posted that she was getting ready to re-do the intro diet, and offered to support others who wanted to do it as a group, I thought, "well, that's good. A lot of people will benefit. Maybe I'll do it again at some point, but not now."

Not now indeed. I am starting my thesis (and that is part of why I haven't been writing here, because I have been thinking, planning, finishing my coursework...) It is Spring in Port Angeles, so we have been taking winter things off the boat, ripping plastic off the windows, eating geoduck, foraging for nettles. Everything, really, but doing the internal Spring Cleanse that might be in order.

But two things happened: Baden is crazy persuasive, with her gentle matter-of-fact approach. She doesn't push anyone, which gives people room to make their own decisions (I admire this trait, something I need to emulate). And I, like Baden, have allowed non-GAPS foods to slip in over time, which recently has been having unwanted effects. A few old symptoms have returned--mild vertigo, water retention, basal temperatures dropping.

I think I am both ready and in need of that Spring Cleaning.

So, without planning, at least not consciously, I have started Intro this morning. I didn't have all the supplies ready, but I was pretty close. I had to use lime in my water instead of lemon, and the soup I had for breakfast was some that I had canned last summer (thank goodness I am such a miser and can't bear to throw anything away!) I am sipping ginger tea as I write, hold the honey. Because craving sweets is definitely another of those pesky issues that has reared its ugly head.

I tried to talk myself out of it. Several times. The Thesis. The Spring Cleaning. Foraging. Easter is coming, and I always make candy for the kids: luscious marshmallows, nut brittle, truffles--all made with honey and love. So many things to get in the way of self-love. But, you know what? I can still make the candy, and I can not eat it. I am a strong adult, and I can take care of myself. I can make a pot of soup for me, while cooking for the family. Intro is not forever, and the payoff is huge.

I may not do it perfectly. In the past I have cut a few corners, but this time I am trying to do it textbook-style. Just to see what happens. Maybe I will be able to introduce dairy this time, after three years with butter as the only dairy I can tolerate. Maybe by being strict right now, I will have more freedom down the line.

And that's what it is about for me. Freedom. Freedom from symptoms, from worry, from complications. GAPS is about eating simply and healthfully. It's about making a meal that satisfies, not one that impresses. It's about giving my body a rest. It's not prison--it's the opposite: pure freedom.

If any of you are still hanging with me after my erratic habits of the last two years, thank you. And if you are motivated to do your own Spring Cleaning, do let me know. Let's support each other toward the freedom of true health.


Michael & Sue said...

Hi! I am so with you! So many excuses to NOT start yet...but for me, a lifetime of agony over eating is enough. I've circled this mountain long enough! Feel this is the way to go and as you said, "do it 100%" !!
WE CAN do this! There is a great book to help with the mental/emotional difficulties called "Power Thoughts" by Joyce Meyer that I have been reading over the last couple of months. Very encouraging and also great tools for building inner strength and resolve. HIGHLY recommend it as a daily morning get started part of the day!!

Justine Raphael said...

@Sue--thanks SO much for your support and kind words! Yesterday was harder than I thought it would be, so I truly appreciate it...

Are you doing intro now?

Laura said...

Me! Me! I'm not doing GAPS, but after all your gentle persuasion I've finally given up all grains and sugar. Backing into GAPS, as you've encouraged me to do... For me, the final impetus was Sam's weaning (sniff). I finally have the energy to embrace self-care as you put it. Check out *my* blog if you find some time--with my Emirati friend I'm writing about parenting and traditional foods. Big hug from across the world!

Michael & Sue said...

I haven't started yet - need to take it a little slower...I have gone through many many detox type diets cold turkey and really get sick to the point of not being able to function,so I'm taking it a little slower this time. Right now I'm in process of cutting out all negative foods for me like sugars etc...I'll do this for about 7-10 days and then will start on Intro diet. Not looking forward to feeling like poop and the terrible carb cravings BUT know that I don't have a choice. Also feel God's leading in this like never before and know that He will be with me through it!
My mantra for today:
I CAN DO whatever I need to do TODAY through Christ who gives me strength!
Praying for strength and positive thoughts that today will be a better day for you!

Justine Raphael said...

Hi Laura! I miss you! I am so happy to hear from you...and congratulations on taking such a big step! It's not easy, but it really is amazing to feel well, energetic, centered.

The baby weaning IS a milestone! Sad and sweet at the same time. Now you get to take care of Laura as well as you have cared for the kids. Yay for that!

What's your blog address?

Justine Raphael said...


Sounds like you are approaching it just the way you need to--gently and with awareness. That's the best way, I think.

And thank you so much for your support! Today is already better because of it...


Linda K said...

Hi Justine,
I am doing an Ayurvedic 2 week cleanse right now. Spring is the time for cleaning right?? Almost half way through it. My first one so I decided to do a guided cleanse with Dr. Douillard. I have not had dairy, gluten, sugar or animal foods for 7 days now. Huge change for me! Once it is over I am looking forward to introducing gluten and dairy back one at a time to see how my body reacts. I am learning much about Ayurveda and eating with the seasons and understanding your personal constitution. Makes such sense to me!! We are all so special & have different needs as the seasons change. I look forward to your posts all the time & miss them. But I know you have a lot on your plate right now. We sure do miss you down south but am glad you are happy there!!! I love to read about how much you are able to forage for wild food there...sometimes the foods you mention I have never heard of and have to Google them...LOL!! I wish you the best on your way Back to Gaps :)

Justine Raphael said...

Hi Linda!

Yes, I saw some comments about your cleanse. I think Spring is definitely the time for tonics and shifts in eating--adding greens, more raw foods, etc. At least, in our temperate climate here that's what works. I am a bit leery of harsh cleanses that end up dumping toxins into a stressed system--I have done that, and it wasn't pretty. I like the "food as medicine" paradigm, where we allow the body to use what it needs, taking out the junk, but not starving ourselves.

Come visit! Then I can introduce you to my plant friends ...

Clicky Web Analytics