Saturday, April 30, 2011

Day 10 - Aha!

One of the biggest challenges of doing GAPS or any other elimination diet with a nursing child is that there are always two sets of variables that can affect the child's symptoms. There's what the little one is eating and then there's what mama's eating. Ideally, mama is eating exactly what baby is eating so there's no doubt about what caused a problem when it arises. But this is often impossible, at least in the long term. (We've been at this for a year.)

One thing I've found is that there are some things that bother Ellie's tummy when she eats them, but don't affect her when I eat them. Things like broccoli or green beans or other fibrous vegetables, for example. But sometimes I get a little carried away in hoping that something I discovered was bothering her will still be OK for me to eat. This was the case with goat yogurt.

We trialed goat yogurt a few days ago and it did not go well. I took it out of Ellie's diet but kept it in mine, mostly because I need the calories and fat. After not having the yogurt, she improved somewhat, especially in terms of her daytime mood, but her bedtimes were still a disaster and she would cry on and on, telling me her tummy hurt. Today I bit the bullet and cut the yogurt out of my diet. And wouldn't you know it. I put Ellie down for bed and she didn't protest one bit. I walked away, and she staying laying down snuggling her stuffed animals. Right this minute she is happily whispering to them as she peacefully winds down for sleep.

These moments are always a mix of elation and sadness. Yay! I figured it out!!! It was the yogurt! Followed by ... Crap. I really liked eating the yogurt. It was so nice to eat something that wasn't meat and veggies. How many things have I had to give up already!?! And so on. We just need to give up yogurt for a while and focus on getting more healing under our belts before trying it again.

In happy news, today we enjoyed our first stew! Anyone who hasn't been through GAPS Intro probably thinks that sentence would not necessitate an exclamation point but it really does. After 9 days of eating only soup for every meal, I cannot tell you how exciting it was to serve up meat and veggies on a plate and eat them with a fork! (We had broth in a mug on the side.)

Here's how I made it: I put a 2 lb. lamb roast along with two bone-in lamb shanks in my dutch oven and filled the pot with filtered water til the lamb was 2/3 covered. I put that in a 300 degree oven for 4 hours. Then I added chopped onion, carrot, mushrooms and pattypan squash and let it go for another hour. Right before stirring I added Celtic sea salt and chopped garlic. Yum. It was super good.

Onward and upward.


  1. All so beautifully done, Annie!!! I really admire the will and tenacity you are showing. I think we mamas have an advantage in a sense -our love for our little ones makes it possible to do 'the impossible'! And in doing it 'just so', you're really getting results! Hoorah for you!


  2. Thanks so much Baden! It's nice to get a hoorah! It's so true that as a mama there seems to be no other option but to "do the impossible." The option of staying unhealthy in order to eat foods I'd like to eat might be something I'd do to myself, but not to my daughter. Funny how our children can give us strength we didn't used to have. :)

  3. What a lovely way you have with your daughter. :) I love hearing about how sweetly she snuggles her stuffed animals to sleep. We just had a setback with sauerkraut, and I can completely sympathize with the doubt and frustration of trying to navigate troublesome foods and symptoms. It's HARD to be on an elimination diet while nursing, especially when you're craving something so bad 'it just may kill me if I don't have it' (or at least it feels that way). My body is in bad shape from being on such a strict elimination diet while nursing for almost two years and then going back to the SAD diet. That elimination diet did me in! Thank goodness for GAPS!!!

  4. Jennifer - Yes, it's funny. GAPS Intro is much more restrictive than the elimination diet we were on beforehand, and yet I feel much more satisfied now. I think incorporating more fat into our diet made a huge difference in feeling nourished and not needing to run for sugar-y pick-me-ups (even if they were SCD/GAPS legal) every afternoon and evening!