Monday, August 22, 2011

Our diet

After spending three months on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet and four months on the GAPS diet we've now come into our own and we're following our diet. I finally have found a group of foods that are allowing Ellie to thrive and that I'm managing to survive on. While I would love to be eating a more expanded diet, I'm not ready to wean so I'm sticking with this and taking it one day at a time.

For the most part our diet is the SCD/GAPS diet in that we don't eat grains or starchy vegetables but we have departed from time to time, like with stevia. The big difference I suppose is that we don't eat the way GAPS is prescribed anymore. We eat relatively low fat, we don't eat organ meats or cook vegetables in loads of lard and we aren't eating much in the way of soups, though that's probably a seasonal thing. And our focus is on lots and lots of fresh produce.

I am in a good place where I'm no longer reading and re-reading diet books or trying to introduce new foods with the assurance from some book that it will be well tolerated only to be disappointed when Ellie has a reaction. The number of foods we're eating is quite small ... I mean the fact that I can compile the foods into a list is indication enough that we're eating a small group of foods. But they are very nutrient-dense and there is not an empty calorie in there. Our nutritionist assures me that Ellie is not missing anything nutritionally, and that actually she's eating a healthier diet than 99.999% of America's two-year-olds. So what are we eating?

Here's the list of foods that are working for us:

Salmon/ all fish
Chia/Flax/Hemp seeds
Green apples (peeled)
Celery (juiced only)
Green beans
Lettuce/mixed greens
Butternut squash
Cashew butter
Cilantro/ parsley/ all herbs
All spices, especially curry
Olive oil
Duck fat
Sauerkraut juice
Fermented beets and cucumbers

Supplements: Gut Pro, Vit D, Cod Liver Oil, Magnesium, Stevia, Apple Cider Vinegar, Digestive Enzymes, Bile Salts

Every food on this list represents trial and error and it's through a lot of missteps and tummy aches and bad nights that we've arrived at this beautiful list of foods that work for us.

There are a few minor points where my diet can break from Ellie's. For example, I can tolerate almond butter and she cannot; she can only tolerate cashew butter. And I can snack on whole nuts. I can eat sauerkraut and she can only have the juice. I can munch on celery but that's too fibrous for Ellie so she has it juiced. But for the most part we are eating the same foods. The plan is to keep things stable (i.e. no trialing new foods) for a while and focus on introducing new supplements, including bile salts, which seem to be going well, and additional lactobacillus. As she continues to poop regularly and sleep well the hope is that she'll experience enough healing to be able to add more foods sometime next month. 


  1. Sounds great Annie!! Isn't it amazing when you finally get it 'right'?? And yes, your nutritionist is right on the money. Your list is not that limited - I have seen much, much worse. And it does force you to be creative which can be a very good thing (like dealing with a bumper crop!). All the best to you and Ellie,

  2. This is great, Annie! It is really a nice list - I hope to get there once, too.
    I was going to tell you about DDS-1 lactobacillus strain but you probably already came across it in your research. I am thinking about trying to make our own kombucha (J love green tea) and maybe water kefir to introduce more probiotics. I started J on Digest Gold but it seems to me that it maybe making her a little hyper, did you notice anything like that?

  3. Hana - we are going to start Ellie on a straight lactobacillus soon, once her system acclimated to the bile salts, which is taking a long time. I didn't see any problems like you described with the enzymes with Ellie. Go figure - everybody is so different! She is still really sensitive to fermented foods so I haven't tried water kefir but I like that idea for the future!

  4. Whoops! Typing on a phone - meant to say Jana!