See all the stages of the diet here.
Who should start GAPS by doing the Intro Diet?
Your GAPS practitioner is the best person to hep you decide how to start GAPS. But some general guidelines are:
- Intro diet may be the best place to start if you:
- are transitioning from the SCD
- have chronic diarrhoea – or –
- already have a limited diet and wouldn’t be able to start with Full GAPS
- For many people, it’s best to spend some time (maybe a couple of months) easing into Full GAPS. This will give you time to build new habits and get used to the new foods. Then find a suitable time to go through the Intro, starting with at least a few days when you’re not working or at school. It is especially important to go in gently with small children.
- Some people should definitely not start with Intro. If you have these conditions, consult your GAPS practitioner before planning to Intro:
- If you are constipated, Intro can make it worse. So don’t even think about Intro till your constipation has resolved and been settled for a few weeks.
- If you are amine sensitive, you may need to gradually build up your tolerance to the broths, as you need to be able to drink soups all day.
Top hints from people who have already done Intro
- Be well prepared when going into the Intro phase. Don’t underestimate what is involved – emotionally or practically.
- Read as much as you can from the listed resources
- Ease into it
- Make sure you have all the kitchen implements you might need
- Have a good supply (lots!) of stock in the fridge and freezer
- Have a couple of days worth of vege soups in the fridge before you start
- Have some sauerkraut and/or fermented cabbage juice ready
- Plan some time off school or work for at least the first 4 days
- Rest and sleep as much as you can in the first week, and plan some enjoyable passive activities. eg. get a pile of books from the library or rent some movies
- Familiarise yourself with the GAPS tips for constipation, and know where you can quickly get hold of an enema kit if needed
Stages of the Intro Diet
- Start the day with a cup of still mineral, aquifer or filtered water (warm or room temperature)
- Take ½ your daily dose of probiotic (take the other half at bedtime)
- Homemade chicken, meat or fish stock, taken as a drink all through the day with and between meals.
- Leave all the fat in the stock and drink that
- The gelatinous soft tissues taken off the stock bones and the bone marrow should all be eaten – some with every meal.
- Homemade soup with your stock and veges such as onions, carrots, broccoli, leeks, cauliflower, courgettes, squash, pumpkin
- Probiotic foods: juice from your homemade sauerkraut or fermented vegetables. Add to every cup of (not too hot) stock or soup
- Ginger tea & a little honey between meals.
STAGE 2 – Add in one by one:
- Raw organic egg yolks.
- Stews and casseroles made with meats and vegetables
- More juice from sauerkraut or fermented vegetables
- Fermented fish, starting from one piece a day and gradually increasing
- If you have been off dairy for 4 weeks by now, try re-introducing homemade ghee, starting from 1 tsp a day. Otherwise, wait till a later stage.
STAGE 3 – Add in one by one:
- Ripe avocado mashed into soups, starting from 1-3 teaspoons and gradually increase.
- Nut butters
- Pancakes made from 1) organic nut butter; 2) eggs; 3) a piece of fresh winter squash, marrow or courgette (peeled, de-seeded and well blended in a food processor) and fried in ghee, goose or duck fat.
- Egg scrambled with plenty of ghee, goose fat or duck fat. Serve with avocado (if tolerated) and cooked vegetables, especially onion.
- Sauerkraut and fermented vegetables (not just the juice). Work up to 1-2 Tbs per meal.
- Cod Liver Oil can now be introduced
STAGE 4 – Add in one by one:
- Roast or grilled meats (but not barbecued or fried yet) with cooked or fermented vegetables
- Cold pressed olive oil – start with a few drops per meal and build up to 1-2 Tbs
- Freshly pressed juices, starting from a few spoonfuls of carrot juice. Then try lettuce, celery and mint.
- Bread made from 1) nut flour; 2) eggs; 3) piece of pumpkin, squash, marrow or courgette (peeled, de-seeded and finely sliced); 4) some natural fat (ghee, butter, goose or duck fat) and some salt to taste.
STAGE 5 – Add in one by one:
- Cooked apple as an apple puree, with ghee, duck or goose fat added
- Raw vegetables starting from softer parts of lettuce and peeled cucumber.
- When these two vegetables are well tolerated gradually add other raw vegetables: carrot, tomato, onion, cabbage, etc.
- If the vegetable juice is well tolerated, start adding fruit to it: apple, pineapple and mango. Avoid citrus fruit at this stage.
STAGE 6 – Add in one by one:
- Peeled raw apple
- Other raw fruit
- A little more honey
- Homemade cakes and other sweet things, using dried fruit as a sweetener
- Continue introducing dairy:
- If the ghee is tolerated, introduce butter
- If the butter is tolerated, wait a few days and introduce homemade yoghurt and/or kefir
- Then cheese, then cream (after you have been on GAPS for a while), and raw milk last
Then move onto the Full GAPS Diet.