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GAPS diet: let's find out more

GAPS Diet: A Nutritional Journey to Wellbeing

The GAPS diet, an acronym for Gut and Psychology Syndrome, is a dietary approach designed to improve the health of the digestive system and, as a result, positively influence mental well-being.

Created by Russian neurologist and nutritionist Natasha Campbell-McBride, this diet was developed to address a wide range of ailments, including gastrointestinal problems, psychological disorders and more.

What is the GAPS Diet?

The GAPS Diet was designed to address the concept of "leaky gut syndrome". According to this theory, a damaged gut can be the root of numerous health problems.

The diet focuses on eliminating foods that can contribute to intestinal inflammation and irritation, thus allowing the intestinal lining to heal.

What does the GASP Diet consist of?

The diet is divided into different phases, starting from a very restrictive introductory phase and then gradually reintroducing more complex foods.

In the introductory phase, all grains, sugar, dairy products and foods with high starch content are avoided.

Instead, the focus is on nutrient-rich broths, lean meats, fish, eggs, non-starchy vegetables and some nuts and seeds.

Subsequently, foods such as fruits, legumes, gluten-free grains and fermented dairy products are gradually reintroduced.

What to eat on the GASP diet?

The GAPS diet promotes nutrient-dense, easy-to-digest foods. Meat broths, rich in collagen and minerals, are a key element in supporting intestinal healing.

Lean meats, fish, eggs, non-starchy vegetables, healthy oils, nuts and seeds provide essential nutrients without overwhelming the digestive system.

Fermented dairy products, such as kefir and homemade yogurt, are gradually reintroduced to support gut health with beneficial probiotics.

The GAPS diet involves consuming foods that promote intestinal health and aid in the healing of the intestine. Here are some foods that are generally included and excluded on the GAPS diet:

Foods included in the GAPS Diet

  • Rich Broths : Homemade meat broths are a key part of the GAPS diet. They are rich in nutrients, collagen and substances beneficial for the digestive system.
  • Lean meats : Beef , lamb, chicken meat (skinless), and lean pork are usually included.
  • Fish and seafood : Fish rich in omega-3s such as salmon, sardines and anchovies is a good option. Seafood such as shrimp and mussels may be included.
  • Eggs : Eggs, especially free-range eggs, are often part of the diet.
  • Non-starchy vegetables : Vegetables such as kale, broccoli, spinach, zucchini, cucumbers and celery are well accepted.
  • Healthy Oils : Oils like extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, and ghee are often used.
  • Fruit : At an advanced stage, low-sugar fruits such as apples, pears and berries can be gradually reintroduced.
  • Fermented dairy products : Once the digestive system is improving, fermented dairy products such as kefir and homemade yogurt can be reinstated.

Foods to avoid or limit

  • Sugars and sweeteners : Refined sugars, syrups, honey and artificial sweeteners should be avoided.
  • Cereals : Wheat, rye, barley, oats and other gluten-containing cereals are excluded in the initial stages.
  • Dairy products : Initially, dairy products such as milk and cheese are limited, but fermented dairy products are gradually reinstated.
  • Processed foods : Whereas it is good practice to remove them from any type of diet, foods with additives, preservatives and artificial colors are avoided in GASP.
  • Legumes : Beans, lentils and other legumes can be difficult to digest and are excluded in the early stages.
  • High starch foods : Potatoes, corn and other high starch foods are avoided in the early stages.
  • Alcohol : Alcohol is generally avoided or consumed in moderation.

It is important to note that the GAPS diet is highly customizable and the phases of introduction and reintroduction of certain foods may vary from person to person.

Before starting the GAPS diet or any other significant diet, it is advisable to consult a health professional.

What meat do you eat on the GAPS diet?

As for meat, both high-quality beef and poultry meat are preferred, preferably organic and coming from reliable and sustainable sources.

These represent an essential source of complete proteins, B vitamins, iron and zinc. Nutrition specialists recommend moving towards organic meat or meat from animals raised outdoors, which have followed a natural diet and have been raised without the use of antibiotics or hormones.

A crucial component in the GAPS diet is rich bone broth.

This approach extracts a wealth of valuable nutrients, including collagen, gelatin, minerals and amino acids, thus offering a number of significant health benefits.

Obtained through the slow cooking of animal bones, this elixir is rich in nutrients, collagen and gelatin, effectively contributing to the healing of the intestinal mucosa and supporting gastrointestinal health.

Bone broth, increasingly appreciated in recent years for its healthy benefits, is prepared using bones from various types of animals such as chicken, beef, pork or fish.

These bones, along with vegetables, spices and water, undergo a slow cooking process that can last for several hours.

GASP Diet Health Benefits

Proponents of the GAPS diet report a wide range of health benefits. These include improved digestion, increased energy, improvements in skin condition, reduced symptoms of gastrointestinal disorders, and a potential mental health benefit.

However, it is important to note that scientific research on this diet is still limited, and results may vary from person to person.

Final considerations: medical clarification

The GAPS diet is a nutritional approach that goes beyond simple weight management. It focuses on gut health as the key to overall well-being.

Before undertaking any significant dietary changes, it is advisable to consult a health professional to ensure that it is appropriate for your individual needs.

The GAPS diet represents an interesting approach to health that closely links gut health with overall well-being.

Although there are positive testimonials, it is essential to approach this diet with caution and under the careful guidance of a health professional.