Sunday, January 20, 2013

GAPS Tips That Work For Me

I've been on GAPS Intro now for 14 weeks. Things are going along smoothly, it has WELL been worth the sacrifices. My Raynaud's is under control for the most part, my digestion is much better, I feel stronger, and my thinking is clearer.

What do I eat? Right now; soup, bone broth, fermented veggies, eggs (in soup), and avocados (again, in soup), and the GAPS 'milkshake' without the apples. I've tried to add back in dairy in the form of kefir, but the candida let me know it was there for sure!
Cravings, what drove my eating habits all these years, are long gone. Happy am I to get to the point where healthy eating is about nourishment and not entertainment. An easy road to get here? No way. But as I said in my last post: sacrifice a little today - to have an awesome tomorrow!
I have always love to cook, but quite honestly, GAPS cooking is really more like one of those reality 'extreme cooking' shows. It doesn't seem to end. Chop, simmer, eat, clean up, and repeat!
Husband and Daughter are both doing GAPS with me to help with their allergies. DRAMATIC results, but more on that another day.
Keeping up with the meals is a common GAPS complaint. So instead of a dirty kitchen daily, I cook twice a week! Cooking 4-5 big pots of soup takes me about three hours. That includes clean up.
Accidental soup is what I've usually made in the past, you know, the soup you make when you clean out the fridge -smirk-. I've come up with some 'formulas' that make planning and cooking soup less stressful, a list of 15 or so soups to choose from with all their main ingredients. This still leaves room for some creativity. I'll be posting my soup 'formulas' tomorrow.
Another GAPS tip that I'd like to pass on - don't start until you are ready! This means, if you don't have a pantry or freezer full of broth, don't start until you do! Even though you'll be filling the stock pot daily to make broth, there WILL be a time when you're running short. That will also be the moment when everyone around you is absolutely STARVING and bad choices will be made. Peace of mind is a back-stock of broth.
And yes. Make broth everyday. Keep it full and available. Broth - a well made bone broth - will fill the belly, help detox, make you look younger (collagen anyone?), provide minerals that you need, and a HOST of other beneficial things!
These are just a few tips that have kept us going, would love to hear if you have any!

Enjoy the day-

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

GAPS Diet? Me? Really?!

Yesterday, I hinted about the most exciting and helpful weapon I have in my arsenal to detox the heavy metals in a more natural way. Perhaps you've heard of the GAPS diet?
Let me tell you a little story first....
About four years ago, my friend Loretta excitedly called me to tell me about a book she wanted me to read. She, in fact, was so excited she was willing to drive the thirty minutes to my house to drop it off. When she got here, she told me that she'd be back to pick the book up in one week.
ONE WEEK? I couldn't figure out what the hurry was. Or, why I was reading it for that matter. The title was confusing for me and I really couldn't figure out how it applied to me. Gut and Psychology Syndrome? What was she trying to tell me? She knew I was struggling with Raynaud's Syndrome, did she think it was all in my head? The cover of the book didn't stop there: Dyspraxia? No. Autism? No. A.D.D/A.D.H.D.? Not that I knew of. Dyslexia? Nope. Depression and Schizophrenia? Uh, no..?
But alas, I did skim the book and YIKES! What a diet! The restrictions were unbelievable and how could a baker like me give up grains? I flat out rejected the whole idea. Little did I know, God had sent me a boat and I turned it away. Hind site...yada, yada.
Fast forward to 2012. The year started out with the news that my auto-immune disease and the host of other problems taking me down could possibly be because of heavy metal toxicity. Documenting this journey to hopefully help someone else who might go through the same thing, I couldn't quite figure out the new readers I was corresponding with: moms with autistic children. That is, until I read the GAPS book. I get it now.
We are all so connected and we really have no idea. Autism, A.D.D., allergies, eczema, asthma, rheumatoid, auto-immune diseases, you name it!....all these things can be connected to the gut!
The GAPS diet really needs to be announced before it's explained. It is a TEMPORARY healing diet. Remember the word 'temporary' and note the word 'healing'. If you had the opportunity to heal a part of you that is stopping you or slowing you down - would you do it? Even if it meant TEMPORARILY giving up things you loved to eat? Would you do it? Who wouldn't? Life is short. Too short. Why wouldn't you want to sacrifice a little today to have an awesome tomorrow? Maybe I should type that in all caps!
The whole diet can be found for free at, but I do suggest buying the book and reading the whole thing. I have been in what is called the Intro stage of this diet since October (because of who I am, everyone is different) and things are going very well for me. Slow, but very well. I truly believe that this diet can help restore my own detoxification system that's been broken for a long time. I'll still be helping it along the way with herbs and what-not and give updates as I go along.
So, if you happen to have a friend (maybe it's me right now) like Loretta who wants to help you have an awesome tomorrow....get in the boat, will ya? And bring your kids.

This post shared at : Simple Lives Thursday and Thank Your Body Thursday.
Enjoy the day-

P.S. check this out for GAPS tips that work for me!

Monday, January 14, 2013

From the Garden - January 14, 2013

I can hardly believe I'm posting a garden update in January, and a substantial one at that! One goal I have for 2013, is to increase the amount of food we produce on our property. And with property being limited, the real answer is to produce year round.
In early August I seeded a whole bunch of Miyashige Daikon Radishes. At the time, the garden was full of promise and there was no room to be found, so they were seeded in deep 4" pots and transplanted to the garden in late September. They did very well in the pots, and being transplanted.
We ate the greens regularly and the radishes in soup until the ground froze hard a little over two weeks ago. I thought for sure what was left in the ground would only be good for compost, or good for only next year's seed.
The weather was really mild yesterday and today, melting all the snow and ice that's hung around since the last storm. We pushed the leaves aside and saw the most beautiful snow white roots pushing up out of the ground!

This harvest of 8 1/2 pounds has certainly put us off on the right foot with our goals of winter gardening!

The smaller radishes were left in the ground....just to see what will happen next. At the very least, I'll see them through for seed and continue eating the greens. Very yummy in soup, by the way. The buns enjoy them too! 
In the kitchen, the radishes were scrubbed, sliced thin, and put in fermenting jars to be preserved. 

Husband made these fermenting jars for me. Pretty cool, huh?
Later this week, I plan on seeding some more of this radish in our cool sunroom. We'll see if the early spring harvest is as tasty as they are this winter. I'll keep you posted!
Enjoy the day-

Detox/Raynaud's Update - January 14, 2013

Some days I'm just dog tired!

This is one of those posts that I've been dragging my feet on - which has made me drag my feet on all the fun stuff I like to blog about too!

Here's the bottom line on my detox program. I quit. Well, not totally. Sorta.

Detoxing the metals out must continue. Especially since I feel like a ticking time bomb walking around with all these metals. I'll be seeing my doctor soon to go over more natural options. Options that will take the process long and slow, but right now that's a lot better looking scenario. Here are my reasons for stopping the DMSA:

New Pain
I managed to complete five DMSA cycles and things started to get a little scary for me. Pain. Very deep in my bones that I can't really explain. I just knew that it wasn't good and it didn't go away between cycles.

Dumber Than Dirt
Sigh. I'm not the same person I was when I started, but am hoping that as time goes by, things will improve.

Pig Pen
The house was a disaster. You can't really expect a teenager to keep up the pace of maintaining a house for very long. My in-laws have helped (and continue) to run errands, pick up groceries and stuff like that. Our church family helped tremendously with meals when we needed them most, but I could never ask for help with the dirty work around here.  You know, laundry, toilets and things like that. My own (extended) family has been busy with their lives and over the last year I've gotten the occasional call. Probably to make sure I was still alive!

Burn Out
Husband and Daughter really had enough of not having the "normal" me. The word never came out quite like that, but the heavy sighs and mumbling  when the sock drawer's been empty or meals not on time....well, enough is enough. It was time to to get back to some kind of normal.

The Good News
While I continue with periods of exhaustion, poor digestion, foggy thinking, systemic candida, periodic liver pain, leaky gut, and extreme chemical sensitivity, there is good news. The good news is, the Raynaud's is FINALLY under control. Here is it the middle of winter and my feet are almost normal. No black toes. No open sores. AND I can actually walk. EVEN walk outside! I'm still not normal, but far better than a year ago.

Moving On
I've spent a considerable amount of time researching detoxing and all the methods out there and I think I've got a much better understanding of how the body's own natural detox system works....or doesn't. Currently, I'm using Bentonite Clay once daily, Chlorella, Garlic and Probiotics. I plan on using some sort of natural chelator, but in the mean time, I've been working with something that has helped tremendously.

And that. I'll share. Tomorrow!

Enjoy the day-