Why I don't endorse one specific gut healing protocol
Someone asked me if I maintained a list and outline of various gut healing protocols a few weeks ago and I outlined in my reply why I couldn't, but it also led me to wanting to explain why I don't just direct everyone to a specific gut healing protocol at all.
Here are the reasons: 1. I used to say I did a bastardised version of GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome). In fact, it was actually more like AIP (Autoimmune Protocol) but it still contained some foods from time to time that no gut healing protocol I've ever heard of would recommend - including a somewhat regular hemp milk Chai Latte from Starbucks (this habit is thankfully long gone) and even hummus. So really I didn't follow a protocol at all. I borrowed heavily and cherry picked and found something that worked for us. The prevailing principle was around reducing inflammation as much as possible, and incorporating real foods that were easy to digest. We were still able to eliminate eczema within 3 months, reducing RAST antibodies by around 85-95% in 9 months and be able to watch our daughter now eat all the foods we were once told we would have to wait 5-10 years to see if she would grow out ... and results came far quicker than for most. I think a big aspect is that we went beyond just food and that's what those protocols mostly address. I also don't think that GAPS/raw vegan/AIP are the solutions to everybody dealing with leaky gut issues - I tend to reserve specific protocols
for the more extreme and complex cases. What I do tend to do is direct newcomers to general gut healing "how to" articles such as this one so that they get a basic idea of what is involved and so they can really start to understand why moving away from the mainstream approach can be so beneficial. 2. I didn't/don't have time to read all the books. I really just followed my curiosity back then, and integrated the elements that resonated with me: attachment/conscious parenting, facilitating emotional release, natural health principles, gut healing, low toxin living, intuitive eating etc. So given I'm not the best expert on all the books or protocols out there, although some I know more than others, and that I ended up studying a diverse range of dietary theories in my time at IIN, I can't maintain a list of ever changing books or protocols to recommend. 3. Recommending one specific protocol would also defeat the purpose of my bigger message - which is all about listening to your body, developing your own sense of control over the situation, doing heaps of reading but remembering we're all different although there are some base principles that tend to help many. It's just the detail sometimes that differs. We're all on our own journeys and as hard as it can be once you realise there may be no magic bullet or protocol, there is a lot of power in that as well. 4. Those books are all helpful in their own ways especially if you're feeling stuck or need some more detail on what is happening. I honestly do think that no matter where you start, being open to learning and changing and using your powers of observation and sense of intuition to guide you, while adopting common sense is the ultimate way of navigating through this. This is what I get to work on with clients in my Health Coaching business as well. And plus, that way I get to outline all of my thoughts in my own book ;)