What to do about Constipation on the GAPS Diet

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Wondering what to do about constipation on the GAPS diet? I’m sharing my best tips.

What to do about constipation on the GAPS diet

What to do about constipation on the GAPS diet

Even though we don’t always like to talk about it, constipation is something that can happen when you start the GAPS diet (or any dietary adjustments).

If you find yourself in this predicament, here are some of the best nutritionist advice on the GAPS diet on what to do about constipation on the GAPS Diet, according to the creator of the GAPS diet, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. 

If you’re looking for GAPS diet recipes, you’ll want to check out my full GAPS and GAPS intro recipes.

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My best tips for fast relief when constipation happens on the GAPS diet, as well as how to resolve it longterm!

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Why constipation can be a concern on the GAPS Diet

Factors contributing to constipation on the GAPS Diet.

If you are on the GAPS diet and finding yourself struggling with constipation, there are plenty of reasons that could explain why. 

  • Your liver and gallbladder need more support to produce more bile, which is very common with GAPS people.
  • The microbiome in the gut can be unbalanced, which is always the case with GAPS people when they first come to GAPS. This means that the bacteria necessary to properly digest your food isn’t available, specifically in the large intestine. 
  • One of the biggest GAPS diet challenges is starting the diet already constipated. If you suffer from the signs of chronic constipation before beginning the GAPS diet, it is not recommended for you to start the introductory stage of the GAPS diet. This is because the GAPS intro is very low on fiber and can make constipation worse. Instead, Dr. Natasha recommends to start with the full GAPS diet. After you have given your body time to heal, then you can start the introductory phase. 
  • Probiotics and constipation are a topic that you have heard talked about over and over again. On the GAPS diet, probiotics are found in fermented foods as well as supplements, and increasing them slowly is something that you should definitely look into no matter what stage of the GAPS diet you are on. 

What to eliminate and what to add if you are experiencing constipation on the GAPS diet

The feeling of constipation is one of the worst feelings. Even though it is something that can be common when people start GAPS, it shouldn’t be an everyday occurrence. With a focus on our gut health, here are a few foods that you can eliminate or incorporate to help your body digest food with ease.

Natural remedies for constipation from Dr. Natasha:

  1. Reducing or eliminating high protein dairy (yogurt, kefir, cheese). Instead, focus on high-fat dairy (cultured cream, butter, and ghee). If this doesn’t help, cut out dairy entirely for a while while your gut heals, but note that cutting out dairy completely should only be done as a last resort after many other things have been tried. 
  2. Consume lots of animal fat. Start this process gradually by consuming ghee, butter, tallow, or lard. Take this slowly to help trigger the liver to make more bile so that you can digest more over time. 
  3. Increase stomach acidity by eating sauerkraut or drinking the sauerkraut brine at the beginning of meals.
  4. Take oxbile tablets temporarily to help your body digest fats more easily.
  5. Take herbal digestive bitters.
  6. A wonderful liver tonic is beet kvass. It is one of my favorite fermented foods and is pretty easy to make. See my beet kvass recipe here.
  7. Eat more cooked or raw beets with meals. Don’t go overboard, though! Beets are powerful cleansers.
  8. Herbal teas for digestion are a wonderful way to relieve your constipation. Ginger tea is gentle and will help your body keep things moving. Dr. Natasha recommends that you drink several times a day with some raw honey added. 
  9. Drinking more water or meat stock to stay hydrated. 
  10. Drink fresh squeezed lemon juice in water first thing in the morning.
  11. If you haven’t already, adding juicing can really help relieve constipation. Making the juice in to GAPS shakes as Dr. Natasha outlines in her GAPS books is another wonderful liver and gallbladder support that can really help resolve the constipation for good.

Dietary Adjustments to Address Constipation on the GAPS diet

Dr. Natasha is the creator of the GAPS diet, and knows every tip and trick in the book to help your body heal and your gut.

Supplements and natural remedies, tips, and tricks for constipation

Aside from eating different things to help support your body, here are a few tricks that I use to help support digestion: 

  1. Getting enough sleep is essential to allow your body time to heal and encourage consistent bowel movements. 
  2. There is actually a huge connection between exercise and digestion! Gentle exercises like a walk around the block or a 15-minute yoga session can help tremendously.
  3. Skin brushing
  4. Detox baths with Epsom salt in the evening before bed can help support the body. If you don’t have access to a bath, topical magnesium supplements on the skin like my organic magnesium lotion are a great alternative. 
  5. Castor Oil packs with a hot water bottle at bedtime can help with decongesting the liver, according to Dr. Natasha
  6. Cleansing water enemas were popular in the past and are popular in the GAPS community to relieve constipation quickly and easily, as well as promote gentle and deep detoxification.
  7. There is no denying that stress and constipation are also linked. Take some time to look at the stressors in your life and eliminate any that can be.

What to do about constipation on the GAPS diet video

Other posts I think you will love….

How to Make a GAPS Diet Baby Bottle 

GAPS Diet Cupcakes Recipe

GAPS Diet Flours for Baking

Have you struggled with constipation when starting the GAPS diet?

Be sure to watch my full YouTube video with all of my tips and tricks on how to avoid “getting stopped up” when starting the GAPS diet! Let me know in the commits below how long ago you started your GAPS journey and where you are now.

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If you tried any of these tips and found them helpful, tag me on Instagram @bumblebeeapothecary

GAPS™ and Gut and Psychology Syndrome™ are the trademark and copyright of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride.

The information in this blog post is my personal experience and opinion. It is for general information purposes only, may not apply to you as an individual, and is not a substitute for your own physician’s medical care or advice. Always seek advice from your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding nutrition, medical conditions, and advice. Never disregard medical advice or delay seeking medical care because of something you have read on this blog.

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