It’s time to throw a party! We’ve made it to the GAPS diet introduction stage phase 6, the last of the GAPS intro stages. Let’s break out some celebration foods like fresh fruit, honey, and GAPS desserts.
At this point, I felt like I’d accomplished something huge. By making it through the first 5 stages of the GAPS introduction diet, I believe I have done one of the most important things I could do for my health.
Going through the GAPS intro stages deeply nourishes the gut, which set me up for good, longterm health. It isn’t an easy thing to do, but it is so, so worth it.
Can you eat fruit on GAPS diet?
Yes! For the first several stages of GAPS intro, though, Dr. Natasha says to avoid sweet foods like fruit. She says this helps to balance the friendly gut flora.
On stage 6, we get to add fresh fruit.
- I started slowly, with peeled, raw apple.
- I make sure the apple is ripe.
- Slowly and gradually, I added other raw fruits.
For most people, Dr. Natasha says it’s usually best to enjoy fruit in between meals, as a snack. Eating fruit with meat can lead to digestive upset. That’s because fruit digests quickly, while meat digests slowly. See what works well with your body.
In general, I try to keep my diet full of savory foods, and let sweet foods like fruit and honey make up only about 15% of my total food intake.
Dr. Natasha say this will help make sure that pathogenic bacteria don’t start to take over again, and will help keep gut flora in a healthy balance.
Honey on the GAPS diet
Natural sweeteners are fun and add variety to meals. In stage 6 of GAPS intro, we get to have other sweet foods, like honey and dried fruit.
I like to use these to get really creative with so many different GAPS legal desserts and treats. I have lots of GAPS dessert recipes coming up, so watch for those! Often, Nourishing Traditions style desserts can be easily adapted to be GAPS legal, like this lemon mousse recipe.
When I make GAPS desserts, I sweeten them with honey or dried fruits. It’s really amazing how many different healthy treats you can make and enjoy! Like I’ve said before, you definitely don’t need to feel deprived on the GAPS diet.
I just remember to keep sweet foods to about 15% of my total diet and focus on savory foods for 85% of what I eat. And I always enjoy fermented foods with every meal.
GAPS introduction diet how long
The time people spend on the different stages of the GAPS introduction diet is very individual. Dr. Natasha says to not move through them too quickly. Here are the most important clues she says to look for:
- Abdominal pain
- Stool changes
Dr. Natasha says to let pain and diarrhea start to clear before moving on to the next stage. If new symptoms show up, she says that means that die off is happening.
Die off is a good thing, but she says it’s important to not let it happen too quickly. Going at it too aggressively is really uncomfortable.
The key is to strike a perfect balance of gentle die off and detox, while going slowly enough that the die off doesn’t make you too miserable.
- I went slowly with fermented foods
- I only added one new food at a time
Some people may find that they’re just not ready for certain foods, and that’s okay. Some foods may have to wait longer than others.
I try to give myself as much variety as you can within each stage of GAPS intro. If you think about it, you really have a lot of variety to choose from as far as meats and vegetables and the meals you can create, even just on stage 1 of GAPS intro!
If there’s one food that is really not working, Dr. Natasha says it’s usually okay to go ahead and progress through the intro stages, and just avoid that food for a while longer. Once more progress has happened and you’re on full GAPS, she says you can try that food again. I talk about how to transition to the full GAPS diet here.
GAPS diet stages
As I finished up the last stage of GAPS intro, I made sure to keep up with the meat stock. I enjoy it with every meal and drink cups of it in between meals.
Also, I kept working through those fermented foods. I went slowly and gradually as I increased the amounts and tried new ones.
Dr. Natasha says that if you’re having certain digestive issues like constipation or diarrhea, focus on the ferments that will help you the most.
- For constipation, fermented vegetables and homemade sour cream from raw cream are best
- For diarrhea, homemade, raw milk yogurt is really helpful
Full GAPS diet
We’re almost there. Once I added fresh fruit and tried some GAPS legal sweet foods and everything was going well, I knew it would soon be time to move to the full GAPS diet.
My next blog post in this series will walk you through exactly how to transition from the GAPS introduction diet on to the full GAPS diet.
GAPS diet review
How is GAPS going for you? What foods are you enjoying? Have you seen some relief from symptoms? Let me know how it’s going in the comments!
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