Tag Archives: GAP diet

Yogurt: the Good, the Bad, and the Yucky.

I have to admit sometimes when it comes to health I tend to be more outspoken. But unfortunately talking about health does one of two things: falls on deaf ears or steps on people’s toes. Now I love to talk about health, and probably have more information then can conveniently fit between my two ears. So when I join a conversation and see a convenient place to enlighten people about health – I have to say something.

Recently I was in a conversation with three of my friends who were talking about putting healthy foods with unhealthy ones. So basically the healthy would nullify the unhealthy ones. Uh… it doesn’t work that way, but I won’t get on that soapbox for now (you should thank me).

But what was really interesting was when we got into a discussion of yogurt. Now I’ve enjoyed yogurts from the regular grocery store as a child. You know the kind – light, fluffy, and loaded with sugar and flavorings. Well it got down one guy telling me he had one of the yogurts that have a candy/cookie packet on top that you stir in. Okay first that sounds gross to me, putting candy or cookies in yogurt, if I wanted dessert I would go for ice cream not yogurt.

I couldn’t stay silent any longer and made the comment that the company in question (the second google result when you search yogurt) made “terrible yogurt”. I got a swift response from one person that it was their favorite, but I’m not making this claim on taste. Companies can make anything taste good, and if you need examples look around you the next time your in a grocery store.

Because of a law there has to be at least 10 million bacteria per gram in yogurt at the time it is marketed. (1) But the real problems with yogurt come in ways we, as consumers, have been taught not to think about any more.

1.Low to No Fat

Low or no fat isn’t healthy, especially for GAPSâ„¢ people. Good healthy fats like butter, lard, coconut oil, meat and dairy fat are needed in high amounts for gut and brain health. So having a 99% fat free yogurt is just begging for problems.

2.Unhealthy Additions (like sugar, flavorings, candies, cookies, etc.)

Another problem with commercial yogurts is the additions that make a healthy treat unhealthy. Now there’s nothing wrong with adding fresh fruit to your yogurt, that is a healthy way to make home yogurt tasty, but adding unhealthy things to your yogurt is all around a bad idea.

3.Milk Trouble

The biggest trouble with store bought yogurts is the milk used. Milk from unhealthy cows, reduced, low or no fat milk all are bad choices. Homogenization is also another reason while you shouldn’t eat it.

fresh yogurt

Now I say all this so that you can know there is a perfect choice of yogurt out there. Homemade yogurt from fresh, raw, whole milk that’s been allowed to ferment for 24 hours. It’s the perfect solution to yogurt woes. Full of nutrients that your body can easily use, free of the flavorings, and sweeteners that aren’t allowed on the GAPS diet.
It may seem a little sour at first, but adding fruit or making a smoothie is a great way to get your palate used to this nutrient dense food. Since I’ve been eating it for 5 months I have to say that 24 hour homemade yogurt is the best I’ve ever eaten, and the best part is:

It’s easy to make!


Raw Milk Yogurt

Ingredients

  • 1 quart fresh, raw milk, for a thicker product substitute 1 pint fresh cream and 1 pint fresh milk (see sources)
  • 2 tablespoons of starter: plain, unsweetened, additive-free yogurt with live active cultures found at any grocery store (non-homogenized) or 2 tablespoons of yogurt from a previous batch
  • (For a gallon of milk use ½ a cup of yogurt. You’ll need extra mason jars.)

Equipment

  • yogurt maker or cooler and a 1-quart mason jar with lid or food dehydrator and a 1-quart mason jar
  • thermometer

1.Heat milk in a saucepan over a medium-low flame until it reaches about 110° F / 43º C.
2.Remove from heat and allow it to cool to room temperature, then whisk in 2 tablespoons of starter culture (like yogurt from a previous batch or plain, unsweetened, additive-free yogurt with live active cultures) to inoculate the raw milk.
3.If you’re using a yogurt maker, simply pour the mixture of fresh milk and starter into the yogurt maker and culture it according to the manufacturer’s instructions for 24 hours.
4.Pour the mixture of starter and raw milk into a 1-quart glass mason jar and cover it with a lid.
5.If you’re using a cooler, place the mason jar full of milk and starter in the center of your cooler and pour warm water (approximately 110° Fahrenheit, 43º Celsius) until it reaches just below the lid of your mason jar. Cover with a warm towel for added insulation and leave in a warm spot in your kitchen to culture for 24 hours.
6.If you’re using a food dehydrator, simply place the mason jar full of starter culture and milk into the food dehydrator, set the temperature to 110° Fahrenheit / 43º Celsius and allow it to culture for 24 hours.
7.Once the culturing period is complete, remove your still warm raw milk yogurt from the yogurt maker, cooler or dehydrator and place it in the refrigerator to chill and solidify for 8 hours.
8.Serve plain as a sauce, blended with fruit as a smoothie, combined with fresh fruit or nuts or sweeten it, if desired, with a touch of raw honey.

NOTES: Raw milk yogurt has a tendency to be runny; this is normal and is caused by the action of temperature-sensitive enzymes present in raw milk that would otherwise be killed by heat. If liquid-like consistency is unappealing to you, consider substituting part of the milk for fresh cream or straining the yogurt through fine muslin or a nut milk bag.
Because the natural presence of beneficial bacteria in raw milk are likely to eventually out-populate the desired strains in your starter it will degrade over time. So it is necessary to maintain desired quality of your yogurt by purchasing new starters to periodically refresh your old starter.
TIME: 10-30 minutes (preparation) and 24 hours (culturing)

If you have any tips to share about making or eating your homemade yogurt please leave a comment I would love to hear from you.

UK Weston A. Price Conference Video- Dr. Natasha

In 2010 the Weston A. Price conference was held in the UK, which they taped, and put online for free! The videos are very helpful to listen to, and Dr. Natasha’s talk is enlightening.

This talk is what finally got my family and I ready to do the GAPSâ„¢ diet. After watching this we were pumped up! I hope it does the same for you. Happy viewing!

Wise Traditions UK – Natasha Campbell-McBride

10 things you need to know before you start GAPS

When most people start the GAPSâ„¢ diet they run themselves ragged trying to prepare with all sorts of gadgets and foods. In reality starting the GAPS diet is pretty simple though it does take sometime to set up so you don’t get overwhelmed.

To get you started on the path I’ll be trying to write once a week an article that covers a part of what you need to know, buy, and make before you start the diet. I hope you find this helpful, and if you have any questions leave a comment or contact me.

To start us off this weeks article will be on the things you need to know. When you have these 10 thoughts in place, and understand them, it makes the GAPS diet much easier to start and stay with.

 

1.) Read Gut and Psychology Syndromeâ„¢ by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride.

The one thing I can’t recommend highly enough is that you read Dr. Natasha’s book for yourself. Reading her knowledge on your own will empower you to stick to this diet like nothing else. This site is intended to help you with GAPS, but to do that you must first have the knowledge yourself.

If you can only buy one thing right now in my opinion this would be it. It is essential!

2.) It takes time.

I do not say this to frighten you, but the diet takes time. It’s a new way of eating and a new lifestyle. Getting used to that will take a period of adjustment. So go easy on yourself; know that you’ll mess up in the beginning (we all do) and that’s okay.

Once you get it under your belt GAPS will be easy and won’t take a second thought, but if you don’t take the time to do it well in the beginning you’ll most likely quit.

3.) Die-off

When you start to add in your probiotic you will experience die-off. This means you won’t feel well for a little while, but don’t worry it usually passes quickly.

If you or your child feel really bad during the die-off reduce the probiotic, and remember it will pass. In fact plan for the die-off. The first week or two of the diet reduce your social schedule and plan to do fun, quiet things. Like watching old movies, going to the park, or extra sleep.

4.) Foods Allowed.

It is vital that you know the type of foods you can eat. I find it helpful to carry the list with me, and we have it posted on our fridge. You need to see the Allowed Foods list often so eventually you’ll know it no matter where you are.

5.) Foods not Allowed.

Knowing this list can be a little painful after all most of our current favorite foods can probably be found on it. It is still important to get familiar with what foods you can’t eat because you will any time you cheat you’re going to feel it. Trust me.

6.) Eating with friends and family.

Eating away from home is a challenge on GAPS. At restaurants it really isn’t possible and at friends or relatives (who aren’t on the diet) dodging all the not allowed foods becomes an art.

The safest way to eat with others is to always bring your own food. Now I realize that’s not always fun, but when you explain to your host that you have to eat a certain way they are usually happy to have you bring your own food. That way they don’t have to try and weed out everything you can’t eat, and you don’t have to worry about what’s in your food.

But if you can’t bring your own food or the host wants to try making a meal for you tell them something simple you can eat like hamburgers and a salad, or roast chicken and green beans. Cooking this way isn’t really hard and it gives some people a real joy to cook for others with health issues.

7.) Always bring a snack.

orange
Whether your out shopping, going to a friends house, or just out for the day carry a small snack with you. It can be a small handful of crispy nuts, muffin, or piece of fruit (in a small cooler) but carrying something to eat with you is easier than shopping for something to eat. It also means you don’t have an excuse to cheat on the diet. It’s also helpful to have a snack in the car in case your friend has nothing you can eat.

8.) Fast food is OUT of the question.

Fast food places are an absolute no-no for someone on GAPS. Trust me there is nothing you can eat there! If you’re stuck somewhere without food and you’re hungry go to the store not a fast food place.

9.) Be Patient with Yourself.

When you start on the diet understand that you’re going to make mistakes. Plain and simple. Don’t purposely make mistakes, but when they occur give yourself some grace. It’s not the end of the world.

Simply pick yourself up and begin again.

10.) GAPS is a lifestyle.

The sooner you understand that GAPS is a lifestyle and is your choice of lifestyle the easier staying on it will be. You have to decide it’s worth it or nothing I say or you do will keep you on it.

This is probably the hardest thing you need to know about the GAPS lifestyle: you need to make it your own or you’ll probably fail.