SIBO update!

Sorry for not getting back to you for almost 2 months…! As soon I was diagnosed with SIBO, I started on the first intro stage of the GAPS diet. Both the GAPS and the SCD diets are potentially effective approaches, but I chose GAPS because it includes more gut-healing components (such as bone broth) and the possibility of avoiding dairy by using fermented vegetables.

During the first 2 weeks, I mostly ate chicken, lamb and beef accompanied with ghee and small amounts (1/2-2/3 cup per meal) of pureed vegetables (I started with carrots and peeled zucchini only for the first week). After a few days, I started adding other well-cooked and pureed vegetables, such as cauliflower, broccoli, red bell pepper. I also started adding spices and herbs to season my meals. I experienced a few bad days at the start, probably die-off reactions (a worsening of my usual symptoms). I also introduced coconut oil and raw egg yolk.

After 2 weeks on the first intro stages of the GAPS diet, I started taking herbal antibiotics. I recommend that you meet with a experienced naturopathic doctor for help in this regard. I started taking garlic pill, one a day, and had some die-off reactions. I slowly increased to 2/day the following week, 3/day the 3rd week and 4/day the 4th week. Meanwhile, I also took ADP oil of oregeno, which I had left from my parasite infection, during the last 2 weeks. During these 4 weeks, I also combined these herbal antibiotics with regular cinnamon. I used at least 1-2 tsp. a day. It is very yummy mixed with pureed carrots and coconut oil. I also added a raw egg yolk to the mix for a very creamy and delicious treat! I stopped all herbal antibiotics after 4 weeks, with the exception of cinnamon, which I now only use once in a while.

I have gone through all the intro stages of the GAPS diet, but haven’t tried dairy (with the exception of butter) or honey. I tried fruits (apples and mangoes) and was fine, but after having them a few days in a row, my symptoms started to come back. I tried blanched almonds and had mild bloating and it seemed like my body couldn’t digest them properly. Pumpkin and squash seem to be too high in carbs for my body now. I decided to stay away from all of these foods for a few more months to allow my gut to heal completely. I don’t puree my vegetables anymore but cook them thoroughly.

So now, after 2 months on the GAPS diet, I believe my SIBO infection is a lot more under control! Here is what I can eat/tolerate:

Vegetables:

  • broccoli, cauliflower, onions, mushrooms, bell peppers, carrots, zucchini, kale, asparagus, fermented vegetables, bok choy, green beans, eggplant and tomatoes (very occasionally), garlic, spinach
Protein:
  • poultry, chicken skin, lamb, pork, beef, eggs
Fats:
  • ghee, butter, olive oil, avocado, coconut oil
Seasonings:
  • pink salt (from the Murray river, Australia), all types of herbs and spices
Beverages:
  • water, green tea, bone broth
Supplements:
  • I introduced supplements slowly and gradually and at the moment, I am taking L-glutamate, fish oil, vitamin D, iodine, probiotics (multistrain & S. Boulardii) and 5-HTP. I am no longer taking digestive enzymes. I felt like I need to cut back (because of burning stools!) and actually don’t take them at all anymore!
I believe that I did react to FODMAPs, salicylates, amines, glutamates and eggs at some point as I did react to a whole lot of other foods, but healing and sealing my gut and correcting my gut dysbiosis is helping me solve the root gut of my food intolerances instead of just avoiding the foods that I can’t tolerate. It may take a bit of time, but I now have more variety than I could ever wish for and am convinced that it is only going to get better and better… with time.
My goal is to stick to this low-carb GAPS diet for a few more months / years (I will see how I feel and how quickly my body heals) and then I may try to introduce even more foods… maybe even occasional small amounts of non-GAPS foods, such as dark chocolate! 😉




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15 thoughts on “SIBO update!

  1. Hi there! 🙂 A little background…I have celiac, IBS, SIBO (methane type – C), pelvic floor dysfunction, and motility issues. Have struggled with Candida, so have been on Candida diet since January. Its helps some. Didn’t know I had SIBO until recently, however. Now looking into FODMAP and GAPS/SCD.

    Are you combining FODMAP with GAPS? If I understand correctly, there are a number of contradictions between these two diets. I would really like to know how you process through choosing one diet over the other…or doing both? With so many other food restrictions (I now suspect I “react” to many foods because of the SIBO because I was tested for food allergies and only tree nuts came up, but like you I don’t have much that I can eat at all anymore), I feel utterly overwhelmed at trying to come up with something safe to eat.

    Cheers from USA! Thanks for any advice or help you can provide. I appreciate hearing from someone else going through this.

    Gutsy Girl

    • Hi Gutsy Girl! 😉
      I started by combining both the FODMAP and GAPS approaches. When I started on the GAPS diet, I stayed away from onions, garlic and other high-FODMAP foods for a few weeks before reintroducing back into my diet one by one. My belief is that if you are intolerant to FODMAPs, it is probably due to SIBO or other gut dysbiosis. Rebalancing your gut flora and healing and sealing your leaky gut with the GAPS diet will probably correct the problem and allow you to tolerate most GAPS-friendly foods, including those higher in FODMAPs.
      At the start of the GAPS diet, pureed carrot was my only vegetable for the first 1-2 weeks. I then introduced other vegetables but in very small quantities, one at a time to establish my tolerance. Good luck with your GAPS/SCD diet and let me know if you have any questions! 😉

  2. Thank you so much for sharing your journey. I have leaky gut and you have inspired me to keep finding ways to heal. Please update us when you can..

  3. Hello Aglaee, my son has blastocystis hominis and has had gut problems since he was 8 ,He’s 23 now and together we’re trying to work out whats next. He’s seeing a naturopath and has been taking,for 2 months, blackcummin seed, grapeseed extract, mastic gum ,properlous ,git 2 gut support,primal defence probiotic,Bactocad (finished), and slippery elm. Joel reacts to most foods physically and mentally he gets depersonalization symptoms, which makes it difficult to function. We’re thinking the gaps deit might be the next step, to support the gut and mind What would you suggest? Thanks for your time.

    • I know this is an old thread, but came across it and was wondering if Jenny could reply if the gaps diet helped your son’s symptoms as mine are similar, such as foods causing stomach distress and depersonalization(the worst), and severely foggy and dizzy like after certain foods. Ive been trying so many things this past year including the gaps diet and supplements, cleansing and treating Candida, with hardly any improvement. I’ve been trying everything and am desperate to be able to function and live my life again. Thank you so much for any advice you or anyone might have.

  4. Do you now think that people should start with GAPS, even if they react to the bone broths etc. ( presumably because of the way the proteins in the meat get broken down into their constituent amines in the broth)?
    Or do you think it is better to pare back to a few foods a person can tolerate first, like you did, and then slowly build up tolerance to GAPS?
    Basically do you think that at some point, people are going to have to grit their teeth and put up with some adverse reactions for the sake of the gut healing offered by GAPS?
    Background:
    I ask because I find bone broths and fermented foods very very hard to tolerate. The bone broths less so, but the ferments induce terrible heartburn, even in small quantities. Cider vinegar & garlic the same. same.c incredibly painful really paiful for me.
    I am fructmal but cannot tolerate most fruits even the ones supposed to be ok like berries… 😦

    • Hi Sarah, I would probably start with meat broth (cook for 2-3 hours only) at first. THen, after a few weeks or a month or two, you could try bone broth again but make sure that when you make your homemade bone broth, the temperature is a low as possible (barely simmering) to decrease the formation of amines. Don’t use onion/garlic or other FODMAP-containing vegetables in your broth. I think it is normal to go through a worsening during the first days or first couple of weeks as your body goes through withdrawal/die-off reactions, but it should quickly start going in the right direction again. I would probably hold off with the cider vinegar and any other foods you don’t tolerate. Your fructose malabsorption is most likely SIBO, candida overgrowth or a food chemical intolerance if you can’t tolerate berries.

  5. i have been on and off the GAPS for SIBO mainly because everytime i implement it i get severely constipated without my tubers and plantain. i suppose this wasn’t your issue (sounds like you had the “D” variety with hydrogen as the culprit? any advice for this issue? thanks and congratulations on your sweet wee baby.

    • Hi Kelly! I no longer blog here. I wonder if you’ve read my book Digestive Health with REAL Food? radicatamedicine.com/books-publications/ If you do have it, you can join my private DHwRF community here:`https://www.facebook.com/groups/793189077412887. If you have constipation-predominant SIBO, you really need to get the appropriate treatment to get rid of it. Diet alone won’t work (although it will certainly help). Best of luck to you.

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