Changing Gut Flora
A glass of probiotic juice may not look like much but has the potential to change everything. Every decision of what food goes into the mouth has an effect on the body’s ecosystem.
The GAPS Nutritional Protocol uses food and traditional cooking to change and rebalance the body. Part of that is to do with the microbiome. Changing foods to those that the body can repair and rebuild with also requires the regrowth of a variety of probiotic bacteria.
The process of changing gut flora can be a balancing act and can take a long time. As health improves, there can also be different levels of die-off symptoms from the chemical reactions of various pathogenic bacteria. These symptoms can range from mild, like desiring more carbohydrates, starch, and sugars, to more obvious and severe symptoms like joint and muscle aches, headaches, and emotional mood swings. It’s important to gradually introduce fermented foods so the body has time to adjust.
Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride recommends starting with 1 teaspoon a day of fermented vegetable juice to gauge how a person’s body is going to respond. If there is no reaction after a few days, increasing the amount gradually will avoid any extremes. There may also be different responses from different vegetable ferments because of the microbes each contains. Following the same procedure of 1 teaspoon, then 2 teaspoons, will lessen any symptoms and ensure the body can cope.
The important thing to remember is that changing food choices means better health in the long-term. If that means taking a few more days to introduce a probiotic ferment, so be it.