February 09, 2011

A Word About Carbs

My friend Debi asked a question about carbs in her comment on my last post.  I have to confess, I had never heard of "Ketosis!"  So I did a quick online search to see what she was talking about.  Obviously since I hadn't heard of it, I haven't been concerned about it being an issue for us, LOL.  But I want to be sure I have correct information, and of course I want to be sure the significant changes we're making are not part of any "fad" diet research.  So I welcomed the question as an opportunity to learn more.

In working my way through the book Gut and Psychology Syndrome by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride, I actually read some information today about carbohydrates.  This may answer Debi's question, and if not, Debi, feel free to comment. :-)

First of all, I learned--or maybe relearned, because I do vaguely remember some of this from high school science classes!--that carbs are made of monosaccharides, the most common of which are glucose, fructose, and galactose.  They easily penetrate the gut lining and do not need digestion.  Glucose and fructose are found in abundance in fruit and vegetables.  Galactose (which is one I don't remember hearing about before) is found in soured milk products like yogurt.  "Monosugars" from fruit and some veggies are the easiest carbs for us to digest and should be the main form of carbohydrate in the diet of any person with a digestive disorder--which includes allergies, asthma, and other autoimmune issues, along with a host of other GAPS issues.

The next size carbs are the double sugars--the sucrose (table sugar), lactose (milk sugar), and maltose (from digestion of starch).  We cannot absorb these sugars without a lot of internal work!  When a person has GAPS issues, these carbs cannot be absorbed and stay in the gut, becoming major food for pathogenic bacteria, viruses, Candida, and other toxic substances.  Even in healthy people, a lot of starch goes undigested.

Before doing this research, I thought carbs were breads, pastas, rice, cereal, etc.  Now I'm learning that THOSE kinds of carbs are exactly what causes so many health problems today--at least, in the form most of us eat them!  Most carbohydrates are ultra-processed foods in a completely different form from what God intended us to have.  I could probably write a lot about this, since I just finished reading this chapter, but I'll close with an interesting quote from Dr. Campbell-McBride:  "The more processed carbohydrates with or without gluten you give your GAPS child or adult, the more 'toxic' he or she will become and the more autistic, schizophrenic, hyperactive, or other symptoms you will see."

As our bodies heal, we will slowly return to eating grains properly prepared--that is, buying our wheat as a grain and cooking it at home as opposed to baking with pre-processed wheat flour.  We thought we were being so healthy to make our own breads and use whole wheat flour in cookies instead of white flour, but we weren't really much better off than the majority of Americans who purchase their breads and desserts! 

How long will this process take?  I wish I knew!  The kids keep asking, and secretly, I do, too, LOL.  The book says that people with severe GAPS symptoms need to expect to be on the diet 2 years in order to build back their supply of good bacteria while depleting the bad.  Since we aren't dealing with major issues like MS, autism, depression, ADHD, etc., I am hoping that we'll see significant improvements with our health within a year.  Of course, Ted's deployment kind of throws a wrench into his own healing process, but God knows what He's doing!  And Ted is even farther into the book than I am.  He's learning what he should and should not eat in order to promote healing in his own body, and he'll make the best choices he possibly can.  And I'll plan to mail him lots of homemade sauerkraut, LOL.  It's a probiotic. :-)

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