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More about Dr. Campbell-McBride:
BOOK: Gut and Psychology Syndrome
BOOK: Vegetarianism Explained
BOOK: Put Your Heart in Your Mouth
Have you ever wondered how our guts play a major role in our body? In today’s episode, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride will share with us GAPS, the normal and abnormal gut flora and how our body reacts to food.
[0:00] Intro: Hello, true health seekers. And welcome to another exciting episode of the Learn True Health Podcast.
I am so, so honored today to have with us Dr. Campbell-McBride. She’s a nutritionist, a medical doctor, neurologist, and neurosurgeon. She’s the creator of the GAPS diet, which stands for Gut And Psychology Syndrome. Her diet heals the gut, eliminates leaky gut syndrome, and thus helps to heal the nervous system. Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride shares that the GAPS diet helped cure her first son of autism. She now widely promotes the diet as a natural cure for many psychiatric and neurological conditions, including autism, asthma, allergies, food sensitivities, ADD and ADHD, dyspraxia, dyslexia, depression, schizophrenia, Tourette’s Syndrome, bipolar disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, eating disorders, gout, and childhood bedwetting.
It is so fascinating to hear the relationship between gut health and our brain and our nervous system and our immune system. And you’re going to love all the things that Dr. Campbell-McBride shares today.
As you’re listening to this episode and if you really geek out on this kind of information, learning about different diets that heal the body in a certain way, and you want to learn more about all the dietary theories out there that helped to heal different issues in the body really using food as medicine, consider becoming a student at IIN, the Institute for Integrative Nutrition. This is the online school that I went to, to become a health coach. It’s a year-long training program designed for busy, busy moms and dads or busy working people that also want to learn this information. So they make it in a way that allows you to do it in your free time. Listen to these great audios and watch these videos that you can fit it into your everyday life.
And in the course of a year, you learn a hundred dietary theories and all the ways in which you can heal the body with food. You also learn how to help others. So whether you want to become a health coach to help others or just have another tool in your tool belt to help your friends and family and help yourself, IIN has an amazing program. It was really life changing for me and I’ve said this before in the podcast, I would have done the program just for myself. Just for the personal growth that it gave me. And then in addition to that, it added more tools in my tool belt to help others. So if you’d like to learn more information, you can go to learntruehealth.com/coach. That’s learntruehealth.com/coach and it allows you to take one of their modules for free to see if it’s something that interests you.
If you have any questions about IIN or going through it as a student and want to know more about the experience, please feel free to reach out to me. You can reach out to me through Facebook and our Facebook Group, the Learn True Health Facebook Group. Or you can email me, email@example.com and I’d love to answer any questions you may have about my experience about going through it as a student. There are actually dozens of people, dozens of listeners that have gone through their program and become health coaches that are also in our Facebook Group. So you can just post in our Facebook Group, the Learn True Health Facebook Group, any questions you have, and not only will I answer them, but others will answer it so you’ll get an even deeper picture of what it’s like to go through their program.
Excellent. Thank you so much for being a listener. Thank you so much for sharing this podcast with those you love. Please share this episode with the mothers and fathers in your life who have children who may have some difficulties with development or with ADD or ADHD, with allergies. This is something that is life changing not only for children but also for adults. I have a friend who this diet saved her life. Because those who have autoimmune conditions as well see great benefit from doing this protocol if they have leaky gut syndrome. So as you’re listening, you may also start to think about all the friends and family that would benefit from hearing this information. So please keep sharing and thank you so much for helping me get this information out there to help as many people as possible to learn true health.
[4:47] Ashley James: Welcome to the Learn True Health podcast. I’m your host, Ashley James. This is Episode 385.
I am so excited for today’s guest. We have with us – I feel like it’s I’m like in the presence of a Hollywood celebrity in the health realm – Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. I have been a big fan of yours. Many of our listeners have been a big fan of yours. And one of my friends who is also a listener says that she would be dead right now if it wasn’t for your protocol. You literally saved her life. And she is the biggest fan girl. Her name is Caroline. She just loves you. So I just want you to know there’s a woman in Seattle who loves you so dearly. People around the world have shared that your protocol has changed their lives. I first saw you on Netflix, actually. The season two, episode one of the Paleo Way. And I was really confused because there are all these diets out there that totally contradict each other.
And what I really get about diets is that it’s about figuring out what your body needs right now. And you have such a scientifically sound protocol to help people heal the brain and heal the gut. You’ve created the GAPS diet. Your website is gaps.me. And we have all the links to everything that Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride in the show notes for today’s podcast Learn True Health. It is such a pleasure to have you here today. Welcome to the show.
[6:26] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Thank you for inviting me. I’m delighted to be here.
[6:29] Ashley James: Absolutely. And thank you for taking the time. Isn’t like 6:00 p.m. your time in London right now?
[6:35] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: It is.
[6:36] Ashley James: Excellent. Well, thank you. Good evening. And I’d love to start by hearing the story. What happened that led you to create the GAPS diet?
[6:50] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Well, I guess it was my fate to create it. Because when I was 18 months old, I fell ill myself and nearly died. I had the food poisoning in the crash. And the food was just going in and coming out. And I was losing weight and literally dying. Until my parents contacted my grandmother – my grandparents in the village who had a smallholding in the village. My grandmother took me there and she healed me. And later on I’ve learned what she healed me with was the GAPS diet, basically. That’s exactly what it was.
[7:28] Ashley James: I love it.
[7:29] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: They have their own – yes. They have their own animals. They have their cow and sheep and chickens and garden and bees and all of that and everything was natural. And my grandmother used to make her own fermented milk from her own milk – raw milk. So that’s what healed me. And then when I got married and moved to Britain, my first child was diagnosed with autism at the age of three. And I knew, I knew instinctively at that point that it’s coming from the digestive tract. Because he had severe digestive problems right from the beginning. So I knew that it’s the diet. That the diet has to fix it. That is the most important thing.
And of course, in those days we didn’t have internet. All I could do is go to the local library and ask for books or whatever. And I came across the specific carbohydrate diet. Because I went to a conference where Elaine Gottschall was speaking. And we made a professional relationship. We became professional friends. And I started that protocol. And then I’ve changed it, evolved it, adding what my grandmother would do. Adding the traditional diets to the traditional wisdom to it. And then my own patients have called it the GAPS diet, standing for Gut And Psychology Syndrome. That’s the abbreviation.
Later on, I’ve added another GAPS strip, Gut And Physiology Syndrome. Because initially, obviously, I focused on autism. And as I was working with autistic children, I realized that their siblings are not healthy either. They have digestive symptoms, they have allergies, asthma, eczema, many of them are clingy, many of them are hyperactive, many of them are fussy eaters. Fussy eating just universally present amongst these children. And I realized that these children are just as well as their autistic sibling is just that they’ve had a different pregnancy, different constitution so they’re not autistic, but they have problems which stem from the same place – from the digestive system.
And as I started putting whole families on the GAPS diet, on the GAPS nutritional protocol, the parents started recovering from chronic fatigue syndrome, from fibromyalgia, from multiple sclerosis, from allergies, from migraines, from chronic cystitis, from all kinds of problems. As well as the siblings and the autistic children. So I realized that this is one condition that indeed, as Hippocrates put it all those thousands of years ago, all diseases begin in the gut. Every one of them, chronic diseases. We’re not talking about acute situations, of course. We’re talking about chronic diseases. That they all begin in the gut. And that’s where the treatment has to begin.
What we have with these people, they have abnormal gut flora. Recent research discovered the fact that 90% of all cells in the human body are in our gut flora, 90%. So our human bodies are only 10%. It’s a shell, a habitat for this mass of microbes that live inside us. That’s our gut flora. And it is a highly organized microbial world in a healthy person with all kinds of microbes are present there. From the bacteria viruses, protozoa, archaea, worms, flukes, all kinds of things have to be there. Because they’re all part of the harmonious community of microbes. They plant each other. They harvest each other. They eat each other. They control each other. They don’t allow one another to get out of control and start causing trouble. And normally, when you have that balanced community of microbes in there, then you are able to digest the food properly and benefit from that food. And it protects you from all kinds of illnesses. It protects you from any kind of reactions of the immune system. Because 85% of our immune system is located in the gut wall.
Our digestive system is a major immune organ in our body. It’s the biggest and the most important immune organ in the body. So any kind of immune abnormality, whether it is a chronic inflammation, or allergy, or autoimmune disease, or anything else, or histamine intolerance or anything else. Look in the gut. Don’t look anywhere else. Look in the gut first. Because that’s where the majority of the immune system is. That is where all the commanding echelons of our immune system are. All the generals, admirals, officers, the commanding echelons. And that’s where all the major decisions are made, in the gut.
So what happens in GAPS people, they have abnormal gut flora. Because we live in the world, which is literally set on damaging our gut flora from the moment of birth even before then. Antibiotics, and not only prescription antibiotics but antibiotics in our food because majority of agricultural chemicals used by our industrial agriculture, which grows our plant foods and then feeds them to our animals and feeds cows and pigs and sheep and chickens with antibiotics on a daily basis. Because that makes them increase weight quicker, grow quicker, so it’s more profitable. So all the industrially produced food that you buy in supermarkets is full of antibiotics. Chemicals which are antibiotics in their nature. Every time we put food in our mouths, we eat antibiotics. Antibiotics kill bacteria. That’s all they can kill, bacteria. These bacteria were eating and controlling fungi, viruses, protozoa, archaea, and other things. When you knock them out, all these other creatures suddenly are not controlled anymore. The balance is gone in the digestive tract. As it is on the overgrow and instead of being a beneficial member of a balanced community, they suddenly become pathogenic. They become villains. They start producing toxic substances and they start damaging the integrity of the gut wall.
A gut wall in the GAPS person is like a [inaudible 00:13:51], it’s got holes in it. So food doesn’t get the chance to get digested properly before it absorbs through these holes into your blood and into your lymph. And then your immune system finds this undigested food in your blood, in your lymph. It doesn’t recognize them as food and attacks them. And this attack, first and foremost, manifests itself as a food allergy or intolerance. So that can show itself as any kind of symptoms under the sun. It can be a drop in your blood pressure. It can be a drop in your blood sugar level. It can be a migraine attack. It can be an asthma attack. It can be a skin rash. It can be a panic attack. It can be about cystitis or anything else. It can be a heart palpitations. Anything at all.
And the symptoms can be immediate or it can be delayed. So on any given day, you have no idea what you’re reacting to. You might be reacting at the same time to something you’ve just eaten for lunch plus something you’ve eaten yesterday plus something you’ve eaten several days ago plus something you’ve eaten two weeks ago. All these reactions overlap on top of each other. In effect, you’re reacting to pretty much all food that you’re eating. Because all food is absorbing partially digested, improperly digested. You’re absorbing a lot of food undigested and you’re reacting to it.
There are many laboratories in the world which now can do testing for you on this food allergies and intolerances. And they tell you to remove this food and remove that food. And I’ve lost count of people who have taken that out and they started removing foods and removing and removing, then finish up with virtually nothing left to eat. They’ve got a few, literally, a handful of foods that they’re eating and they’re still reacting. Because as long as you got this like [inaudible 00:15:44], you are absorbing everything undigested. You’re reacting to everything.
So in the GAPS nutritional protocol, I don’t even recommend doing this testing, particularly for people who have limited funds. It’s expensive to do testing. We work on healing and sealing the gut lining. We rebuild the gut lining for the person. Because the beautiful fact is that, human body doesn’t waste effort on healing sick cells or damaged cells. If a cell is damaged, if a cell is sick, it is killed and removed. And then new baby cells are to replace it. In order to give birth to this baby cells, building materials are required. And the whole process is ruled and orchestrated by the bacteria, by the microbes. Not just bacteria but the whole microbial community in the gut. This beautiful process is called cell regeneration. And it goes on in every organ, every tissue in the human body. In the gut lining this process is very fast, very rapid. The cells which line our gut will only live a few days. They have a very short life. And they get replaced all the time. New baby cells are born all the time.
The problem is if a person has abnormal gut flora, and it’s the gut flora that is in charge of this process, these newly born baby cells get damaged immediately as soon as they’re born. Even before they mutate and they’re unable to fulfill proper functions of digestion and absorption of food. So what we want to do, at the same time, we want to change the gut flora. We want to drive out pathogens. Replace them with the beneficial flora. Restore the diversity of gut flora. Restore the whole harmonious microbial community in the gut. So this process goes right and this baby cells do not get damaged. At the same time in order for the gut lining to give birth to trillions of cells every day, we provide concentrated amounts of building materials for the body to make the cells from. And that is what the GAPS diet provides for the person.
So in effect, what we’re doing, we’re building new gut wall for the person. We’re healing and selling it. So that is one aspect of what happens to Gaps people.
The second thing that happens to GAPS people, because their gut flora is abnormal, the food that comes along is digested by this pathogenic abnormal community of microbes. And they have their own metabolism. They convert food into wastes, various products. And these products then absorbed for the damaged gut lining and finish up in the bloodstream. Many of them, thousands of them, are done by poisonous pathogenic. They go into the bloodstream. They get distributed around the body and cause havoc in every organ and every tissue. At the same time, these microbes all of them have their own metabolism. They produce hormones. In fact, now they produce so many hormones in such huge amounts that now researchers in gut flora have pronounced our gut flora to be the biggest and the most important endocrine organ in the human body.
The flow of hormones that comes from the gut flora is enormous. And of course, when these hormones finish up in our bloodstream, they regulate our hormonal balance. They talk to your thyroid gland, to your pancreas, to your dreams, to your sexual hormones. And they upset it. They unbalance it. As a result, usually typically GAPS people develop low thyroid function. Their adrenal hormones all over the place. Cortisol is usually high through the roof. So these people are constantly in a stress response. They can’t sleep well. They can’t cope with their stress. They can’t cope with pressure. And their adrenals are not working very well. They get exhausted in this people. And so sex hormones are all over the place. Some are too high, some are too low, the whole thing is dysregulated. And that will produce perimenstrual syndrome. That will produce polycystic ovaries. That will produce dysmenorrhea and various other problems in that area. In men, it will produce also problems in that area. And infertility is one of those problems as well.
And I would mention another problem that I see because I work with children and have been working for the last, almost, 30 years. So many of these children still stay with me. I observe them for a long, long time. Many of these children with abnormal gut flora, have abnormal sexual development due to this flow of hormones. Hormones from their gut flora. Girls are not sure they’re girls. Boys are not sure they’re boys. There are some secondary sexual characteristics which are not quite right, not quite normal. And they’re abnormalities in this area due to this fact.
Another thing that this community of microbes produces in combination with the gut itself are neurotransmitters. We now know that almost 100% of serotonin is produced in the gut and then transported to the brain to be used. About 70% of dopamine is produced in the gut and then sent to the nervous system to be used. Almost 100% of GABA is produced in the gut. And many other endorphins and neurotransmitters. These are chemicals that our nervous system, the cells in our brain and spine, use to communicate between themselves and between each other.
And when the serotonin is low, if your gut is not functioning well, your gut wall is abnormal, it’s unable to produce enough serotonin. If your serotonin is low then you can’t sleep well, you become negative, and you become depressed. You don’t see any joy in life at all. Because to be positive, to be content, we need serotonin.
When there isn’t enough dopamine, it’s a motivational neurotransmitter, that’s another side of depression. When the person is just apathetic. They don’t want to get out of bed. They don’t want to brush their teeth, brush their hair, change their clothes, to wash themselves. What’s the point? This person has no dopamine. Not enough dopamine is being produced.
When there isn’t enough GABA, the person becomes anxious. That is the cause of anxiety in the person and panic attacks.
And the combination, all of these neurotransmitters are very powerful. They have many, many functions in many different organs, not only on the nervous system. They also affect the immune system. They affect how the muscles work and how many, many other organs in the body work. So it’s a disaster just these three aspects of the activity of the gut flora, abnormal hormonal flow, abnormal neurotransmitter flow, and thousands of poisonous chemicals absorbing. All of this situation turns the digestive system of a person into a major source of toxicity in the body.
While the food is not digesting properly, not absorbing properly, and the person developing multiple nutritional deficiencies. When you have abnormal gut flora, you can be eating the best diet in the world, the best quality food in the world. But you are unable to digest it properly, to absorb it properly. And this food is not really benefiting you as a result. So that’s what happens in the GAPS person.
The more we research gut flora, the more we research microbiome – that’s the new term that science has created – the more we realize that there is nothing sterile in the human body. We have microbes living everywhere. Our blood vessels are populated by microbial community. Our blood has microbes in it. Our heart, our lungs, our brain has microbes in it. Our abdominal cavity has its own microbial flora. The uterus in a woman, the tubes in the woman, the ovaries have their own flora. The flora is everywhere.
But the bulk of it, the headquarters of all these microbial community are in the gut. And I believe that it is from the gut that all the major instructions and data and information goes to the rest of the microbiome in the human body – from the gut. So when we fix the gut, when we turn that gut flora back to normal, and when they heal and seal the gut wall, everything else in my clinical experience just fixes itself in the body.
The person might come to me with rheumatoid arthritis. And when I asked them about their digestive system, they say, “Well, I’m okay in that department. No diarrhea, no constipation, no gas, no bloating, no pain. I’m all right.” But when we test their gut flora, we find that it’s abnormal. When we test the permeability of their gut wall, we find that it’s like a safe, everything absorbs undigested and it’s just the flow of toxicity coming through it. And when we put the person on the GAPS nutritional protocol, the rheumatoid arthritis disappears. The person recovers from this disease which is far away from the digestive system and nobody would connect the two.
The same with the mental illness with the brain. Look how high the brain is in the body and where the digestive system is. That is why for a long time nobody connected the two. And with the GAPS nutritional protocol, what we do – and my book has – the GAPS book came out first in 2004. And when it first came out, I lost count of mainstream medical professionals and professors and so on who were telling me that I’m absolutely crazy. That I’m off my rocker saying things like that. That autism has any connection to the digestive system. Or hyperactivity in children or anything else like that. Now we have a number of scientific studies published which are confirming that fact. So the science eventually caught up with us, which is great.
So what happens in an autistic child? From my point of view and from the point of view of many other holistic doctors that I know, ecological doctors, almost 100% of these poor little darlings, these autistic children in the world – we have an epidemic of autism – we’re born with a perfectly normal brain. These were perfectly normal babies.
But what happened to these babies? They acquired abnormal gut flora from the mother. We now know that the child starts acquiring gut flora during pregnancy in utero. Because the woman has uterine flora. She got the flora in her uterus and her placenta. The placenta is populated richly, apparently, by microbes. And that’s where it all begins. So the baby is born already with some microbes populating the whole digestive system, the skin of the child, the eyes of the child, the mucous membranes. But then a large percent of our gut flora comes in into the baby during the moment of birth if the child is born vaginally, if the child is born normally. Because vagina is richly populated area of the woman’s body. And that flora comes from two sources. It comes from her gut flora. So whatever gut flora she has, it travels out of her rectum, into the groin, and populates the vagina.
The second source is the father. If the father has abnormal gut flora, then he’s groin and all the organs in that area will be populated with that abnormal gut flora. And he shares that flora with the mother a regular basis through sexual conduct. So that’s how Mother Nature designed it. So both mommy and daddy pass their gut flora to the child at the moment of birth.
If the child was born through C-section, then the flora is impoverished. That’s what research shows. That the diversity of microbes in the flora of these children is much, much lower. It’s impoverished because they didn’t go through the vagina. Therefore, it comes from the hands of people who look after the child, from the bottle, from the nipple of the mother. Because the milk ducts in the breasts of the mother are populated by and enriched microbial flora. So breast milk is a probiotic food. It’s rich in beneficial microbes plus all the necessary food to encourage the right kind of microbes to grow in the digestive tract to the child. So breast is still the best without a doubt. If the child on top of that is not breastfed, is bottle fed, then that’s another source of good gut flora eliminated in this child.
So why is it important to understand and know the parents pass their gut flora? Because that is where we find the source of this epidemic of autism, ADHD, dyslexia, dyspraxia, schizophrenia, diabetes type one, allergies, asthma, eczema, and under problems in our children.
About a third of Western children certainly in the United States of America are now being estimated that they will not outlive their parents. Children who were born in the last ten years or so. Because their constitution is so poor and their health is so poor. They just haven’t got the chance, this children. And unfortunately, that proportion of children is growing every year and the situation is getting worse every year. And the same with autism.
When I started practicing when my own child was born, we were diagnosing one child in 10,000 with autism. Today we’re diagnosing one child in 35. And scientists have already projected that line for them. And by 2025, between 2020 and 2025 in the English speaking countries which are on the forefront of this epidemic, they are predicting that one child in two will become autistic.
Half. The other half of our babies will not be healthy either. They will have ADHD, ADD, dyslexia, dyspraxia, schizophrenia, Oppositional Defiant Disorder. The list of various diagnostic labels is growing all the time. Epilepsy, diabetes type one is an absolute epidemic. Absolute epidemic. It is growing through the roof. Rheumatoid arthritis in our babies. Eczema, asthma, allergies, all kinds of health problems. And the proportion of these children is growing.
So what is happening and while this is happening? Before I talk about the health of the child in my clinic, I always talk about the health of the parents first and our grandparents as well, and all the siblings. And out of that information, a typical scenario has emerged. If the grandmother and grandfather were born, let’s say, after the Second World War, they’ve acquired normal healthy gut flora from their parents. Or maybe during the Second World War, they were born. And then antibiotics came onto the market in the 50s, maybe they had one or two courses of antibiotics which damaged their gut flora slightly. It didn’t have any effect on their own health, you know, because the human body is pretty resilient. And then they passed a slightly damaged gut flora to their children at the moment of birth, both the mother and the father. And then these children grew up in a very different world. They grew up in a world where antibiotics were given to them throughout their childhood and youth as sweets for every cough and sneeze, regular courses of antibiotics.
This was the time when the food industry flourished and appeared on the planet. And industrial agriculture appeared on the planet. And then the increasing number of agricultural chemicals being used, many which antibiotics in their nature. This is the time when junk food came onto the market. So a lot of these kids grow up on junk food, processed foods, full of antibiotics, full of chemicals. And then this is the time the generations where the girls will put on the contraceptive pill at the age of 15 or 16, which they took for quite a few years. Because this is the generation again where people started having children later and later in life. So the woman takes this pill for quite a while, quite a few years, before she is ready to have her first child.
Contraceptive pill has a devastating effect on the gut flora and on the immune system of the woman as well. So by the time this generation of people decides to have their first child, they got fully seriously damaged. And that is what they passed to their child at the moment of birth. So these children start their life from a very poor stand, already acquiring abnormal gut flora, abnormal microbiome of the whole body, from their parents. And what I see that every year, this situation is getting worse and worse, deeper and deeper. Those who had their first baby five years ago, passed a little bit better gut flora than young ladies who are having children this year or last year. And it’s accelerating. The whole thing is just accelerating. This is the epidemic of abnormalities in the gut flora that the GAPS epidemic. That is the root cause of all the other epidemics we have, autism, ADHD, dyslexia, dyspraxia, poor vision in the children, epilepsy, diabetes type one, allergies, and so on. And every year the situation is getting worse.
There’s another factor that joined in the last few decades, particularly recently in the last 20 or 25 years, and that is the toxic load that the baby is born with. It sounds cruel. It sounds unfair. But the way Mother Nature designed a woman’s body is that it uses pregnancy as a chance to clean up by dumping toxins into the fetus, into the baby. Our ladies nowadays grow up in the world, they are born into a world where vanity rules. We now have five year old girls dyeing their hair, doing nails, using makeup, all kinds of personal care products usually targeted at female population as well. All these chemicals, the personal care industry, the makeup, the hair, all of this sort of things. Human skin is not a barrier. It’s a sponge. It absorbs everything you put on it in seconds.
And our chemical industry to date has invented some 80,000 or something of new chemicals which don’t exist in nature. And this list is growing all the time. We haven’t even researched the majority of these chemicals. They are not safe. The human body doesn’t know what to do with them. They accumulate in the human body and the body just tucks them away somewhere so they don’t cause damage.
So by the time the lady is ready to have her first child and women have their children later and later in life, majority of women in the Western world now wouldn’t even think about it until they’re 30, even later sometimes. So the longer the woman waits, the more toxicity her body accumulates. And then as soon as she gets pregnant for the first time, her body thinks great, “I’ll clean up.” And it dumps the whole lot into the baby – into the fetus. If that toxicity is enough to kill the baby then the woman will have a miscarriage or a stillbirth. We have an epidemic of miscarriages. The statistics are also growing. But miscarriage is not a happy event. But it is a chance for the woman’s body to clean up. So for the following pregnancy, she’s cleaner. And she will continue having miscarriages until her body is clean enough to provide an environment for producing a viable body for her baby.
If the woman didn’t have enough toxicity in her body, then her baby will be born with a high toxic load, if it wasn’t enough toxicity to kill a fetus, the fetus has survived, but the baby will be born with a high toxic load. And that means this baby has a compromised constitution. This is not going to be a healthy person. A healthy human being born with a high toxic load. And indeed, if you look at the statistics of autism, of ADHD, and other problems, other health problems in children, the vast majority of them are first born in the family. Because the woman cleaned up on the first pregnancy. And the following pregnancies, she had a cleaner body for those and these children were born with a smaller toxic load. As a result, stronger constitution and stronger health, generally speaking. If a woman was exposed to some toxicity between pregnancies, which can happen in our modern world as well, then following pregnancy will also dump a lot of toxicity into the child.
So this is a double whammy for babies nowadays. They’re born with a high toxic load plus they acquire abnormal gut flora. So there are gaps this children. From my point of view, nobody’s researching this. There are no epidemiological studies done on this yet in the world. How many of our babies are born as GAPS? But from my point of view, a vast majority. A growing majority. It is hard to see healthy babies nowadays. Babies are affected in one way or another.
So what happens in this child? The child begins its life with abnormal gut flora. While the child is exclusively breastfed – breast milk is the best food for the baby for many reasons. First of all, it doesn’t mean digesting. It absorbs – the nutrients are all there ready to be absorbed and to nourish the child. It is perfect. Absolutely perfect. Secondly, the milk ducts in the breast populates a beneficial flora. So this is a probiotic food. So while we are exclusively breastfeeding, we are correcting the gut flora in the child getting it better a little bit.
At the same time whatever abnormal gut flora the mother passed to her child, she had for a while herself. So her immune system has developed some defenses against her own gut flora. She would have antibodies. She will have immune complexes against this microbes. And all of this immune complexes and antibodies will be flowing in her milk. Because milk of any animal is the white blood of the female with red blood cells removed. So everything that is in your blood, in the mother’s blood, will be in her milk. And that means all the immune complexes alive and active, alive and active hormones, neurotransmitters, microbes, nutrients and the right kind of biochemical forms so the breast milk is the best. There’s no doubt about it. So while the woman is breastfeeding, she passed her abnormal gut to the child but at the same time through her breast milk she’s providing protection for her baby. So the baby is protected.
The baby might have colic. Colic is the first symptom that the child has abnormal gut flora. It must not be ignored. It’s very important, Colic has become so universal that health [inaudible 00:39:13] pronounced it as normal. Because they just see so many babies with colic. It is not normal. It means that the gut flora is abnormal in the child and it’s producing too much gas. At the same time, inflammation sets in the walls of the digestive tract of the child. When the bubble of gas accumulates somewhere in the digestive tract, it stretches those sore, inflamed walls, and the child has pain. The child has cramps that is why the child is crying. And until that gas gets released, one way or another, or gas moved into a less painful area of the digestive tract, the child will be screaming. So this should be a signal to the parents that the gut flora is abnormal. We must do something to deal with the situation because if we don’t, later on, that can lead towards autism, towards another learning disability or epilepsy or allergies or [inaudible 00:40:05] or something else disastrous for the child. So that is the first thing that happens.
The child may have colic, the child may be crying, may have eczema. Because eczema is a GAPS condition. What happens? A lot of this toxicity that absorbs from the digestive tract has to be removed from the body somehow. And sweat is a major way to eliminate things out of the body. So when these toxins come out in sweat, they cause irritation on the skin. There is a flora on the skin. The microbes interact with those toxins. They try to initialize them, eat them, or maybe convert them into something even more toxic. That’s a possibility. And of course the immune system is going to join the whole party. When the immune system joins the whole party, that’s when you get the redness, the swelling, the itchy scratchy patches on the skin. Only when the immune system joins in. Because it’s not the toxins and not the microbes that caused the symptoms, It’s the immune system trying to deal with that situation that causes the red, the hot, the itchy, and the painful patches on the skin. So that’s what eczema is. The root of it isn’t the gut. That’s where the toxicity comes from. So when we heal and seal the gut, eczema disappears.
And I have thousands of children who healed from eczema very nicely when they followed the GAPS nutritional protocol. So this baby – let’s come back to this exclusively breastfed baby, the baby might be crying because of colic. The baby might have eczema. But the baby is growing, developing, nobody is particularly concerned. But when solids are introduced or formula is added to the breast milk regimen. And formula, now we have studies to show that even occasional bottle or formula changes the gut flora in the child towards pathogenic end.
So we really need to work on exclusively breastfeeding our babies and avoiding all commercial formulas because they do our babies no good. This is a dead powder made of processed synthetic things, which do nothing good for the baby whatsoever. So breastfeeding, breast is the best.
And many women who do not produce enough milk or have some problems with breastfeeding, they ask me, “What do I do? If I can’t feed formula, what do I do?” What we need to do in our human societies – modern human society is to resurrect thousands of years old practice. Because formula only existed in the world for a few decades. What did women do for thousands of years when a girl can’t produce enough milk for her baby? There will be other women around who are breastfeeding their babies, they will feed her baby for her. And that was called wet nursing. We need to bring that practice back. That is the only viable and the only proper thing to do for our babies. Not to run to the pharmacy and buying formula.
So what I recommend to all pregnant girls who go to antenatal classes, I tell them, “You single out. If you pregnant ladies there who look healthy, speak to them and say let’s form a group.” Because you never know what happens. Giving birth is the most dangerous thing a woman can do in her life. It’s completely unpredictable. You can prepare in the best possible way. You don’t know what’s going to happen. Really, it is from the experience of obstetricians. They will confirm that experience. “So let’s form a group, girls. If one of us cannot breastfeed for whatever reason, we will feed that baby, we will share our milk.”
Many women when they breastfeed produce so much milk, they can feed more than one baby. Definitely. I was one of those women. When I was breastfeeding my two babies, I could breastfeed five, no doubt about it. I had so much milk. And it was very, very rich. I would have been perfectly happy to share. So there are many women like that. And that’s what we need to do. We need to create these communities of wet nursing to support each other and to support our babies. Because no matter how clever and how well the formula is marketed, no formula in the world will ever come close to the quality of the breast milk of a woman. So that’s what we need to be doing.
And what happens to these babies with abnormal gut flora when the solids are introduced? That’s when their pathogenic microbes suddenly get the feast. You know, and usually it’s baby rice or processed powdered milk or anything else processed for these babies. And so they feast on that and they start manufacturing all their toxins and all the abnormal hormones go in and other things go in. And that’s where real problems begin in the child.
And many children nowadays instinctively learn that solids are not good for them. Anything apart from mommy’ breasts, everything else they just diffuse these babies. Because maybe when they were given the first solid or the first formula milk or anything else, the child got a tummy ache or maybe got a headache or maybe got pain in the joints or pain in the muscles. The baby can’t explain this to you. But the baby learns that anything but mommy’s breasts hurts me. I’m not going to have it. They refuse it.
It is rare for a human child to continue thriving exclusively on breast milk past the age of nine months, ten months, maybe on average. That’s when children start losing weight. And the development starts slowing down and everybody gets concerned. And that’s when the child gets diagnosed with failure to thrive in this situation. And the mainstream does all sorts of terrible things. These children have a tube through their nose and fed synthetic formulas through the nose and all sorts of things like that. And if that continues, the child will develop severe profound physical and mental disability.
What we do with these children, we put them on the first stage of the GAPS introduction diet. We start with meat stock for these babies. [Inaudible 00:46:22] boil chicken. We get organic chicken, boil the whole chicken in about two or three liters of water, and we start with that meat stock. The meat stock is warm. It is soothing. It is healing for this baby. So what the mother does when the baby is ready to eat, is not stressed, the baby needs to be happy and calm. There’s no crying, no pain anywhere. And before you give the breast to the child, you give the child one teaspoon of this warm chicken stock. Just put it in the child’s mouth and let the baby swallow it. What we’re doing with teaching the child that the spoon is safe. Because at some point the child learn that spoon is dangerous. That anything coming off the spoon gives me pain. I’m not going to have anything from the spoon or from the beaker or from the bottle or anything else. We’re re-teaching the child that the spoon is safe. And the beaker is safe and the bottle is safe by using this warm soothing healing meat stock.
And we’ll start with a small achievable target, one teaspoon before the breast is given. So before every breastfeeding, we give one teaspoon until one teaspoon is not a problem. Then we move to two teaspoons before every breastfeeding. Then three teaspoons and so on until we start using a bottle, start using a beaker, and the child has a good amount of this meat stock before every breastfeeding. When that’s not a problem, then we’ll take the skin, the fat, a little bit of brown meat of the wings and the legs of that chicken that we made the meat stock and blend into the bouillon into the stock. And this is only for soup. So we’ll make that soup gradually thicker and thicker and thicker. So the child is having the stock and and the chicken itself. And the most valuable parts of the skin of the chicken and the fat of the chicken and a little bit of brown meat. Not the breasts.
And then if that’s not a problem anymore and that has become a normal part of the child’s daily routine, having this little soup, then we start adding some vegetables to the soup. We cook them well. We start with non-starch vegetables. This is described in my book – in my GAPS book, that is part four there, about preconception and new baby. Where there is a diet on new baby. That’s how we deal with that situation.
Learning disabilities and other serious physical problems usually develop when breastfeeding stops in the baby. Because the breast milk was providing protection from these disabilities. Despite the fact that the child has acquired abnormal gut flora. The child has colic, has eczema maybe, has other problems, but as long as the breast milk is provided, it provides protection. Because we can’t live with colic and many parents wouldn’t mind – you know, I’m not so concerned about eczema even compared to autism. Autism was a far more disastrous situation than any of those other situations. So nobody wants that. So what I recommend for these families, if you know that your gut flora is abnormal, if you know that your child already has a colic, has eczema, or has something wrong with the gut flora, breastfeed for as long as you can. Two, three, four years. Even once a day, a little supplement of breast milk will do wonders. It will boost the immune cell status of the child. It will provide the right nutrition. It will provide healing substances for the gut lining. It will provide probiotic microbes for the child. Just don’t stop breastfeeding until you’re sure your child is doing well. And in the meantime, follow the GAPS nutritional protocol to heal the gut, to heal the immune system, to normalize and rebalance the hormonal system in the child, neurotransmitter production, and immune function. Everything in the child will straighten up on the GAPS nutritional protocol.
There’s another very serious situation that is fairly modern. It’s a new diagnostic label called a FPIES. There are now variations of this diagnostic label. And that is a Food Protein-Induced Enterocolitis in the child. Basically, what we have here, we have a child with such damaged gut wall with big holes in the gut wall. So all protein in this child absorbs undigested. And these are the children who are often exclusively breastfed. Breast milk goes in, diarrhea comes out, and the child i’s not putting weight, vomiting, diarrhea, vomiting, diarrhea. Everybody gets concerned. The doctors test this child and find that the child is allergic to all proteins on the planet. So the woman is told to stop breastfeeding. As a result, the child is put on an elemental soy formula, which is terrible. And the parents are told, “You can’t give your child any protein. Just give them some bold carrots or something. And that’s it.” And then, you know, the doctors tell them to look for veganism for the rest of their lives.
So what we do with these babies? I have a growing group of these babies in the world. We have now a support group amongst parents, wonderful mothers, wonderful, just absolute heroes mothers who have healed their own children and now helping hundreds of other babies in the world with this terrible situation.
We start with meat stock with these babies. Lots of protein. But what we’re doing with this meat stock, we’re building a new gut wall for the baby. And until that new gut wall is built, vomiting, diarrhea might continue. The child might continue reacting. But we have to, there is no other path, there is no other way. And this children do recover. They have to stay on the GAPS diet then pretty much for life. For many, many, many years until we’re absolutely sure that the person is healthy and robust. Only then you can try and introduce things which are not allowed on the GAPS diet. But there are now many children in the world who recovered from this condition. This are GAPSters children. And many other health problems. So this is the first year that we talked about.
Now let’s move into the second year of the GAPS children. That is the year when they develop autism, hyperactivity, dyslexia, dyspraxia, diabetes type one, and other learning disabilities and other physical problems. Because that’s usually is the year when the breastfeeding stops and the child is on solids. And the child can digest that food. Their digestive tract is a source of toxicity. How do babies learn? How do children learn how to be a human being in this world? Because they need to learn that sort of thing. They learn through using their senses, their eyes, the ears, their tactile sensitivity, their sense of smell, sense of taste, and other senses. So what does sensory organs do? They collect information from the environment. Just observe babies. They listen to everything. They stare at everybody. They touch everything. They take everything in their mouth. They’re using their sensory organs to collect information from the environment. And then this information is passed to the brain to be processed. And from this processing, the brain learns. Now, “This is mommy. This is daddy. This is a toy. I play with it like this. This is food I eat. These are the children, I copy them.” And that’s how human beings develop. That’s how a baby learns to be a human being.
But in our GAPS children, their brain is clogged with toxicity. That proof of toxicity coming out of the gut gets into the brain of the child and clogs it with toxins. This brain cannot process this information from the sensory organs appropriately. All this information comes into a mush, into a noise in the brain. And depending how much toxicity is in the brain, what kind of toxicity the character with, the child will develop symptoms. If it’s the most severe situation, the child will become autistic. If it’s less severe and there are bits and pieces here and there, the child may become hyperactive or develop attention deficit disorder or dyslexia or dyspraxia or schizophrenia, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, strange fits, strange ticks, and epilepsy.
Epilepsy is a safety valve for the brain. When the brain accumulates too much toxicity and it senses that this toxicity is physically damaging to the tissue of the brain. Remember, these children were born with a perfectly normal brain. This was a perfectly normal brain. But of course, years and years of bombardment of the brain by this toxins will cause physical damage to the brain. And a proportion of these children, the brain develops a cleansing procedure, a safety valve. It sends one electric discharge through or a number of electric charges, and burns the whole lot of toxins out. It cleanses itself. But clinically that manifests itself as an epileptic seizure. We have known that epileptic seizures are cleansing for the brain for the last 200 years from classical psychiatry. There are many descriptions of that and that’s what classical psychiatry understood. So the last thing these children need is another toxin added to the whole load of toxicity in the brain in the form of antibiotic medication. All it does is suppresses the brain activity. So the longer the child is on this medication, the more they are unable to learn and they become – they develop learning disability and they become just couch potatoes. Their personality changes in these children.
What we want is to subtract toxins from the brain. Not to add more. There are dangerous forms of epilepsy. But the child is having several grand mal seizures a day. That’s when the medication is life saving. Because an epileptic seizure can kill a child. But majority of children are not in that category. Majority of children had one seizure and then no seizures for many months. No epileptic activity for many months afterwards. And yet they’re put on medication. My dream is that one day our medical professional will be putting them on the GAPS state. Because I have many, many children around the world who recovered from epilepsy with the GAPS diet. Because what we do with the GAPS diet, the GAPS nutritional protocol will clean the gut, drive out pathogens, reestablish normal harmonious balanced community of microbes in the gut, and we heal and seal the gut wall.
As a result that wave of toxicity coming from the gut stops. And when it stops, the brain cleans itself. Human body has an amazing ability to clean itself. Every cell, every tissue has a cleaner in it, which is very busy and constantly cleaning itself. The headquarters of this cleaning detoxification system is in the liver and departments in every cell of the human body. So the human body and the brain has a beautiful ability to cleanse itself to get rid of toxicity. We just have to stop these toxins from coming in. And in order to do that, we have to heal the gut. Because if your tap in the kitchen is leaking and you have a puddle on the floor ,what do you do first? Do you start mopping the puddle or do you deal with the tap first? It’s a good idea to fix the tap first and then mop the puddle. So by fixing the gut, we’re fixing the tap in the kitchen – the leaky tap. And once the leak stops then we can mop the paddle and be done with the situation.
So as far as the brain is concerned, in my opinion, all mental illness – all of it – schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder, addictions, depression, epilepsy, any kind of mental illness, panic attacks, memory problems are GAPS conditions. They’re all coming from the digestive system from my clinical experience, from everything I know, and all learning disabilities and children. So whenever there are any mental symptoms in any person, the first thing we need to do urgently, get on the GAPS diet immediately.
But when this river of toxicity gets to other organs in the body, it will cause disease on those as well. And number one thing that happens in many tissues and organs – and that is a collagen disorder. I call it GAPS collagen disorder. I’m finishing my second GAPS book, the Gut and Physiology book. Hopefully, it will come out next year. If I get enough time to see fit. And I described this condition in there – in that book. What happens? About a third of all protein in the human body is collagen. It’s an elastic protein that holds the human body together, pretty much. It’s made out of fibers, long fibers. The skeleton of your muscle, the skeleton of your bones are made out of collagen. All fissures, all ligaments, capsules of the joints, every joint and all the materials that the joints are made, the cartilage, the synovial fluid, the capsule of the joint, all the ligaments and all the supportive structures are collagen largely. So it is a very, very important part in the human body. The problem with it is that, it is an absolute magnet for toxicity for toxins. This toxic river that is absorbing from the digestive tract of a GAPS person. Many of these toxins are attracted to collagen. They attach themselves to these molecules. And that changes the three dimensional structure of collagen.
Our immune system goes around the body surveying it all the time. What it finds, this change molecules of collagen. It looks at them and says, “You’re not mine. I don’t recognize you as mine. You must be some something foreign that got in.” And initially the immune system would use off the shelf response which is always ready, always there on the shelf, and that is inflammation. It will cause inflammation in that area. What inflammation does, it kills the enemy and cleans the site. That is its function. It will remove this toxicity. It will clean that place up. So if this influx of toxicity was temporary, and not very heavy, you may get about inflammation somewhere. And inflammation always comes with pain. It’s red, it’s hot, it’s swollen and the function is limited. So that might happen in your knee or your elbow or your thumb or your spine, in your – you’ll get lumbago, you’ll get a backache, back pain. That is a major, major cause of back pain because our spine is a whole collection of tiny little joints. It’s made out of lots and lots of little joints. The spine, lots of collagen.
But if this situation is not temporary, if this toxicity is coming all the time, and the immune system has been using inflammation for many, many days, the immune system will have enough time then to study these changed molecules of collagen and start producing antibodies against them. And you’ve got an autoimmune disease. That’s when your temporary bouts of arthritis turned into rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, or another form of autoimmune arthritis. If this situation happened in your lungs because the lungs are full of collagen, then you may get asthma, you may get obstructive pulmonary disease, or another problem with your lungs. If the situation happens in your heart, and the heart has lots of collagen in it because heart valves are largely collagen. The strings that are attached to the heart walls, the inside lining of the heart has a lot of collagen in it, and the muscle of the heart itself and the capsule of the heart,. Then you can get palpitations and you can get heart problems. So wherever this sort of situation happens, it becomes chronic and there is an autoimmune component as well as inflammation going on in the body.
Many of our GAPS children have that situation pretty much from birth. That is why these children usually have loose weak joints. They are double jointed. They have flat feet. They stumble on a perfectly level floor and hurt themselves all the time. These children, because their joints are loose because the collagen that is holding the joint together is being destroyed by our own immune system by autoimmunity. The [inaudible 01:03:01] has become loose in this person so these children and adults can develop hernias. All our organs inside our bodies are hanging on big sheets of collagen. These are the things that are holding them hanging in the right place. They all sag down quite often. They hang low and these people. And that can cause the problems with the function of these organs. And because our blood vessels are largely made out of collagen, these people get very weak blood vessel walls and they bruise easily.
There are many people with GAPS who say that, “I bruise so easily. I just pick something up and I’ve got a bruise on my hand.” I just have to bump a little bit into something and they get the great big bruise. The wall of your blood vessels is very weak because you have a collagen disorder. That’s what happens in these patients, they are called GAPS collagen disorder because the toxicity is coming out of the digestive system of the person.
Wherever these toxins get you, they will cause disease, neurological illness, multiple sclerosis, neuropathies, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, DM [inaudible 01:04:11] or any other neurological – chronic neurological disorder. Fibromyalgia can be put into that category as well because these people have neuropathies as well.
The skeleton of every peripheral nerve in our body is collagen. And if that collagen inflamed and under autoimmune attack, of course, there will be symptoms. There will be problems. I have many patients with neuropathies who have recovered on the GAPS nutritional protocol.
Energy production in the body also suffers when people have so much toxicity coming out of the gut. The energy in the human body is produced by organelles in every so-called mitochondria, our little energy factories. They’re very effective mitochondria. They produce a lot of energy per unit of glucose or unit of fat that they burn to produce energy. The problem is the process is dirty. The things that shoot out of these mitochondria into the cell are free radicals. This wild oxygen species which can damage a lot of things in the cell. Because this process was designed by Mother Nature over billions of years, the cell has a way of dealing with that situation. It produces antioxidants to deal with this free radicals immediately. It produces lipoic acid, glutathione, vitamin C, and other things, other antioxidants. And the whole thing is ticking nicely.
The problem is, our mitochondria very vulnerable to toxicity coming out of the gut. They get damaged by toxins. And many cells also die. Many cells in the body not only mitochondria but many cells in the body get damaged in the human body. So the energy production starts reducing. The person starts getting fatigue. The person starts getting tired from ordinary or normal activities. They have to rest and pace themselves. And what happens at a certain point in the body? There is a central command that comes from the brain. When the brain senses that enough cells in the body are dying from this toxicity, enough mitochondria being damaged, a central command descend from the brain to shut all mitochondria down. Why does that happen?
And that is the day when the person can’t get out of bed. They become more chair bound at that point. They can breathe. They can just about, you know, live, but they can’t do anything. They can’t function – these people – because there isn’t enough energy.
What happens in this situation? When many cells are dying in the body because of toxicity get destroyed. The human body has to produce lots of baby cells to replace them. Lots and lots. The body becomes broody. It starts producing lots of babies. In order to produce a baby, a cell has to unwrap its genetic material. Its chromosomes which are hidden inside the nucleus of the cell behind a very thick wall. Why it is hidden behind a thick wall? Because our genes, our chromosomes, are extremely vulnerable to free radical damage. And all these free radicals shooting out the mitochondria inside the cell, they can damage our genetic material. When the cell wants to produce a baby, it has to dissolve that wall, make its chromosomes make it inside the cell, divides them into two, build two nuclei, build a wall around those nuclei to protect them, and then divide and produce a baby – produce a baby cell. So while that process is going on, what the cells do? They shut down their mitochondria. They can’t allow them to work. They can’t allow this production of free radicals in the cell.
And while mitochondria are shut down, the cell uses a very old archaic way of production of energy, which comes from evolution, which will allow the cell to divide, will allow it to breathe, but will not allow it to do anything else. It’s archaic. It’s very old. It producers only a little bit of energy that’s not enough to really function to the full capacity. But because the cells divide quite quickly, it only takes a few minutes. As soon as the baby is produced, mitochondria switched on again. And this process worked for us beautifully for thousands of years, possibly millions of years. But what happens when the person is so toxic and so many cells are dying, and so many babies need to be produced? At a certain point, the brain perceives this situation. It keeps a tab on everything going on in the body. And with the central command, it shuts down all mitochondria. And the body starts functioning on that archaic, old way of producing energy in the cytoplasm of the cell. Which will allow you to breathe, to stay alive, but will not allow you to jump out of bed, to make breakfast for your children, to take them to school, to go and work, or do anything else. And this is chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, myalgic encephalomyelitis, and some other conditions where the person suffers from severe fatigue.
So how do we help these people? What do we need to do? It’s toxicity that’s killing them. And where is that leaky tap where toxicity is coming from? The gut. We need to fix that tap first. We need to fix the gut first. We need to be on the GAPS diet for many, many years. Sometimes for the rest of the person’s life. Because this is a very serious situation. Once we fix the gut and that waive of toxicity stops, the leaky tap is fixed. Then the body moves up the puddle on the floor. Removes the toxicity. And as the toxins are being removed from the body, the body becomes cleaner and cleaner. At a certain point the brain perceives that situation and it takes off that command, it switches on the mitochondria. And that’s a beautiful day usually for the person because they wake up in the morning and they’ve got enough energy to actually get out of bed and maybe go and brush their teeth, you know, or brush their hair, or have a shower, or something else like that. The next day, a little bit more energy. Next week a bit more energy. And gradually they regain their normal energy production.
But in order to get to that point, to the point of actually producing energy, first we need to spend time on healing the gut. And that can take a year or a couple of years, it can take time, depending how severe the situation is in the human body. Generally speaking, with all of this severe chronic conditions, the disease has been building up and developing in a person in less. It’s like an onion this whole disease. First, the first layer was developed. And then the second layer developed on top of that. And then another layer. And the healing will go in the reverse order. The body will decide what’s the priority number one, then what’s the priority number two, was the priority number three. And the body has to deal with the priority number one first until it’s done. Only then the body can have a little break, a little respite. And that’s the time when the person feels really well. They really feel well. And then the body decides it’s good enough resources. Enough strength now to attack the layer number two, the second priority. And that’s when new symptoms develop. That’s when the person feels ill again.
Don’t be disheartened if you were on the GAPS nutritional protocol for a year and you got better, much, much better. However, not all your health problems are gone yet. And then suddenly you feel worse again. Your body got to the second layer of the onion. It’s dealing with another second priority. And it could not deal with it before because it had to do with the first priority first. And it’s your body that is doing the healing. The human body has a wonderful ability to heal itself. All the healing mechanisms are programmed into our body. All we have to do is allow the body to do that work without us attacking it with clever inventions, pharmaceuticals or anything else.
Just let the body work and give it all the resources. Give it the right food. Give it enough rest. Give it a positive mental attitude. Give it, maybe, meditation. Give it fresh air. Give it a nice gentle walk in the fresh air every day. And loving, nurturing environment. We each live [inaudible 01:12:44]. You need to have love around you. People who are positive and loving and supportive. All those aspects are important for healing for the human body.
The diet is a huge subject. We probably don’t have time for it in this interview. It’s described in great detail in my book, the Gut And Psychology Syndrome Book. And it’s also described in great detail on my website gaps.me. The diet, how to implement it. And GAPS nutritional protocol is not just a diet. It also has some supplements in it. And it has lifestyle changes. So it’s a problem. So the whole program needs to be done by the person.
[1:13:24] Ashley James: When you first did it with your son when he was three years old and he was diagnosed with autism and you started as we’ve started to really like dive into this for him and do this, the GAPS diet with him, what kind of changes did you see?
[01:13:40] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: He’s now an adult. He’s 26 years old now. And he’s fully recovered. He’s leading a normal life. So he was my first teacher. In fact, I believe that children come to us as teachers. We are just teaching them to mind and mundane things you know, how to dress, how to walk, how to drive and so on. While they teach us the most profound universal truths. They make us better human beings. They make us grow and force us to grow. So he was my biggest teacher in my life. And we started the diet when he was three. And by the age of five, he went to the mainstream school with support. About 95% of success we have achieved in the first two years. And then the rest, 5% of the healing, happened over the next five or six years gradually. They were the most difficult bits, obviously, to get rid of.
Apart from the GAPS nutritional protocol, we did the ABA program, Applied Behavior Analysis. And I’m a great advocate of this protocol of this program. Because what happens with autistic children, children learn certain skills at a certain age. That’s how our brain is programmed. From the moment of birth, from the moment of conception, we follow a certain program that has been put in, I don’t know when, I don’t know by who. Because it’s not just genetic. It’s not just genes. Far from it. So it’s a divine extremely complex problem. And as a child is born, they have to learn certain skills at a certain age. That’s when the program that you learn that. A certain window of opportunity. We have to learn to walk around the age of one. We have to learn to speak around the age of two. Then in the following years, we’ll learn syntaxes and grammar. And finally, of the language and social skills and the rest of it. And if the child missed that window of opportunity of learning that skill, they may not learn that skill themselves later on. You have to teach it. And you have to teach it. You have to break that skill into the tiniest possible steps and teach them systematically starting with the simple most fundamental step until that’s mastered. Then build on that. The second step then build on that. The third step. And the only problem that I know that is thorough like that, like a fine tooth comb is the Applied Behavior Analysis. There are other programs out there. But it’s only this protocol that, in my experience, produces the right results with autistic children.
So with these children, it isn’t enough to just fix the body. We have to teach them all the skills that they’ve missed. That is why the younger the child is when we put them on the GAPS nutritional protocol, the quicker they recover and the more fully they recover. Because first of all, the brain wasn’t bombarded that long with toxicity to cause physical damage to it. And secondly, because the child missed less on its development, less windows of opportunity have been missed by the child. It’s easier for them to catch up. Easier for them to fill those gaps. And that usually, you know, children recover fully up to the age of four-and-a-half, maybe maximum five. It’s very individual, obviously, in every child. Older than that, what usually remains? Some percent of it remains. Though I did have some cases where children recovered remarkably well, 95%, 90%, which is most grown. There was just some idiosyncrasies left, some quirks left maybe. But the child could function and live in this world and be a full member of the human society.
So it depends. It’s very individual. But at any age of autism, I will do the GAPS nutritional protocol. I will put these children and adults on the diet for the rest of their life. I used to say that children can come off the diet at some point. Now, with all the experience that I have accumulated I recommend everyone autistic child to stay on the diet strictly for the rest of their life. When they fully recovered occasionally, when you go on holiday, maybe you can cheat a little bit. But then when you’re back home back, back to normal, back to the GAPS diet because that would prevent any illnesses, that will prevent any relapses, that will prevent any regressions and any problems whatsoever. And just make this person very healthy and well and functioning. Functioning on the top of their capacity and developing on the top of their capacity.
So what I recommend to all parents, when something is wrong with your child, don’t wait for the diagnostic label. The label will do nothing for your child. It will not help in any possible way. And doctors can take a very long time – an awful long time to give you a diagnosis. Your parents, in your heart you know something’s wrong. You know something’s not quite right with your child. Start the GAPS nutritional protocol. Start the GAPS diet immediately. And chances are, in a few weeks there will be no need for any diagnostic label. If you’ve got an autistic child who is two or two-and-a-half, a few weeks thereof, you don’t even need to do ABA with them. They’re learning themselves. They’re diverting themselves. They’re off. They’re developing. Maybe we’ll need to work a little bit on some skills but not as intensively as the ABA requires.
So the younger the child is, it’s particularly good to start it when the child is 18 months old. You know, because even at 18 months old with autistic children, you already know something’s wrong. Something’s not quite working. The eye contact is not there. He’s not responding to his name. He’s not pointing. He’s not saying anything. He’s not understanding language. Not understanding commands. It’s clear, something’s not quite right with that child. Start the GAPS diet and chances are you will not needing a diagnostic label and you will not need to do anything else with that child.
Children with hyperactivity, with dyslexia, dyspraxia, and other learning disabilities do very well on the GAPS nutritional protocol with these children. Because there isn’t the same cognitive deficit in the child. He may not need to do any special teaching problem with the child. You just put the physical body right, clean up the brain, allow the brain to function the way it’s supposed to, and the child will be off developing, developing normally the way the child should develop.
[1:20:21] Ashley James: Brilliant. Now, I know in your book you have a chapter dedicated to children that are picky eaters, fussy eaters. Because I know parents are like, “Well, how am I going to get my kids to do this?” So I know that that’s in the book. I definitely encourage listeners to get the book.
[1:20:37] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Absolutely. Absolutely. Fussy eating is a normal symptom on GAPS. It is a part and parcel of GAPS. What happens with these children? The food that they’re eating is converted into millions of toxic substances by the abnormal gut flora. But this microbes in the gut are clever. Part of that toxicity, they make in the form of endorphins. Chemicals that give the brain the pleasure signal. So the brain wants more. So your little adorable darling is a drug addict. The drug is produced in the gut by the abnormal gut flora for this child. So the child is trapped in the typical drug addiction, vicious cycle, when they love and want and limit their diet to the very foods that hurt them, damage their brain, and damage them, and caused their disorder. So if any of you ever read about how difficult it is to try to treat a drug addict, you would realize just how difficult it is to treat them. Your child is going to fight you every step on the way. Pulling a drug addict out of that vicious cycle is hard work. The parents must be united on this issue. The mommy and daddy, grandparents, grandmothers in particular, need to be united on this issue. It takes two adults in the first week or two to break the child out of that vicious cycle. And the child will fight you every step of the way. Be prepared for that. So you have to be strong. You have to stand there like a rock. And that grandma must be like a rock or a daddy or any other member of the family that is helping you.
So what we do, we sit the child down. We make that beautiful meat stock with the chicken or lamb or beef or anything else. And we sit the child down. One adult is standing behind the chair with a big smile on his face, making sure the child cannot leave the situation. The child cannot jump up and run away from the table. Just hold him down gently, nicely, with a smile. The mother is feeding. I will start with a small achievable target, one teaspoon of this meat stock for a reward.
For any child that is verbal and for whom any nonfood reward works, be it a computer game or a favorite video or a favorite book or a favorite game or horses around the house or peekaboo, whatever, whatever works for this particular child, use that as a reward. To swallow that one meaty little teaspoon of the meat stock. As soon as the child swallowed it, we’ll give the child the reward. But most importantly, this is reward has to come with over exaggerated praise from the parents. The parents to explode in happiness. Then you should give the child a complete circus performance in happiness. Throw him up in the air, kiss him, hug him, tickle him, whatever works and then let them go. Let them leave the situation. Let them wander around, play, whatever he wants for five minutes. After five minutes back to that chair, we sit down again, another teaspoon. And we work like that all day until the teaspoon is not a problem anymore wit the child. Quite often children love the circus from the parents so much. It’s so nice for them to have the circus. They will do just for that without any rules. That’s a reward enough for them. The circus from the parents, they always exaggerated praise.
When one teaspoon is not the problem anymore, the child just swallows it and gets the circus and gets the reward, we want two teaspoons for the same reward. And then three teaspoons. And then push and push and push more and more and more until the child has a whole bowl of this stock. And then we start adding that chicken to that stock. And then we start adding vegetables and the rest is history. We just keep working at it and your fussy eater that wouldn’t be anything but from his biscuits or his sweets or whatever it is, in a in a week will be eating everything including liver, fish soup, you know, anything. Absolutely.
[1:24:37] Ashley James: I love it. Now, what if the child or the adult is allergic to some of the foods on the GAPS diet. My son who – I mean I am absolutely going to put him on the GAPS diet starting today. He has asthma. Definitely induced by what he’s allergic to. He’s allergic to dust mites and there’s about seven foods he’s allergic to. We’re gluten free, dairy free household from birth. And he eats organic and he eats really clean. And so we’ve never – we couldn’t figure out why. And he had colic as a baby. And I couldn’t produce enough breast milk. So I got donated breast milk from as many mothers as I could. And when we ran out, we supplemented with formula but he had colic. Everything you said in this interview is exactly what my son’s been going through. And now here he is, four-and-a-half years old. He has asthma. If he’s a eats avocado or egg or has an exposure to dairy – because we’re allergic – the whole family is allergic to dairy – and garlic, fish, any kind of fish will throw him into an asthmatic attack and his histamines through the roof. So these foods that are very healthy foods, very healing foods, his body’s reacting to. So what do you tell parents when they want to put their child on the GAPS diet but they are allergic to some of these foods?
[1:25:59] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: The only allergy that we truly respect is anaphylactic typology, because that’s life threatening. It’s very, very dangerous. Or other allergies are due to the leaky gut. To that porous leaky gut wall. Obviously, if there is no anaphylactic reaction, let’s say, to dairy. And the only dairy that we use are well-fermented dairy that were ferment at home for 24 hours. When you ferment the milk and the milk is raw, it’s essential [inaudible 01:26:24]. It’s very, very important. When the fermented milk for 24 hours is predigested, the microbes in the milk they eat all the lactose because microbes like eating sugars, so that is a truly lactose free product. All the proteins, casein, the albumins, and other proteins are predigested, broken down in this product. So it is a very different product from milk, from any dairy that you bought or from a yogurt or [inaudible 01:26:53] that you bought in the supermarket, in the shop. When you fermented at home for 24 hours, it’s a very different product.
And with all of this, if there is something that your child reacts to, initially avoid these things. Because there’s enough other foods in the diet to focus upon. But then gradually try them. And first start with the ones which do not cause any anaphylactic reaction. Obviously, anaphylactic reactions need to be respected for quite a bit. But in about a year or so, the immune system will rebalance itself. We will nourish the immune system, nurture it, it will rebalance itself. It will be a completely different immune system in the child. And you may be surprised to find that when you try a tiny, tiny amount of the food that the child had an anaphylactic reaction to, there is no reaction anymore.
I had a number of children who recovered peanut allergy. Yes. Anaphylactic reactions disappear. They can also be healed. Because they obsolete sort of information that the body remembers. But the body recovers and it rebuilds itself and the immune system is very different in this children. So it is possible to recover even from those. But the reactions that non-anaphylactic, they’re all due to the leaky gut. Generally speaking, we ignore them. We ignore them and we focus on healing and rebuilding the gut wall.
[1:28:17] Ashley James: What about collagen powder? This is a big fad right now. Getting powdered bone broth and powdered collagen supplements. What do you think about those?
[1:28:30] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: I don’t. I do not like supplements, particularly. The only supplements we use in the GAPS nutritional protocol, [inaudible 01:28:36]. So described in my book. The supplement industry is a multibillion industry and they will all try to convince you that you need to take the supplement for the rest of your life and you can’t live without it. This meat stock that they’re making with joints and bones of animals will provide you in one bowl of soup with a whole bottle of those capsules of collagen.
Large amounts and it is natural and it is fresh and it is properly digestible. And it will it will do what it’s supposed to do in the body. And it comes with all the cofactors.
[1:29:14] Ashley James: I have a technical question about cooking. The chicken, for example, let’s say people are starting phase one with the whole chicken. Instead of slowly simmering it on the stove for several hours, what about using the Instant Pot? The electric pressure cooker –
[1:29:31] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: No, I don’t recommend that.
[1:29:33] Ashley James: You don’t recommend that. So you recommend just traditional. The old way. We got to do it the way grandma taught us.
[1:29:38] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Exactly. It’s two hours – for a chicken, it’s two hours. It’s not that long. You just put the whole chicken. It’s best to get also the neck, the head, the feet of the chicken. That would be wonderful. The giblets will be great to put in there. The whole chicken and about three liters of water to it, some salt, and simmer it for a couple of hours until the chicken is soft. You can eat that chicken. It’s delicious. And the stock will be clear absolutely delicious. Every child loves it once they’ve tasted it.
[1:30:09] Ashley James: And you don’t add any seasonings when you start. It’s just the chicken?
[1:30:13] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Just the salt. Just the chicken and the salt. And the salt needs to be natural. Himalayan Crystal Salt or Celtic salt, you know, natural unprocessed salt which has all the minerals in it. Nothing has been taken out of that salt. Completely natural. You can add some vegetables to eat at the beginning if you want to. You can add a whole onion, you can add the carrot to it if you want you to, to make that stock richer. Some people do that.
[1:30:46] Ashley James: Have you seen people heal things like diabetes, heart disease or issues of the gut like small intestinal bacterial overgrowth or Candida with this diet?
[1:30:54] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Absolutely. All those gut. I have written a book called Put Your Heart In Your Mouth. What really causes heart disease? What I explain what causes heart disease, because it’s not cholesterol and not animal fats the cause heart disease. That is all based on a faulty hypothesis, which has been proposed in 1953. And since then it was proven to be completely wrong, by solid, honest science. The problem is that, while the science was working on this hypothesis, a very powerful and very wealthy, commercial, and political machine grew based on this hypothesis. And it doesn’t allow it to die. It’s the machine that educates all the public.
So in that book, I explained the role of cholesterol, the role of the fats in the body. Cholesterol is something that we cannot live without. It’s one of the most essential molecules for every tissue, every cell in the human body, particularly for the brain, particularly for our hormonal system, for our adrenal, and for our immune system. It’s an absolutely essential molecule. That is why the human body has wonderful abilities to manufacture its own cholesterol. The headquarters of this is in the liver. The liver has a factory in it which manufactures cholesterol. And it is the liver that maintains the level of cholesterol in the blood of the person. And the liver works in connection with every cell, every tissue in the body. No healing, for example, can happen in the human body without involvement of large amounts of cholesterol and fats. Saturated fats in particular. Because they give stability to the cells of the human body. So the cell membrane, in particular. About 40% of our brain tissue is cholesterol. The other 40% is saturated fat. This structural elements of the human body.
So when there is any damage in the human body, maybe you had an operation or you’ve been to the dentist or you’ve hurt yourself, you have a trauma, something happened to you, healing has to happen. When you just went through a stressful period of time, stress causes a lot of damage in our tissues in the human body. No healing or repair can happen in the body without large amounts of cholesterol and animal fats and proper fats. So any damaged tissue in the body sends a signal to the liver saying, “I need cholesterol. I need fats.” So the liver starts that factory inside itself. It manufactures cholesterol. It manufacturers triglycerides. These fats, packages them appropriately. Because these are fat soluble things. Our blood is water based. You can’t put fat soluble things into the water without packaging them appropriately. So cholesterol is packaged into LDLs, low density labor, proteins. And fats are packaged also into other [inaudible 01:33:37]. And these shuttles deliver this vital substances to the place of damage to heal it. That’s the healing. This is the most healing substances in the world.
And what do our doctors test? They test for these things in the blood and say, “Well, they’re high” or whatever. There are no really high or low standards of cholesterol. Whatever level of cholesterol is in your blood is the right level for you in that amount. It depends on what your body is doing. Because your body might be healing something, your body might be under stress, every stress hormones in the body is made from cholesterol. So when we’re under stress, stress hormones are required to deal with that stress. Your adrenal will send a signal to the liver, “I need cholesterol.” The liver will get into gear, produce it, package it, put it in the blood. Your blood will be delivering that cholesterol to adrenal and they’ll be converting it into stress hormones for you to cope with the stressful situation. So your blood cholesterol will be high. If you interfere with that, you will not be able to cope with stress. You will have a breakdown without these hormones. And many people finish up in that situation. There is no way of reducing blood cholesterol to a diet. That’s been proven in hundreds of studies. No way that diet has – you know, you can eat no cholesterol or no fat at all, your liver will just have to work harder to manufacture more. You’re not providing any help to your body at all.
And the only way to reduce blood cholesterol is to break that factor in the liver. And that’s what anti cholesterol pills do. That’s what they’re designed to do, to break that factory in your liver so it cannot produce cholesterol. That is why these drugs cause so many serious side effects. The major part of Alzheimer’s epidemic is due to Statin, the cholesterol pills. The hospital infection problem is due to Statin because the immune system cannot function without large amounts of cholesterol. It cannot. And what do hospitals do? Every person over 40, as soon as they arrived to the hospital, they’re put on a Statin. That’s a routine prescription. They don’t even measure blood cholesterol anymore. They just put people on Statin straightaway. And that impairs their immune function. They’re unable to fight any infections. So people get infections in the hospitals. You get hospital infections as a result. There are many – memory loss is due to ubiquitous description of this medication.
So please read that book to understand what fat and cholesterol do. GAPS diet is very rich in cholesterol and in animal fats. Because when we analyze human fat, about 50% of your dry weight is fat. The other 50% of your dry weight protein in the human body. About 70% water. So we talk about the dry weight. So fat is a structural element of the human body, 50% of you is made out of it. So fats are not optional for humans. And when we analyze human fat in the laboratory, we find that in its biochemical structure, it’s very similar to fats in lamb, beef, pork, goose, duck, butter.
Plants have lots of fats in them but their biochemical structure is very different. It’s inappropriate for our fats for building our fats in our human’s body. They’re polyunsaturated. We need a little bit of polyunsaturated fats for the human body, omega fats, omega 3, 6, 7, 9 and so on. But we need them in tiny, tiny amounts. So when you eat enough, if you eat a fresh salad or you eat ed a handful of fresh nuts or oily seeds, you’ll get enough. Although you don’t need much of them.
The bulk of fat consumption has to come from animal foods. From animal fats for the human body. Because these are the only fats that are appropriate for our human physiology. They are structural. And they are functional for us as well. That is why GAPS nutritional protocol, GAPS diet is rich in animal fats.
The same with protein, when they look at the protein in the human body and analyze it in the laboratory, we’ll find that in its biochemical composition is very similar to proteins in meat, fish, eggs, and dairy. Plants are full of proteins. The most famous one is gluten. And the more research gluten, the more we realize nobody can digest it. No human being on this planet can digest gluten. It damages everybody. It’s just people don’t connect their piece of beloved bread with their arthritis or their migraines or their skin rash or whatever, psoriasis or whatever. People don’t want to connect because bread is addictive.
And this is just one protein that we’ve researched. Well, there are many, many other proteins in plants and all of them are indigestible for the human digestive system. This biochemical structure is very difficult for us to digest. And amino acid composition in this protein is inappropriate for building our protein or human protein. [Inaudible 01:38:37] amino acids are in excess and the amino acids are in deficit.
And that leads us to another subject here on vegetarianism. We live in a world of nutritional propaganda. And the latest fashion and propaganda promoted by all the governments in the West is that we all should become vegetarian and even vegan. This propaganda is political. It comes from the commercial sector of the world, which will gain huge profits if large parts of humanity become vegetarian and vegan. That is the agrochemical complex. And that’s where the propaganda originates from this sort of thing.
Plants are indigestible for the human digestive system. They do not feed us. They’re largely cleanses. The foods that feed the human body are animal foods, meat, fish, eggs, and dairy. And we discussed the protein and the fats in them that only animal protein and only animal fat are appropriate for building our fat and our protein. The very structure, the physical structure of the human body.
But there’s another aspect to it and that is the way the human digestive system has been designed. The scientific fact is that the only thing on our planet that can digest plants – that can truly digest plants, the only things, are microbes. And this is the fun that Mother Nature used in designing the digestive system of herbivorous animals, cows, goats, sheep, antelope, deer, giraffe, and so on. In order for these animals to digest the plants that they live on, it gave them a very special digestive system called rumen. A cow, the big belly of a cow, a large part of it is rumen. It’s a huge four chamber stomach. Four stomachs, really. And these four stomachs are full of microbes. The bulk of our gut flora lives in that rumen. And it’s these microbes which digest the grass for her. The cow herself is unable to digest grass. It’s the microbes that do the work for her. And then once they’ve digested all that grass, it’s passed into the intestines where the bulk of absorption happens. That’s where all these digestive elements then absorb.
We, human beings, do not have a rumen. We have a small stomach which produces hydrochloric acid, pepsin, and some other things. And the only things – the only food that these
stomach juices are able to digest are meat, fish, eggs and dairy. That’s a simple chemical fact. And if a human stomach is healthy because virtually no microbes in it, the microbial population is very, very sparse. Because hydrochloric acid just kills them. It creates a very, very hostile environment for any kind of microbes to survive in there. Because in a healthy stomach and a healthy person, when they’re hungry, the pH can be below one. It’s extremely acidic. It will kill any kind of microbes. Without microbes, we can’t digest bones.
So the only things that truly digest in a human stomach are meat, fish, eggs and dairy. Plants just sit there waiting for their turn. Not much digestion happens in plants. And then the whole thing gets passed into the several meters of intestines where absorption of food happens. And the only things that can be absorbed are the ones that get properly digested higher up in the stomach. And that is meat, fish, eggs and dairy. So in order to build – to feed the human body, the physical structure of our bodies, we need animal foods. The plants go through that whole intestines. They contribute some vitamins. They contribute some minerals. They contribute some phytonutrients. But they cannot contribute the bulk for building our physical structure, the protein and the fat. They cannot contribute those because they’re indigestible and they’re inappropriate for our physiology. And then the plants land in our bowel at the end of our digestive system, which is the equivalent of the rumen in the cow. That’s where the bulk of our gut flora lives. And these microbes then digest the plant matter, break it down a little bit, give us some support.
But the difference between us and the cow is that her rumen is at the beginning of her digestive system. Where the grass is properly digested before it’s passed into the absorptive part of the digestive tract. In us human beings, our rumen is at the end of our digestive system. It’s too late now. The bulk of absorption already happened higher up. That is why we human beings derive our feeding and building nutrients from animal foods. So what do we eat plants for then? Plants are powerful cleansers, particularly when we eat them raw. They cannot build the human body to any degree but they keep it clean on the inside. They have antioxidants, phenols, phytonutrients, all kinds of things in there, which absorb and which keep us clean on the inside. That is why we eat plants.
Traditional cultures around the world through the research of Wesley Price and some other researchers who traveled around the world and studied traditional cultures, they all knew this fact. That is why they will spend extra effort on obtaining meat and fish and collecting eggs and milking animals. And they learned that plants don’t feed them, really, to any large degree. So they developed methods of making plants a little bit more digestible. And the major way they did it was fermentation.
Nontraditional culture would even dream of eating grains, for example, any kind of grain or beans without fermenting them first – thoroughly fermenting them. What are we doing with fermentation or [inaudible 01:44:36]? You know, some cultures [inaudible 01:44:38]. What do we do? We employ microbes to digest that plant for us before we put it into our digestive system. We’re doing exactly what the cow does in her rumen. It’s just that nature has already programmed that in the cow. Well, we don’t have a rumen. So that needs to be understood.
So it is possible to be a healthy vegetarians long as the person continues eating some animal foods to sustain the physical structure of their body. As long as the person eats plenty of eggs and plenty of high fat and full fat dairy every day, maybe fish occasionally, and maybe meat occasion. In cultures like that, traditional cultures exist in India where people – why do you think the cow is a sacred animal in India? Because they know that without a cow, they will perish, these cultures. She gives them milk, cheese, ghee, butter, cheese, you know, clean. And that sustain them. And also in India, all of these vegetarian cultures, they will have chickens and ducks and they have plenty of eggs. That’s where the feeding comes for them. And they’re not vegetarians by choice these people. The vegetarian is out of necessity, out of poverty. Because they didn’t have access to meat. There are so many people in India. India has always been very densely populated. If they start eating their animals, they’ll probably eat them all in two weeks or something like that. So they had to – but when they get a chance to eat meat, they don’t say no to it. Or when they get the chance to get fish, they also cherish it and would eat it.
The western style veganism, the religious evangelical veganism, came with the books of Nathan Pritikin in the 1930s to India and created some following in India. But traditional Indians who are vegetarians, they are vegetarians out of necessity, out of poverty. Veganism is not a diet. It is a form of fasting. You’re not feeding your body to any degree. You’re cleansing, cleansing, and cleansing, and cleansing, and cleansing. Many people in our modern world are very toxic. They couldn’t do with a period of cleansing. And these are the people who when they go on a vegan regimen, they start feeling better quite soon. In the first few weeks, they feel so much better. Because a less toxic body feels much better than a toxic one. And also the removal the process junk, they remove the flour and the sugar, the bread, the pasta, and the cakes, and the biscuits, and the sugar. And any person who removes that feels better immediately. Not because of what they’re eating but because of what they’re not eating anymore. They feel better. And this is the time when they usually write the evangelical books and trying to convince everybody to become a leader.
But at a certain point, the body will finish cleansing and it will become hungry. It will give you a signal, “I finished cleansing. Now, feed me.” And the way the body will give that signal is by giving you a desire for a piece of meat, for roasted chicken, for a pot of green, for a piece of cheese, or something else like that. The problem is many vegans in our modern world follow this regimen for emotional reasons, political reasons, religious, ethical reasons and so on. They don’t listen to their body. They override that signal. They force their body to continue cleansing when the body really needs feeding. And that is when the body has no choice but to start cannibalizing less important tissues to feed more important issues, such as muscle. That’s when they start losing muscle, these people. Because the body breaks down muscle to feed the heart, the liver, the lungs, the digestive system, the brain, the more important organs than the muscle. And the person eventually develops [inaudible 01:48:24] degenerative disease. If the person pushes themselves long enough to veganism. So the veganism can be used as a cleansing fast, as a fasting procedure. But it must never be used as a long term lifestyle. We need animal foods as human beings.
I have many anorexic girls in my clinic and some anorexic boys as well. And what I discovered very quickly that more than 90% of these kids became anorexic because of misguided veganism and vegetarianism. Misguided vegetarianism has become a major cause of mental illness amongst our young people. Many youngsters destroy themselves through this propaganda, through this idea. And that spurred me into researching this subject thoroughly. And very quickly, I’ve discovered that there are no scientific studies we can really trust in this area. All of them have been conducted by pro-vegan and pro-vegetarian [inaudible 01:49:22] manipulates it.
And the data has been specially analyzed. None of them can be trusted. They’re completely untrustworthy, all of these studies. Particularly the China study. The China study has been criticized very heavily already by many people. There are books written about it. Do not trust it. It’s a lie upon lie upon lie. And once I’ve discovered that, I had no choice but to go to basic sciences of biochemistry, of human physiology, of zoology, of animal physiology, anatomy, and clinical experience. My own clinical experience and clinical experience of other doctors. And based on all that research, I have written a book called Vegetarianism Explained. It came out in 2017. So for all those people who are really interested in this subject, please read that book. It will explain to you all the ins and outs of it so that you don’t get into trouble. It is easy to destroy your health and it’s not so easy to rebuild it. I know many recovering vegans and it takes many, many years to get even halfway to healing and rebuilding your body after several years of veganism.
[1:50:34] Ashley James: I’ve recently finished reading a book called the Metabolic Typing Diet. And in the beginning of the book, this doctor shares a story of his mentor who has since passed, was a dentist back in the 50s.
[1:50:51] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Yeah. Donald Kelly. Yeah, I’ve read that.
[1:50:53] Ashley James: Right. He had a really large pancreatic tumor that was sticking out of his gut. Everyone could see it. And the doctor said, “Go home and get ready to die.” And his mom said, “No. You are going to eat vegan.” Well, they did haven’t a word for it back then. “You’re going to eat fruits and vegetables and nuts and seeds and greens and that’s it. We’re going to get you on a vegan diet.” And within months, his pancreatic cancer had shrunk and eventually went away. And so he became a total cheerleader for this diet. And soon, because it was a small town, all the people are coming to him not for dental health but for diet health. And so he put everyone on this diet. Many people saw huge changes, wonderful healings. But there’d be a percentage – a small percentage of people that would get worse. And he couldn’t figure it out.
Until one day his wife – and this is back in the 50s so, like, they didn’t have many regulations around chemicals. But she was exposed to paint fumes that were toxic and of course disrupted her liver and her mitochondria and everything. And she was bedridden and almost comatose. She was within days of dying, basically. Her body had shut down. And he tried giving her vegetables and fruit and nuts and he was trying to basically put her on the diet that healed her cancer and she got even worse and practically fell into a coma. And so he did the last thing he could possibly think of, “What’s the last thing I haven’t fed my wife is meat.” And he boiled some beef and started feeding her little spoonful’s and she started to get better. And within a day, she was sitting up in bed and he scratched his head and thought, “This is crazy. How come I cured my cancer with no meat? But 100% meat is what helped my wife get better.”
And so he basically sold his practice. Moved to Washington from Texas. And dedicated the rest of his life to studying diets and figuring out why is it that some people can heal eating this way and other people get worse and some people can heal this way. And that’s the big crux of it, is when do we do the GAPS diet? When do we do a vegan cleanse or raw vegan cleanse? When do we do a Paleo diet? When do we do these things to heal certain ailments?
[1:53:20] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Yes, of course. Every human being is unique. One size fits all doesn’t work. Every human being is unique. And depending if your predecessors were Eskimos or from Scandinavia or not somewhere, chances are you don’t need to eat lots of meat and fish and fat. But if your predecessors come maybe from some tropical areas of the world or Mediterranean basin, then you need to eat more carbohydrates. So indeed, every human being is unique. And that’s what this book on metabolic typing tries to assess and has a large questionnaire to help people to assess that.
And what it basically has created, that protein type people, carbohydrate type people. But the majority of people are in the middle somewhere. We’re all mix type. Most of us are mixed type. The only way for us human beings to really know what we need is to get back in touch with human with our body intelligence. Because it is your own body that is keeping lots of checks and balances up in the air every minute of your existence. Depending on what you do and depending on the season, on the weather, on your stress level, your age, and in women depending on the menstrual cycle, wherever you are in the menstrual cycle, depending on all these factors and parameters, your body needs a certain set of nutrients. And it is unique to you.
And the only way the body can let you know what it needs at any particular moment is by giving you desire for a particular food, which you must listen to. And then it’s essential for us human beings to smell before we eat and to taste. And then listen to our insights and our internal organs which will give us a feedback after we’ve eaten it, does this sit well or doesn’t it sit well. And every human being is unique and every day is unique and what satisfied you for breakfast may be repulsive for lunch and vice versa with the dinner. I have a whole – in the book Vegetarianism Explained, I have a whole chapter which is called One Man’s Meat Is Another Man’s Poison. What I explained to people how to get back in touch with your inner body intelligence. So you can feed yourself properly on a daily basis.
Because one day you wake up, depending on the weather, on your hormonal metabolism today, on what you have to do, whether you’re resting on holiday, whether you’ve got an exam coming at lunchtime, or something else, you may devour a full English breakfast. The next day you wake up, you don’t feel like a full English breakfast. You just – a yogurt and an apple will do. But later on – every time your body will give you a signal what it needs right now. And make no mistake, the human body knows the composition of foods on this planet. So if it needs, for example, so much protein, so much fat, so much B12, so much zinc right now, how can your body give you all that information? And even if the body knew how to give you that information, how are you going to go around accomplishing those proportions?
Well, the human body is kind, nature is kind. It doesn’t ask us to do anything so complicated. It gave us tastes, it gave us senses, the sense of desire for a particular food at a particular moment. So whenever you have a moment to eat and you feel a bit hungry, ask yourself a simple question, “What would I kill for right now?” The answer will pop into your head immediately. And that food will smell divine, taste divine, and it will satisfy you. But after eating that food, you will not be looking for anything else, not snacking, not kind of still feeling unsatisfied. You can forget about the food for a while and go into something else. But if you feed yourself according to some book or some guru or something else, then you are you are likely to be going against your own body and what your body needs at that moment. And as I say, you need change every hour, every minute, all the time. It depends. It’s very, very unique. So no clever doctor and no laboratory and no clever book can ever design what you need to have for breakfast, what do you have for lunch, what you need to have for dinner, what you need to have in between, or whether you should have dinner at all, or whether you should have lunch at all, or not. Only your body knows that. And you need to get back in touch with it. Listen to it. Respect it. And do what it asks you to do. And then you’ll be fine. And I explained that in that article, please read that article.
[1:58:08] Ashley James: I’ll make sure that that is linked in the show notes. You brought up when to eat and sometimes not to eat. That’s an interesting concept because what’s really popular now is the idea of intermittent fasting where we don’t eat until, like, 10:00 a.m. Your book, I believe says, to not eat breakfast until 9:30. That can be very healthy for some people. What about people that wake up first thing in the morning ravished with hunger or maybe they have diabetes and they want to eat earlier, should they listen to their body or should they try to extend that fasting window to 9:30 or 10:00?
[1:58:47] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Intermittent fasting, it’s another fashion. It will pass. There are lots of fashions in nutrition. We have many fashions and now is the fashion for vegetarianism and intermittent fasting. It will pass. There will be other fashions coming in.
Listen to your body. Listen to your body on a daily basis. If you’re not hungry, despite the fact that the member of the family laid a huge dinner on the table, you don’t have to eat now. Listen to your body because you can burn yourself without food. And then it will not digest well and it will only cause disease. It will only cause problems in your body. Eat when you’re hungry. That’s right. Listen to your body. Your body is the expert. Not the book, nothing.
So if you woke up in the morning and you are, obviously, hungry, of course, have a full breakfast and ask yourself what you desire. Because it takes time for people to recover because processed carbohydrates that everybody’s lives on in the world – in the Western world in particular – are addictive. Sugar is the number one addictive substance in the world. The second most addictive substance is wheat flour. Particularly, modern commercial varieties of wheat which are 80 times higher gluten in them. So there’s highly addictive substances. And a lot of humanity is addicted to them. That is why they crave bread and they crave sugar and they drink soft drinks and so on. But if you get back in touch with your body intelligence – with your inner body intelligence, you will need to gradually distinguish is this an addiction or is this what my body really asks for?
[2:00:32] Ashley James: I love it. Yeah, we are addicted to those hyperpalatable foods, the salt, the oil, and the sugar. They mix them together and it becomes this wonderful concoction that makes the brain go crazy for it. So when we first start out asking what do we want, the brain is like, “I want pizza” because the brain wants its crack. It wants its drug. And so we have to heal the gut and start to calm down our senses and think about what is my body say it really wants. Not what do I -what drug of choice do I want? What hyperpalatable highly processed food do I want? It’s what my body really wants to nourish it and start to listen to that. I love it.
I could talk to you for hours. It has been such a pleasure to have you on the show. And I really, really would love to have you back especially after you publish your next book, which I hope that you get lots of time to be able to finish it. Because we’re excited to absorb your latest book. And of course all the links to all your books are going to be in the show notes of today’s podcast at learntruehealth.com.
To wrap up today’s interview, is there anything you’d like to say to the listeners to complete the interview? Anything left unsaid or any homework that you want to impart on us?
[2:01:57] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: I would like to say that the human body is a miraculous creation. It’s a pinnacle of evolution on this planet. It has every mechanism of healing itself and maintaining itself, rejuvenating itself programmed into it. Trust it, and listen to it, and work with it, and never lose hope. I have seen so many miracles happening with the GAPS diet alone. Things that have been classified incurable people recover from. Diseases that have been classified as genetic because we don’t know what else might be causing it. People suddenly recover from them despite the fact that they’ve got the gene that the doctors have tested and found the gene and the person still recovers. So never lose hope. Never give up. If your doctor hasn’t got an answer for you, keep searching because the answer is probably elsewhere. So anything can be healed, I believe. And just trust in the human nature, in the Mother Nature, and in the design of the human body.
[2:03:08] Ashley James: Beautiful. Thank you so much, Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. It has been such a pleasure having you on the show. You’re welcome back anytime.
[2:03:15] Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride: Thank you very much. Thank you for listening.
[2:03:19] Outro: Hello, true health seeker. Have you ever thought about becoming a health coach? Do you love learning about nutrition? And how we can shift our lifestyle and our diet so that we can gain optimal health and happiness and longevity? Do you love helping your friends and family to solve their health problems and to figure out what they can do to eat healthier? Are you interested in becoming someone who can grow their own business? Support people in their success? Do you love helping people?
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