This post is about another “Cherry on top” that we are pursuing for our families healing. My youngest, pictured above, had a stomach bug of some sort in early February and ever since then has complained of her tummy hurting. These complaints would come several times a day but rarely would they stop her from doing what she wanted to do so I gave her some ginger tea and tried to wait it out. After a couple of months of this it became apparent that my approach wasn’t getting us anywhere so I took her to the Dr. She is my child with lots of GI issues and I was afraid that the advice would be to go back to the GI. I feared that a trip to the GI would mean more invasive testing and as much as I wanted answers and to help my daughter feel better I did not want to do that unless I had no other choice. Thankfully, that was not what my Dr suggested. She had two ideas for me. One was that little J has seasonal allergies and perhaps the post nasal drip was causing her tummy aches. I hadn’t realized that she was being effected by allergies although I have said since she was an infant that she seemed to react to pollen. Her other suggestion was to see a local Chiropractor who does something called Enzyme Therapy. Since treating allergies was easiest and fastest we started with that. I picked up some D-Hist and gave her (and myself) some right away. I noticed an immediate improvement in the allergy symptoms that I hadn’t even really registered as having (itchy eyes, sinus congestion, scratch throat). And I do mean immediate. Within 20 minutes of my first dose I felt significantly better. Yay! Kids are harder to judge so I just gave some to J and hoped for the best.
I let a couple of weeks go by and then she had her third acute tummy bug in 3 months. (lots of puke). Her complaints of tummy aches did seem to have diminished since we began the D-Hist but it wasn’t completely gone so I knew that we hadn’t found the answer yet (nothing is simple is it.) We made an appointment with Dr Gould at The Healing Center in St. Louis. Our Dr had told me of another family that followed GAPS for 6 months and wasn’t seeing significant healing of gut issues that then went to see Dr Gould and had profound improvements with her approach. We have been on GAPS nearly 2.5 years at this point and we are not healed. I wouldn’t suggest that anyone add something like this till they have tried GAPS for 6 months (Dr Natasha says that 80% will get better on GAPS alone and the rest need additional therapies to see complete healing). This is for two reasons. First and foremost you need to give GAPS a good opportunity to work for you also GAPS is just so hard at first and trying to layer on another protocol while you are still struggling with the basics of GAPS can make it just too difficult to do anything well.
At the first appointment Dr. Gould listened carefully to my daughters health history. She is very familiar with the GAPS diet and very supportive of it. She did a brief physical exam and determined just where my daughters tummy hurt (something I had been unable to do). She then suggested two things. That we start her on a general digestive enzyme and that we do a urine test on her to better determine how her gut was functioning and what sorts of interventions might help her the best. We did the urine test the next day after the first appointment and started her on the enzymes the day after that. After the very first dose of the enzymes, for the first time in months, when I asked my daughter how her tummy felt she said that it didn’t hurt! I was thrilled! (and when the tummy ache came back after I forgot to give her enzymes with her morning snack I was sold on the importance of them). Just to be clear we had tried various digestive enzymes with my daughter in trying to help this but none of them seemed to make a difference. This particular formula really made a big difference for her.
We have now had our second appointment where we learned the results of the test and the implications of it and her suggestions for healing. We learned that the stool is moving too slowly through her gut and she is reabsorbing toxins from it. She has been having 1-2 bowel movement every day but obviously this in not enough so we have begun trying some different things to get her going more often. I’ll go back to regular enemas if I have to but I’ll try magnesium and apple sauce first. Also, despite her being in ketosis and generally following a low carb diet because of the foods she tolerates the best, she is still getting too many carbs for her. So I will need to focus even more on fats and keeping the carbs to a minimum. She also showed as deficient in essential fatty acids. We already give her Fermented Cod Liver Oil every day and so the suggestion was to start giving it away from meals to give her body a better chance to absorb it. She seems to be doing ok with this (it doesn’t cause any stomach upset) but finding a time when she hasn’t recently eaten and isn’t about to eat is tricky! (Has anyone noticed that kids seem to eat all the time?) Plus giving her pills reminds her that she hasn’t eaten recently and she then wants a snack. Sigh. We’ll figure it out. She also tested low in gut bacteria. I had been slacking with her probiotics lately and I am back on the bandwagon with that. I also am about to invest in some Pickl-it jars to see if I can make more powerful ferments with them and get us all healed up! The only other change was a kidney support enzyme formula that she is to now take twice a day since her kidneys are working extra hard with all of the extras she is passing through them.
So far I am very impressed with this therapy (no more tummy aches!!!) and I really like Dr Gould. She is considering becoming a GAPS practitioner and if and when she does that she will be the first one in our area. I am so glad that we found her and that she is able to be yet another piece of the healing program for my family.
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