How do I recover from modified paleo (GAPS) setback?

Commented on June 03, 2015
Created June 02, 2015 at 10:09 PM


I'm a 25-year-old male and new here. Four-plus years ago (January 2011), I began to experience startling psychiatric/neurological/psychological symptoms after eating. This includes schizophrenic-type symptoms, thought disorganization, sensory processing issues and severe panic. This came after a week or so of taking vitamin B5 for severe cystic acne. I have since stopped the B5.

To this day, I don't know what foods trigger it -- I just know the symptoms are strongly associated with what I eat. Nuts and raw vegetables seem to aggravate my condition.

In the past four years, my symptoms have waxed and waned -- I've been able to eat lots, and then there are times where I can eat next to nothing.

I have seen a nutritionist, and she advised to get on the GAPS (Gut and Psychology Syndrome) diet, which helped a bit (before GAPS, I was eating only sweet potatoes, olive oil and the occasional egg. On GAPS, I introduced bone broth, boiled meats and cooked vegetables, without a ton of symptoms -- although my symptoms never fully left. 

I'm feeling really stuck on GAPS -- I introduced the butternut squash pancakes (boiled squash, egg, ghee), and I immediately felt great afterward. I felt great for the two or so days I was eating the pancakes, but then I began to eat boiled butternut squash after eating my beef (I had graduated from boiled beef to steaks at this point). 

Now I feel horrible again. I can't eat beef without having horrible reactions -- this was never the cause before the butternut squash. I'm eating four steaks a day, and I had two soft-boiled eggs last night, and while it seems like my symptoms are lessesening a bit, it's still pretty bad.

I'm wondering what could have possible caused this recent setback and where to go from here. I don't know how I was tolerating butternut squash pancakes (and feeling better than I ever had) for two days in a row, only to have things get worse once I started eating boiled butternut squash after steak. I have cut out squash entirely for now.

BTW: When I was subsiding on only sweet potatoes, the store ran out, so I had to get yams. That caused a horrible debilitating reaction for days. Peanuts and almonds also have caused my severe reactions.

I just don't know what to do! The harder I try, the worse things seem. The only times I've felt relatively OK was when I was eating sweet potatoes and, before that, when I was drinking lots of alcohol, but even then, things weren't great.

Has anyone experienced this or something similar? Are there any underyling possibilities than I am missing?

Thank you.

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1 Answers


on June 03, 2015
at 07:33 AM

Start with totally eliminating A1 dairy and gluten, but don't try to be extra strict when it stresses you. Then you can go on with eliminating soy other cereal grains and pseudograins, other heat treated dairy, and maybe egg whites and other foods you know you react(fermentable fiber if you have SIBO for example) as well.

I don't think it may have sth to do with vitamin b5, rather it must be what accompanied it when you used it, it must have been a rather psychologically strenuous time.

You also have digestion problems, and you probably have sleep problems as well.

Do the sodium bicarbonate test to see if you have suboptimal stomach acid, if it's not good enough start betaine hydrochloride + pepsin tablets. These are explained at scdlifestyle website.

Check your throid hormones to see if they are close to the optimal ranges(not lab ranges).

Use blackout curtains or eyemask, use orange/red glasses 1 hour or more before sleep, use warm(yellow/orange led lightening) lightning in your house, these will help optimize your sleep. Also use f.lux on your computer and twilight on android(there may be a similar software for ios)

You may use enzyme tablets as well and try using tamarind pulp also.

You may also have pathogens living anywhere in your body and especially nervous system, it may be a virus/toxoplasma or sth else(for example lyme diease and bartonellosis are associated with schizophrenia also). You may get checked for toxoplasma and though you may not get information about latent toxoplasma, you may understand if you have it according to the results and some reading. If you have latent toxoplasmosis, treat it with antibiotics(co-trimoxazole for example). Treat other infections as necessary also(there may be better alternatives than what your doctor suggests in some, for example d-mannose may be better for e. coli urinary tract infections). You may try a bottle of squalamine extract or some shark liver oil for viral infections(they may be hard to diagnose). Also try to use some liver in your diet.

Try to focus on your psychology as well, it may be expressing your feelings, moving away from some people and having new friends or listening good music while taking a walk at noon(bright light exposure during day also helps with sleep).

Get some sunshine exposure when you can, even sunshine coming to your ear canal may be helpful, and it's not only about vitamin d.

Artificial electromagnetic fields may also be harming you, some frequencies are shown to increase gut and blood-brain barrier permeability, you may start with using your cellphone less and healthier(holding away from your body, using headphones, using flight mode, closing gps, wifi, bluetooth when you don't need them etc.). You may also get an emf shielding scarf and canopy(that makes your bed a faraday cage to a degree).

Don't try to hurry everything, get help when you can, there's much more that can be told but these are what comes to my mind for a good start in your situation to me now.

Take care



on June 03, 2015
at 07:43 PM

Forgot to mention -- I got extensive bloodwork when this started happening, and everything came back fine (no adrenal tumor, no diabetes, thyroid levels are OK, fasting glucose is OK, heart is OK, blood pressure is OK, etc.). The only thing they note is that my potassium levels seem depleted after an acute episode (I haven't gotten my resting potassium levels checked). But it's hard to bring the potassium levels back to normal when I can't tolerate foods that contain potassium.



on June 03, 2015
at 07:39 PM

Thank you so much. 

I have already eliminated gluten and dairy -- I've eliminated everything but beef -- and even that is giving me problems.

I will look into your other advice! I previously was told by my naturopathic doctor to supplement with apple cider vinegar to aid digestion, but that made me feel worse.

My diet is so limited right now (beef only!) -- I'm thinking of going back to sweet potatoes (I felt better when that was a staple in my diet), even though they're prohibited by GAPS. Right now I'm just looking for the foods that are easiest to digest. 

Thanks again.

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