Specific Carbohydrate Diet and GAPS Diet are grain-free and starch-free.

Grains and starches can be difficult to digest, especially for some people, such as those with microbiome imbalance and gastrointestinal disorders, and can cause irritation – and even inflammation – of the gut, impacting the gut microbiome. The gut and brain are closely tied so when the gut is irritated, the brain is often negatively impacted.

Gastrointestinal disorders and an imbalance microbiome are very common in neurological conditions including ADHD, anxiety, and autism. Some people, including those with autism, have reduced numbers of carbohydrate digesting enzymes or an imbalanced microbiome. Reducing starch and grain intake gives the gut a chance to heal, and can help reduce other systemic reactions and symptoms.

Specific Carbohydrate Diet

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) is designed to restrict disaccharides (double-sugars) and polysaccharides (starches), however, natural monosaccharides, such as honey, fruits, and non-starchy vegetables are allowed. SCD was developed on the basis that some individuals struggle to digest carbs, due to damaged mucosa in the small intestine.

The premise of the Specific Carbohydrate Diet is based on an inability to digest these “double-sugars” and starches – which are instead then eaten by gut bacteria and yeast. This causes microbial overgrowth and restricts enzymes from breaking down carbohydrates further, contributing to more damage in the gut. Avoiding eating double sugars and starches should bypass this, and help to heal the gut.

SCD is often used to help those with gastrointestinal conditions and symptoms like chronic diarrhea, gut inflammation, and intestinal pain.

Gut and Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) Diet

The Gut And Psychology Syndrome (GAPS) diet is based on the diet principles on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet above, with a few tweaks. The GAPS diet is named for the link between the gut and brain, and more emphasis is placed on bone broths and eating fermented foods to help heal the gut microbiome. This diet was created for people with gastrointestinal problems that are causing neurological symptoms; such as autism and ADHD.

Your child is unique and so are their diet and nutritional needs. Learn how personalized nutrition can help your child today. Download our guide: “12 Nutrition Steps to Better Health, Learning, and Behavior.”

Explore our SCD/GAPS Diet recipes below. Be sure to read all of the instructions before beginning in case diet-compliant substitutions are described in the introduction.

SCD/GAPS Recipes

No-Mato (Tomato-Free) Sauce

No-Mato (Tomato-Free) Sauce

Ingredients 5-6 carrots, chopped 1 red/purple beet, peeled and chopped 1 small or 1/2 large onion, peeled and chopped 2 celery stalks, chopped 1 ½ cups water  Directions Place all chopped and prepared vegetables and water into a pot. Once water boils, reduce heat,...

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Low Carb Cauliflower Tortillas

Low Carb Cauliflower Tortillas

Avoid pepper for LOD and FG. Ingredients 1 head of cauliflower 3 eggs ½ teaspoon salt Black pepper (optional) Directions Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Wash cauliflower, cut cauliflower chunks off base stem/leaves. Put cauliflower in food processor and process until a...

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Rutabaga Fries

Rutabaga Fries

This is a great recipe because it’s compatible with so many diets. To make it low salicylate or SAG, use ghee or sunflower oil. For 100% dairy-free, avoid ghee. For keto, eat sparingly. Ingredients 3-4 Rutabagas Ghee or expeller-pressed coconut oil Salt Directions...

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Thanksgiving Turkey

Thanksgiving Turkey

     The turkey is usually the star of your Thanksgiving show! Many traditional recipes can be converted for food allergies or intolerances. Here is an easy guide for a perfect bird! Let’s start by discussing how much turkey you will need to buy and how to...

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The Easiest Shishito Peppers

The Easiest Shishito Peppers

Have you tried shishito peppers?  They are an incredible Asian pepper with no heat and such a great flavor profile. They are rich in vitamin C and also contain vitamin B6, K, and E.  They are also one of the easiest dishes you can create in a really convenient short...

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Ground Beef Stuffed Zucchini (Zucchin-izza)

Ground Beef Stuffed Zucchini (Zucchin-izza)

We continue the food and garden chronicles here at Nourishing Hope. Our garden, to say the very least, has been a place of comfort, fun, learning, memories, and deliciousness for me and my family.  I know there can be some intimidation around starting a garden. But...

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Summer Grilling: Kid-Friendly Vegetables on the BBQ

Summer Grilling: Kid-Friendly Vegetables on the BBQ

Most dads love a good barbeque. If you’re a dad planning a barbeque, or a mom creating a fun day for the dad in your family’s life, I’ve got some ideas for you! When you think of BBQ, I’m sure most of you are thinking of meat. But vegetables can be delicious on the...

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Coconut Pancakes (Grain-Free Recipe)

Coconut Pancakes (Grain-Free Recipe)

GFCF/SCD/GAPS/LOD, Nut-free Ingredients ¼ cup, (plus 1 Tablespoon) coconut flour ¼ teaspoon unrefined salt ¼ teaspoon baking soda 4 large or 5 medium pastured eggs (room temperature) 2 Tablespoons of coconut milk or other diet compliant non-dairy milk 1 teaspoon...

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Sauerkraut Recipe

Sauerkraut Recipe

GFCF/SCD/GAPS/Paleo/LOD/BED/Keto Diet Compliance Sauerkraut is wonderful for digestion and the immune system. It’s also beneficial for our mood.  Sauerkraut is made with fermented or cultured cabbage and other vegetables. When they are made raw, the traditional way,...

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Crispy Kale Chips Recipe

Crispy Kale Chips Recipe

Our family loves kale chips, including my daughter. And not only are the delicious, they are very nutritious. Kale is the cruciferous, or brassica family, along with other powerhouse foods like broccoli, brussels sprouts, and cabbage.  Kale Nutrition Kale...

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