What is GAPS?
Up until six months ago, I had no idea.
GAPS is the brainchild of Dr Natasha Campbell-McBride (MD, MMedSci (Neurology), MMedSci (Nutrition), which she based on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet. She initially founded the diet to try and heal her own son’s gut issues after he was struggling with severe learning difficulties. Over the last twenty years she has pieced together the puzzle that is now slowly becoming a more mainstream topic of discussion;
that his ailing gut health was the major cause of these disabilities.
I would be niave to believe that I can explain it better than Natasha herself, so in her own words, as quoted from her book, ‘Gut and Psychology Syndrome’ (pages 5-9);
“GAPS children and adults have digestive problems, sometimes quite severe. Colic, bloating, flatulence, diarrhoea, constipation, feeding difficulties and malnourishment, all to varying degree’s are a typical part of autism, schizophrenia and other GAPS conditions … As we can see modern medicine has created all these seperate diagnostic boxes to fit our children in. But the modern child does not fit into any one of them, the modern child fits into this rather lumpy picture. Why are all these conditions related? What underlying problem are we missing in our children which make them susceptible to asthma, eczema, allergies, dyspraxia, dyslexia, behavioural problems, ADHD and autism in different combinations? … to answer all these questions we have to look at one factor, which unites all these patients in a clinical setting. This factor is the state of their digestive system. I have yet to meet a child with autism, ADHD/ADD, asthma, eczema, allergies, dyspraxia or dyslexia, who has not got digestive abnormalities … but what have digestive abnormalities got to do with autism, hyperactivity, inability to learn, mood and behaviour problems? According to recent research and clinical experience – a lot! In fact it appears that the child’s digestive system hold’s the key to the child’s mental development … rather than trying to fit a child with autistic tendencies, asthma, eczema and hyperactivity, or a child with dyspraxia, dyslexia and allergies into a particular diagnostic box we need to have a name for the underlying disorder, which originates in the gut and manifests itself as any combination of the above conditions.
Here I propose a name: Gut and Psychology Syndrome, or GAP Syndrome.