Will SCD, GAPS, or Paleo Work for Everyone? (Podcast 38)

by Jordan Reasoner

will SCD, GAPS, or Paleo work for me

I recently sent this hard-hitting email to members of our digestion newsletter:

I wonder how much easier it would be to get symptom-free, if you knew exactly what to eat.

But it depends on so many things…

… like how high your inflammation is

… and how leaky your gut is

… and how out-of-balance your gut bacteria are.

We’ve been fascinated with this mystery for three years. We know that you have a custom diet that will work for you. But we wondered how it could be possible to show you yours.

200+ blog posts later.

3 book revisions later.

Thousands of willing test cases later.

We were looking at it from the wrong angle…. instead of what you SHOULD eat…

We created a way for you to figure out exactly what you SHOULDN’T eat and it takes less than 3 minutes.

There’s some debate about whether or not SCD, GAPS, or Paleo will work for everyone.

But not for us.

These diets will work, but each of us has a custom version we have to figure out first. Not only that, but our custom diet changes month-to-month from things like healing, stress, travel, etc.

Let me share the secret sauce of it all…

The way to unlock consistent healing and always be improving your health is to know what you SHOULDN’T be eating.

And for that, each of us needs to find out whether we’re a “Tough Case” or “Mild Case.”

Once you know that, we can reveal the well-worn path you need to follow to get symptom-free – the path well traveled by the thousands before you.

On This Podcast, You’ll Learn:

2:20 Will SCD, GAPS, or Paleo work for me?

4:50 How to tell if the way you’re eating is “working” for you

11:26 Why there’s so many stories claiming these diets don’t work

18:52 The common Paleo mistakes by people with digestive problems

21:50 What it means to be a “tough case” or a “mild case”

27:56 What should I do if I’m a tough case?

30:54 How to find out which case you are in 3 minutes

Play

Here’s this quiz to help you find out if you’re a “Tough Case” or a “Mild Case”….

–> http://scdlifestyle.com/2012/03/the-gut-health-recovery-quiz/

To check out the “Healing Curve Theory” Steve talked about in this podcast, click here to view the image:

–> The Power Law Healing Curve Theory

– Jordan

P.S. – If you can’t see the audio player below, download the MP3 here. Also, make sure you subscribe on iTunes and leave a review – thanks!

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About the author

Jordan Reasoner Jordan Reasoner is a health engineer and author. He was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2007 and almost gave up hope when a gluten-free diet didn’t work. Since then, he transformed his health using the SCD Diet and started SCDLifestyle.com to help others naturally heal stomach problems. You can check out his story here and find him on Google+, Facebook or Twitter.

The Specific Carbohydrate Diet Works

{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Aval June 22, 2012 at 5:16 am

i want to get my diet chart ……. where shoul i mention my problem n disease ??

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Steven Wright June 22, 2012 at 8:51 am

@Aval – Please email us with more info using the contact us form. I’m not sure what your referring to.

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Gareth June 22, 2012 at 8:44 am

Once I had a discussion with a woman who was adamant that she had “done” SCD and that it didn’t work. Her idea of implementing SCD was to go straight to the full diet, cheat regularly and then give up after two months. One of the greatest misunderstandings of this approach to health is the nature of the required commitment, both with respect to discipline and time. Although understandable, who doesn’t want to get healthy immediately after all, it’s rather frustrating to continually see people upset or complaining after two weeks or a month because SCD isn’t “working.” In contrast to you guys, however, when I started SCD I was surprised by the number of positive testimonials, and those (alongside desperation ;)) kept me persevering through the difficult first months.

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Steven Wright June 22, 2012 at 8:54 am

@Gareth – That’s awesome that you found more positive testimonials than we did! It is frustrating to talk with those who think any treatment is the silver bullet, because they will always be disappointed and go around spreading their negative energy.

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Carolyn June 24, 2012 at 11:01 am

hi Jordan and Steve. Starting the SCD was very difficult~ after 10 months, I still was not feeling well and sought out advice from other SCD support groups. The advice each of them gave me was the same- make sure that you are not eating any illegals, check your supplements, etc. This was not helpful as I was being fastidious about following the diet. I was ready to give up. Then, I found your website and learned about the 4 horseman and creating a food safe zone. I already felt so limited in my food choices that it was hard to limit them even further, but I removed unsafe foods. My health took a huge turn for the better and now see myself on the upward swing of your graph! After 18 months on the diet, I tested banana yesterday and it went well. It’s a testimony to how our bodies are always changing and healing! Thank you for helping those of us who fall through the BTVC cracks!

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Jordan Reasoner June 24, 2012 at 3:50 pm

Woohoo, way to go Carolyn. I’m so excited for your new healthy life.

It’s a testament to how amazing you are. After going through those challenges, you chose health, you chose to keep fighting.

You Rock!

Jordan

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kris July 19, 2012 at 1:32 pm

I can’t remember if it was this podcast or the previous that you asked for more feedback and ideas. Here are a couple:
1) One of my favorite podcasts was Dr. Galland. He raised the flag regarding UC being different than Chrons. Mainly, he mentioned that UC responds better to a vegie diet than all the meat protein. I completely agree! Is there anyone else who can separate these two and give a more appropriate diet for UC. SCD and most others are high in meat (which I know works well for you both).
2) Have you ever tried to reach out to Dr. Dahlman in Ohio? He has a free program that he posts for IBD & IBS. He basically gives a one size fits all program which includes the enzymes/HCL and other anti-inflammatory supplements along with the SCD(ish) diet recommendation. He might be a good person to interview. Although I don’t see a tremendous amount of success stories on his website.
3) Another area I’m interested in is the affects of dehydration from having chronic diarrhea. What are the long term affects?

Thanks so much for all you do! And for championing a very worthy cause (when we are all so very let down by the “system”). Your passion and commitment is tremendous. I look forward to seeing what you have next!
Kris

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Steven Wright July 20, 2012 at 2:57 pm

@ Kris thanks for the thoughtful feedback I will look into Dr. Dahlman. I’ve actually very high success for UC with a high meat and fat diet very low carb. So my experience on this site and the people we’ve talked with doesn’t support Dr. Gallands thoughts. At this point the only speculation that I can say is that more vegetables would increase soluble fiber which possibly might increase the substrate for colon bacteria to grow. But we know from other sciences eating a high grass-fed beef and seafood diet is the most inflammatory approach.

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best weight loss supplements kit September 22, 2012 at 3:19 pm

I agree. My thanks for posting that. I will definitely come back to find out more and inform my acquaintenances about it

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Ann S. September 25, 2012 at 12:20 pm

I thought the podcast was very balanced. I opened up the SCD book & about fainted dead away. I knew there was no way I was gonna do SCD 100% from the git go. I looked at vegan dies, Paleo, ad nauseum. After a trip to the hospital for a raging flare (I haven’t stopped totally bleeding since 11/2011 & it’s now almost 10/2012). I de-
cided to mix and match.

I immediately cut out gluten, wheat, sugar and processed foods. I stoped drinking
diet sodas, pastas, spicey foods. There was an immediate improvement. As for store bought almond milk, well, I said “screw it” and continued to buy commercially pre-
pared almond milk, even though SCD claims there are ingredients in it that are not
compliant with that diet.

Up until I started SCD, I wasn’t eating gobs of beef. Well, I happen to like beef, so I
was kind of relieved that meat was allowed on SCD. I would say I’m about 75%-85%
compliant with SCD, but I recognized, after reading multiple Internet articles, books,
Face Book posts, this web site and many others, I was going to have to mix and match. I stopped drinking and smoking many years ago & I had to “wean myself off” of both alcohol and cigarettes. I haven’t smoked in about 18 years and haven’t had
a drinkin 38 years. I haven’t had a desire for either since I totally stopped. I think
the food thing is gonna work out the same way for me. Again, for me, it’s all about
balance. I try not to go too far one way or the other. Some times, I’ll eat some thing
and it will totally agree with me; a week later, I’ll eat the same thing & voila! I get
sick. I give it a rest. I back off. My body absolutel tells me when something ain’t
right.

Lastly, on reviewing the SCD diet, I started to view the list of “no-no’s” and “yes yes”
as looking at all the foods I could eat and not what I couldn’t eat. Better put, I tried
to view the glass as “half full” as opposed to being “half empty”.

That’s my two cents.

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Laura December 11, 2012 at 11:18 pm

I thought this webcast was wonderful! I personally did not get the feeling that you were not supporting Paleo or Gaps or any other diet for digestive issues. What it did for me was to clarify, in my mind, the issues that I have been having with Paleo. I do plan on continuing, or at least building up to a full Paleo plan again AFTER I have completed and tailored the SCD diet. My system is not ready for all of the raw and al dente veggies. What you have done is confirm in my mind that I do need to tailor my plan. All of the fats, good fats, just made me feel sick. I have no gall bladder and even when I did, fats made me feel bad. Food intolerances have increased in strength for awhile, am getting a test done and will get the results in a couple of weeks. Thank you for this podcast and the information. I took the quiz and thought that I was a mild case….boy was I surprised to come in at a 7!

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Jordan Reasoner December 12, 2012 at 2:54 am

Thank you Laura, we’re rooting for you! Can’t wait to hear an update.

In good health,

Jordan

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Bryan January 29, 2013 at 7:04 pm

I have chrohnes and have tried many different medications. I am currently on cymzia and prednisone. I started the scd diet about 3 weeks ago. I am starting to feel better and was wondering how you can determine if it is the medication or scd diet that has brought me out of a flare? Also at what point can I stop medication. I know that it helps but long term goal is to get off of all medication

Thanks

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Jen February 20, 2013 at 6:04 am

I have been on the SCD now for a month. It has improved my bloating no end but not my IBC but I’ve lost a little weight too which is great. I was always a lover of sugar and anything sweet. I’m having trouble staying on the straight and narrow when I get an attack of the munchies. I then find myself snacking on the wrong foods and then paying for it later of course. Surfing the net the other night I found a supplier of foods and snacks here in Australia designed for the Paleo diet. My question is, are these snacks suitable for people on the SCD? They certainly sound delicious enough and don’t seem to contain anything on the forbidden list.

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Steven Wright February 20, 2013 at 3:23 pm

@Jen – You’ll have to check the ingredients. As a general rule Paleo foods are usually SCD legal. But I’d say rather than feed the snack monster, why not defeat it? Check blood sugar issues, hormone issues and brain imbalances.

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Angie April 30, 2013 at 2:52 am

Hi, I have just started the SCD diet (3 days ago) and It has triggered cycititis. This happened last time I started a high protein diet which I stayed on for approx on month. During that time the cycititis contuined to get worse until I stopped the diet! I am very close to stopping the Scd!! I suffer with brain fog, difficulty with temperature control with a feeling of heaviness in body (with a diagnosis of ME). I would be so grateful for feedback Steve re cycititis.

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Steve July 23, 2013 at 7:31 am

Can I offer some feedback to suggest the test might be a tad flawed?

I answer yes to both of these, but that makes me a tough case. I am in clinical remission and currently not taking any drugs, and answer no to all other questions. Do you really think that still makes me a tough case?

Have you ever been prescribed any of the following drugs (Imuran, Humira, Remicade, or any other TNF-alpha inhibitors) (yes/no)

Have you had surgery to remove any portion of your upper or lower intestines? (yes/no)

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MaryAnn Jane March 4, 2014 at 11:34 am

Just wanted to provide another thank you for all the info. and add a testimonial. My daughter has had pan-colitis for 3 years. She was well controlled on meds for 1 year and then they stopped working. High doses 100mg. of prednisone and remicade had minimal effect and last May while hospitalized they discussed removing her colon. She is 26. She was ordered off work to rest and we began SCD while she moved home for a couple of months. Four days after started her bleeding of 1 year stopped, 10 days after she had her first formed bowel movement. Her specialist about after 2 months on diet showed her inflammatory markers fell from high 900’s (off the chart) to .4! She continues remicade but is off steroids and has her life back. She remains on the diet! Amazing but true!

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janetm August 15, 2014 at 3:45 am

Thanks, I really needed to hear the entire podcast having followed the announcement in my inbox today. With me at the end of my rope a long time ago, finding a thread to hold onto helps to remind myself that there is a rational cause and solution and that I am not goofy. It was interesting to hear you are both mechanics. Feeding a vehicle the wrong type fuel causes problems, yes?
Two things: in the past I discovered that not eating a day or two before something important preempted much of the anxiety and discomfort, that of course combined are a toxic pair. In fact, I have fasted for long periods and USED to get good results from that. But over the past couple years, I felt that gastritis or inflammation if present were not helped and maybe even made worse, since stomach acid and bile are still produced. I do like the clearness of mind though, the ideal being able to have that as well while ingesting the right fuel for this machine. Otherwise, mindfog is ABNORMAL.
The 2nd point is having disastrously taken some powdered collagen for which I am still tasting it in my mouth, that is, still present in the entire tract and have been burning up all the way to the other end now for three days. It is somewhat better than in the beginning and hope this is only a passing fluke that I will NOT repeat until I am fully entrenched in the diet. It did work when I started about a week ago.
I was just wondering what results or even benefits others may have had from fasting, if they or you tried it.

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Brent Kovacs August 15, 2014 at 12:23 pm

Hi Janet,

Thanks for reaching out! Chris Kresser talks a lot about intermittent fasting on his site chriskresser.com.

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Andrea September 18, 2016 at 5:26 pm

Hi guys! I know that this podcast is a few years old, but I hope you still see this comment . I tried gaps diet six years ago when it first started getting big . I had issues with insomnia, irregular periods, High Cortisol etc. I have to say that the diet really did make me worse. It wasn’t die off or eating a any specific food per se as much as not having starchy carbs. My hair started falling out, my hypoglycemia got even worse , I gained weight all in my belly area , and suffered from insomnia and fatigue… All the symptoms of low thyroid . I even had my first and only miscarriage when I got pregnant a few months after I went off the diet . As soon as I added in some starchy carbs( about 30% of my diet) I felt soooo much better . Now,I rarely ingest any sugar or high sugar fruits, and I follow a mostly Weston a Price diet, but, after recent testing, I know that I still have some gut dysbiosis….especially since my two boys were born with food allergies . I just don’t know how these diets would work for me when I feel so terrible off of carbs. Do you think that some people can heal gut while still consuming starchy carbs ?

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Mariel Heiss September 19, 2016 at 3:59 pm

Hi Andrea – yes we do! We think starchy carbs are actually really important and advise people to eventually reintroduce them. You can learn more here: http://scdlifestyle.com/2013/03/starch-evil-or-golden/

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Andrea September 19, 2016 at 6:44 pm

Thanks so much for the reply. Checking the info out (-:

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