May Minutes 2015

GAPS Meeting Notes

Brain Fog

Brain fog is mentioned many times in blogs and books and articles, but what is it? A survey of each of us at our GAPS meeting indicated that it is altered consciousness and decreased mental alertness/function that can occur quickly and be persistent. We all agreed it could be life threatening while driving. It was compared to “chemo brain” in our group and also in blogs. An article online on WebMD offered advice such as being more organized, writing things down, and basically, learning to live in spite of it.

In our group discussion we tried to identify triggers. Some that we felt were key were sleep deficit, stress, and eating food away from home that had questionable, unknown ingredients. It seems apparent that toxins are an issue with brain fog; either ingestion of too many or our body’s ability to eliminate them are compromised. Most likely both. For example, none of the systems of our body work as well when sleep is compromised, so ingestion of toxins after a sleep deficit might be more likely to induce brain fog than if those same toxins were ingested while being well-rested.

The most important thing with brain fog is to address it in a safe way. If plagued with it while driving, taking a break is imperative.

We discussed various methods of detoxification. Those were:
1. B vitamins
2. Saunas, near and far infrared
3. Dry Brushing
4. Epsom salt soaks
5. Baking soda shampoos/soaks
6. Castor oil packs
7. Coffee enemas
8. Fasting (while avoiding hypoglycemia!)
9. Iodine therapy
10. Cod liver oil
11. Vitamin C
12. Balanced activity, not too much, not too little
13. Healthy Fats
14. Broth
15. Grounding
16. Rebounding
17. Aromatherapy/Essential oils
18. Sleeping in the dark
19. Minimizing EMFs

Great discussion! Hopefully we can each incorporate more simple detoxification into our daily lives.

Minutes from January 2015

GAPS Minutes January 2015

Lots of great questions and comments!

Samples: lacto-fermented coleslaw, Beet/ginger fermented cabbage, bone marrow custard, and second ferment blueberry/elderberry/mulberry kombucha.

Links below were requested to be in the minutes:

Dosages for cod liver oil:

Oral wellness site:

Cure Tooth Decay:

Pictorial verification of cavities healing:

How to improve digestion by enhancing the acid in our stomach: power point…

Diverting fruit flies from kombucha: put a small glass with ACV and a few drops of soap next to the kombucha.

As always, so many questions, so many interesting comments, so little time. Until next time….


Cod Liver Oil “Candy!”

Below is a post from the GAPS Practitioners Forum regarding cod liver oil:

“Everyone tells me that they find the Fermented Cod Liver Oil very strong tasting. Older kids and adults take the capsules if they have a strong aversion to the taste. But, I do warn the families that capsules are way more expensive and you need to take 5 capsules for 1 teaspoon of FCLO. The most popular flavours of my clients and kids are plain, cinnamon tingle and chocolate cream. I prefer the cinnamon tingle as it tastes like those sweetheart candies, that have a strong cinnamon taste.

Younger kids cannot swallow the capsules and often have a huge aversion to the taste, if they have sensory issues. Dave Wetzel at Green Pastures says he lubes the buns of his 2 year old with FCLO. I have never tried that one.

But, my kids like when I hide their dosage in a mixture of coconut oil and honey.

Mix a small amount of honey into the softened coconut oil.

Drop teaspoonfuls of the coconut oil/honey mixture onto Parchment paper.

Place 1/4 or 1/2 tsp of FCLO onto each coconut piece and form the coconut oil/honey mixture around it, so that the FCLO is in the center.

Place the paper into the freezer to harden.

Then, when it is time to take their FCLO, they line up and I drop a frozen ‘candy’ onto their tongues and they just let them slide down their throats, without biting into them.

Coconut oil slides easily down the warm tongue into the throat. They tell me that it tastes like a Bounty or Mounds Bar. Hope this helps.”


Friends, Foes, & Folly

Google does not recognize it -  It is my own construct……. But it is real.

Candida Neurosis.

Do you have it?

Candida Neurosis occupies your every thought – especially about food. When it is your enemy, it takes the joy out of life. Fighting Candida works just as well as killing people to attain peace.

Is Candida real? Most certainly!

Can it also take the joy out of life? Yes!

If it is real and it is damaging and fighting it doesn’t work, what does one do when plagued with it?

Embrace it as your friend.

A friend that came over to eat all of your junk food.

Surely you would never feed a friend junk food! So do not feed your friend Candida junk food either!

Neither would you starve a friend. So do not try to starve your friend Candida!

Give your friend Candida lots of eclectic friends to hang with. Will that hurt your friend Candida? No, it will just keep her from getting overbearing.

How do I invite other friends over to hang around with Candida?

Fermented foods at every meal. (You know how everyone shows up for a free meal!)
Probiotics (start slowly and keep taking different ones to keep your group of “friends” eclectic).
Serve all of your friends nutrient dense foods that your body is capable of digesting.

When beginning GAPS, you may not be able to digest more than meat broth. That will still feed you and your friends. In fact, it will feed you far better than if you try to eat foods that you cannot digest.

Foods that are impossible for your body to digest end up inviting guests from the wrong side of town. You know how those parties go…things get out of hand in a hurry.

After healing takes place, more foods will be able to be thoroughly digested. Your diet then can (and should) expand to ensure that you are getting the nutrients your body needs.

Candida is a messy friend. She leaves clutter wherever she has been. Your liver and other detoxification pathways try constantly to clean up after Candida. When Candida is the only one around, the liver can’t keep up. When other friends keep her in check, the liver starts to get the place presentable again (detoxifying).

You can help your liver make the “place presentable” by giving it certain elements that slip liver detox into high gear. Iodine “paint” is one of those essential elements. Epsom salt baths nourish your detox mechanisms and promote relaxation with magnesium and sulfur; two elements essential to healing and detox. Baking soda baths actively allow the skin to detoxify. Cod liver oil provides vitamins and fatty acids essential to the immune system. A healthy immune system puts less demand on the detoxification system. A diet very high in fat (mostly saturated, animal fat) gives your body what is necessary for every cell in your body to function as it should. This, again, minimizes the work for your detoxification pathways.

Why saturated fat?

Saturated fat is like having nice cushy furniture for your friends to lounge in. It helps the cell walls stay tight and protective (like a warm snug house). It promotes an atmosphere conducive to friendship – Good Karma if you will – by building neurotransmitters that help us experience joy and satisfaction. Without it, there is a sterile echo-y atmosphere, not conducive to friends hanging around.

Bottom line: Candida is your friend; do not treat her as your foe.

Christmas and Sauerkraut!

This year I am honored to be hosting my in-laws on Christmas Day. One of the treats I will serve is an old family recipe – Sauerkraut Salad.

Years ago, as a newly-wed, sauerkraut salad was my usual assignment; something I could not ruin. I remember holding my nose while opening a can of Frank’s kraut, dumping it in with other ingredients which I believed could never reform this conglomeration into something edible. (I never touched it, so I never knew.)

Today, in the 7th year of my Weston A. Price nutrient-dense-food-journey, I relish making this salad – with appropriate modifications., of course!

Instead of “2 cups of sauerkraut” (Franks in a can because it was at the local store and cheap), I lavishly share 2 cups of our very own raw, Pickl-it sauerkraut that as been brewing in our cold room since August.

The recipe, in my mother-in-law’s distinctive, beautiful cursive handwriting, calls for “draining” the sauerkraut. Gasp! Discard all of those enzymes, vitamins and minerals? Instead it was substituted it for some of the apple cider vinegar. The vinegar, which is raw, organic, and unfiltered instead of the imposter I used to pick up in a plastic jug.

The two cups of celery are from the organic section of the grocery store. Next year it will have some of mine; but this year my 2013 stash is defunct. (Thank you Cheryl Peterson Halsey for giving me a perennial lovage bush that passes as a celery plant!)

The “medium onion, chopped” is fresh from my garden. Pimento is from the freezer, also a garden item.

A half cup of raw honey is substituted for the “cup of sugar” – organic, without any high fructose corn syrup. The oil is organic olive oil purchased from a trusted source, NOT rancid soybean oil laden with pesticides.

This is a Weston A. Price approved recipe AND it is GAPS friendly as well.

Bon Appetite’!

…..Wonder what my in-laws will think….

How do you spell relief?

Check out the PDF version of my power point – How do you spell

((click here for) R-E-L-I-E-F)? Gas, bloating, constipation, digestive woes….

Cream cheese - smoked oysters - fermented onions on a carrot "cracker"

Today I used Flax seed “gel” to fix my hair. Honestly, I looked the best I have in days!

Here is the recipe from The Healthy Home Economist:

Natural Hair Gel 

Makes about 4 oz


1 cup filtered water

2 Tbl organic whole flax seeds (where to source)

Few drops of essential oils for natural fragrance (optional)

Few drops of aloe vera gel for a moisturizing effect (optional)


Bring the cup of filtered water to a boil.  Stir in the flax seeds, turn down the heat to medium and let simmer for between 7-10 minutes.

*Do not simmer longer than 10 minutes else you won’t be able to strain out the flax seeds from the gel.

Strain out the flax seeds using a strainer or cheesecloth and let the gel cool.  Mix a few drops of essential oils and/or aloe vera if desired.

Pour gel into a small bottle and refrigerate.


Ash Wednesday Meeting – 02/13/13

Today our discussion centered on the premise that “If you believe you can heal, you can.” Your journey might not provide healing in the way you envisioned, but it will be healing.

We reviewed culturing cream; Cultured Cream(see slides). Sampled vegetable medley, ginger kombucha, ginger tea, chicken broth. We had a quick demonstration of making chicken broth. We sampled sauerkraut, and got a glimpse of how a Pickl-it works;

We discussed an overview of the information available about the Weston A. Price Foundation (WAPF). The Mount Marty College Library has many of the “Thumbs Up” books discussed in the WAPF journals. They can be checked out with a free membership to the library, or through Inter-library loan.

GAPS Meeting notes – next meeting at my home

Our next GAPS Meeting will be held at MY house October 10 at 10 am!

Everyone is invited. Please RSVP so that I have an idea of how many there will be! :)

Directions: I live halfway between Avon and Tyndall just off HWY 50. My address is 41039 304th St., Avon SD. From Yankton, take HWY 50 west until you are 5 miles west of Tyndall. There HWY 37 NORTH joins with HWY 50, turn left and go south one mile on a gravel road. (Do not let the HWY 37 that goes SOUTH from HWY 50 just outside of Tyndall confuse you!) After traveling one mile south on the gravel road, at the top of the hill, turn right and go west 1/2 mile to our house, which is on the left (south) side of the road.

Everyone uses the back door, which is fine, but you are welcome to park in front and use the front door. That way our garage can still be used by my ever-so-patient husband! :)

Ketchup Recipe: Attached is a recipe I have not tried, but plan to. I think sauerkraut juice will be a bitter seller at my house than fish sauce… Attached is a recipe for and information about Kombucha.

Dr. Cowan: Liver detoxification and castor oil packs

Castor oil packs: A simple way to help our body detoxify. Apply castor oil on the abdomen. Cover with a soft rag and or plastic to avoid staining clothes. Use a warm pad over the pack. Relax for 3–60 minutes.

Links with more about detoxification and castor oil packs:

Samples: Kohlrabi slices, fermented (These can be used as a substitute cracker. Try it with liver pate’!)

Broth: Dos and Don’ts


Use only filtered water. Bake the bones or the bird in the oven to allow for browning (which enhances the flavor of the broth). Add salt while cooking. Save and savor the marrow!!!


Rush the broth. Simmer beyond 30 hours without restarting with fresh water.

Detox Tea Made from herbs from Amy Willis “Amy Willis”

Upper respiratory symptoms in children: Try onion or garlic pack for ear aches. Keep in mind the body detoxifies through the lungs. (See the slide below.) Both water soluble AND fat soluble toxins are expelled via the lungs.


Fermented Mayo – Chicken Salad

Fermented Mayonnaise

adapted from Nourishing Traditions and Julia Child – From

Creates 1¼ to 1¾ cups finished sauce

Mayonnaise made by hand or with an electric beater requires familiarity with egg yolks. It is certainly far from difficult once you understand the process, and after you have done it a few times, you should easily and confidently be able to whop together a quart of sauce in less than ten minutes.” – Julia Child

Ingredients – Must Be At Room Temperature

  • 1/2- cup extra virgin olive oil 
  • 1/2-cup organic coconut oil (the milder, the better)
  • 2 pastured egg yolk, at room temperature
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon-type mustard (I use 2 well-rounded teaspoons)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons lemon juice (important for “cutting” the fat, developing full flavor)
  • 1 whole Pickl-It fermented garlic or 1/2 tsp Pick-It garlic brine
  • Pinch (generous) of sea salt


  1. Fork-Whisk Oils: Gently fork-whisk or hand-whisk olive and coconut oil (if solid, gently liquefy by placing bowl in a bowl of warm water) together in a pourable glass measuring cup; set aside
  2. Whisk Egg Yolks: Place egg yolks in a room-temperature glass, ceramic or stainless steel bowl; whisk yolks for at least 1-minute until they’re thick, light-lemon colored
  3. Add Oil Blend:  With blender-stick still running, or continually hand-whisking, slowly drizzle coconut/olive oil blend into the egg mixture; typically takes 5-8 minutes with hand-whisk, and 2-3 minutes with stick blender
  4. Add other ingredients:  mustard, lemon juice, and smashed garlic clove (or garlic brine) as well as whey, if used
  5. Whisk for 6-seconds if using stick blender; 20-seconds for hand-whisk
  6. Salt-to-taste, whisking briefly
  7. Spoon into a 3/4-Liter Pickl-Itand snap on lid;  insert airlock (if not inserted already); add water to airlock; snap cover onto airlock; place mayo in dark corner of kitchen, covering sides; allow to sit at room temperature for 4-6 hours
  8. Chill mayonnaise at least 2-hours before using or serving; this will help the mayonnaise to thicken (coconut oil becomes firm)

Chicken Salad

 Bake chicken breast

Salt chicken with sea salt.

Bake with skin on in uncovered pan in a 350 degree oven for approximately 1 hour.


Eat skin.

Cut chicken into small bites.


diced onion (2 TBSP) or to taste

sweet red pepper


1 diced crisp, sweet apple

Approximately 20 grapes, cut into thirds

½ cup soaked/dehydrated almonds, cut into halves

sea salt to taste

freshly ground pepper to taste

Mix into freshly made fermented Mayo