photo by nuttakit used with permission,

photo by nuttakit used with permission,

Constipation is a common occurrence when the microbiome is imbalanced. Certain pathogens in the tract release toxic gasses that are paralytic. They paralyze peristalsis, freezing the intestinal tract in an open, immobile state. At this point the fecal matter doesn’t move along the tract to be evacuated, it just sits and rots. This causes the toxic gasses in the fecal matter to be reabsorbed through the body. In essence, this person is recycling their own toxic overload adding more burden on their body, especially the liver. When the liver is stressed it’s often visible with dark circles under the eyes. 

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GAPS is a healing protocol which kills pathogens in the tract. If there is an overgrowth of the pathogens and bacteria that release paralyzing toxic gasses, like clostridia which is generally present in autistic spectrum children, then constipation is imminent. When constipation happens, it is generally a sign you’re in the right place killing the pathogenic bacteria. However, assistance is needed to eliminate the pathogens.

Adults that have chronic constipation are recommended to do full GAPS instead of intro due to the need for higher fiber. However, if food intolerances are highly restrictive, then GAPS intro is more appropriate. 

There are several tools in the toolbox for assisting with constipation. 

photo courtesy of

photo courtesy of

Cleansing enemas are the top of the chart for relieving constipation. Unfortunately, many people have a negative paradigm with enemas and avoid them like the plague. Once you’re deep in the drowning state of sickness they make all the difference. Dr. Natasha recommends the parent do a few on themselves first so they know what it feels like so they know what to expect. Making the experience a joyful, fun time is essential. It is recommended that adults do one liter of water, one teaspoon of mineral salt, one teaspoon of baking soda. Children are only recommended to use water. To sterilize the water heat it up in a stainless steel pan then cool it until you can stick your finger in the water and swirl it around for ten seconds. For adults, coffee enemas are even more effective to healing.

GAPS Shakes if tolerated. GAPS shakes help to lubricate the bowel through increased bile flow. They are reported to gently massage the gallbladder while opening up the bile ducts. Click here to learn how to make a GAPS shake. 

Magnesium oxide is an oral supplement of magnesium that will give the side effect of loose stools. This desired effect is the goal for some stuck in constipation purgatory. Be sure to use a clean supplement as fillers feed the pathogens we are trying to eliminate. Suggested GAPS dosage is to start low and build on the dosage until the bowels are moving. If diarrhea ensues, the dose is too high. Click here for a clean magnesium oxide.

Liposomal vitamin C, according to bowel tolerance, pulls free radicals out of the body as well as assists in moving the stools. Many people report feeling great while on Liposomal C. Click here to learn how to make your own Liposomal C.

Sour Cream, fermented at home from organic or pastured cream, contains beneficial probiotic strains as well as lubricating the bowel. The general recommendation for GAPS folks is two cups a day. Click here to learn how to make homemade sour cream.

Fat intake also increases the lubrication of the bowel. Beneficial GAPS fats include all animal fats such as pastured tallow, pastured lard, pastured chicken skin, wild caught fish skin, high fat pastured fermented dairy, butter, pastured ghee, olive oil, avocado oil, flax seed oil, hemp oil, goose fat and duck fat. 

Water intake assists in softening the stool making it easier to pass. The general rule of thumb is to drink half your bodyweight in ounces a day.  Filtered water and spring water are GAPS approved. 

photo courtesy of

photo courtesy of

Castor Oil Rubs are done by rubbing castor oil on the intestinal tract to stimulate movement. If a clock were placed on your intestinal tract, follow the second hand for rubbing the castor oil deep into the tissues. Click here for a high quality castor oil. 

Castor Oil Packs are done by doing a castor oil rub then saturating an old piece of flannel or cotton with castor oil and laying it across the intestines. Place a piece of cling wrap on top of the flannel then put a hot water bottle on top of that. A towel laid across the hot water bottle will help keep you warm and covered. The weight and heat of the hot water bottle will assist in pushing the castor oil into the intestinal tissues. 

Gentian root is an herb which supports the liver and aids digestive tract issues. The bitter qualities of gentian stimulates gastric juices assisting in bowel movements. Gentian root can be taken as a powder in capsules, tea or in a liquid tincture form. 

Colonics assist the same way enemas do, however, use four to five gallons of water instead of a liter. 

Smooth Move Tea is a combination of herbs which help in moving the bowel. It is easy to take with you in a purse or suitcase for travel and in stubborn situations can be used with two tea bags instead of one. Most folks who suffer greatly with constipation say Smooth Move Tea is a lifesaver. Chicory root is not gaps approved if ingested, is it OK as a tea? Dr. Natasha says, “The tea is fine.” (Campbell-McBride, Natasha. “Re: Questions” Message to Becky Plotner 8 February 2018. E-mail).

photo courtesy of

photo courtesy of

Again, those who suffer from chronic constipation are recommended to do Full GAPS due to the higher fiber contents. 

*Nourishing Plot is written by Becky Plotner, ND, traditional naturopath, CGP, D.PSc. who sees clients in Rossville, Georgia. She works as a Certified GAPS Practitioner who sees clients in her office, Skype and phone. She has been published in Wise Traditions, spoken at two Weston A. Price Conferences, Certified GAPS Practitioner Trainings, has been on many radio shows, television shows and writes for Nourishing Plot. Since her son was delivered from the effects of autism (Asperger’s syndrome), ADHD, bipolar disorder/manic depression, hypoglycemia and dyslexia, through food, she continued her education specializing in Leaky Gut and parasitology through Duke University, finishing with distinction. She is a Chapter Leader for The Weston A. Price Foundation. [email protected]

“GAPS™ and Gut and Psychology Syndrome™ are the trademark and copyright of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. The right of Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride to be identified as the author of this work has been asserted by her in accordance with the Copyright, Patent and Designs Act 1988.



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