I’ve made many dietary changes since discovering gluten/dairy intolerance 10 years ago. My health journey has started with exclusion of these items and eventually led to doing a grain free therapeutic diet known as the GAPS diet. This diet was so restrictive that it revealed a deeper genetic glitch I’ve had all along- methylation impairments. This gene is known as MTHFR and there are many specific subsets in the DNA that relate to this genetic glitch but I won’t go into detail here. You can read more on MTHFR.net. Anyway, this glitch has shown me that I have sulfur intolerance in when ingested in large amounts- which is exactly what the healing foods are on GAPS diet!! (Saurkraut, cruciferous veggies, soups with onions/garlic, green veggies galore)
If any of you are on the paleo diet, GAPS diet, or grain free diet to heal your guts and you are noticing a drop in energy and crazy detox symptoms despite eating ample carbohydrate sources from veggies, you may want to check into the possibility of this genetic glitch. It’s not that uncommon actually, I think around 30% of the population carries it, however it’s not usually expressed unless some sort of trauma or disruption happens to the body. It’s an interesting area of study known as epigenetics.
This issue is super complex. I’ll post more as I learn. For now I just want to raise awareness to others on these diets who are having issues. Going on a low sulfur version of the grain free diet has done wonders for me and my daughter. I think the GAPS and paleo diet are amazing, but you have to be able to properly methylate for those diets to have the total healing effects you are seeking.
You can check out Dr. Amy Yasco’s work on the relationship between this genetic glitch and autism. She states she seen an insane relationship between this gene and the presence of an autistic spectrum disorder in children. This genetic glitch is also highly correlated to thyroid issues, autoimmune disorders, and chronic fatigue syndrome.
My hope is by bringing awareness to the GAPS diet and to the prevalence of MTHFR issues, that other families who are struggling to piece together their health challenges will find the answers they are seeking.
You can order your own DNA methylation panel at the links below to find out if you are a carrier of this gene. However I think it’s crucial to work with a doctor who understands this genetic info to help navigate the treatment process. There are 2 sites to order the DNA testing from. I chose to do Dr. Yasco’s DNA test even though it is way more expensive because it seemed more thorough. However, I might do the other (23andme) at a later date as it tests for different genetic info as well: