Tuesday, January 19, 2010

What is the SCD? Or, How in the heck am I supposed to do THIS!!!!

It took me a year of owning and reading/rereading the book Breaking the vicious cycle by Elaine Gottschall to come to terms with the fact that I was going to have to do the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) with my eldest son. The diet is extremely intimidating all on it's own, but once you factor in no eggs or beans, limited nuts and a rotational diet it's a paralyzing task. I'm glad I took the year I did to do research, to learn about other diets that had food that would fit under the umbrella of SCD.

My biggest concern was finding snacks for my son. Cooking proteins for him was not a big deal and learning to make nut milks and then nut yogurts wasn't too hard. However, making baked goods (cookies, breads, muffins, brownies, chips) became a real challenge. We had already been Gluten, Casein, Soy and Egg free, but now we were losing rice, potato, tapioca, corn, arrowroot and all other polysaccharide (multiple sugar chain) starches. The raw food diet was our saving grace. I was able to make a multitude of raw cookies that could be dispensed on a rotational basis. The cookies were full of protein and "good" carbs (great for a growing child!). When his friends were getting cookies full of sugar and mind numbing "bad" carbs I took a great sense of pride in the fact that my child was getting a brain "boost" instead of a brain "fog".

The primary principle behind the diet is eating foods that the gut need expend no energy on digesting. Monosaccharides are readily absorbed by the gut without effort, now the gut can use all its energy on healing. It is a sound scientific principle and the diet has been proven over and over again. Our success was measured in solid stools for the first time in 5 years and FINALLY being able to potty train our son. It was a near on miracle for us. It was also a long haul. It was 3 years before we could successfully take our son off the SCD, and to this day at least half his diet falls under the umbrella of the SCD. His diet now includes some corn, amaranth, chestnut and sorghum, some starches (arrowroot, tapioca) and VERY occassionally potato. He still eats raw food cookies, and he still eat rotationally. He also has done all of this dietary intervention under the careful watch of a Registered Dietitian, www.holcarenutrition.com, and his regular pediatrition, www.drohara.com , and his pediatric gastroenteroligist. He also has, and still does, take several medications to help heal his gut, but without a doubt I can say the medicines didn't work until the diet pavedthe way for them. We even have biopsy reports to back that up! On my son's last endoscopy/colonoscopy the doctor stated that if he hadn't done the previous 3 scopes, that he would say my son had been misdiagnosed, almost all the damage in his gut had healed!

The following is a recipe for SCD chicken nuggets:

1 organic chicken breast
1/4 - 1/2 cup pureed squash (depends on size of breast)

Almond flour
organic cold pressed coconut butter/oil

Grind chicken breast in a grinder or food processor, then mix in squash. Scoop 1-2 tablespoons at a time and put in almond flour. Cover both sides in flour and place on wax paper lined cookie sheet or plate. Repeat until all nuggets are made. Refridgerate for 1 hour (or more). Heat coconut butter/oil in skillet over medium-low heat. Cook nuggets slowly being very careful not to burn the almond flour. Flip and cook on other side when almond flour has browned slightly. Reove to paper towels to drain off oil. Nuggets can be frozen and reheated in a 300 degree oven. Again watch not to burn the almond flour. Nothing tastes worse than burnt almonds!

I will post again when I get the chance. Thanks to everyone who reads this!