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Part 3: A Success Story In Using the GAPS Diet to Stop Absence Seizures!

Here is more of the completely unedited version of how The Kinder Family used GAPS to treat their son’s seizures.  Why do I keep stressing it’s unedited?  Because I’m wriggling on the edge of my chair running this.  What would my former colleagues think about how this child was treated?  What would they think about me for running this story?  And most importantly, what do I think about all of this?

Using nutrition to treat seizures is NOT new.  I’m taking the following from the Mayo Clinic page.  We’ve all heard of and respect the Mayo Clinic, right?

“Ketogenic diet. Some children with epilepsy have been able to reduce their seizures by following a strict diet that’s high in fats and low in carbohydrates.  In this diet, called a ketogenic diet, the body breaks down fats instead of carbohydrates for energy. After a few years, some children may be able to stop the ketogenic diet and remain seizure-free. Consult a doctor if you or your child is considering a ketogenic diet. It’s important to make sure that your child doesn’t become malnourished when taking the diet. Side effects of a ketogenic diet may include dehydration, constipation, slowed growth because of nutritional deficiencies, and buildup of uric acid in the blood, which can cause kidney stones. These side effects are uncommon if the diet is properly and medically supervised.”


MedicationAnti-seizure medications may have some side effects. Mild side effects include:  fatigue, dizziness, weight gain, loss of bone density, skin rashes, loss of coordination, speech problems, memory and thinking problems.  More severe but rare side effects include:  depression, suicidal thoughts and behaviors, severe rash, inflammation of certain organs, such as your liver.”


Important:  Information on this site is not intended to be for diagnosis or treatment purposes.  Please discuss diagnoses and treatment options with your healthcare provider.  You don’t want to miss anything dangerous or life-threatening, and you want to make sure the treatment options are safe and appropriate!

Now…on to the story!

Part 1:  A Success Story in Using the GAPS Diet to Stop Absence Seizures!
Part 2:  A Success Story In Using the GAPS Diet to Stop Absence Seizures!

Part 3:  A Success Story In Using the GAPS Diet to Stop Absence Seizures!

By Dan and Tammy Kinder


After months and months of research and reading by both myself and my husband, my husband came across a YouTube video of a little girl having an absence seizure. He immediately recognized them as the same “episodes” that our son was having and at that moment he realized that our son had epilepsy, which is anyone that has had at least one seizure. This was a big turning point in our journey to find a solution to our son’s disorder.  We now knew exactly what we were dealing with, but we had no idea how far from a resolution we were at that point. The self diagnosis was both frightening and exciting.  With the history of finding remedies for my husband’s illnesses, we had some level of confidence that we could help our son. Along with that confidence we also had a healthy amount of fear since this was something way outside our realm of knowledge. We didn’t want to take him to a conventional doctor because we read up and knew that they did not know the source of epilepsy. We also read that the solution they would offer first is to prescribe a drug that may reduce the frequency of the seizures, but it would also make him a couch potato feeling sluggish and tired all the time. Knowing the conventional doctor was not the answer, I started researching and reading everything I could find on epilepsy.

During the time we were searching for an answer, my husband began tracking the number of seizures our son was having each day. It turned out he would average between 3 and 10 per day on an average day. Within a month or so he figured out that when we would go to certain places, the number of seizures would spike to 15, 20 or even 30 the next day. After looking into these places he found that the common thread was excessive mold in those places. After testing the theory, we discovered that just by avoiding those places he would never exceed 11 seizures in one day. We also discovered during that time that when he ate more carbohydrates, the following day he would have a few more seizures. He would also complain more about his stomach hurting. As we started to pay attention to his body and test our theories we put these two primary changes in place. We saw some quick results the first couple of months in that he never exceeded eleven seizures in a day. As the months went on, the number of seizures slowly decreased. Within five to six months the number of seizures settled to between three and five each day. This was consistent and he would rarely deviate from this range.

It was during this time that we heard of Doug Kaufman and his anti-fungal diet. This made a lot of sense to us as the diet was also a low carbohydrate diet. The concept was to eliminate or minimize the carbohydrates to starve the fungus in the body. After being on this diet for many months, we saw some minor improvements, but saw no reduction in the number of seizures. Since our son’s condition did not see much more improvement at this time, we called into Doug Kaufman’s radio show. Mr. Kaufman recommended a conventional doctor up in the Dallas area that practiced with a natural, holistic mind set. This doctor ordered a multiplicity of tests that revealed several new symptoms we were unaware of. We learned our son was slight hypoglycemia, had some vitamin deficiencies and had a high level of one of the heavy metals. The doctor tried several treatments including supplements and an anti-gluten diet. These treatments did not result in much change for our son’s condition. After several visits we realized that he did not have much experience with seizures and that he could not help our son. We were thankful for his efforts and the new issues he found, but at that point we knew it was best to stop seeing him and focus on trying to improve the hypoglycemia, vitamin deficiencies and heavy metal issues.

We continued our research looking for ways to improve our son’s condition. We tried a few other types of diets like the modified Atkins diet and others. We tried several supplements including chlorella and even a long herbal parasite program. We sort of went through a pattern of trial and error. I would read of a treatment or supplement. I would then share it with my husband. He would look into it and make sure there were either very little or no side effects to the treatment. We would try it out and hope it was the key to solving this long mystery. As we grew tired of this process not working very quickly, I came across the GAPS diet. I ordered the GAPS Diet book and started reading it. After reading the book, I asked my husband to read it. After reading only a short part of the book my husband immediately thought we should try it. He was particularly impressed about the way Dr. Campbell made the connection between the gut and the brain. It was the first time he read something that connection the symptom to the possible cause of the symptom. With high hopes, we decided to try the GAPS diet. The GAPS diet seemed much more difficult than previous diets we had tried. Instead of just eliminating certain foods or trying certain new foods, the GAPS diet had much greater preparation time for every meal. Although it seemed overwhelming and a huge commitment, I knew I had to try it. With four children I knew it would be impossible to make two sets of food every time a meal was served. As a result we decided to put the whole family on the diet.

In April of 2012, we started the introduction phase of the GAPS diet. We decided to follow the instructions of Dr. Campbell as closely as we could. After reading about some potential negative side effects for epileptic children, I emailed Dr. Campbell. She told me not to give him the fermented fish oil because he was having seizures, but to give him lots of egg yolks and fermented sour cream at the appropriate phase of the diet. With lots a hope and some measure of reluctance, we started the introduction phase. We committed to only eating at home and according to the GAPS book. Week one here we come. We ate nothing but chicken soup for the whole week. To our surprise, the first three days of the diet, none of us had seen our son have a seizure. But on day four they were back and nothing seemed to change for quite some time. As for the rest of us, two of my sons and me felt horrible with detoxification symptoms for two and a half days, but after those first few days we felt fine.

After the first week on the introduction phase, as the GAPS book recommended, we gradually started adding additional foods into our diet. We did this gradually for about six weeks. To be honest, during the first couple of months, I felt very overwhelmed with all that I had to do. I felt like I was in the kitchen all day long. I am here to tell you that it is a lot of work, but it gets easier as you get better at preparing it. It was at this point that we questioned ourselves about when we should add new foods into our diet. The GAPS books said to add foods as long as the symptoms did not reappear, but our son’s seizures never went away, so we were not sure whether to keep adding foods or to stop adding foods and wait for the seizures to stop. It was especially hard to decide whether or not to add in new foods because of how few things we could actually eat. The entire family was kind of grumpy since we were already sick and tired of the chicken soup for the whole first week. Looking back it is easy to say that we should have been more strict and progressed more slowly in adding foods, but at that time we let our feelings and the begging of our children convince us otherwise. We decided to continue adding more foods listed in the GAPS book and slowly but surely increased the number of things we could eat. We discovered a few new things about our son during this time. We noticed that if our son took a good, quality probiotic, he would not complain about his stomach hurting. We tried several different probiotics, even the one that Dr. Campbell recommended, but he would still have stomachaches. This one particular probiotic, Renew Life Critical Colon, basically stopped his stomach pains completely. We are not sure if it was the number of strains or the pure volume of good bacteria, but what we did know was that it was helping our son, so we kept giving them to him daily as we progressed to the full GAPS phase of the diet.

After a while I also gave our son liver. To make it more palatable, I would mix it up with other meat to disguise the taste. We continued on the full GAPS diet for about three months before I started to question if it would work on our son. I definitely wanted faster results. I was growing more and more impatient as all the hard work seemed to have no results…

Part 4, the last segment, to follow next.  Thank you so much, Dan and Tammy, for sharing your story.  This story has meticulous details, and I can only imagine the journals and records they must have kept.cropped-hsd-line-drawing_edited-1.jpg

Part 1: A Success Story In Using the GAPS Diet to Stop Absence Seizures!

Over the next several days, I will be running an unedited story from Dan and Tammy Kinder of Missouri.  They chose to use dietary intervention, GAPS, when their son developed absence seizures, and they kindly wanted to share their story with the rest of us.  Thank you.

Please know that I am not editing their story or words, even though in places, I certainly would have changed explanations or taken a different approach.  Also know that seeking help from a traditional medical doctor is where I always suggest starting.  Never in your life would you want to miss a diagnosis of diabetes, hypothyroidism, leukemia, brain tumor, or any other life-threatening diagnosis that traditional doctors are trained to screen for and diagnose.

My blog is to encourage awareness that food treats the body like any drug, with good and bad effects (even “healthy” foods); most doctors don’t know or adhere to this.   I am not advocating GAPS; I am advocating a hard look at what goes in that mouth and how it affects the rest of the body (and brain).  You cannot take anybody else’s word on what is good for you; you have to take the word of your own body.

A big thank you to the Kinder Family of Missouri for sharing their story about how they feel GAPS cured their sons seizure disorder!

(Again, please use nothing I say for diagnosis and treatment of health problems.  It is not meant for that.)

A Success Story In Using the GAPS Diet to Stop Absence Seizures!

By Dan and Tammy Kinder

I feel like I have to start my story years ago, so you can understand the reasons we chose the treatment options that we did. About 13 years ago, my husband started having several symptoms including being extremely tired. Seemingly out of no where he was sleeping 10, 12 and even 18 hours a day. Even though he was sleeping for so long, he would still wake up feeling tired. He had many other different symptoms that would come and go, but tiredness was the consistent one. For the next two years he went to thirteen (13) different doctors. He started with his primary care physician. After several misdiagnoses and failed treatments, he turned to another M.D. and then another. He went to specialists of all kinds including a lengthy treatment by an allergy specialist. After none of these conventional doctors helped and desperate to regain his health, he decided to try some alternative doctors like naturopathic doctors and chiropractic internists. It seemed with every new doctor, there was a new supplement or some new therapy or treatment that would make the difference in his condition. Of course there were some minor successes through it all, but no significant long term improvements.

During the first year, my husband ran into an old friend that told him about the benefits of juicing, specifically juicing carrots. Desperate to regain his health, my husband decided to give juicing a try. He bought a juicer and began drinking 4-6 eight ounce glasses of fresh carrot juice everyday. The benefits of juicing were evident within the first week. Instead of sleeping ten to twelve hours per night and waking up feeling drained, he was only sleeping 8-9 hours a night and waking up feeling refreshed. Many of his other symptoms would come and go, but there was no doubt the carrot juice made a tremendous difference.

Nearly two years after his initial symptoms, he had someone recommend a new doctor in the area. He made an appointment and to my husband’s surprise, the doctor took a long time asking questions, trying to figure out the source of the symptoms. The doctor was very methodical in assessing his condition and trying to find a diagnosis. He went through each symptom and would order tests to rule out possible disorders. If the tests were not to the doctor’s satisfaction, he would send my husband to a specialist to investigate more. This process of testing and ruling out disorders went on for several months. The doctor had exhausted every avenue he could think of and he still had no diagnosis. He sent my husband home and told him to come back in a month so he could have some time to think about all the testing and results. When my husband returned, the doctor still had no diagnosis. The doctor then went back asking about the symptoms again. As they discussed the symptoms, the doctor suddenly had an idea. He took an instrument and looked into my husband’s nasal passage and quickly determined he had sinusitis. Next, my husband was sent to an ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist who diagnosed him with chronic sinusitis. The ENT explained that after getting a sinus infection that it would take him 3-6 weeks to get over it before another sinus infection would come. So it was basically a perpetual infection that almost never went away for just over two years. The sinus infection suppressed his immune system causing viruses that were already in his body to multiply and show other symptoms. From mono to shingles to many other conditions, the persistent sinus infection allowed viruses and bacterium to run wild. It also zapped his energy causing him to be tired all the time and require more sleep. The most amazing part of this was that through thirteen doctors, over two years of suffering and sickness, thousands of dollars spent, countless different treatments and supplements the cause of all his problems was a simple sinus infection. Yet virtually all the doctors missed it or misdiagnosed it…

cropped-hsd-line-drawing_edited-1.jpgPlease check in tomorrow for Part 2.