Our questions and Elaine Gottschall's answers (1)

1) The following things have been questioned as to whether they are
allowed or not on the diet. Could you please comment:

  • Pectin, naturally present in many fruits
    .... why is it not usable in jams, jellies?
  • Plantain bananas and plantain banana chips (no sugar added)
  • Cashews roasted by oneself
  • Fructose or glucose sweetener,
    which are found with other sweeteners like Saccharin
  • Kidney, pink, red, pinto and other common beans
  • Fresh fennel

    Pectin is an indigestible soluble fiber which is normally not digested but
    which increases microbial (bacteria and yeast) growth when it reaches the
    lower part of the tract. It appears that the amount in fruit is not too
    much of a problem (although it may be the reason for gas after eating
    fruit). If you add pectin you are adding more nourishment for the yeast
    and bacteria we are trying to starve out.

    If you can be sure there is no sweetener added to plantain and banana chips
    then they are OK.

    Cashews roasted by yourself are just fine.

    Fructose or glucose sweeteners (with saccharin, etc) are not really
    monosaccharides as I have explained before; they are a mixture of many
    sugars. If you can find pure dextrose it appears that when the name
    dextrose (actually another name for glucose) appears on something, it may
    very well be a monosaccharide. However, I cannot keep up with what
    companies are doing and I am even not sure of this.

    Kidney beans are OK but I am not sure about pinto. Black beans are OK. You
    can do a lot with ordinary white navy beans. Since I do not know the
    analysis of other beans and since Dr. Haas approved of the ones I allow,
    I have been satisfied to use the white, the kidney, and sometimes black.

    Fresh fennel is similar to celery and is OK. It is very fibrous and only
    those who are practically without symptoms should eat all that fiber. If
    people already have a narrowing at the ileum, these stringy and very
    fibrous foods can plug them up further.

    2) What could be the causes of extreme bloating shortly
    after eating? Any ways to alleviate this? Any particular
    foods to avoid? Any connection to yeast overgrowth problem?

    The extreme bloating is probably caused by too much raw fruit and
    vegetables or mixing a lot of beans with a lot of protein. If you study
    the diagram on page 17 you will see that gases (carbon dioxide, hydrogen,
    and methane gas) can be formed by yeast and bacterial fermentation. These
    gases cause bloating. And by the way all these IBD problems can be
    related to yeast overgrowth. When I use the word MICROBIAL, I mean yeast
    and/or bacteria.

    3) Question concerning fermented food.
    I have added sauerkraut to my diet. I don't like it, but I read that
    fermented foods such as yoghurt, apple cider vinegar, and sauerkraut
    add that very valuable lactobacillus acidophilus to the intestinal tract.
    Is sauerkraut legal? Does Elaine know anything else about fermented foods?

    Sauerkraut is very legal but be careful that it does not have added sugar.
    The yoghurt is one of the best fermented foods but only homemade. Apple
    cider vinegar is OK.

    4) I'd like to ask Elaine about Pentasa, what she thought of it
    and whether we need to get off it to make the diet truly "successful".
    If we do get off it what should we be taking instead?

    I cannot comment too much on the drugs. Pentasa is a time-release Asacol.
    If the person thinks it is helping, the diet will still have its good effects.
    Especially for colitis, the drug of choice for years was AZULFIDINE
    (salazopyrene). It may not be as good for small intestinal Crohn's.
    This sulfa drug (Azulfindine) should be started slowly and worked up to levels
    the "Merck Manual" recommends to the doctor. If you do not start out slowly,
    some people develop an allergy to it. Like all drugs it has some side effects
    ... the druggist is your best bet for that information.

    5) Someone told me that if you buy something called Beano and place 3-4 drops
    on the first mouthful of gastric food, it helps to eliminate the gas
    and helps you to digest. I'd really like to hear Elaine's comments on Beano
    and whether it can be used in the soaking water instead of "in vivo".
    I know it's destroyed by heat but maybe it would work in the cold water?
    Elaine is not a big fan of 'in vivo' digestive enzymes,
    but I don't know why.

    I am in the midst of a family crisis right now and I have forgotten how
    Beano works. I recall that it broke some of the chemical bonds in the bean
    sugars. As for "in vivo" enzymes I had a few papers that said it did not
    work for lactose. Unless you used "Lactaid" in the milk before drinking
    as contrasted to taking the milk and "Lactaid" at the same time, it would
    not work. If the Beano helps in starch digestion, I would think it is OK.
    I also think that digestive enzymes should be OK. Many people have tried
    them without the diet and get little results. Perhaps with the diet,
    digestive enzymes could and would help.

    6) Some direction on vitamins, minerals, supplements,
    homeopathic/naturopathic remedies etc. Have seen people talking
    about ... omega-3 fatty acids, wheatgrass juice, flax seed oil, Cat's
    Claw, fish oil, evening primrose oil, folic acid, Biotin ... there are
    so many!

    I cannot give much direction on homeopathics, etc. I have tried alternative
    methods when I have had problems and some work and some don't.
    I have given you as much vitamin information as I can. I cannot spend years
    looking into different brands. Some doctors, like Dr. Galland & Dr. Hoffman,
    use grapefruit-seed extract and fish oil. Could not a member of your group
    tell what effects fish oil has had? I have seen a lot of hype on fish oil
    lately and I would rely more on experience with it than hype.

    7) Why are canned vegetables forbidden even if the ingredients
    don't include anything forbidden, especially since canned fruit
    and vegetable juices are allowed?

    Canned fruit and vegetables are just fine if you do them yourself. There
    are pages and pages of legal testimony showing how deceptive the labels
    are on commercially canned products. One case has been in the Federal
    Courts for 10 years filed against Everfresh, one of the biggest producers
    of juice. I am just afraid of deception. But if you do it yourself, that
    is just fine.

    8) Why does one have to wait before drinking almond milk?

    I do not know how the almond milk is made. If a person gets over his/her
    symptoms, then drink it.

    9) Why is butter OK?

    Butter is a natural product from which all the milk protein lactoalbumin
    (highly allergenic) and lactose (residual amounts) have been removed in
    the process of making it. Margarine is completely manufactured in that
    the oil is hydrogenated (trans fatty acids) and additional milk solids
    are added including lactose.

    10) Are beets allowed (I can't remember; my doctor has my book currently).
    If they're not (I seem to remember something about beet sugar), then
    why not? Fruit has plenty of sugar in it too.

    Beets are OK even though they contain sucrose. I realize there are
    inconsistencies in the diet but I always go back to what Dr. Haas told me.

    11) What is the difference between red and white wine, dietwise?
    Naturally, the yeast in the wine is one part of the answer, but why
    dry whites instead of reds, especially if grape juice itself is okay?

    Wines - I think dry red and white wine are OK.
    I believe that adding sucrose is added to the wines,
    and in a not so dry wine, some of the sugar remains.

    12) Is "Lactaid 100" milk allowed on the SCD? I understand 100% of the
    lactose has been removed. If so, can "Lactaid 100" be used for an SCD
    yogurt? Could this yogurt be cooked fewer hours so it would not be so
    acidic and sour since the lactose has been removed? Would we need to
    use a lactose-free starter? Are there any other SCD items that could
    be made from "Lactaid 100"?

    Two books have been written on this product and it should not be drunk by
    the glass by people on the diet. Because the liver plays a big part in
    converting galactose to glucose and because "Lactaid" has been broken down
    to glucose and galactose, it is feared that in IBD where all the digestive
    organs may not be working 100%, including the liver, then lots of the
    galactose in the "Lactaid" would build up in the blood just like glucose
    builds up in a diabetic.

    13) What is the premise behind the expected flare-up
    at 2-3 months into the diet?


    The flareup is a mystery. I do not know why it occurs ... I could speculate
    but it is very involved and I am probably not correct.
    There are lots of mysteries with the illness that cannot be explained by anyone.

    14) Why are canned meats not allowed? Example: Swanson brand canned
    turkey which contains only "turkey, water and salt". Is the problem
    with them what might be added to them and not labeled?

    No canned meats - undoubtedly deceptive labelling.

    15) Why are canned tomato products not allowed? If I buy organic stewed
    tomatoes from the health food store, and there are no added
    ingredients (and I write the company, if I need to), are they okay?

    If you write to the company and they say there is nothing added to the canned
    tomatoes, use them. I know that tomato juice works great in most recipes
    requiring tomato puree or canned tomatoes. If you cook them and freeze them
    yourself, they are OK.

    16) I don't know if anyone else did what I did, but on re-reading the
    book, I realize that I didn't start out with the introductory part of
    the diet, I just leapt right in eating everything: beans, nuts, etc.
    that probably should have waited a while, so: should I "start all
    over" with a week of the introductory diet and stop eating beans and
    nuts for awhile? (I've already seen slow, steady improvement in my 9
    weeks on the diet the way I've done it).

    The real test of the diet is that it is working for this person.
    No, you don't have to start all over again.

    17) Is the problem with maple syrup the natural ingredients
    or in what may be added?

    Maple syrup (naturally) has sucrose just as honey naturally has single
    sugars. (Editor's note: maple syprup, like apple juice & perhaps other fruit
    juices, can have formaldehyde and/or other chemicals added to it without needig
    to be labelled as having them, so if you find any item problematic, that might
    be why: foods that contain "additives" but aren't required by the law of your
    country to be labelled as including these "extra" ingredients)

    18) Are "double sugars" digested more easily then the polysaccharides?
    Should one be reintroduced before the other?

    I cannot answer that question as to double sugar or polysaccharides being
    added back first. You are just going to have to experiment.

    19) Once a person is symptom-free, how much damage will an occasional
    "violation" of the diet cause? For example, an eighteen-year-old who
    follows the diet strictly 95% of the time and is symptom-free -- will
    one forbidden meal per week undo the healing that has taken place?
    (Bet Elaine won't like this question!)

    Elaine does not mind this question but I cannot answer it. Everyone is
    different. I would certainly not start introducing large amounts of
    forbidden foods and mixing food up. I would, for example, start with 1/4
    of a small potato, skip a day and repeat every other day for about a week.
    Then stop it and try a slice of bread in the same way.

    20) Have many people with IBS been helped by this diet?

    Number of people helped - I have about 200 letters in my files after
    selling 160,000 books. I know there are more because each time I have a
    book signing or spear, someone rushes up to me and tells me of their cure
    who has never written or called.

    21) Do you have any idea why this diet works for some with IBD
    and not for others?

    I do not know why the diet does not work for all - it may be caused in the
    cases that do not respond by a mutated bacteria which is not a big carbo
    eater but I really don't know. The immune system is much involved with
    especially ulcerative colitis and no one has a clue what is happening.
    When a diet works for so many, it is a good launching pad to do research
    but the powers-that-be don't seem to be interested.

    22) Are most people who have success with the diet also able to maintain
    good health without medication?

    Most people who are successful can stay that way without medication but
    there are a few who say they need low doses of certain drugs like
    Azulfidine to lead a normal life along with the diet.

    23) After being on the diet for 2 years (18 months symptom free!) how
    should one go about introducing forbidden foods back into the diet?
    Are there some things that should be tried first?
    Should one thing be tried at a time?

    See Question 19.

    24) Have you found any other allowable flour substitutes besides the nut
    flour since the book has been published? The breads and muffins made
    with nut flour are very indigestible for me.

    I have not found any other flour substitutes except chestnut flour.

    Saturday, 9 Nov 1996 20:54:18, Michael Cabarles,
    <michael@filmgraphics.com> writes:


    I've had a bit of an idea, so let's see how it goes. I don't know if
    Christine is still with us, if she is she must be too busy or sick to read
    the mail since a number of people have tried to raise her about the
    "Questions for Elaine". I hope it's the former and not the latter.
    Anyway, I have created a new e-mail address for questions to Elaine.
    When I accumulate about 20, I'll fax them to her.

    So please send your questions to Elaine to:


    If the question has already been answered, I'll direct you to the answer
    either in the book or if I'm busy or I think someone in the group can
    answer it, I'll forward it to the group. If no one is able to answer the
    question, then please resend the question to the same e-mail address as
    given a second time and I'll leave it there for Elaine to answer. I think
    this is necessary so that we don't overload Elaine with repeating
    questions and so she is not too overwhelmed so we wear out our welcome.

    So get those questions going and send them in now!

    Regards, Michael

    Thu, 28 Nov 1996 01:09:15

    Elaine answered my letter. The following is what she said:

    Rice Dream - NO
    Grain vinegar - OK
    Canned olives - OK
    Dill relish - homemade only, as commercial ones have sugar
    Granulated fructose - NO, only pure dextrose is OK
    Wine - any very dry wine, red or white,
    marked "0" for sweetness level zero.
    Substitution for milk in coffee: a little "Lactaid" can be used.
    Mesasol is a 5ASA drug with no starch or lactose apparently. You can ask
    your doctor about switching to it, if Asacol or some other one is
    bothering you. The diet will definitely help IBS also.

    By the way, I noticed that a more recently printed edition of "Breaking
    The Vicious Cycle" had a few additions, like the instructions on Glucose,
    Fructose, or any combination of the two. It says not to have any beverages
    containing these. This was a surprise to me, as I had been buying some
    with it in.

    If you're in the bookstore, pick up a new copy and glance through it.


    Gary Martin wrote:
    > Hello out there. I haven't been to this site before. I am wondering if
    > anyone knows what Elaine's home address is. I want to send her a
    > Christmas card to thank her for her diet.

    > My name is Jillian Martin. I am 20 years old, and I have had Crohn's Disease
    > for two years now. Both I and my father, (who is age 44 and has Colitis),
    > are on her diet. I have been on it for eight and a half months and I feel
    > wonderful! Her diet has given me my life back. And so, if anyone out there
    > knows what her home address is or where I can get it, I would be very
    > grateful. Please e-mail me at my address below.
    > Jillian Martin
    > Delta, B.C., Canada
    > gary_martin@mindlink.net

    Elaine's address is c/o the publisher:

    R.R. 1, KIRKTON, ONTARIO, CANADA N0K 1K0 (The address is in the book)

    (She has moved recently)

    Elaine Gottschall's new tel. #
    Tue, 6 May 1997 12:55:18 GMT

    Hello all.

    Elaine Gottschall's new telephone number is: (905) 349-3443
    the FAX number is: (905) 349-3420
    the new address is: 396 Grills Road, R.R. # 2, Baltimore, Ontario K0K, 1C0

    Happy spring, Ann Watts

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