Our questions and Elaine Gottschall's answers (1)
1) The following things have been questioned as to whether they are
.... why is it not usable in jams, jellies?
which are found with other sweeteners like Saccharin
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
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
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,
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!
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
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
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