Lentils and other legumes are recommended on the GAPS diet.
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The GAPS diet, or the Gut and Psychology Syndrome diet, was designed by British neurologist and nutritionist Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. While on the plan, you'll need to restrict your intake of refined sugar, milk and grains like wheat, which Campbell-McBride claims can lead to disorders ranging from autism to eczema. Vegetables, beans and legumes like lentils are considered healthy foods for the digestive system health on the diet. Do not begin the GAPS diet or place your child on the eating plan without first speaking to your doctor.
Wash and Drain
The GAPS diet guidelines specify that you should avoid consuming processed foods whenever possible in favor of foods that are fresh and in their most natural state. Because of this, you should use dried lentils instead of canned lentils while following the plan. Before preparing the lentils, place the dried legumes in a colander and rinse them thoroughly under cool, running water. Remove and discard any broken or discolored lentils, stones or pieces of debris. Allow the lentils to drain off any excess water.
Simmer and Stir
Unlike other types of legumes, lentils do not require presoaking to cook quickly. To prepare them for use in GAPS-friendly recipes, put the washed beans in a large saucepan or stockpot and fill the pot with enough water to cover the lentils. Bring the water to a boil and use a spoon to remove any foam that accumulates on the water's surface. Turn the heat down so that the water is at a gentle simmer. Lentils typically take between 20 and 40 minutes to become tender. Stir them occasionally during the cooking time, and use a spoon to remove some to determine if they've reached your desired level of tenderness.
Salads and Soups
Individuals following the GAPS diet are advised that the most beneficial foods for them to eat include fresh produce, eggs, nuts, seeds, garlic, olive oil and unprocessed meat, poultry, fish and shellfish. To use cooked lentils with these foods, try sprinkling them on a salad of mixed greens or as the base for a salad prepared with chopped vegetables like bell peppers, celery and shredded carrots and dressed with an olive oil vinaigrette. Add the lentils to vegetable soup or season them with herbs and spices like coriander and cayenne pepper, and use them as a bed for grilled fish or poultry.
Storing and Freezing
To help you resist the temptation to fall back on the convenience foods restricted by the GAPS diet, prepare extra lentils and store them for future use. Reserve the liquid after cooking lentils and put the legumes in an air-tight container, covered in their cooking liquid, in the refrigerator for up to three days. To keep the lentils longer, put the container in the freezer for up to three months. Defrost frozen lentils in the refrigerator overnight.