Specific Carbohydrate Diet Missing Link

I thought I would wade in and add my thoughts and perceptions

concerning Elaine Gottschall’s specific carbohydrate diet (SCD)


the missing piece of information detailed in the book

but ignored by the majority.


What I’m about to share is my layman understanding of reading Elaine’s book Breaking the Vicious Cycle resulting in my successful control of colitis.

The diet works but you have to be patient and recognize your life has changed forever.  It may take many months to at least a year of cycling from very bad bleeding to minimal bleeding bouts back to very bad bleeding before re-gaining control. If you accept during your flare up that you are in a weakened state then it will all make sense. Kidneys and liver are likely not functioning fully. Have you ever been told you have gray or yellow skin? The Kidneys/liver impaired state limits one’s body to detoxify result being healing has slowed or you get sicker. The SCD is designed to take the burden off your organs by reducing the toxic by-products produced from the autoimmune response. My take from the book is the autoimmune response is a result of toxins which cause one to bleed leading to the rarely talked about  affects on the mind. Depression, brain fog, anger, can’t focus/read, constant fatigue, anxiety, I’m certain this sounds familiar.


So what is this vital missing piece of information? Not so fast. Elaine says all you need is the SCD and it should take at least one year to be healed. Actually Elaine also alludes that healing (see below) could take up to 5 years which is more realistic. Yes the bleeding for me went away and my symptoms stopped but my quality of life was horrible. I could not get off the diet despite feeling okay. If I ate a few pieces of cake early symptoms before bleeding would crop up. I was still toxic…blah. That highlighted my body was not strong enough to finish the job plus I looked like crap.


So what is this missing information from Elaine’s book that people ignore? My interpretation is she believes the root cause of the autoimmune response is the toxic by-products are produced by viruses, bacteria, parasites and yeasts. Once I added methods to cleanse these bad bugs out of my body I was able to go back and eat rice, cake, wheat products, sugar. My quality of life was back!!!! However this is not a cure I do have flare ups every few years. The good news is each subsequent flare-up is less intense than the last. I suspect the reason is my kidneys, liver and my body generally is in better shape to handle the toxic load. If one is sceptical regarding effects of these bad bugs look-up C-difficile that has similar symptoms to colitis, Candida, cold sores and bad gums producing bad bacteria and its affect on the body. So it is not a stretch to accept Elaine’s view. This is the most important statement of this posting, while strictly maintaining the SCD, source a Naturopath that is an expert on viruses, bacteria, parasites and yeasts to help with cleansing of your weakened body. Cleansing the body of bad bugs is a slow process, be patient. Remember you are likely dehydrated, suffering from malnutrition and inflamed internally. This added piece of info or missing link to your treatment regime could reduce your healing time by 50%.


One should also work with a traditional doctor but be aware that traditional doctors primarily provide symptom suppressors thus once you phase down from the drug of choice colitis has a tendency to re-appear if it is your only course of treatment. The doctors role in providing symptom suppressors is very important because they allow you function on a daily basis. My drug of choice so I could work was prednisone, that is all.  What doctors and drug companies provide is important to many sufferers but unfortunately they do not help everyone. That is why alternative medicine is an important medical companion to traditional medicine and has its place for people who fall through the cracks like myself.

A colitis bout typically lasts only four months for me because of SCD. The second most important statement in this posting is SCD is crucial because it minimizes the autoimmune response (bleeding & cramps) thus reduces your dosage of prednisone or any other drug. The higher the number of pills you take per day the message you body is telling you is you are extremely toxic. The horrible pain from cramps and explosive washroom events is my interpretation of my body fighting to rid itself of these bad bugs and accumulated toxins. The body is flushing itself. Once the autoimmune response is minimized thus reducing the damage to your internal organs the naturopathic remedies provide the body with what it needs to rid itself of the bad bugs.

These are the areas I would focus on to minimize the severity of flare-ups:

1) Stay on the Elaine Gottshcall’s SCD and include broths (chicken, beef and veggie) and a daily shot of natural cider vinegar with mother (alkalizing). SCD works end of story. Buy the book Breaking the Vicious Cycle authored by Elaine Gottschall.
2) Rehydrate and cleanse your body by drinking up to 8 glasses of reverse-osmosis water per day. Sorry no tap water. Hot or cold lemon water in the morning is also very cleansing and alkalizing.
3) Use prednisone daily, if needed. As a baseline of how toxic you are, 5 pills per day your body is extremely toxic. For my flare-ups typically 1/4 of one 5 mg  pill will do the trick. I’m still bleeding but I can function at work. Your goal is to reduce your drug dosage to nil.
4) Seek an expert Naturopath that focuses on viruses, bad bacteria, parasites and yeasts. Not all Naturopaths are created equal and many are just guessers. Choose wisely. Note well, this is not a quick fix, be patient. I believe I contracted colitis from contaminated well water.
5) While taking remedies and being on the SCD symptoms get worse, accept it. I go through a phase where I scream out it will never go away this time. It always does go away.
6) Use Depends diapers, it reduces the stress. Enough said.
7) If deciding to use super drugs make sure you learn about the side effects. This also applies to remedies as well.
8) Prednisone learn how to use it. You can’t take large dosages and then stop. That is dangerous. That is why your doctor phases you down. Learn to use drugs and remedies safely.
9) Be patient and be aware of your body’s signals. Specifically cause and effect of food. Meaning at first I was fortunate that I could stay off of all drugs so I could learn the cause and effect of certain foods related to my level of bleeding. For many suffers they have to work and require the drugs which blocks the cause and effect. You get my point. Use Elaine’s book as your food bible. Just note everyone is different and may react to legal foods.

I hope I have sparked curiosity and experimentation for some of you. These insights have worked for me. So there is hope for those who step out of the box.

Here are a few quotes from Elaine’s book for the curious:

Page 38: “intestinal tract can be a source of toxins which affect normal brain function”

Paraphrased from page 14: “From 1906 to 1924, numerous researchers isolated certain types of bacteria, injected either the bacteria or bacterial toxins into laboratory animals and claimed the injections produced colitis in animals.”

Paraphrased from page 14: “Dr. B.B Crohn spoke about a new intestinal disorder and stated this new disease might be due to microorganisms”

Paraphrased page 1: “Elaine’s daughter within a couple of years  was free from symptoms and another few years  she returned to eating normally”. I suspect five years is typical if your regime is strictly the diet.

If you take these quotes literally then you have a course of action that you can follow.


written by “Matrix”

submitted in the Colitis Venting Area


5 thoughts on “Specific Carbohydrate Diet Missing Link”

  1. Thank you, Matrix. I have been suffering from U Proctitis for a little over a year now, avoiding meds (I only use Canasa) because they don’t help. And I am as stubborn as my disease (go figure). I just read the book and I’m starting on the diet with enthusiasm. Now, I must cultivate patience… deep sigh… what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.

  2. Sanne
    Sanne van Kralingen

    Hi Matrix,

    I’ve had UC for 5 years now, and have had 2 major flare-ups, both caused by bacteria, not food! Certain foods do indeed worsen symtomps, so I’ve also started the SCD and so far, it seems to work. The bacteria that triggered my UC were salmonella and a really rare type found in water, can’t remember the name.

  3. I started with gluten free yesterday, and I try to consume only lactose free products. I’m going to see a naturopath for the first time this Wednesday. I have been taking prednisone but I am no longer responding to treatment. My GI wants to put me on AZA but after reading reviews and doing some research, Im starting to think maybe its time to try something other than western medicine.

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