New Enzymes with Sucrase!

My sister came across these while doing research for her nutrition class. We are giving them a try now that Parker’s eczema is under control. Although he still showing some symptoms, we believe it’s mostly environmental. As of yesterday this will be the only digestive support he will take until the bottle is gone.

I will continue to give Parker his antihistamine at night, and apply the prescription ointment for topical treatment. For the record here is a picture I took of him yesterday when we were baking gingerbread cookies gluten free of course.

They are available through various Amazon sellers. Simply search: “Klaire Labs Vital-Zymes chewable”

As you can see he still has some irritation around his eye and some spots on his neck…but huge improvement over all.


CSID, Eczema and Additional Food Allergies

I have some frustrating news. After over six months of Parker’s eczema flaring up, I finally took him to the doctor and requested a food allergy screening. Something else had to be irritating his system since he hadn’t been in school for an entire month, I was watching his diet very closely, and trying to keep his skin moist with a variety of creams and lotions. (See the bottom of the post for photos.) I did not want to continue the steroid cream, especially when the rash had spread to his neck and face. And I wasn’t going to give him another dose of antibiotics no matter what she said. But, the only way to know for sure if he was still eating something that was aggravating his system, was to get the allergy screening ordered through his doctor.

While waiting for the results, I asked our chiropractor if the colloidal silver he had mentioned a few weeks back could help with the infection, so I didn’t have to put Parker back on antibiotics again. He said it most definitely would. Within 48 hours, most of the oozing and irritated areas were drying up nicely. Read more about how I have addressed the topical healing HERE. I wrote a brief product review through my work blog last week on this topic alone.

Within a few days, the allergy results came back. To my dismay, he is now allergic to the following:

  • egg whites (a look at my recipes and you will know why this one made me cry!)
  • milk (sorry buddy, no more cheese or sour cream)
  • wheat (not a surprise)
  • shrimp
  • cockroaches (um…what? you say… guess what cockroaches are used for? FOOD DYE!)
  • penicillin (yah, so my hesitation about antibiotics will no longer be challenged!)
  • cat and dog hair and dander
  • timothy grass
  • cedar
The good news? The Paleo diet support the omission of most of these foods, so I was on the right track. The challenge: not using eggs. After attempting to feed our entire family according to these limitations over the past couple of weeks, I realized this is not possible with my limited time and resources.
My compromise? I purchased some gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free baking mixes (despite having high-starch content)… for the purpose of baking Parker a variety of “treats” he can have in place of the bread, milk, etc. that the rest of the family can eat.
I just can’t bear for him to be starving all the time. We are all pretty small people to begin with and we have lost far too much weight consuming Paleo foods alone. I realize quantity is a factor, but I need to find a happy medium. Costco is now selling many products that are organic and gluten-free. A relief (kind of ) to my food budget. So, I will be including non-gmo brown rice, Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free baking mix with Ener-G egg-substitute into our weekly menu plan. 
Parker will continue to take his Sucraid and Food Enzymes to assist with sugar and starch digestion.
As far as his eczema, we have been experiencing triple-digit heat here in the Sacramento Valley. I am trying to keep him indoors and we are swimming in fresh water to avoid lake contaminants and chlorine. He is also drinking 22 ounces of Chlorophyll Cocktail and a cup of Dandelion Root tea each day. There are parts of his body where the rash is clearing up, but other parts (primarily the ones he keeps scratching) keep getting irritated again.
I know it’s a process and it could take months to flush out whatever is stressing out his system. My hope though, is that we can get the rash under control before school starts again. And that his new teacher is willing to help make him comfortable and encourage him to make wise choices.
PHOTOS (for comparison purposes)

CSID Cookie Recipe for Nursing Moms

I just had to share this recipe that came through my work in-box. I have not tried it myself, so please post comments regarding any adjustments or opinions for how this works for your family. My comments are shown between { … }

Gluten Free Lactation Cookie
Created by Jennifer at

{This recipe if for nursing mothers to consume, not for toddlers or children with CSID, unless you have tested individual ingredients and understand your child’s tolerance levels.}

·         1 tablespoons fenugreek to make 4 T brewed fenugreek tea
·         2 tablespoons flaxseed meal
·         1 cup Kelapo Coconut Oil, melted
·         3/4 cup raw honey
·         2 eggs
·         3 teaspoons vanilla
·         3/4 cup peanut butter or other nut/seed butter (I really like sunflower seed butter in these) {unsweetened almond butter}
·         1/2 cup coconut flour, sifted OR 2 cups gluten free all-purpose flour
·         4 tablespoons nutritional yeast
·         2 teaspoons aluminum free baking powder
·         1 teaspoon sea salt
·         3 1/2 cups gluten free oats {if starch is an issue, try 3 cups almond flour}
·         1/2 – 3/4 cup raisins or dried cranberries (optional)
·         1/2 – 3/4 cup chocolate chips (optional) {omit with first batch to test tolerance without}

1.      Preheat oven to 325 degrees

2.      Brew fenugreek in 8 ounces of hot water until grains are soft.

3.      Mix flaxseed and 4 tablespoons fenugreek tea and let sit for 3-5 minutes. DO NOT DISCARD THE GRAINS!

4.      Beat coconut oil and honey.

5.      Add eggs and vanilla and mix well.

6.      Fold in the peanut butter/nut or seed butter until well combined.

7.      Add flaxseed mix and fenugreek grains and mix well.

8.      Add flour, nutritional yeast, baking powder, and salt. Mix and if using coconut flour see ingredient notes below.*

9.      Mix in oats until well combined.

10.    If using raisins or cranberries and/or chocolate chips, slowly fold these in.

11.    Round off a large tablespoon of dough and place on cookie sheet. Press it down slightly.

12.    Bake for 15 minutes then check cookies. Continue baking (checking every 3 minutes) until the outside is a bit brown with crispy edges. The inside should still be slightly moist and soft.

13.    Let cool on cookie sheet for a few minutes and transfer to a cooling rack.

Ingredient Notes
1. Coconut flour has the tendency to soak up a ton of liquid. Every brand varies. If your batter seems dry at this point, add in a tablespoon at a time of coconut milk or your other favorite milk until the consistency is more doughy and moist. If you overdo it, add in sifted coconut flour in 2 teaspoon increments.

2. This batter is really sticky! Do not try to form dough balls with your hands. It will be a mess. A yummy mess at least! I like to grease my spoon with a little coconut oil. It helps the dough slide right off!

3. This recipe is not incredibly sweet although if you use the dried fruit or chocolate chips it does sweeten up! If you prefer a really sweet cookie, add some additional honey and/or vanilla. For every 1/4 cup of honey you add, you will need to increase the coconut flour by 2 tablespoons and the oats by 2 tablespoons.

4. The reason that honey is used and not sugar is because honey has tremendous health properties which a mother can pass on to her breastfeeding infant. Unless you are allergic to honey, please do not substitute the honey with sugar.

Going Paleo {Paleo + CSID Part 1}

Sausage, Egg, and Sweet Potato Breakfast Skillet{}
Within a few weeks of finalizing A Place to Start Without Sugar or Starch for printing, I started noticing the word “paleo” popping up on my favorite food blogs and on cookbook covers in the health food stores. After researching dozens of other diets that involved a low-carb approach, I honestly did not feel like looking into one more. In the long run I did want to refine my CSID approach, but time and other resources were lacking.
Knowing I was close to eating as healthy as possible with my CSID diet plan, I figured I needed to master the meal planning for my family first. Then I would look into this paleo thing in time and see if it would work in light of CSID.
In my last post I mentioned that I needed to focus on my own health and well-being, which I am still working on. However, with Parker’s eczema worse than ever and my migraines lasting more than 5 days, I was feeling desperate for a natural, long-term approach to our health. We had compromised our diet due to time and money constraints. But I was feeling so lousy, it made it hard to utilize what resources I did have in the best way possible. By this time I had made a note to take a closer look at the paleo diet. After all the compromising of processed foods into our diet, I figured we didn’t have much to lose. Something had to change.
First, though, I had to kick the migraines. I decided to see a chiropractor since the last thing I wanted was to add another medication to my nightstand. I had worked hard to remove most of them over the past 18 months. And I knew pills were not the answer to repairing the imbalance in my body. They were just giving me temporary relief.
I was fortunate enough to visit a chiropractor who uses a whole body approach to healing. From what I gather, he sees his care as just a part of the overall lifestyle change anyone needs to feel well. I had long believed in the theory of chiropractic care, but had not sought treatment since the onset of my Fibromyalgia symptoms back in 2011. I was in too much pain back then to consider getting adjusted.
After a week of treatment and a few tests, the Doctor concluded several things about my state of health.
1. My “normal” was so far from actually feeling well, I couldn’t comprehend what well felt like.
2. I have moderate scoliosis, and impairments in the top and bottom of my spine.
3. With an aggressive treatment plan, plus diet and exercise changes, I actually have a chance to feel great for probably the first time in over 20 years.
Parker was also assessed and the Doctor believes his eczema and his headaches are due to issues in his skeletal system. He doesn’t claim to be able to reverse the CSID, but does believe once Parker is aligned properly, it is possible his overall health will improve drastically.
The chiropractor also fully believes the paleo diet is part of the solution.
That was my tipping point. I needed to set aside my own theories and trust that someone with over 20 years of experience treating people successfully could have the answers I had been searching for.
My first step would be to look into paleo and see if it would work for us in light of CSID. It only took a few minutes for me to see how similar the diet is to CSID-friendly foods. Though Parker and I are in a state of distress, we are not presenting major digestive symptoms. Considering this confession, this is my plan for our family:
1. Since we have already been compromising with starches and grains, I am not going to be concerned with included higher-starch foods from the paleo menu such as cashews, pecans, and winter squashes.
2. I am going to wean us off of most of our digestive enzymes. The paleo diet includes mostly digestive friendly foods, so as long as we include a plentiful amount of raw fruits and vegetables, we should not need help digesting most of the foods. The exception will be to include Sucraid with the sweeter fruits allowed, such as papayas and melons, or dried fruits.
3. We will all be removing some of our most favorite foods over time. The idea is that if we eat 80-90% paleo most of the time, we can occasionally “cheat” with few ill affect. On the other hand, literature on paleo suggests the longer we comply with the permissible foods, the less we will want to eat the forbidden ones. For our family this will mean:
  • No more chips. Even organic corn which is a staple.
  • No more peanut butter. I don’t eat this as I prefer almond butter, but the hubby and kids are going to find this a hard one to completely eliminate.
  • Cutting back virtually all dairy products. Ouch! I really love my butter,cheese, and half&half!
  • No more sprouted grain bread. All grains, including corn are off the table.
Essentially Paleo includes all vegetables (except potatoes), all fruit, nuts and seeds, and animal protein such as eggs, chicken, turkey, pork, and beef raised in a healthy environment with a grain-free diet.
Paleo excludes grains (including corn), legumes (peanuts, peas, and green beans included), beans of all kinds, and dairy products. The books I reference below go into much more detail about why. Since I am a novice at this, I will not attempt to explain it myself.
4. The great thing, however, is we are already 80% there with my CSID diet approach. It will require planning and always having quick snacks on hand such as nuts, fruits, hard-boiled eggs and sliced-up veggies. My food dehydrator will probably be working overtime between drying fruit and making beef jerky.
5. By not purchasing organic dairy products, sprouted grain baked goods, gluten-free cereals, and organic peanut butter, I will save a lot of money that will go to purchasing grass-fed beef, and fresh fish and poultry.
Here are a few of the family-friendly Paleo resources I have found so far. I will be purchasing the electronic versions of the cookbooks soon and can’t wait to get started!
If, as a CSID family, you see the potential in applying the paleo diet to your household, please let me know! I will be posting recipe testimonies and linking to recipes or other resources as we find success.

If you are new to the CSID diet, or you or your child have been recently diagnosed with CSID, visit the brand new website for a complete description and direction for managing CSID.

The Importance of Limiting Harmful Starches

Even though some situations where starch is tolerable, it is important that each family learn to master the CSID diet without starches. Every day our discussion groups reveal variations to how much and which types of starches appear tolerable for us or our CSID children.

However, a CSID diagnosis is rarely (if ever) confirmed without the child or adult presenting symptoms. These symptoms are a sign the body is suffering. This suffering is the result of undigested food in the gut. Undigested food harms the lining of the intestines, and can irritate to the point of causing tears in the lining of the intestines. This “leaky gut” can also result in allergies to foods that have made their way in the blood stream through these cracks. Once the gut is healed, some of these food particles may have a chance to be properly digested and the “allergy” will eventually diminish. Of course, this would be on a case-by-case basis. For us, Parker had to eliminate dairy for quite some time and now has it all the time without issue.

I came into knowledge of this process through a combination of my own research into various digestive problems and solutions as well as from insight from several professionals in the field of digestive health. The conclusion being not all starches are created equal. Some can cause great harm, especially to a weakened system that is irritated and sensitive due to months or years of undigested food wreaking havoc.

There has been a lot of talk about starches on the Facebook and Yahoo CSID groups lately. I sense a push from parents trying to find ways to incorporate starches into their children’s diet. Everyone has their opinions about the best way to go about it, but I would like to take moment to emphasis the fact that some starch-based foods should be eliminated to avoid possible long-term problems. Starchy foods that do not offer any nutritional benefit should be out. Overly processed foods should also be eliminated or reduced to an occasional basis.These include foods that come from white flour and that include artificial sugar. Most grains, even whole, still promote the growth of harmful bacteria, which can manifest as various symptoms, including behavior problems.This theory is based on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (SCD) approach which reveals that undigested carbohydrates cause the most harm by feeding harmful bacteria and promoting fermentation. Another result from including harmful starches on a regular basis is acidosis, which requires a strict ph-balancing process to reverse.

There is a way to incorporate essential carbohydrates in the form of “safe” starches once the starch-free diet has been mastered and symptoms are no longer present. See my other posts relate to STARCH & DIGESTION for more details on assisting with the digestions process and choosing easy to digest foods.
When I use the word “safe” I mean to imply that my research suggests these foods have a lower likelihood of causing digestive distress while also providing maximum nutrition.

These “safe” foods include:

  • almond and coconut-based foods
  • soaked dry white beans such as baby lima, navy, or northern
  • lactose-free dairy such as butter, heavy cream, and homemade yogurt to serve as thickening or fillers
  • incorporation of plain yogurt to promote helpful bacteria product
  • 100% organic, sprouted-grain
  • low-carb/sprouted grain wraps and buns (on a limited basis, taken with Food Enzymes
My family has also experienced success in the occasional use of brown rice pasta and red potatoes (2 foods which are NOT endorsed for SCD) — but always with food enzymes! 
What I have also found is that there are many other digestive diseases and illness that have a direct correlation with the excessive eating of sugars and starches. Even though doctors and scientists do not know the direct cause of diseases such as Crohn’s or colitis or in some cases, Celiac; the recommended dietary approach often involves the elimination of starches, sugars, and sometimes lactose. Continuing to consume harmful carbohydrates in light of CSID or other digestive ailments can result in additional digestive disease and in some cases, stomach or colon cancer.
In the end, I will not promote or endorse suggestions for foods that do not line up with my personal approach to remove what harms and add what helps. I do not pretend to follow this diet 100% of the time, but I feel listing exceptions just confuses parents, especially those who are new to the diet. By incorporating my knowledge of the best of CSID-friendly foods, the SCD approach, digestive supplementation, and a pH balanced goal I have found our family experiences maximum health, energy and overall well-being.

A Ph Balanced Diet in Light of CSID

I first became aware of the importance of pH in May of 2007. Having exhausted all the possibilities with traditional medicine in regards to bringing my son to a state of complete health and well-being, I made an appointment for Parker with an alternative medicine doctor. Known for her non-evasive testing techniques and reputation of healing herself from cancer, I welcomed the advice of Dr. Cindy Schmillen as a breath of fresh air and a hope that my son didn’t have to suffer for the rest of his life.
Parker had been to numerous specialists and had many tests done over his three and a half years of life. Each time, I braced myself and warned the nurses and technicians about the inevitable breath-holding<!–[if supportFields]> XE “breath-holding” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> spell that was sure to commence once the poking and prodding began. Our experience at the small, home-made clinic office was a complete contrast to any other. Parker remained calm and talkative throughout each procedure, non of which required him to experience pain or for me to hold him down. After the doctor reviewed the results, we sat down with her in her office and Parker slowly nursed his pomegranate-juice cocktail. Cindy asked me a few simple questions about Parker’s eating habits, and then explained the test results to me.
She knew he had a history of seizures and that he had not grown well his whole life. She showed me a chart and explained how most of his organs were still under a lot of stress, despite the fact I had removed all sugars and starches from his diet. His body was in a highly acidic state, which had promoted the growth of a fungus within his blood stream and left his immune system<!–[if supportFields]> XE “immune system” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> in a weakened state. She had also detected high levels of salt, and told me point blank Parker could have died of a heart attack during any of his breath-holding<!–[if supportFields]> XE “breath-holding” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> spells! Then she asked me if I was able to invest around $80 per month and make a few minor changes to his diet.
I admit I was a bit hesitant at first. She didn’t know much about CSID, and I didn’t want to put Parker under further stress. However, she was the first doctor to connect-the-dots with all of Parker’s symptoms and she was the first to confidently assure me that Parker could thrive if I followed her suggestions. And I did want him to thrive—I wanted to know I was doing all I could to improve and maintain Parker’s health, regardless of the types of food he could eat.
The first priority was to bring his body into balance and reduce the acidity in his system. Dr. Schmillen ‘prescribed’ liquid Chlorophyll, papaya-mint enzyme tablets, and calcium gluconate powder. In addition, she told me to give him fresh lemon juice in water with all of his proteins, and to eliminate all the cheese in his diet. If I wanted to give him milk, she recommended low fat in only small amounts. All of these measures would sooth Parker’s digestive system and begin to bring his body back to a state of alkalinity, where it would then be able to begin to heal, defend itself, and begin to grow at a normal pace. The chlorophyll<!–[if supportFields]> XE “chlorophyll” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> and calcium were also ‘activated’ with AbramsFrequency Device. The ‘activation’ was set to a specific electrical current that would help to kill off the harmful fungus in Parker’s system. As important as the activation device was to Parker’s acceleration in healing—I believe the use of chlorophyll and calcium alone can still result in bringing about an alkaline balance in others.
At that same time, Parker had seen most of his specialty doctors with follow-up appointments scheduled for the next year. I remember telling them all I was going to be looking into alternative methods that may reduce Parker’s breath-holding<!–[if supportFields]> XE “breath-holding” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> spells and encourage an upward climb on the growth chart. I vividly recall each doctor crossing his arms and legs as their eyes told me I was just going to waste my time and money on such ventures. He had tested borderline for receiving growth-hormone therapy and I wanted to exhaust every other possibility before I would add a daily injection to his routine.
In March of 2008, after a year of implementing the supplements and dietary changes recommended by Dr. Schmillen, I took Parker to see his other doctors. After weighing, measuring and examining Parker they all came to the same conclusion: I was to keep doing whatever I was doing because Parker was doing great! He had grown five inches and gained over five pounds! I must remind you that in the year and a half between his CSID diagnosis and implementing an alkaline-based diet, Parker had only gained a couple of pounds and hardly grown in height at all. And though his seizures had stopped, he was still having regular breath-holding<!–[if supportFields]> XE “breath-holding” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> spells.
Though I believe several factors were involved in promoting Parker’s overall health and accelerated growth, there is no question in my mind that increasing the increase in alkaline forming foods and supplements have contributed greatly to his body’s ability to heal and defend itself. By healing, I mean reducing the stress and trauma to his digestive system and other organs. Promoting alkalinity and using the other methods I discuss in my book and blog will not CURE your child of CSID, but will assist your child in feeling well, despite the disorder.
So what was actually taking place in Parker as a result of his acidosis? The following symptoms can result in anyone experiencing high acid levels in the body as the body attempts to fix the imbalance with limited resources:

Compiled from The Acid Alkaline Food Guide— (my notes and comments added in parentheses)

·                 Enzymes begin to malfunction(ability to digest milk or lactose often the first to go)
·                  Reduction in bone formation(Parker’s last bone test showed a year of loss, or that his bone-age was that of a three-year-old at age 4. He also did not erupt any teeth between 12 and 24 months—having only ten teeth until his was two years old.)
·                 Loss of ability to repair cells, tissues and organs.
·                  Suppression of growth hormone (this was probably why Parker growth-hormone tests kept coming back low)
·                  Increase in free-radicals which impairs antioxidants and reduces the body’s ability to fight off infection and disease. (This could explain the higher rate of respiratory illness in children with CSID)
·                 Chronic inflammation and pain(It is possible that Crohn’s disease may develop in those with CSID who do not alter their diets appropriately.)
·                  Increased fluid and retention (I believe at times this gives a false-sense of our children ‘gaining weight’, especially when the type of carbohydrate is changed such as when Parker went from breast milk to formula.)
·                  Disruption of the balance of intestinal bacteria with related digestive problems (harmful bacteria thrive on simple carbohydrates like sugar and white flour)
·                  Encourages the growth and spread of yeast and fungi
·                  Encourages a breeding ground for viruses, which require an acidic environment with low levels of antioxidants to survive.
·                  Reduces the energy reserves in the brain, causing a weakened mental capacity (Parker’s developmental delays and possibly his seizures prior to diagnosis. In addition, while eating school lunches last year–which are packed with acid-causing foods, he struggled to concentrate and often complained of being tired)
·                  Mild hypothyroidism (Explains Parker’s short stature, though test results were inconclusive)
·                  Low Phosphorus resulting in loss of appetite or anemia, muscle weakness, etc.
·                  Build up of toxic residues in the body – Suboptimal liver detoxification.
There are other affects of high acidity in the body, but these were the predominant ones affecting Parker either prior to his CSID diagnosis, or still prevalent before I began keeping a better eye on what he was still eating that could promote acidity. There is a way to test the normal pH levels in order to determine how much alkaline foods are needed to bring a healthy balance back to the body. However, eating 60-80% alkaline foods per meal will generally bring about the needed balance. One of the most encouraging elements specifically for those with CSID, is that most sugar-free, starch-free foods are alkaline forming foods.
You need not eliminate all acid-forming foods, but be wary of serving large amounts for each meal. For example, I initially removed all cheese and milk from Parker’s diet. As he has become more accustomed to eating the alkaline forming foods, I use these foods as an added treat or reward for when he tries new foods. Parker loves cheese and sour cream on pretty much everything—but since I am now aware of the acid-forming affects of these foods, I try to keep the serving sizes to a minimum while increasing the amounts of alkaline forming foods with each meal.
Another aspect to consider is the use of Sucraid<!–[if supportFields]> XE “Sucraid<![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> for foods containing refined sugar. Since Sucraid is a yeast and likely causes an acid-forming affect (though this has never been determined scientifically)—using it in combination with foods known to promote acidity, can have unknown negative affects. Because of this, I adamantly discouraging the use of Sucraid for anything other than naturally occurring sugars in fruits and for use with pre-packaged foods that may not disclose small amounts of sucrose<!–[if supportFields]> XE “sugars:sucrose” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> contained in the product. 
The following list is only a partial list of CSID friendly foods, most of which I use in my recipes. For a complete list of foods and their acid/alkaline affects, spend some time on the website Balance pH Diet. Always cross-reference foods with the lists on

CSID  Foods
Listed By Their Known Alkaline/Acid Forming Results
+ High Forming
– Low Forming
S– Sucraid recommended
use these often and liberally
permissible but not beneficial, use sparingly or in smaller portions
Almond Butter (no added sugar, Group B & C only)
Sacharin (Sweet ‘n Low)
Almonds (Group B & C, possible Group A)
Aspartame * (Equal)
Apple Cider +
Lima beans (butter beans) –
Apple Juice (unsweetened) S
Hamburger +
Applesauce (unsweetened) S
Steak +
Asparagus  + S
Splenda<!–[if supportFields]> XE “Splenda<![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> * (sucralose<!–[if supportFields]> XE “sucralose” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–>)
Baking Powder (corn-starch Free)
Carrot Juice –
Bananas (super-ripe only) S
Soda +
Bell Pepper S
Tap water –
Black Pepper
Blackberries +
Cheese<!–[if supportFields]> XE “Cheese<![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–>
Cottage Cheese<!–[if supportFields]> XE “Cheese<![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–>
Bottled Mineral Water
Butter –
Vegetable Oil
Cauliflower, Cabbage
Celery +
Lunch Meat
Coconut Oil
Iodized salt
Currants (Group B, C)
Stevia –
Flaxseed Oil
Ginger Root (Group B,C– 3.1gr starch per 100gr)
Grape Juice –
Canned Tomato Paste –
Green Olives
Herb Teas
Spinach –
Kale  +
Kiwi  +  S
Lemon Juice +
Maple Syrup –
Lime Juice +
Limes +
Pork, ham, bacon
Mandarin Oranges + S
Tomato-based pasta sauce with meat
Mangos + S
Mushrooms –
Olive Oil
Onion  +  S
Orange juice – S
Tomatoes –
Oranges S
Papaya + S
Peaches    S
Pears  S
Raspberries S
Cream Cheese<!–[if supportFields]> XE “Cheese<![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–>
Sea Salt
Snowpeas –
Cow’s Milk<!–[if supportFields]> XE “Milk<![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> –
Strawberries +
Sour Cream –
Sunflower Seeds – S
Sweet Potatoes  S
Watermelon S
Zucchini (summer squash), Lima beans and Navy Beans
Keep in mind that cooking vegetables kills valuable enzymes<!–[if supportFields]> XE “enzymes” <![endif]–><!–[if supportFields]><![endif]–> which help the body to break down the food as well as alter the alkaline forming affects. The more a food is cooked, the more acid-forming it becomes. Steaming or quickly sautéing vegetables will help to retain the enzymes as the alkaline forming affect they have once they are eaten. All canned foods generally become acid-forming and lose most of their valuable nutrients in the canning process. I recommend using fresh, frozen and organic whenever possible. This ensures the highest level of antioxidants and nutrients and the lowest possible traces of toxins, pesticides, or unknown ingredients.
As you conduct your own research and review the links below, know that there are some variations regarding which foods are considered acid-forming or alkaline-forming. There is also a theory out there that blood-type may also be a factor. Even with these inconsistencies, I think this list will be an “ah-ha” moment for many, as it was for me. You will see that the majority of the foods I use in my recipes include those that are alkaline-forming, and this is why!

Estimating Sucrose/Starches Using Nutrition Facts

Nutrition Facts Label for “Breakfast Quiche”

I don’t know about you, but I find Nutrition Facts labels confusing when it comes to determining the total starch and sugar content in a packaged food. They isolate the carbohydrates by sugars and fiber. This does not help us much as sugar can stand for sucrose, fructose, glucose, lactose or other forms of sugar. There is a way, however, to use the Nutrition Facts Label in conjunction with the ingredients to estimate how much sucrose and starch a serving of food contains.

First of all, choose foods with very few ingredients whenever possible.The more ingredients the food has, the more daunting this task will become. Consider it a junk-food-proof motivation to stick with mostly pure, unprocessed foods whenever possible!

Next, you will need to memorize all the different names for sugar— primarily anything ending in “-ose”, with the exception of fructose and glucose. Unless there is another dietary issue, these monosaccharides (single molecule sugars) can be tolerated by those with CSID. Also anything containing the words syrup, such as rice syrup and corn syrup. Palm kernel nectar is also over 90% sucrose. Other names for sugar include cane sugar, cane juice, turbano sugar, brown sugar, and molasses. Please see “Choosing the Best Sugar Substitute” for an overview of  all sweeteners.

Generally the order of the ingredients indicates the percentage of the ingredient used to make the overall product. If sugar is the first word, you should avoid it all together, unless total sugars per serving is less than 5 grams.

Please note that experimenting and estimating starch and sugar content in packaged foods should not be attempted during episodes of major symptoms. Ideally, the child or adult should have successfully completed 3 weeks of the Induction Diet without symptoms before adding foods which may contain starch or sugar.

Performing the following steps and calculations will help you to determine if a food is tolerable, as well as how much sugar or starch a serving contains.

  • TOTAL Carbohydrates per serving should be no more than 35 grams. From what I have learned anything more than this probably contains too much starch for the CSID diet. If starch tolerance levels have not been determined, this number should be far lower. If Sucraid is not available and if any of the ingredients include a form of sugar, this food should be avoided for the time being.
  • Then look at the breakdown of sugars and fiber below the carbohydrates. Comparing the ingredients again, search for sources of fiber if the food contains fiber in any amount. Fiber sources which may irritate those with CSID or other digestive problems include wheat, bran, corn, rice, quinoa, potatoes, farina, wheat germ, and others. To play it safe, only choose foods containing fiber sources from fruits, vegetables, legumes (if they are sprouted) and nuts. If the source of fiber is “safe” (not from a grain), you can then subtract the total fiber from the total carbohydrates. Using the label above as an example, we now have 3 grams of carbohydrates left to account for.
  • To determine total starch content, the next step is to subtract the total sugars from the remaining carbohydrates. This means a serving of the Breakfast Quiche labeled above has a total of 2 grams of starch per serving. This is an acceptable amount of starch since it most likely comes from the almond flour and possibly the mushrooms.
  • If you want to find out the total sucrose content, the figuring is not as specific. Depending on the type of food, you can make an educated guess at best. As always, when in doubt, just don’t use the food at all. If for example, you are looking at a carton of ice cream, you can assume that the majority of the total “sugars” is probably from lactose or the milk sugar. However, the total sugars per serving with Sucraid should not exceed 25 grams.

In Summary…

No grains or sucrose.

  • TOTAL CARBOHYDRATES less than 35grams per serving
  • Carbohydrates – fiber = sugar and starch
  • Carbohydrates – fiber & sugar = starch

Remember dairy products containing lactose are counted in the total sugars.

Group A (or limited maltose enzymes) should not have any starches from grains– almond flour and fiber from non-sugary fruits are okay.

Group C, symptom-free may be able to tolerate up to 35 grams of starch per serving. See “Starch Tolerance Test” to help determine individual tolerance levels.

Use Food Enzymes or Kirkman Isogest with foods containing more than 5 grams of starch per serving.

Use Sucraid 1-2ml with foods containing more than 5 grams of sucrose per serving.

Additionally supplement with Sunshine Heroes Enzymes and Sunshine Heroes Probiotics for maximum digestion support.

Starch Tolerance Test

So how do you know if your child can tolerate starches at all? The enzyme test results will be an indicator as to whether any starch will be tolerated. Once your child is symptom free and at a healthy weight, then the following “starch tolerance test” can be conducted under the supervision of a dietitian.

1. The child (or individual) must go 3 weeks without any starches at all. Even trace amounts can skew the results. Stick with Group A foods– primarily berries, non-starchy vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, eggs, and dairy. No almonds or peanuts allowed.

2. The child must not be underweight, or have had any diarrhea or vomiting for 3 weeks as well..

3. You will need a box of saltine crackers and a notebook.

DAY 1– note child’s weight and the date. Start with 1 saltine cracker in the morning and write down the time you gave it to your child. Aside from a few sips of water, do not allow child to drink excess fluids when they eat the cracker.

Each square cracker contains approximately 2 grams of starch. Note any symptoms such as bloating, gas, complaints of stomach pain along with the time they occurred. If none, write this down as well and continue with DAY 2 below..

If symptoms do occur, be sure to write down additional liquids and food the child had throughout the day.

Repeat Day 1 again, adjusting other foods and liquids to determine if symptoms were due to a food-combination issue or a starch-tolerance issue. Do not continue to Day 2 if after several tries, a single cracker creates digestive distress. Your child is not ready for starch at this time. If no symptoms occur, move to DAY 2.

DAY 2— repeat Day 1 and add another single cracker at lunch time. Again, if symptoms present themselves, notate additional food and liquids and try to give the child 1 cracker in the morning and at lunch time again. If no symptoms occur, move on to DAY 3.

DAY 3— Add a third single saltine cracker to dinner. Note symptoms if any. If none, move to DAY 4.

DAY 4 — Beginning on this day, you will increase crackers to 2 per serving, 3 times per day. If no symptoms present themselves, you will continue to increase the number of crackers per meal, per day until your child presents symptoms. Once symptoms present, the total number of crackers tolerated on the previous day is the total starch tolerance level.


Day 4 (2 crackers per meal, 3 times per day) symptom free = Total Starch Tolerance Level of 4 grams per meal.

Day 5 (3 crackers per meal, 3 times per day) symptom free = Total Starch Tolerance Level of 6 grams per meal.

Day 6 (4 crackers per meal, 3 times per day) symptom free = Total Starch Tolerance Level of 8 grams per meal.

Day 7 (5 crackers per meal, 3 times per day) symptom free = Total Starch Tolerance Level of 10 grams per meal.

This may seem daunting, but it is the best method to determine exactly how much starch your child can tolerate.

You may add non-starchy toppings that do not require Sucraid to add flavor and keep your child interested in eating the amount of crackers needed. Toppings may include cream cheese, pure fruit raspberry jam, plain yogurt with sliced blueberries, avocado slices with sea salt, peeled cucumbers with tuna (if canned, make sure there is no broth or soy flakes added).

Choosing the Best Sugar Substitute

(Note: This is a very long post but a very important topic. Originally an excerpt from A Place to Start Without Sugar or Starch, I’ve modified it and will be including it in the 2nd Edition: Essential Carbohydrate Living)

In my many conversations with other CSID parents, I have found that we take a different approach regarding sugar or sugar substitutes in food. No wonder with all the choices we have! Even with the best of intentions, we can make a wrong choice based on what we have heard or the trust that tends to occur from seeing a particular brand over and over again.

From the start, I was dead set against giving Parker any artificial sweeteners, since I knew the long term consequences would never outweigh the benefit of giving him a sweet treat. Though many people view this topic as controversial, my opinion is that my son has already suffered enough. Why would I give him a food that could bring him more harm?

The other side of this argument could be that come CSID children can only have artificial sweeteners such as aspartame. Although I can sympathize with this perspective, I also feel that this is used to justify serving diet cola, candy or gum containing aspartame or other artificial sweeteners. The bottom line is any of these foods in excess are not GOOD for ANYBODY, especially a child who is already facing lifelong challenges with making healthy food choices.

Yet, I am a firm believer that with knowledge comes power. If I don’t take a small risk in sharing what I do know about all our options regarding the use of sugar or sugar substitutes in food, I risk not getting that information to the parent willing to make changes who is just lacking an action plan to do so.

With that, consider the following questions and then consider the following information summarizing the possible disadvantages and benefits to choosing the right sweetener for your child. My hope is that when you have the choice, you will then know the best choice to make and in turn be teaching your child how to make those choices one day in the near future when you will not be by their side to assist them.

Knowing that your child lacks the enzymes to digest sucrose, you would not knowingly feed your child a food containing sucrose, right?

Additionally, knowing that your child’s digestive system and other major systems in his or her body experienced a certain level of stress and trauma prior to a confirmed CSID diagnosis, would you feed your child a food containing ingredients that could potentially add stress to his or her body?

Again, I come to my premise for everything I post here and plan to publish in my upcoming recipe and resource guide. With the ultimate goal of teaching parents so that they can then teach their children a LIFESTYLE of eating well for total wellness…

Whenever possible~

Avoid What Harms & Add What Helps!

I say all this as a parent who has to make daily choices regarding what is BEST for myself, my family and my children given my current time, money, energy and other resources.

Do I find it easy to follow the “ideal” recipes and other information I post here?


Do I feel that without at least knowing what the best option is, I have more control over our long-term health and wellness?


And I expect nothing more or less from anyone who comes across this blog or one of my books.


Name them whatever you want, the CSID body recognizes them as SUCROSE (TABLE SUGAR).

Even with Sucraid in hand, choosing foods containing minimally processed versions of sugar also contain less chemicals, and less potential to harm. At the time I revised this post (2016), it is my understanding that non-gmo cane juice or organic coconut sugar are the least processed forms of sucrose.

Check out this video on sugar and perhaps you’ll see how CSID may be a blessing in disguise as it forces us and our children to reduce overall sugar intake and possible help avoid a gamut of health issues facing the current generation.

Countdown from Worst to Best in Sugar-Substitutes…(In my OPINION)


I avoid using these artificial sweeteners at all costs. The bottom line is they are created for and manufactured for people desiring to continue bad eating habits despite being overweight, having diabetes or worse. Splenda gets my worst of the worst review for their highly deceptive marketing campaign. Essentially Splenda (or sucralose) is a non-corn syrup, sugar based sweetener which is coated in MALTODEXTRIN (starch!) to prohibit absorption into the bloodstream.

This is no better or healthier than Aspartame… a drug (oops…) I mean “sugar substitute” which should be considered a POISON! If you feel you must choose a food containing any of the above ingredients, I beg you to consider how necessary the given food is at all? I provide more than enough recipe and food alternatives on this website.

Please choose those and do not risk harming your child’s delicate system. As you will see, there are so many BETTER options if you just look for them.


As shown in the above video, fructose (especially high fructose corn syrup) is not a great sugar alternative. You would have to be living in a cave to be unaware of all the controversy surrounding corn syrup and high fructose corn syrup, and the research is getting so strong, food companies are now adding the phrase “no high fructose corn syrup” to packaging.

There was a time when I let my guard down and allowed corn syrup and HFCS into Parker’s diet. This came in handy when eating out or at social functions when the only beverage available was the lemon-lime soda brand which used corn syrup and no sucrose as a sweetener.

However, I quickly regretted making this compromise as it gave Parker a “taste” for artificial and processed foods. Aside from this, what is the harm? Beyond potentially harming the liver and leading to other health problems such as diabetes and obesity, most foods containing corn syrup or HFCS are void of any significant nutritional value.

Also read this article for a more detailed explanation of the differences between corn syrup, HFCS and sugar:“The Facts About Corn Syrup” (SFChronicle, Sept. 24, 2008). I was also shocked to learn that some forms of HFCS also contain sucrose!

5. crystalline FRUCTOSE

Fructose is a single molecule (monosaccharide) sweeter derived from corn. Though fructose occurs naturally in most fruits, it is my experience that any dried fructose you find in the store comes from gmo-corn unless otherwise labeled. Fructose is often one of the first options to use as a sweetener for those with CSID, due to its similar taste and consistency to sugar.

However, recent reports from Harvard Medical School indicate that high levels of fructose in the diet can contribute to liver problems.

My impression of this article tends to lean toward the high consumption of high fructose corn syrup in processed foods and how the levels of consumption have increased dramatically since the day when our main source of fructose came from the fruits we ate. However, please read the article by clicking on the underlined portion above to come to your own conclusion regarding total fructose intake for you or your child.

Over the past several years I’ve transitioned from using fructose to sweeten my coffee, tried agave syrup for a time, and after learning of the possible harm of excess fructose, began using Coconut Sugar (see below). I generally only use fructose for baking or cooking if my sweetener of choice (honey) does not compliment to overall flavor or consistency of the recipe or meal.

Please Note: Some people with CSID also lack the enzymes to break down fructose. Consult your dietitian to determine if fructose is the best sugar-substitute for your individual case.


I’ve been asked a lot about using Stevia instead of sugar. Honestly, the main thing I don’t like about Stevia is that it tastes strange.  It’s also very expensive to use for baking if used in the quantities needed for the recipes on this blog. However, on occasion and in small quantities (such as to sweeten coffee or tea), I personally use it over artificial sweetener or a sucrose.

Since Stevia is an herb and I have heard from various sources that children should not take in large amounts of herbs (specifically medicinal) I have avoid using it for my children. There just isn’t enough long-term use to convince me it is safe. Stevia does not contain sugars of any form. In addition, the ingredients in Truvia are questionable, especially since one is “natural flavors”.

One final note to consider if choosing Stevia or Truvia is that this is marketed as a no-calorie sweetener. Since our children require a daily minimum of calories from carbohydrates (a sugar alternative being one of them), this sweetener of choice doesn’t add to their caloric needs.


To the best of my knowledge, agave nectar contains only fructose (up to 90%) and glucose. I have personally used agave nectar to sweeten my coffee and as a last resort to sweeten Parker’s chlorophyll or lemon slushy. This is one of those products that has recently become a popular sugar substitute, and thus earns a red-flag in my book. I have also heard rumors through helpful clerks at local health-food markets that some agave manufacturers may add corn syrup to help stretch product.

This may turn out to be a great sweetener of choice for those with CSID, but without more research or confirmed reports of successful use, I will leave it up to you to decide. In addition, since it is a form of fructose, we should consider overuse in conjunction with the research about high-fructose corn syrup.

One final note — I used a bulk-variety blue agave I purchased from Costco for several weeks about a year ago. I used it mostly in my coffee and in some baking and cooking and cannot recall any problems. I have used it for traveling when fructose is not available since many health food stores carry Agave and do not carry fructose.

I prefer agave nectar over crystallized fructose because it’s organic, not derived from gmo corn and it’s more readily available at grocery stores. However, processing techniques are questionable so I don’t consider it as natural an alternative as I once believed.


I wish I could explain why this form of sucrose doesn’t appear to bother those in my family, but I can’t. Perhaps it is like certain forms of starch, and simply easier to break down. I’ve been using it fairly consistently in my coffee for a little over a year now and haven’t experienced any issues that I’m aware of. My kids also prefer the taste over honey in baked treats. Daily intake is very minimal — less than 15 grams and if Parker eats anything containing it, he takes his digestive enzymes just in case.

1. HONEY (My #1 Choice!)

Perhaps I am a little partial to honey since it was the only sweetener I ever knew as a child. I kid you not…my mother made us honey sweetened carob cake with whole-wheat flour (which also probably included eggs from our own hens and raw, whole cows milk) for our birthdays!

Honey is the least processed of all sweeteners and has been used for many thousands of years longer than any of the other sweeteners listed here. Depending on the source, honey contains a very small percentage of sucrose and maltose and is mostly made up of glucose and fructose.

Read this article on How to Identify Fake Honey for some interesting facts and information on finding good-quality honey. The obvious choice is locally grown, unpasteurized honey as it has the most benefits overall.

Out of all the healthy foods I grew up with, honey remains one of the only foods our CSID children and myself can have without the need for digestive enzyme support. According to CSID Info, they have reports of some CSID families needing to use Sucraid with honey. They state that some do not use honey at all, but do not state why.

They also provide a detailed list of sweeteners, chemical breakdowns, and recommendations based on various CSID mutations (which are ever-changing and growing).

Please note: Children under the age of 1 year should not eat honey. Please consult your pediatrician regarding the safety of using of honey in baked goods for children under one year.

I hope you find this information helpful when determining which sweeter to choose for your child. Now you know why my recipes use either honey or fructose. I will continue to experiment with Agave in a few of my recipes to see how Parker likes it for both taste and tummy ease.

Enzymes for Carbohydrates Update

Parker and I are now in week two of using the Kirkman Isogest for assisting us in digesting carbohydrates (specifically starch) with our meals. To date we have used it with pasta, cereal, rice, sprouted grain bread and even Girl Scout Thin Mints!

As long as we keep the servings small (actual serving sizes) we are having no issues with belly pain, gas or other symptoms.

When I emailed the chemist at the Kirkman labs, he informed me that he knows of several CSID families who use Isogest successfully. As I mentioned in a previous post on Enzymes, the main reason why this enzyme therapy is not referenced for use by those with CSID, is that they do not have the funding to conduct the necessary studies to achieve FDA approval. He also said he would be willing to donate several bottles to parents with CSID children in trade for providing data and feedback regarding the successful use of their product. If you are interested in recieving a free bottle of Isogest to try with your child and you understand Kirkman can make no claims of guarantee or possible side affects and are willing to try it at your own risk, please let me know right away. If I can gather 12 parents, we might be able to use our results and apply for a research grant to fund an official study to approve Isogest for CSID.

In addition to the Nature’s Sunshine Enzymes I have listed on the sidebar, the Kirkman Isogest appears to serve the similar purpose of of assisting with carbohydrate, or isomaltase digestion.

In this day and age where making all food from scratch is not realistic, being able to choose the least-processed food without concern for starch is sure making my life easier! I would love your feedback regarding your own experience (and your child’s) using Isogest or the Nature’s Sunshine Enzymes. Regardless of enzyme levels, these supplements can assist your body in digesting carbohydrates, relieving digestive stress and broadening the types of foods you can eat.

One more wonderful advantage to these supplements in comparison to Sucraid (which should still be taken with foods containing sucrose), is that they do not need to be refrigerated! Though I store mine in the fridge to maintain freshness, throwing a few capsules in my purse during a day out is so much easier than toting around a cooler with ice!