When I first learned of my Hashimoto’s diagnosis, I dove into ALL areas of my health and well being. From IV therapy, to colonics, to supplementation, further hormone testing and of course diet, I put together a healing strategy – one that I am still following today.
“The root cause of all autoimmune diseases is the same: our immune system, which is supposed to protect us from invading microorganisms, turns against us and attacks our proteins, cells, and tissues instead. Which proteins, cells, and tissues are attacked determines the autoimmune disease and its symptoms.” – Dr. Sarah Ballantyne
The Autoimmune Paleo Protocol (abbreviated AIP), is a powerful strategy that uses diet and lifestyle to regulate the immune system, putting an end to these attacks and giving the body the opportunity to heal.
AIP can be seen as a ‘stricter’ version of the paleo diet. It eliminates foods allowed on the typical Paleo diet that have compounds that may stimulate the immune system or harm the gut environment, including nightshades (like tomatoes and peppers), eggs, nuts, seeds, beans, grains, gluten and alcohol.
Since I had already eliminated grains, beans, gluten, most dairy and sugar from my diet, taking it one step further wasn’t that big of a deal for me.
With the AIP diet, there are a lot of things to eliminate and it can be challenging for some. Especially if your meals are centered around grains, it can be hard to give these foods up. I often find that many of my clients meals contain some sort of grain, with protein, fat and veggies not taking up enough ‘plate space.’
If you’ve been dealing with an autoimmune disease, I highly suggest you try out the AIP protocol.
Here is a list of foods to eliminate on an AIP protocol:
GLUTEN / GRAINS / GRAIN-LIKE SEEDS: GLUTEN: – Wheat, Barley, Rye, Oats
GRAINS: – Barley – Corn – Kamut – Millet – Oats – Rice – Rye – Sorghum – Spelt – Teff – Wheat (all varieties – einkorn, semolina, etc)
GRAIN-LIKE SEEDS: – Amaranth – Buckwheat – Chia – Quinoa
DAIRY: – Butter – Cheese – Cottage Cheese – Cream – Ghee – Ice cream – Kefir – Milk – Sour Cream – Whey – Yogurt
LEGUMES: – Adzuki beans – Black beans – Black-eyes peas – Cannellini beans – Chickpeas/Garbanzos – Fava beans – Green beans – Kidney beans – Lentils – Lima beans – Mung beans – Navy beans – Pinto beans – Peanuts – Peas – Split peas – Soy beans
NUTS & SEEDS: NUTS (including nut-derived oils, nut flours, nut butters): – Almonds – Brazil nuts – Cashews – Chestnuts – Hazelnuts – Macadamia nuts – Pecans – Pine nuts – Pistachios – Walnuts
SEEDS (including seed-derived oils, seed flours, seed butters): – Chia – Flax – Hemp – Poppy – Pumpkin – Sesame – Sunflower
SPICES DERIVED FROM SEEDS: – Anise – Annatto – Black caraway – Celery seed – Coriander – Cumin – Dill – Fennel – Fenugreek – Mustard – Nutmeg
NIGHTSHADES (and spices derived from nightshades): – Bell Peppers – Cayenne Pepper – Chili Peppers – Eggplant – Goji Berries – Hot Peppers – Paprika – Pepinos – Pimentos – Potatoes – Tamarillos – Tomatillos – Tomatoes EGGS (chicken/duck/goose)
Also avoid: ALCOHOL, COFFEE, PROCESSED VEGETABLE OILS (Canola, Cottonseed, etc), ADDED SUGARS, SUGAR ALCOHOLS
I already know where your brain is going. I already know you’re telling yourself that you could never eliminate these foods.
Trust me, giving up almond butter was SO hard for me! And to top it off, almond butter ranked high on my food intolerance test as well, so even more reason to eliminate it. And I bake with almond flour all the time. Ugh! My worst nightmare 🙁
But please keep in mind – these food eliminations are temporary. You can reintroduce these foods back, which I have done so already.
Keep in mind ALL the amazing foods you CAN eat. Meat, fish, seafood, veggies, fruit, delicious fats, herbs and spices. There is A LOT you can eat.
From the AIP diet, I naturally transitioned in a modified keto diet. Because I don’t really eat carbs or a very low-carb, I increased my fats to help fuel my body, hormones and brain and so far – I’m loving it.
At the end of the day – you HAVE TO DO THE REAL work and that takes effort and commitment. Changing your diet to be AIP compliant is hard work. And although the AIP protocol may seem challenging, it could also be the ONE thing that just might save your life.
My amazing friend Marni Wasserman, who also has Hashimoto’s is my go to friend when I’m feeling challenged by my diet and health.