The AIP Diet is a protocol designed for those with autoimmune disease to lower inflammation and nourish the body. But what can you eat? How do you manage it?
What is The AIP Diet or Autoimmune Protocol Diet?
The AIP diet stands for Autoimmune Protocol, and it is designed for those with autoimmune disease to reduce inflammation to allow their bodies the opportunity to heal. It removes inflammatory foods, gut irritants, and immune stimulants for 30 days. After the elimination period, foods are reintroduced one by one to see if the body has healed and can tolerate them.
Some people decide to continue to follow the AIP template even after their autoimmune symptoms have reduced. This can be a preventative measure to ensure that symptoms don’t flare or it may be just that you feel better when eating AIP.
What Can You Eat On The AIP Diet?
- All animal proteins (excluding eggs)
- All vegetables (excluding nightshades)
- Fruits in moderation
- Healthy Fats (avocado, olive oil, coconut oil, animal fats, etc)
- Bone Broth, organ meats
- Grain free baking flours (cassava, tigernut, tapioca, coconut, etc)
What Food to Avoid on the AIP Diet?
- All grains (wheat, oats, rice, corn, etc)
- All dairy
- All legumes
- Nightshade vegetables & spices (tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, all peppers, red spices)
- All nuts and seeds
- Seed based spices (mustard, cumin, sesame, etc)
- Thickeners, gums, and food additives
When It Comes to Living Well with Autoimmunity, What Else Should You Consider Other Than Diet Alone?
Healing is so much more than just diet alone. Here are other factors to consider:
- Stress reduction
- Home and body care products
- Community Support
- Underlying Infections
- Working with a good doctor
AIP Diet & Lifestyle Resources
The list of AIP resources grows by the day! This community is vibrant and flourishing. And there are so many amazing blogs, books, and influencers to follow. Here are just some of my favorite resources.
If Your Just Starting Out
Making The Paleo Transition – If you’ve been eating the Standard American Diet, switching to Paleo can be a shock to the system. Here they will show you how to make the transition less painful, which increases the odds of your success!
56 Tips for Starting The Paleo Diet – These tips will help you go from Paleo newbie to Paleo pro. These tips cover things like getting into the proper mindset, making Paleo more easier and fun, and what to do when just starting out, as well as further down the road into your Paleo journey.
Paleo Troubleshooting Guide – When you stay on Paleo long enough, sooner or later you are going to have to troubleshoot a problem. This very helpful guide walks you through the process of figuring out what needs adjusting.
The following books will be a huge help in educating you about Paleo, AIP, or Autoimmune Disease. These books will be especially helpful when you are at the beginning of your Paleo journey.
It Starts with Food – I think everyone just starting out or thinking about going Paleo should read this book. This is the very first book that I picked up when I first started out. It explains why and how certain foods affect us but in a way that connects with you as the reader. You don’t have to wade through science jargon (if that isn’t your thing) to find the information that you need.
The New Primal Blueprint – Mark Sisson is beloved by the Paleo community, and in this fully updated guide to his classic book, you will get the secrets to thriving on a Paleo or Primal diet.
Practical Paleo – This newly updated version of what has become a Paleo classic is brimming with information for newbies and experts alike.
The Autoimmune Wellness Handbook: A DIY Guide to Living Well with Chronic Illness – I have been following the work of Mickey Trescott & Angie Alt for some time. They both have a great understanding of how to live an autoimmune friendly life.
In Defense of Food – This is not a Paleo book per se, but more about why you should stick to the “outside aisles” of the grocery store if you want to eat healthy. “In Defense of Food” goes into detail about the evils of processed foods and the Standard American Diet. Michael Pollan also weighs in on how the U.S. government started making our diets worse by pushing cheap grains in the 1970s.
CSA Finder – A CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) box is a great way to cut down on the amount of produce you need to buy from the grocery store. Buy local and fresh and you will be eating more as our ancestors did, and eating with the seasons too.
Paleo On A Budget – I wrote a Guest Post for The Curious Frugal discussing my top tips for shopping Paleo on a budget as well as dispelling 3 myths about the Paleo lifestyle.
The Weston A Price Foundation – This website is based on the work of Dr. Weston A. Price and is packed with detailed information and evidence about the importance of whole food and ancestral diets.
The Paleo Mom – This blog is written by a scientist and mom who lost 120 lbs. on the Paleo diet. She makes scientific concepts easy to understand and offers tips for raising a healthy Paleo family.
What Great Grandma Ate – This blog is filled with super simple Paleo and Gluten Free ingredients that, as the blog suggests, our great grandmothers would know what to do with.
Paleo Newbie – These recipes are especially for those just starting out on Paleo. They are made in a way that doesn’t overcomplicate things.
Balanced Bites – Diane Sanfilippo is a Paleo rockstar and her two books Practical Paleo and Mediterranean Paleo are staples in any Paleo-inspired kitchen. Her sense of humor combined with simple and delicious recipes make for a winning combo.
Thriving On Paleo – This blogger made a commitment to the Paleo diet after being diagnosed with a number of autoimmune conditions.
Steph Gaudreau – These recipes keep things as simple as possible! They are perfect for those times when you don’t want to prove your culinary worth, but just want to sit down to a hot and tasty meal.