Autoimmune Paleo Diet: Working and Phases

Autoimmune Paleo Diet is also referred to as AIP or Autoimmune Protocol Diet. The main aim of the Autoimmune Paleo Diet is to reduce the symptoms caused by Autoimmune diseases. Autoimmune diseases may be celiac diseases, inflammatory bowel diseases, lupus, etc.

The people who followed this Autoimmune paleo diet reported improvement from common autoimmune symptoms such as fatigue, joint pain.

What is Autoimmune Paleo Diet?

The main purpose of a healthy immune system is that they produce antibodies that will protect it from foreign and harmful cells in the body.

However, in people who have an autoimmune disorder, their antibodies attack healthy cells and tissues rather than saving them.

The symptoms of autoimmune disorders may be lupus, IBD, type1 diabetes, psoriasis and rheumatoid arthritis.

Autoimmune diseases are caused due to infection, stress, inflammation, and sometimes it may be genetic.

So, the autoimmune paleo diet’s goal is to eliminate all these unhealthy foods and replace them with nutritional foods. This helps to cure autoimmune diseases.

Also Read: Keto Diet vs. Paleo Diet

Is Auto Immune Paleo Diet (AIP) and Paleo Diet are same?

Both the diets are considered as same but you can say the Auto-Immune paleo diet is a strict version of the paleo diet. The main aim of this diet is autoimmune diseases such as the leaky gut.

In this AIP Diet, you are allowed to eat nutritionally rich foods and need to maintain distance from inflammatory foods. 

AIP Diet allows to eat foods that can give relief to guts from irritation, inflammatory and other autoimmune diseases.

How does it work?

Mainly AIP diet has two phases

  • Elimination Phase
  • Reintroduction Phase

Elimination Phase

In the elimination phase, you need to avoid all the foods, medications which can cause autoimmune disorders and creates bad bacterias in the gut.

During this phase, you are not allowed to eat foods such as grains, lentils, seeds, even dairy and eggs are also not allowed.

If you are consuming tobacco, alcohol, coffee, additives in the food, sugar and some medications then you need to avoid them strictly. 

This phase permits fresh nutritional foods, minimally or non-processed meat, and bone broth. Like the paleo diet, it also focuses on lifestyle improvement such as better sleep, free from stress, and physical activity. 

The period of this phase varies from person to person. Normally people maintain 30-90 days and some people feels improvement within 3 weeks.

Reintroduction Phase

After seeing improvements in the elimination phase the reintroduction phase begins. As per the tolerance level of the individual, the avoided foods are reintroduced in the diet, slowly.

This phase aims to find out which foods are best suited to person symptoms. Gradually, reintroduces all foods that don’t have any symptoms. This allows a variety of dietary options as per the tolerance level.

While testing in the reintroduction phase, the tolerated foods became your regular diet and symptomatic foods need to be avoided. 

This is not necessary that you are not allowed symptomatic foods, over time food tolerance changes. You can easily add to your diet testing again after a while.

Rules to Reintroduce

  • Select a food that you wish to reintroduce. During the testing period, eat few times the selected foods per day. Then ignore fore 5-6 days.
  • Eat a small portion and wait for 15-30 min to check the reaction. 
    • If yes, then avoid the food completely.
    • If no, then try a slightly larger portion of the same food and wait for 2-3 hours. Then check how you feel.
  • If any symptoms feel, end the test and don’t eat this food. If no symptoms seem, then eat a normal portion of the same food and wait for 5-6 days. Remember, don’t reintroduce any new foods during this period.
  • If you don’t feel anything at this time, this may be the best food that you can add to your diet. Repeat this to reintroduce any new food.

Please Note: Avoid reintroduce any foods if you feel difficult to analyse the results and increases inflammation. It generally happens during irregular sleeping cycles, stress, infection.

Also Read: The Paleo Diet Food List: What to eat and what to avoid

Foods that are allowed during Autoimmune Paleo Diet

  • Grass-fed and minimally processed meat and fish
  • Vegetables: Except nightshade vegetables
  • Sweet potato
  • Fresh Foods in a moderation
  • Coconut Milk
  • Coconut Oil, Olive Oil, Avocado Oil
  • Dairy-free fermented foods: It may be Kombucha, Sauerkraut, Kefir made from coconut milk.
  • Bone Broth
  • Herbs like basil, mint, oregano
  • Green Tea or Herbal Tea (Non-seed)
  • Honey in a small quantity

Foods that are not allowed during Autoimmune Paleo Diet

  • Grains such as Wheat, Rice, and oats
  • Dairy Products
  • Eggs
  • Seed and Nuts
  • Legumes and beans
  • Refined Sugars
  • Processed Foods
  • Chocolates
  • Alcohol
  • Food Additives

Is Autoimmune Paleo Diet suitable for you?

Autoimmune Paleo diet is suitable for you if you are suffering or feeling symptoms of auto-immune disorders. Otherwise, there is no need to follow the rules of the autoimmune paleo diet. If you are completely fine, no need to fear the best food will be always nutritional rich whole foods.

AIP may be suitable for you if you are diagnosed with autoimmune diseases and want to feel better and active. 

AIP is a very restrictive diet plan. It may be unfit for you if you have diet-related medical conditions, risk of dietary disorder, are not interested in food changes, etc. If you don’t have any type of complications like this then you can give a  try Autoimmune Paleo Diet.

One more thing to note is that autoimmune diseases are not completely curable. Symptoms can be managed. AIP helps to manage that symptom by restricting some foods. Also allows checking the best suitable foods by eliminating and reintroducing.

This Autoimmune Paleo diet can be used as a tool to personalize food preferences. The dietary plan will differ from person to person as per their body condition and requirement. This diet should not continue for a longer time.

There are some downsides with this diet plan also, so it will be better to take guidance from professionals. They can guide better nutrient requirements for your body.

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