If you’ve been following this blog from the beginning, you’ll have realised by now that the AIP diet is pretty tough. If you’re only just joining us, you’ll just have to take my word for it. It’s really tough. I’ve covered some of the ways I’m getting through it so far, such as proper meal planning, and batch-cooking, but really, the key to success with AIP is having a great collection of recipes.
When you’re suffering with an autoimmune disease, there’s a lot of ingredients that can exacerbate your condition, including some common vegetables, nuts, seeds and spices. So suddenly, almost every single recipe you’ve ever cooked is out of the question. And where paleo recipes are everywhere and all over the place, AIP recipes are a little more difficult to find. But here are a few places we’ve come across…
There are very few Autoimmune Protocol books out there and the ones that are aren’t all that good. So far, I’ve come across:
The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook – I would seriously love to get my hands on this. The recipes in it look great, but if you’re in the UK, you can forget it unless you have £150 to spare. Seriously. The reviews are really good and I think when Boyfriend and I go back to the states for Christmas, I’ll be having a copy delivered.
The Paleo Approach Cookbook – I’m currently reading The Paleo Approach (non cookbook) by Sara Ballantyne and I have to say, it’s excellent. Very informative. I’m currently in the sciencey bit at the moment, which is pretty heavy. But the whole book is about autoimmunity and the causes and how you can put your condition back into remission. However, I didn’t purchase this book because of the mixed reviews.
The bad reviews complain about the unrealistic nature of the recipes – hard to find ingredients, not being able to dedicate enough time in the kitchen, or just simply having a life outside of obsessive compulsive cooking. So, I skipped it. If you’re more adventurous and have more time, it could be good for you
Paleo Recipes for Auto Immune Diseases (Caveman Cookbooks) – I did, however, buy this book. And then promptly returned it. For a tenner, this was definitely not worth the money. To be fair, I should have been tipped off by the fact that the cover photo displays a meal that consists of practically only foods that you have to avoid on AIP. Hmmm…
So, maybe books aren’t the way to go at the moment, unless you can get yourself a copy of Mickey Trescott’s which is apparently very good. There are also a number of ebooks available, including an ebook version of The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook. I have Kindle Unlimited, so I downloaded a few of the others that were available, but they were all pretty uninspiring. Lots of beige. So, what else is available?
Well, you’re currently reading a blog about AIP, so you’re probably aware of the fact that there are quite a few AIP blogs out there, some of which have a great variety of recipes on them. But here are some of the ones that I’ve found…
- AIP Lifestyle – by Jessica Flanigan, Clinical Nutritionist
- Grazed and Enthused – by Alaena Haber
Just scroll down the page for all the recipes she has found and linked to.
- The Paleo Mom – by Sarah Ballantyne, PhD, scientist and expert on autoimmunity
There are a lot of good resources on this website. I strongly recommend you check it out if you suspect you are autoimmune.
- Phoenix Helix Paleo AIP Recipe Roundtables – by Eileen Laird, autoimmune columnist for Paleo Magazine
This is the mother-load of recipes. Basically, Eileen gets AIP bloggers to submit a maximum of two recipes every week to her blog, where she displays the ones that are AIP-friendly and picks out the favourites for the following weeks. Finding this has made the whole challenge seem a lot more doable. I think especially for Boyfriend, seeing recipes that could be done instead of focusing on the recipes that couldn’t be done any more was a revelation.
There are a lot of pin-boards on Pinterest that are dedicated to AIP recipes. Here are a few of the ones I’ve come across…
- Autoimmune Paleo – by PaleoParents
- AIP-friendly recipes – by thepaleomom
- AIP recipes – by coconikki
- AIP recipes – by AutoimmunePaleo (Mickey Trescott – author of that book I really want)
- And more… there are literally hundreds of Pinterest board dedicated to AIP recipes, making the future of food look a little bit brighter if you’re doing this challenge with me!
Instagram is OK for a bit of AIP food voyeurism, but all you get is a photo and some tags. So unless you’re really good at guessing recipes from filtered photographs, Instagram isn’t going to be that much use to you.
We traditionally like a good cookbook – we love the photos and the lovely designs and the fact we can make notes in it and it’s easy to refer to when you’re cooking. But as there’s not really anything brilliant out there at the moment that won’t break the bank, we’ve found blogs and Pinterest to be the most useful for us. Specifically, we’ve found the Phoenix Helix Paleo AIP Recipe Roundtables and AIP recipes by Mickey Trescott to be the most useful overall.
In order to get through the Autoimmune Protocol challenge, I can’t emphasise enough the importance of having a variety of good recipes at your disposal. Suddenly, you’re pretty much snack-free, sugar-free, and indulgence-free. You don’t want to be taste-free as well. And you don’t have to be.
I hope this helps you get off to a less shaky start than we did! If you’ve come across your own resources on your AIP journey, please share them in the comments.
Breakfast: 2 gluten free sausages, 2 slices of bacon, with salad
Lunch: 2 Big-O-Bacon burgers, 2 mini lamb burgers, with salad (I ate these cold as we had a picnic in the Peak District!)
Dinner: Orange Molasses Pork Chops with Skillet Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Snacks: 1 small glass of coconut water
Pain level (out of 10)
Woke up at 6am with a full bladder and a pain level of 2. After emptying, it went down to 0. Pain has been really low all day, but with the odd twinge at about 2. It hasn’t been pain free, but there’s definitely been less irritation in general. I’m gonna take that as a good sign 🙂