Real life AIP tips and tricks features stories from people like you who are using the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol to manage an autoimmune condition and live well in spite of the obstacles they may encounter. Healing from an autoimmune disease is not just about the food though. While the food you eat (and don’t eat) is extremely important, other lifestyle factors are at play, such as reducing emotional stress, cultivating quality sleep, practicing regular exercise, or keeping a positive outlook on life. My wish for you is to draw strength and inspiration from these real life stories from all over the world.To contribute your own story of recovery on the blog, click here to download the submission form. To read more real life AIP tips and tricks, click here.
Name: Alice Delacourt
Location: Sherbrooke, Québec, Canada
Diagnosis: no autoimmune condition diagnosed, but I was experiencing weight gain, digestive problems and I was clearly reacting to certain foods.
When did you start AIP? March 2016
Have you reintroduced any non-AIP foods yet? Yes, I have reintroduced most paleo foods, including nightshades and coffee. I don’t seem to have any problem with those foods. That being said, I have to be careful with eggs and nuts/seeds; eating too much of these foods will give me pimples and stomach discomfort.
Which tips or tricks made your life easier in the kitchen and helped you stick with the AIP diet?
- Meal prepping: I love making big batches of cauliflower rice, zoodles, crockpot meals (especially pork shoulder), zucchini stir fry, and roasted chicken (I bake two at the same time). This way, I always have something to eat, ready in the refrigerator.
- Having the support of my boyfriend who understands my healing journey. While we eat the same meals, he adds eggs, rice, and potatoes. He also cooks and can totally make AIP dishes!
- Reading books about the Autoimmune Protocol explaining the theory and practice (for example: The Paleo Approach by Sarah Ballantyne).
What are your top three AIP go-to meals that are easy and quick to prepare?
- Chicken sausage and homemade sauerkraut.
- A simple plate with beef and salad (with or without plantains chips/carrots on the side, my favorite foods!).
- Vietnamese-inspired stir fry (zucchini, bok choy, mushrooms, onions, ground meat of choice, coconut aminos, garlic, and ginger).
Meatloaf / terrine with ground meat of choice, liver, bacon, and onions! (note from Sophie: can I say YUM!) This looks very much like traditional terrines one can find in French “charcuteries”. This terrine is easy to make and doesn’t contain any hidden ingredients (gluten, sugars, corn starch, spices)!
What are your favorite AIP snacks?
- Banana waffles (using this banana bread recipe) with homemade raspberry/apricot jam.
- Baby carrots or plantain chips with liver paté.
- Fresh fruit bowl during the summer.
How do you manage to stay AIP outside of the house (at work, restaurants, travel, etc)?
- At work, I always bring my lunch box (so easy!). I transport the food in a cooler and it goes in the refrigerator at work.
- When eating out at a restaurant, I ask for a piece of grilled meat or fish (without any spice) and a green salad with olive oil on the side or “naked” steamed vegetables.
- When we take road trips, fruit is enough to keep me full on the road (I limit my fruit consumption to 1 to 2 servings per day though). One of my favorite go-to’s when traveling is 1/2 cantaloupe filled with fruit and nuts (I have reintroduced nuts).
- When camping, we take our portable BBQ with us and grill some meat or fish that we serve with a side of vegetables.
- For airplane travels, I bring a pre-cooked meal with me on the plane, and some fruit. Also, as I practice intermittent fasting from time to time, it doesn’t bother me to go for a longer period of time without eating.
What other lifestyle components have you implemented in your healing routine (sleep, stress management, exercise, etc)?
- I try to have a very active life outside, in nature. I love running, walking, hiking, and camping! It is important to keep moving in every way you can, even if it is just walking during lunch hour, biking instead of driving to go to work, taking the stairs instead of the elevator.
- I practice yoga regularly (3 to 4 times per week), and I recently began meditation.
- Sleep is very important for me. My boyfriend and I sleep on the floor, just on a puzzle mat. Our backs are better than before the switch.
What advice would you give to a beginner just starting the AIP diet and lifestyle?
Take it easy, try to go for easy meals and look for diversity in veggies and meats.
What are your favorite AIP resources?
My favorite resource is definitely The Paleo Approach by Sarah Ballantyne. I also love her blog, The Paleo Mom, because it is a gold mine of information. Another favorite is the blog of Martine Partridge, Eat Heal Thrive, as well as Autoimmune Paleo. And of course I also love A Squirrel in the Kitchen, which I recently discovered!
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We want to hear about your AIP story and what works for you! If you wish to contribute your own healing journey on the blog, click here to download the submission form.