If you have an Autoimmune disease then a standard Paleo Diet may not be enough to help you with your symptoms and you may need to go a step further and adopt the Paleo autoimmune protocol as recommended by Robb Wolf in his book the Paleo Solution.
What is the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol
The Paleo autoimmune protocol is a superset of the standard Paleo diet and requires the removal of several additional foods for a month or two that have the potential to irritate the gut and develop Increased Intestinal Permeability (Leaky Gut to it’s friends).
Foods to Remove
- Nuts and Seeds
- Peppers (including chillies)
Use digestive enzymes to aid your digestion, the Now Super Enzymes are what we use and come well recommended. Also use a good grade probiotic and if possible eat fermented food for the natural probiotics and foods with prebiotic fibre like sweet potatoes for prebiotic. Don’t overdo the exercise, train smart, no marathons whilst trying to heal that gut!
As a side note, Coffee can be a problem for some folks and I would suggest taking it out and reintroducing it with the other foods. Coffee can cross react with gluten antibodies which means, if you have a problem with gluten, you may well have a problem with Coffee. Take it out for a month if you can manage it (there are lots of great tea’s out there and maybe it’s time to give kombucha a shot!)
After a month, two if you can handle it, try reintroducing these foods one at a time. Always leave at least 3 days between different foods and measure any spike in symptoms or digestive issues (if bringing tomatoes back in has you running for the toilet, then… they are out, for a good while at least).
Putting it into practice
I’ll be honest, this is no walk in the park even for those of us used to eating a Paleo style diet. The removal of sundried tomatoes is a real kicker and worse still, the loss of peppers and all the spices and spice mixes that takes out of action means that a lot of our ‘Paleo Meals’ had to be rethought from scratch.
What you end up eating is going to look at lot like meat and vegetables but that does not mean it has to be boring and we are currently putting together a series of Paleo autoimmune protocol recipes, UK focused but US friendly to help people make the transition without crying into their bowl of lean chicken and brocoli every night.
Eat a standard Paleo diet with lots of fresh, ideally organic produce. Lean cuts of conventional (supermarket) meat; more fatty cuts if desired of grass fed, organic animals and wild caught fish. Supplement with Vitamin D & omega 3. Strictly remove any processed sugars, grains, legumes (beans) and processed vegetable oils. So, that means no junk food & no processed food.
If you are new to this, keep your carbs kind of low and focus on using sweet potatoes, yams and such to get your carbs but try to keep that for after exercise.