Skip links

After medications failed to treat my autoimmune disease, I turned to nutrition to address my symptoms naturally. I want to empower your health with the same steps I used to heal with food.

Reader Interactions


  1. While I’m not following the AIP, I’ve toyed with the idea and ordered Micki’s book a few months ago to learn more about it all. It’s a fantastic resource! I love, love, love the menu plans. We’ve followed a couple weeks of it, and there’s more than enough food for meals and snacks, even for those of us with big appetites. I really like the recipes too. Her beef liver pate is the only recipe that’s made me *enjoy* eating beef liver. And like you say, Lauren, it’s a gorgeous book. Makes me want a tablet just so I can fully enjoy its beauty!

      • PLEASE REPLY. I also get a reaction (redness/rash on chest) when i eat egg white, but only if they are not cooked good. You said in this article that eggs and milk are to be avoided? Well i don’t have a reaction to either, except, as i said, when the eggs are not cooked or not cooked well. My question is should i stop eating eggs anyway?? And milk?

        • Hi, I came to this site while searching for information about autoimmune diets because I have chronic urticaria (DPU, angiodema type), vitaligo, and sjogren’s. A low-histamine diet has been very helpful for me. Many high-histamine foods are not allowed on the AIP diet, and I’m sure there are similarities in what is malfunctioning in my skin mast cells and what is happening in mast cells lining the intestine etc. I just wanted to mention that uncooked egg whites are suspected of releasing histamine from mast cells, while cooked eggs are not.

          Trying to address the root cause (leaky gut) with this diet is a wonderful idea! It would present a real challenge to me, since fermented foods are extremely high-histamine.

          Thank You for the informative site and all your work!

          • Hello!
            I have the same issue and trying anything and everything to get it under control. It’s definitely food related for me but can’t pin point it. What have you done and how are you now!

  2. Oi. I just started GAPS for Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis – after a long and, often, discouraging search for a solution other than taking synthetic hormones for the rest of my life – and I thought that was restrictive! I’m still in the introduction phase, and I’m starting to enjoy homemade broth and soups, but I’ve really been looking forward to yogurt and eggs. This paleo protocol looks a lot more drastic. No eggs? No nuts? No dairy? Is all this absolutely necessary? I want to get better, but I’d like to keep my sanity in the process. I understand that you’re sharing what has worked for you – and thank you, I don’t want to seem ungrateful. But do you think – and I know you don’t know everything, so I’m just asking for your opinion – do you think everyone with an autoimmune disease would be better off on AIP than on GAPS, or is it more individual?

    • No, I don’t believe everyone with an autoimmune disease would be better off on AIP than GAPS. Thousands of people have changed their lives with GAPS, it is a powerful diet. I do believe the nut/seed based baked goods on GAPS are highly problematic for many people. If you continue with GAPS and still have symptoms after like 3 months, then you could try AIP. It will be less of a transition once you are used to GAPS.

        • Carla, I feel your pain! I have Hashimoto’s as well. Holistically, that’s treated by addressing the adrenals/ intestines. If you can afford it, do yourself a favor and find a good acupuncturist who uses herbs. I spent years fighting with doctors only to see results from an acupuncturist within HOURS. I swear I’m not exaggerating.

          I wanted to comment on your diet question as I’m currently following AIP. It took me about a year to transition from GF to full AIP. I wish I had done it sooner. AIP isn’t meant to be your permanent diet, just a method of healing. As Lauren often points out, all these diseases share one bottom line: an unhealthy gut. These are ways to heal your gut, not just slap a band-aid on it. Eventually your diet will expand. But I can say this: it gets worse before it gets better. Don’t be surprised to find you start becoming sensitive to foods you were fine with before. BUT the good news is it’s almost like an exorcism, the body is freaking out as its offenders leave but soon you’ll find things calm down and start to heal. Don’t be overwhelmed with food changes. Do what you can, pace yourself, forgive yourself if you make mistakes, and understand the stress from beating yourself up over a bite of cheese is more detrimental than the cheese itself. I’ve been following Lauren’s blog for a long time and have, myself, spent years trying to figure out what the hell was wrong with me. The truth is the quickest route for healing is to go on a super strict diet. But is that realistic? No. Do most of us do that? I doubt it. I sure didn’t So if you’re looking for another opinion, I’d say do what works for you. If giving up dairy, eggs, etc makes you THAT unhappy, then don’t. But listen to your body! I discovered every time I ate dairy I’d have bad skin out breaks, intestinal pain, and fluid in my ears. Eventually it just stopped being worth it. I really miss popcorn, but bloating and dizziness isn’t worth a few handfuls of crunch. And as you start to explore new foods, you’ll discover there are things you never would have eaten before that you really enjoy now. Every fall my mom made butternut squash and I thought it looked gross. This year I finally tried it out of boredom with my diet and I discovered it’s amazing! Seriously. It’s probably my favorite vegetable. I know it can feel depressing to look at all the foods you can’t eat, but no amount of ice cream is worth feeling and being unhealthy. It may not feel that way now because healing doesn’t happen overnight and you feel like you’re sacrificing for nothing, but eventually you’ll see it’s absolutely worth revamping your diet. So, I don’t mean to be preachy but I just wanted you to know we’ve ALL been there, staring at the screen in tears thinking, “No way am I giving up pizza!” But you’re definitely not alone. Understand you’ll have good days and bad, but you’re healing your body. There is no better feeling than a healthy body! And if you can, find a gut-healing friend to vent to. It’s very helpful to have someone who encourages you to stay on course when you’re having a bad day and vice versa. Plus, exchanging recipes can be fun! Good luck! =)

          • Yes, just want to echo what you said about “We’ve ALL been there.” It’s hard for everyone that does it. It wasn’t much more than a year ago that I remember talking to a friend who was gluten intolerant and feeling that I could NEVER give up gluten. Just gluten mind you. And I meant it. I really didn’t think I could do it, as bread is pretty much my favorite food. Well, now I’ve been eating paleo for 10 months and pretty much full AIP for 6 months (I’ve reintroduced nuts, egg yolks, coffee and small amounts of alcohol successfully). And it is HARD, and I still miss so much about food, eating socially, and so many things.

            BUT, the changes I have seen are nothing short of miraculous. I have Hashomoto’s with depression, fatigue and brain fog as my most persistent and debilitating symptoms–until they lifted with the AIP diet. I feel like this diet has given me my life back. So while I wish that there was another way than AIP, and while I am still very much actively grieving what I have lost food-wise, there is not a single day or moment that I question that this is worth it.

            That’s why I encourage people to try AIP if they think it might help. Just commit for 30 days, or even just 2 weeks! It is VERY challenging, no question, but you can count the days until you can start eating normally again if you want to. It’s doable. No one will force you to stick to that diet if it doesn’t help you, or if the changes you see aren’t worth it. But if it does work for you, you won’t WANT to eat “normally” again, because the tradeoff of what you gain compared to what you lose is so very clear.

          • Thanks for this wonderful post. It is a great encouragement to someone that wants to start this, but is, as you said, afraid to give up pizza. I’m going to look for buddies to do this with. I know many people with autoimmune disorders that are in bad shape right now. I hope I can find at least one that will do this with me.

          • Thank you for saying it gets worse before it gets better. I needed to hear that!! (even though you said it almost a year ago haha) My chiro told me to try paleo and i felt great for two weeks.. then my stomach ballooned and cramped. We got my blood work back and found Hashimoto. 5 days into AIP and I thought I would be flying, not as tired as I am. I am at that point were I have to walk by faith not by sight but you just never are sure you are taking the right path. Thank you for the encouraging words

          • Michaela, I wonder when you say it gets worse before it gets better, if you mean your symptoms, or your food intolerances. I have done the AIP 2 times, for a month each, but then didn’t transition well out of them for different reasons (vacation, holidays, frustration at feeling worse)…going back to normal paleo too quickly to learn anything. So i’m trying again, this time for the long haul. i’m only 3 weeks in, but as happened last time, my symptoms (20 years undiagnosed of severe weakness often keeping me from walking well or at all, torso contractions, extreme exhaustion and brain fog to the point of mumbling and staring at the ceiling for long periods) are getting worse. And others are cropping up, like joint pain, which I never have. I’m making sure to get enough carbs, and am packing in the nutrition with a Whals 9 cups of goodness a day approach, and doing all the other lifestyle stuff like yoga, sun, good sleep, journaling, serious stress reduction, laughter etc.

            Anyone have thoughts on this? On the AIP did you get worse before you started stabilizing and then getting better?

            I don’t have any problem committing to the program, as long as I don’t think it’s exacerbating my condition for some reason.

            Thanks everyone! tara

            • Hi Tara!
              I’ve heard of some people having a reaction to foods like coconut which are a staple of AIP. Would it be possible for you to get an IgG food panel done? That might shed some light on things. I think it’s common to feel crummy at first (I sure did!), but not to be deteriorating over a period of weeks.

              If you don’t have a good functional medicine practitioner, I highly recommend getting one. Brain fog like that can indicate brain inflammation and sometimes brain autoimmunity. I’ve learned from personal experience that it’s important to get tests done by someone who knows what they’re doing and what to look for. If I was doing just AIP alone without the added aid of functional medicine guidance, I don’t think I’d be making nearly as much progress.

          • Wow! Just read your ‘preachy’ note and broke down in gasping tears! I have been dealing with gut issues for years without really knowing what was going on. Finally, a year ago, I read about SIBO and was diagnosed by a D.O. I have been working on my gut with diet and supplements for the past year. Have had ‘some’ relief from the terrible bloat and pain. But…. had not really committed myself to all these suggested protocols. I was just not willing to give up certain foods – I am a self-proclaimed ‘foodie’ that loves to cook, loves to eat, has many foodie friends, and a husband that prefers that I cook his favorite (not so healthy) foods. So I’ve been kidding myself all this time that I can try to live a ‘normal’ life with social outings around food, and please everyone by me, etc. and still get some healing. That’s just not the case. Your post made me cry, but in a good way! Such a relief to hear others that have struggled with all this too and to give myself a break from the guilt over not doing it perfectly. (I love cheese!) I am ‘renewed’ in my resolve after reading your post, so thank you!! I will do what I know is best for MY body – even if it means saying no to dinner out with friends or saying no to fixing my husband foods that I know are bad for both of us and that I know I can’t stay away from. As you said, it’s just not worth it! So thankful for your comments and in-the-face truth! We need to hear it. : )

          • Hi Michaela. I really appreciate your post and everything you said. It makes me feel better to know that I’m not alone and there are many people in the same boat. It’s definitely a struggle to change my diet so drastically but I’m committed to being healthy again. I still feel that I don’t have the energy to get through the day sometimes and I’m wondering if I’m supplementing wrong. I have full blown Hashimoto’s and the last time I had an antibody test was in March of 2014. My tpo antibody number was over 19,000! I have seen numerous doctors and recently a naturopathic doctor but I feel I’m still missing something. I was wondering what supplements you were taking?

        • Do you know much about Intersticial Cystitis? It is supose to be an autoimmune disease. I have had it for about 4yrs, 2yrs chronically. Very painful. I with a naturopath have done AIP with all my fodmaps/sibo food restrictions, and IGG sensitivities removed. Also then removed most oxalates as well as the assumed acidic foods. Doing all of this for 6mnths and no change. I have given up and eat the foods I can digest which include my sensitivities and some oxalate foods. Still sibo/fodmaps safe foods, so low carb! I am very frustrated and not sure what to do from here. If anyone has any opinions please share them.

          • Angela, I hope you see this. I’ve had I. C. since I was twenty and am now sixty. Yes, its horrible. I have gone on a low histamine and medium to low ‘organic’ diet. Drink lots of purified water. Watermelon blended with a bit of organic real sea salt from the health food store has really relieved pain (when I can get it and it doesn’t have to be organic because of the thick rind) I got off wheat but eat a little rice bread, I eat organic bison and chicken only about once a week and poached organic eggs and use coconut oil on everything. Also love baked acorn and butternut squash with wild rice. Try it. And keep up the water and walks outdoors.

          • I was diagnosed with “Interstitial Cystitis” , and boy did I suffer 2 years with “conventional” urologists who were clueless! They did not help me and left me despairing!
            My condition turned out to be a fungal form of Candidis Albacans that had infiltrated my tongue and bladder walls and perhaps intestines ..and overwhelmed my immune system.
            “Conventional” doctors will tell you this is not “possible”. Find a Homeopath.
            I was cured with a combo of carb free Candidas diet and a sulphur drugs in ten days!
            Followed by a protocol to reintroduce intestinal flora and create balance.

    • As a person also living with Hashimoto as well as 2 other autoimmune disorders, I would not recommend this diet in total. Anybody living with an autoimmune disorder knows that different disorders affect different parts of the body. Everybody with an autoimmune disorder should be on a gluten free diet and should also avoid things like soy and corn products. People with lupus should be vegans because meat is very hard on both the kidneys and the heart. People with colitis need less meat and healthy fiber foods. People with Hashimoto don’t do well with grains but very well with all fruits and veggies. People whose joints are affected should not eat dairy or chicken and for some eggs may be okay. People have to do what works for them and be prepared to change as the body changes.

      • Diane, multiple autoimmunity is very common, so that isn’t helpful advice for many.
        Instead of recommending different diets for different conditions, I think it’s more fruitful to eliminate basic trigger foods (which AIP does), get gluten cross-reactivity and food sensitivity testing, and work on healing the gut and microbiome, as well as modulating the immune response and improving digestion (if meat is hard on your system, you likely have deficient HCl and pancreatic enzymes, which is common for autoimmune patients).

  3. This is all great advice if you never leave the house, go on vacation, eat with friends and family, or live with someone who also eats with you. I could tell my husband to bulldoze his entire vegetable garden of tomatoes, peas, peppers and eggplant which he planted so I could have organic fresh vegetables. He planted kale but the bugs eat it faster than I can.
    I have Hashimotos and celiac disease. I have no problem taking synthroid, eliminating gluten was a challenge but I managed without too much trouble. Now I have multiple sclerosis and have been trying to follow a Paleo diet based on the Wahl’s protocol. I have lost so much weight I can’t find clothes to fit and I eat a lot. And now I read about everything else I need to give up and I am getting so discouraged. If I felt a tiny bit better it would be easier to do this but after giving up all these foods I cannot honestly say I feel on bit of difference.
    I even went to a functional medicine doctor who recommended that I have twice weekly I.V. Infusions for ten thousand dollars. That’s not going to happen.
    Sorry about the rant but I am very discouraged.

    • I’m sorry. That sounds so difficult! Making dramatic lifestyle changes without seeing results is pretty awful. My general feeling with these diet changes is that, if you haven’t seen *any* changes at all within a month or two, then it probably isn’t working for you. Maybe ease off and be a little less strict for a while (and see if that has any effect on how you feel), and then start over with AIP in a few weeks or months, when you’ve been able to regroup a bit?

      I know that nightshades, dairy and egg whites –all allowed on the Wahls diet but not on AIP–have a *huge* impact on my symptoms (I have Hashimoto’s), so I think AIP specifically is worth trying. I think you can absolutely do it, but you need to be in a mental and emotional place where you can take on this challenge–especially with, as you say, the complications of travel, social occasions, and how it impacts your loved ones. Get support!–Get it from your husband, from reading the blogs that Lauren mentions (show the success stories to your husband to get him on board!), etc–I have found that it’s really reassuring to read that it’s worked for other real people out there, especially when I have the occasional return of symptoms–that’s when it’s hardest. But so far, as long as I stick with it, those periods pass.

      I know you’re probably tired of suggestions, but one other thing you might look into is LDN: It can be hard to find a doctor who will prescribe it, but the general consensus is that if you have an autoimmune disease there is absolutely nothing to lose in trying it. Just another resource to think about, and it might be worth trying before AIP, since it’s much lower effort and might bring you to a place where you start feeling a little better, which could make starting AIP easier. (From what I’ve read, LDN and AIP diet work really well together–LDN doesn’t give you a pass on diet unfortunately).

      Above all, good luck!

          • I also have MS, Hashimoto and a gluten intolerance they said I have IBD but as soon as I eat anything with gluten I swell up as if I was 6 months pregnant . None of the hormone replacement meds agree with me , I’m suffering terribly have degenerative disc disease also . Carpel tunnel numbness and pain . I don’t know where to turn . My quality of life is awful . I live in Phila have endocrinologist neurologist cardiologist . Nothing helping me I try to stay positive but I can barely get out of bed . I have little support .

  4. Lauren Thank you so much for your time and site.

    I have recently been dealing with low stomach acid and GERD but with so much info out there how do I know which diet to follow. I was going to consult with naturallyhealing bee but some of her stuff seems a bit off. also I hear I should have eggs, some say I shouldnt etc, I hear to have yogurt and some say no, same with Kombucha and fruit and so on even veggies

    any way you could help me to decide on which program to follow would be VERY helpful

    • I can’t give you detailed advice here, but the autoimmune paleo protocol would most likely be very helpful. Then you could try introducing the foods you mention – eggs, yogurt, kombucha, etc. – and know if they cause a reaction.

  5. In 2011 I changed all my diet. Cut out dairy, red meat, pork, night shades, gluten, most grains. I eat organic chicken, fresh fish, organic veges and fruit. I do indulge in a cookie or 2 during the week. I have lost 97 lbs. and am totally cured from 15 years of RA. No pain, no swelling, no fatigue. I have boundless energy, swim a mile in the ocean 3 times a week, walk, run errands (sound silly but with RA sometime going to the store is hell), have sleep overs with 3 grandkids (one is a baby).
    Changing what you eat can greatly change how you feel. I am 61 years old and making up for lost time and loving life. I went cold turkey with all the food changes. Clean out my kitchen, got rid of everything I wasn’t going to eat and went shopping, re-stocked my kitchen. It was not hard. It has taken some serious thought but it is worth every minuet, every day!!

  6. Interesting and nice to read the flowery stories, but I feel very discouraged. I have cut out gluten, dairy, corn, peanuts, pork, and all red meat. I still don’t feel good, am depressed and just want to feel better, but the thought of doing an even stricter elimination diet makes me want to cry! I don’t even see how it is possible for me to do GAPS or AIP or any other similar diet, as I get VIOLENTLY sick when I eat any red meat of any kind. Even traces of lard keep me up for days with severe stomach cramps and diarrhea. I had a bite of beef a year ago and was in agony for two days. How in the world am I supposed to survive this diet when I can’t tolerate meat?? I’ve been suspecting chicken has been irritating me lately as well. Thank you for the info, but I just don’t see how it can help me. Desperate.

    • GAPS isn’t going to work for everyone, and clearly you would not flourish if you have an aversion to fatty stocks and meats. Given this is a site about GAPS/AIP I don’t think it would be fair to think these bloggers have an alternative for you as meat is well and a staple. I’m not sure what food protocol you are following given your list of elimination, maybe it’s evolved into a bit of a hybrid diet, so how about thinking about this issue in a different way.

      If your current food plan is not working for you on either a mental or physical health level it’s time to rethink your strategy and why you started ditching those foods in the first place. Seems like you need to clear the slate, do some more research, an maybe find a nutritional practitioner to work with and start again.

    • Rebecca…I am so sorry for your discouragement. I wanted to share a bit of my experience with you. I was misdiagnosed with IBS for over 10 yrs. I found out a few years ago that I have Celiac. I had already gone gluten free at that time, since I was having an overall health crisis (fatigue, pain, foggy headedness, etc). I felt very overwhelmed by the thought of changing my diet more. What in the world would I eat?! Then, I made a decision. I was spending most of my time wishing I felt better, yet not making any more major changes. So, I decided that I would get really serious about feeling better. I drastically changed my diet. I followed a strict paleo diet (no added sugar, limited fruit) and cut out nightshades for 3 months. I immediately felt a significant improvement in my health. And, once I stopped eating ALL grains, I was able to eat meat and not feel sick for the first time in many years. I had given up red meat as it made me very ill. I now know it was the grains doing the damage in my body, and once they were removed from my diet, my body was allowed to begin the healing process. I have since added potatoes back into my diet, and other nightshades, as I do not react negatively to those foods. Grains, dairy, legumes and excess sugar are big no no’s for me. They always cause some type of poor reaction in my body. In fact, so much so that I don’t want to eat those foods. It isn’t worth it. But it took me taking those first steps in order to realize how much better I could feel by eliminating foods that don’t work in my body. I hope that you can find a diet that works for you and that you will feel better soon, if you aren’t already feeling better. Take care! 😀

  7. Lauren, I’m confused. I read your book Quit PMS and it seems in there that you advocate for eggs and raw dairy, and many of your recipes include it. Why are you then also advocating for a stricter diet that does not include those things? On another note, I want to challenge the idea that healing the gut always involves a strict, no cheat protocol. I’m sorry, but life is much more grey then the black and white approaches these diets take. What if we lived in a third world country without access to organic coconut and an abundance of fresh veggies, organic meat and clean water? We would probably do our best to heal ourselves, but then get on with our lives. My point is that I believe the shadow of restrictive diets is that they can lead to food obsession, depression, anxiety, social isolation, and a very narrow focus in our lives. I have lived with many digestive/nerve problems for the past few years, and every time I try a super restrictive diet I may find short term relief but the stress/anxiety it causes leaves me even more miserable. However, when I can relax around my food a little more and become less strict, often my digestion feels a lot easier. The bottom line is, life sometimes is about trusting and letting go of the illusion of 100% control. There is a lot of healing to be achieved through changing our mindset.

    I do want to say though, that I have been very inspired by your blog and your story, and I appreciate all the information that you give out. I just think there needs to be a balanced perspective when it comes to restriction, and that we could all be a little more kind to ourselves when it comes to our food choices.

    • Nicole, I completely understand your point about being restrictive. I’m on GAPS and became very sad when I thought I couldn’t drink tea, so you know what I drink it! I I only have two cups and have ditched the soy. I have subsequently found out that weak black tea is OK further along so I feel OK about it, and guess what I didn’t explode.
      There are two things that keep me going with this GAPS, firstly that it gets less restrictive as it goes on, and secondly I can see improvements, ironically the first thing I notice was a decrease in my anxiety.
      I know you have mentioned about diet affecting social life etc, but I have to say that I’ve been so sick that these things are not part of my life as my functioning is so poor, and now preparing meals on GAPS is just as easy as planning ‘normal’ meals its just the food choices have shifted.
      So I think in general the diet I have chosen meets my needs, which of course are different to yours. I’m fully aware of the concepts of ‘letting go’, but sometimes life needs us to be proactive, which is different from controlling, it’s how we move forward in life. My mindset is placed on finding any way possible to heal (this includes spiritual connection) and maybe at some point I will be at a stage where I can go to a restaurant or party and have the opportunity to feel disappointed about my restrictive diet.

    • I appreciate your thoughtful comment, Nicole! As for the raw dairy and egg recommendations in Quit PMS, these are extremely helpful for balancing hormones but when there is severe gut disruption – as in the case of autoimmune diets – then the individual should consider this protocol and temporarily eliminate these foods.

      I do respect your point about the detrimental effects – socially and psychologically – about no-cheat healing protocols. I believe there is no one-size-fits-all approach to healing, and this goes for restrictive diets. For me, my symptoms return if I try to re-introduce a food to early. I recently ate sweet potato puree, thinking it was butternut squash puree, and got terrible stomach cramps. Depending on the individual, a super restrictive diet is not always the optimal option for gut-healing (it sounds like that’s you). I do think it boils down to the individual, but also the fact that doing a restrictive protocol like this doesn’t need to cause anxiety (as impossible as that sounds… I know). It only causes anxiety and stress if we are open to the anxiety and stress.

  8. When I first heard about the AIP, I reacted the same as many of you. Honestly, I was offended at the very idea of eating that strictly. Like Lauren, I chose GAPS instead, and it made a huge difference for me, but unfortunately, not enough to put me in remission. 6 months later, I researched the AIP again and decided to give it a try. An important thing to realize is that the AIP isn’t a lifetime diet. It’s an elimination diet, designed to test for food intolerances, and it’s extremely effective in doing that. (I learned I’m intolerant to dairy and nightshades.) If you read the article, Mickey states that you can start reintroducing foods after 30 days. I think the fear blocks us from seeing all the facts sometimes. No one has to do the AIP. It’s just a tool available if you need it. I have rheumatoid arthritis, and while GAPS lessened my flares, it was the AIP that gave me the key to eliminating flares completely, so I’m very grateful this protocol is out there.

    • Thank you for sharing your story, Ellen! Looking back, I should have started with the AIP because it really boosted my healing more than the GAPS Diet. I’m not discrediting the GAPS Diet in anyway, and it offers many beneficial points that the AIP doesn’t, such as the lifestyle changes. But if I had known better, I would have sucked it up and done the AIP first.

  9. Thank you so much for what you shared in this website, Lauren! I have read many of your article and see that they are very informative and useful for me. You really are a fancier with extensive knowledge. I hope that you will share more and more in the future. Love you! Love your article! Thanks again!

  10. Hi Lauren! I have so many questions for you but for now I’ll try to condense. 🙂 I have been interested in the Paleo Diet, and the different forms it takes, for quite a while. I without a doubt have some sort of “mystery” autoimmune problem that has not been identified yet but it has been serious enough to say that I have had severe IBS for the past year. No bleeding but it feels as if it’s on the brink because the pain and discomfort is pretty bad. Now that I’m reading about the AIP diet, I am curious to try it. But I have done Paleo before and, curiously, started gaining the weight I had previously worked so hard to lose only four months before. As for me, my weight is always an indicator of my health. It drastically bungees around depending on the health of my intestines and thyroid. So you can see why I’d be apprehensive to try the AIP diet because, when I was doing extremely well (I was vibrant, lean and thin, energetic, positive etc.) I wasn’t off of grains, beans, nightshades etc. I WAS taking the all in one VEGA powder (which turned out to be recalled because of a bacteria problem. Eek!), exercising too often for a normal work schedule to accommodate (but it was working), and not really worrying about food aside from the obvious allergens like gluten, dairy, and soy which I avoid already. This message is too long. lol!

    What about the AIP diet works for you?? Because I’m not sure if I should try it. I feel like my body is a spaz that can’t tolerate any change! I’m sure you know how sensitive the intestines are and I can’t seem to find a happy medium that works. HELP!

    • IBS is often linked to being HLA-B27 positive and associated with the family of spondyloarthritic autoimmune disorders. There’s a good scientific rationale and a lot of anecdotal evidence (including my own) to support the benefits of a low starch diet to help these conditions. The AIP diet is not low starch, it includes a number of starchy root vegetables, arrowroot powder and starch-containing spices (e.g. ginger and turmeric) and it is stated that it may not be appropriate for all conditions.
      Personally I follow a mix of starch-free paleo and autoimmune (limited nightshade) diet with some additions I’ve found I can tolerate. You may want to look at the following links to find out more.
      Hope this helps.

  11. Hi Lauren,
    I was wondering is the AIP the exact same as just following the Paleo diet and also in the beginning of the article it says not to eat chocolate but a lot of Paleo recipes use that. Plus I was wondering why you picked Paleo and not SCD or GAPS?


    • AIP is not the same as regular Paleo, which includes eggs, seeds, nuts and sometimes nightshades. I actually used a combination of the SCD and GAPS diets for a year and then I merged it with AIP (taking out nuts, seeds, and egg whites). I’m doing my own mix of diets and it is working for me 🙂

  12. This is a gorgeous site and its just what I was looking for! It’s got so much personally relevant information! I’ve been really struggling. Currently my diet is void of all grains, nightshades, cruciferous vegetables, eggs, legumes, dark meats, fish, seeds, nuts, spices and overall: solid food of any kind. I can have bone stock with ghee, small amounts of liver pate (I’ll try the frozen liver bits!), raw goat milk yogurt, raw pickle brine, and dark chocolate (usually 85%) as well as small amounts of raw honey without much fuss. Sometimes I have kombucha, sulfite free raw mead or organic raw cider, or raw juice made with carrots and celery and well strained. I keep trying to add small amounts of vegetables (boiled 2 hours and then pureed in my Vitamix) but even a 1/4 cup of solid food gets stuck in my intestines hurts and keeps me up all night. I’m not producing enough stomach acid even with supplements to properly digest meat, which also gets stuck in my poor gut if I eat more than a bite or two. I’ve read now that I could cut out the cacao, raw dairy, and alcohol. I read about so many people who seem to be able to actually EAT. Do you think it’s worth it to cut more? Is there hope that I’ll be able to eat more with time if I do? I’m underweight but it’s not as bad as before and I know I’m healing…but I’m hungry all the time!!! Any advice or support would be wonderful. Not sure if you currently live in Seattle but I just moved here and I’m so thankful for Bastyr because there’s a lot of great doctor/graduates in the area. I’m in the process of finding my new medical team right now. Thank again for your beautiful site and all it’s fabulous information!!

  13. I’m going to start tomorrow. I am sick of being sick and tired, dizzy, confused, forgetful, over weight, unable to lose no matter what I try and then the relapses on food after long periods of sacrifice and no success straddling my hard efforts, coupled with the emotional roller coaster – ugh. I am willing to try anything right now. I was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease in the late 1990’s; its been a long journey. Fortunately (?), more people are becoming aware of these illnesses so that “we” are not as alone as we use to be. 20 yrs ago it was quite difficult; I was suddenly separated from my employment, friends and family due to environmental allergies; many thought I was crazy so I didn’t attract the support I had hoped for and needed. How do you explain the sudden onset of allergy to the world you live in, but no longer can? In an instant my life went from active and busy to isolated and lonely. Today I can be around people and eat most foods, but I can see/feel the toll on me. It’s time for a needed change and it starts right now, but especially tomorrow morning I’ll go shopping for new food. Thanks for being here and allowing us to share our hope and our misery. K

  14. To be completely honest…I don’t understand why people with autoimmune disorders (I have Graves) are told to stay off grains permanently. For me, it all depends on how the grains are prepared. I can eat things like popcorn, Rice Krispie Treats and nachos without any problem…While a spoon of peanut butter borderline kills me. I guess I just want to know why we have to stay off grains once we’ve healed. Also, fermented foods are NOT good for MOST people with a thyroid issue…and not everyone (like myself) can handle eating heavy meats. Beef, Pork and the like+Me=disaster. I only seem to handle poultry (mainly only the lean parts) well (and tuna). So I can’t say that stuffing my face full of extra meat will make me feel any better. I guess I should try to adapt the AIP diet to best fit my restrictions/allowances?…I don’t really know anymore…maybe I’ll check out another diet or something…

  15. I do not believe in eating meat. And yogurt is a dairy product. The dairy industry kills calves to rob their mothers’ milk and pumps cows with hormones. All the foods you mention as triggers do that for me. This means I am at a loss at what to eat. Is tofu okay? What nuts can I eat? Any type of beans? I do know that when I cut down on junk food–and fruit, by the way–I feel better. But I am so hungry. Oh, would almond or rice flower be better?

  16. I found out I have an autoimmune disease hashimtos They wanted to put me on synthroid medication and I said no and I am trying to heal it myself. However I am a vegetarian and do not eat meat. What do you suggest I eat? I feel very lost. Thanks so much for your help!

  17. I have autoimmune hepatitis and my doctor never gave me a diet to follow, other than mentioning that I should reduce my intake of fat and sugar and eliminate alcohol.
    Through my own research I changed to a paleo diet and I hope this change will be noticed in my next blood test so my doc can either reduce the dosage of the TWO types of steroids I currently take daily or take me off them for awhile. I feel great since starting the paleo diet and of course sugar was THE most difficult, but I did it.
    Additional research brought me to this page and the information is quite interesting. Though I’m following the paleo diet pretty well, I do eat sunflower seeds, eggs and pistachios. I’m going to try and eliminate these foods for a few weeks to see if there is a difference. So much to learn. Thank you for the information.

  18. Hi Lauren.
    i have been following AIP + SCD for the last month, sorry to say i had a (huge) set back but i guess that happens..:/

    anyway, i am a little confused about starch. both diets have so much in common yes the starch seems to be a big issue…

    what do you think?
    i will be very happy to add some sweet potatoes to my diet since it is soooo limited (and i am losing a lot of weight)

    thank you

  19. Hello! I have a question regarding autoimmune diets and candida diets. These two diets vary slightly, but as I am sure you know, candida and leaky gut come hand in hand. How do you recommend tackling this issue? Should one diet be completed before the other? Thanks!

  20. I am so thankful to find this site! SO proud of all of you for your willingness to share your journeys and keep each other motivated! I am at the very beginning and truly believe it was a divine intervention to even find out that I could help myself by healing from the inside! I am excited to think there will be a day when I can live without these awful symptoms. I told my husband in a terrible and humbling 😉 fit of tears yesterday that I’d be willing to do ANYTHING to feel better. But as I’m researching what I should do to get better I have to say I’m puzzled as to how I will accomplish this. I have been a vegetarian for 10 years. I made the decision to not eat meat because of my conscience. It was a hard decision at first because I enjoyed meat! But I did it because I felt it was the right thing to do. I have relied on eggs, nuts, seeds and soy for my protein all these years and am wondering how I could follow this diet without these sources of protein and only fish. (I don’t feel guilty about eating those little guys) I don’t know if there would be any way I could bring myself to eat meat at this point. It makes me terribly sick to even think about it. I don’t think I could keep it down! Like I said, I’m willing to do just about anything- but is eating meat an absolute priority to get my recommended protein and calories in? I exercise and am also nursing my 3 month old and want to start this off the right way. Is it even possible to get all the calories (2,000-2,400) per day and enough protein on this diet without meat, eggs, nuts and seeds? I’d have to eat fish 4 times per day! I’m afraid that could be too much? Any advice you could give would be so gladly appreciated! Thank you so much!

    • Hi Alisha — came across your post and wanted to respond. I’ve been vegetarian for 25 years and in October 2014 started an AIP/elimination diet for Hashimoto’s (Repairvite/Clearvite diet). My doctor allowed me to eat eggs so I kept them in the diet, and have been eating avocado, yams, coconut products, olives, low-glycemic fruits and veggies, and fermented things. That was it for 2+ months and now I have reincorporated some legumes in the last few weeks (peas, garbanzos, lentils, and black beans). I also have reincorporated a bit of rice but I’m ambivalent about it and may keep it out or to a low level. It was challenging to do this diet at first — so much cooking and shopping and dishes and no more socializing around food — but the results have been fantastic; my energy is so much clearer and I have also lost about 12 pounds. I just feel better. FYI I have been eating on average about 1400 calories a day, way less than you said you need, but I don’t feel a lack. In the beginning I did experience a bit more hunger than I was used to and had to eat more often and always carry snacks with me, since the foods I was eating weren’t “stick-to-your-ribs”. I would consult with your doctor if you are nursing, as that adds a layer to your experience that I do not have. But I wanted to say that doing this, when the timing is right, IS possible for a vegetarian. (If eggs trigger you, it might not be possible; thankfully for me I have no reaction to them.) Good luck to you! -Nora

      • Nora,

        Did you follow the standard AIP protocol and the Clearvite Protocol? I was looking at the Clearvite protocol. and on days 8-14 you can’t have any meats. Meat is how I’m surviving AIP. I’m not sure I should follow both plans…I may switch to Clearvite for the detox and then return to AIP.

  21. Is there information in the cookbook about what to DO with the bone broth? I know how to make broth, but if I’m not eating grains, then apart from actual soup (which just leaves us hungry because it isn’t filling enough), I can’t figure out what I might do with it. Do you just drink it straight all day every day or what?

  22. Hi Lauren, I am just learning about AIP and have a few questions. I have Hashi’s and have never been able to lose much weight even when doing ATKINS ( it took 14 weeks to lose 11 lbs). I was eating eggs, and using almond milk in my coffee etc. I am confused about cruceriferous vegetables, goitrogens, and nightshades. Do I have to eliminate all of those fruits and veggies, to be successful? I am willing to try this diet but really want to do it correctly. And do Hashis people actually lose weight from decreasing the autoimmune response against the thyroid or does the diet make you lose weight. I am on Armour and am trying to find a functional medicine practitioner in my area for the rest of testing and supplements. Please advise… Thank you

  23. Hi,
    I have just started the AIP diet and have been using tapioca flour to thicken Lambs fry and bacon gravy, and have tapioca pearl porridge some mornings. I am wondering if tapioca is OK or should I avoid it and use something else.
    Thanks for your help.

  24. I am not arguing that a vegan diet is healthier or will lead to a longer life compared to someone who eats a small amount of animal products, such as a little fish or eggs in their diet. But I am arguing that as the amount of animal products increases in a diet-style forcing natural plant foods off the plate to become a smaller percentage of total caloric intake, the modern diseases that kill over 80 percent of Americans (heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes) will occur in greater and greater likelihood in every genetic type. My review of over 60,000 articles in the scientific literature supports the conclusion that animal products if consumed should be held to a maximum of ten percent of total caloric intake. The Weston Price Foundation, a group that advocates a diet rich in meats based on distorted science and old scientific views that have been disproven by the preponderance of the evidence.

    Dr. Mercola and the Weston Price Foundation flood the internet with their saturated fat is good for you message. They produce articles with supposedly scientific references that either quote the same bunch of people (each other), ignore a ton of modern reputable research, or distort what was said in the study, claiming saturated fat is okay and not related to heart disease. They all use the same distorted logic that it is the consumption of trans fats that are responsible for heart attacks, not saturated fats. They didn’t inform the reader that the reason trans fats are bad is because they have been processed to saturate their carbon bonds so they behave in the body as saturated fats. Because trans fats are bad or worse, does not make saturated fats good. It is similar to the twisted logic of the Weston Price crowd who present the work of this dentist who traveled around the world showing that populations who did not eat processed foods had good teeth, to argue that because some of these cultures ate lots of animal products that must mean diets rich in animal products are good. Because processed foods, sugar, corn syrup and white flour are bad, does not make a diet high in animal products lifespan promoting. Weston Price used some very short-lived people as examples of good health, just because their teeth looked good. Fortunately, we know more today than we did in the early 1900’s. We know which foods contain the full spectrum of nutrients that resist aging and we know that the diseases that afflict modern civilization are not the consequence of aging; they are the consequence of nutritional ignorance. And we also know that saturated fat raises cholesterol and is an important cause of heart disease, but not the only cause. Too bad so much nutritional ignorance is promoted on the internet, it only leads to more people being confused.

    • I appreciate that we both share a passion for research and nutrition, although my research has led me to different conclusions than you – particularly on the topic of saturated fat, trans fat and Dr. Price’s research. It was the combination of the lack of processed foods and the nutrient-dense animal foods that make the people Dr. Price studied both long-lived and profoundly healthy. I think you’ll find some more helpful research in this post:

      Another good resource is Know Your Fats. Dr. Enig discusses the difference between saturated fat and trans fat, as well as the naturally-occuring healthful trans fats conjugated linolenic acid (CLA).

  25. Nice article – I’ve been hearing more and more about this lately.

    I was wondering if you’ve seen any research on the best way people who can’t eat an autoimmune protocol type diet – but might benefit from it – can alter the diet? Like…what seems to be the most damaging to the gut and should be avoided if at all possible, and what is the least damaging so if something had to be added in, that would be it?

    I’m in that position – I have a rare disorder (mast cell activation disorder) on top of my autoimmune disease (celiac) where I react to so many foods that many of the ‘no’ foods on the autoimmune paleo diet are some of the few I have remaining to me. At the same time, I have very close to the autoimmune diet due to trial and error of finding foods that don’t make me react. I think if I could tolerate a little more, it would be exactly what I need.

    So again, just curious if there’s research out there on best ways to alter this, when necessary. 🙂

  26. I’ve been on GAPS Diet for over 2 years now for ulcerative colitis. I did a long slow Intro Diet that lasted 5+ months. I initially seemed to be doing fine with the fermented dairy, nuts, seeds. In addition, I’ve had major PMS issues my entire life, including bouts of heartburn and vomiting the last 2 weeks of my cycle. On GAPS, that went away, until I had to eliminate dairy for a completely different reason. It was several months until I realized that my PMS symptoms returned when I eliminated the fermented dairy. I started slow, with adding in ghee and then a month later butter, and then from there started adding in the various fermented dairy products. As soon as I added the dairy, the PMS related vomiting stopped. However, a few months later, I realized I was having major colitis issues and a flare up of an excruciatingly painful anal fissure. What had changed in my diet? The dairy. UGH! So I took back out all dairy other than the ghee, which I now only eat a few times a week (trying to find balance with it so that the PMS vomiting doesn’t start back up). It has been 4 months now and I’m still dealing with the flare up of the fissure, along with colitis flare ups. I realized that it seems like I have now developed an issue with seeds and nuts, and even coconut flour is problematic. When I was in my first year of GAPS, I had no issues with any of those foods. So now I’m wondering if GAPS is causing even more problems, since I didn’t have those food issues back closer to the beginning of GAPS. I even seem to be having issues with all kinds of vegetables. And I’m now looking to move away from GAPS, whether that means eating the foods allowed on PALEO or trying the WAHLS Protocol,I don’t know.

  27. I love Mickey’s cookbook and found the information she provides very helpful, and I’m glad to see her cookbook promoted on other sites.

    I do have to say, though, that if you’re going to use photos from her cookbook in your posts that you should at the least give credit to Mickey / the cookbook photographer Kyle Johnson and should definitely not place your own logo on one of Kyle Johnson’s images and then publish it to Pinterest (how I found this page) without proper credit to him. Simply mentioning his name in relation to the cookbook at the end of your article is not appropriate attribution. How can I trust that the content on your site is reputable when you are not even properly crediting your sources?

  28. I’m interested in this diet approach, although realistically, I think I’d find it very hard to stick to but I the doctor thinks I have Hashimoto’s, to join the Type 1 Diabetes, Vitiligo and Alopecia Areata that I already have fun with.
    Can this type of paleo diet help all these autoimmune conditions? How do I deal with a diabetic hypo if I can’t use sugar that quickly corrects a hypo?
    Thanks in advance for any advice on that one.

  29. Hi! I was diagnosed with Graves Disease last April. I was so sick. I went to see an acupunturist who suggested that I eliminate dairy. I felt a bit better, but was still having joint pain, hair loss, extreme fatigue, and eye issues. I had a celiacs test that came back negative, but once I eliminated gluten, things really began to change. I also noticed that many beans and lentils irritate me, so I stopped eating them. I am happy to report after three months on a modified version of this diet, my blood work is normal! It’s been a difficult transition as I was a vegetarian for 14 years. I can eat fish with no problem, but chicken is so strange for me. I also had a piece of bacon the other day and I liked it. My health is improving every day and I plan to stick with it.

  30. Hey, I’m gradually preparing myself for this diet and will get the book as soon as I can but I have a question. I have gone gluten free already and decided to have some lentils for dinner yesterday. That same night and into today I’ve been having excriciating joint pain. I was only expecting gluten to have this effect but the lentils seem to be causing me joint pain. Anyone experience this?

  31. If I have had IGg testing done, and have no response to some of the AIP food, not to eat, is it ok to eat them? Eggs is definitely a no go for me, but some of the others hade no response at all (IGg)

  32. Hi,

    I was due a colonoscopy today and somehow there was a mix up with my appt at the hospital… so I came home feeling down… I was told to increase my meds for my UC again. I decided to research a little online and your website and your words have given me HOPE. I am going on holiday soon but once I am back ( in like 3 weeks time) I plan on starting to follow this diet. The no Alcohol part may be difficult at the weekends but I want to overcome this condition badly! I am on 6 tablets a day including suppositories a few times a week. Its tiring…..

    So the first thing I guess to do is purchase The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook right?

    Thank you for your words once again. I am 25 and do not want to live on tablets my whole life.

  33. I grew up with severe food allergies, and environmental allergies. As I did everything possible as a mother to help my children about them, I was unsuccessful. I watched one of my daughters progressively acquiring more and more symptoms. Which you know are the only thing most Dr’s will treat. So our family started the elimination diet. We all felt only slight withdrawals at first, consisting of headaches mostly, as we did not eat much in the way of processed and wheat foods to begin with. My daughter’s symptoms have improved dramatically and most have disappeared! I am so thankful! We are a little over two months into diet and I have found myself extremely ill. All my worst symptoms have manifested and are out of control. Hives(skin writing), intestinal issues, vomiting, odd bruises showing up, extremely dry eyes, etc. I don’t eat anything fermented, no allergen foods, no gluten or mimicking, no soy, nothing in a wrapper, nothing from a bottle or box. Do some people experience getting this sick a few months into the diet? I’m at such a loss.

    • I know this is a few months back, but have you been thoroughly tested for vitamin deficiencies? Radically altering your diet totally changes the variety of nutrients you’re getting, and all of that processed food has added vitamins. Either that, or there’s an underlying condition that needs to be addressed. I personally don’t believe just the diet. Perhaps one of the staples you’re using in the diet is something you’re personally sensitive to, even if it’s not typically a problem food. For example, I thought I maybe wasn’t getting enough carbs, so I decided to start frying plantains in coconut oil. I was SO SICK. Then I realized I must be allergic to plantains, of all things. Turns out cabbage as well. Hope you’re figuring it out.

  34. compare this site to

    this is why no one knows what to do. This site says to eat leafy greens and kombucha. The other site, as cited above, says that they are HIGH oxalate and should be avoided. The list states the following are High oxalate and should be avoided: raw and steamed carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, celery, beets, chard, cooked broccoli, cooked brussels sprouts, cooked cabbage, chili peppers, rhubarb, spinach, peppers.

    Is this not the same author?

    What are we left with eating? Not much.

  35. Thank you for this thoughtful and comprehensive post..

    I want to mention to other readers that when you’re really sick and it’s a challenge to get through the day and all pleasure has been replaced by pain and fatigue, then it’s no problem to give things up if it means a potential for feeling good – or at least ok.

    What it comes down to is your own individual choice. It’s not about your friend or your husband (mine isn’t supportive so sometimes I’ll have to cook different meals for him and our son), it’s about YOU and what’s important to you. I want to be able to play with my son without pain, and be able to do the laundry more easily and clean and ‘take the stairs’ at work. (I’m 110 lbs, so it’s not a weight thing).

    Would you rather have the comfort of preferred foods, but deal with the “side effects” (similar to wanting to drink alcohol but having a hangover the next day), or is it more important to you to have more consistent health and relief from symptoms?

    Diet might not even be your issue, so maybe you don’t need to do this, but I think it’s worth a shot. And to the people who are concerned about how limiting this diet is – you need to follow what your body is telling you. I was fairly certain that I could handle eggs since I’ve never had a problem with them, so I initially tried to include them. Well, I noticed I was feeling really bad still and decided to cut them out. Then I felt a little better. The author is defining guidelines for what is optimal. If you are unable to start the diet due to the limitations, maybe cut out just one major thing (like grains), and after you accomplish that, it might give you the motivation to take on the rest.

    I became sober seven years ago and quit smoking a year ago as well as quit prescription drug abuse 15 years ago, and this was the easiest “self discipline” thing I’ve done. Quitting an addiction sucks, but the diet is more STARTING something.

    Thanks for reading, if anyone makes it this far. There’s just about any recipe you could ever want online, I haven’t even bought a book yet. Good luck and hope you all start feeling better, whatever method it takes.

  36. so if overgrowth of Candida is the root cause of my leaky gut, then do I instigate this “paleo-protocol” AFTER I have balanced the Candida in my gut system? I also eat a steady diet of chicken, meat stock, and most of the veggies (minus the ones that support the candida overgrowth) that are high in oxalates… which apparently, according to your oxalate page further damages the already leaky gut… but which I can only eat because most of the suggested vegetables and foods in THIS list here are “feed” for the candida. So which does a person start with? Do they eat to balance the candida with a candida diet, then adopt the diet here so as to heal/seal the gut? It seems like after reading article, after article, after article after article (especially the ones with books to sell at the end of their long diatribe), that EVERY food, no matter how earthly or “whole” is going to somehow f*ck up my healing processes, either through “feeding the candida” or “causing/exacerbating leaky gut”. I’m sure I’m missing valuable components and not seeing the big picture, so please help me to get the ball rolling on a better understanding.

  37. Hi there,

    Thank you for this comprehensive post. I have systemic candida and neurological issues and started the GAPS diet a few months back to address it. I over did it with the fruit and oxalate comsumption and now I react to pretty much everything.I can only assume it is an autoimmune response. I cannot eat any fruit or vegetable, no ferments, no fish, even herbs I react to! The only foods I can eat are chicken,beef, lamb and bone broth. I believe if you have candida all sugar in all forms including sweet or starchy vegetables need to be strictly avoided. This is a major mistake I made. You will not eliminate candida eating any type of sugar! My question is are autoimmune diseases reversible? I have read once the immune system learns to attach it’s own tissues it can go into remission but never really unlearn that process. Is this true? I just hope I haven’t done permanent damage 🙁

  38. I’ve been doing some major research and glad I happened upon AIP and your blog. I’ve been going through a major health crisis. Back in 2012, I broke out in cutaneous (Leukocytoclastic vasculitis). After a bunch of normal tests, the doctor blamed it on Keflex, and sent me on my way, and the vasculitis was gone in two months, never to return…. that is until June 2015. But this time, the break out on my legs is far worse, and doesn’t seem to be going away any time soon. I ran back to the doctor again for more tests, which came back normal, with the exception of NOW I’m also type II diabetic. I know how I got to this place, with some terribly bad food choices over the years and some weight gain. But now it has to be turned around, pronto.

    If they cannot tell me exactly what is triggering my LV, then I’m going to have to tackle this through diet and get my sugar under control. The doctor tried to blame my skin condition on diabetes, but after some research, LV is not connected to diabetes. There’s a lot of skin conditions that are, but not LV, as far as I know.

    I’m also a diet soda addict. I’ve been drinking aspartame for 6 years and after some research last night, I see that aspartame can trigger or cause faux autoimmune disorders. Great! Sigh.
    So now I’m getting myself off of the aspartame (weaning). I can tell you that there is a definite withdrawal coming off of it.

    I’m going to start with GAPS and see what happens with my LV. Taking prednisone is not an option for me, unless this gets super out of control and spreads all over. I’m really hopeful that healthy eating will help solve this. I realize that things are going to have to change for good. If GAPS doesn’t help, then I’m going to do AIP for sure. I’m still leaving off tomatoes, cheese and other dairy and most nuts and seeds. I’ve always been lactose intolerant.

    Thanks for the space to just write. This autoimmune stuff really gets the emotions going, and realizing things have to change and the old ways of eating are over.

  39. Hi, and thank you for this great post!

    I was wondering if anybody could shed some light on my situation:

    I started AIP two weeks ago and am actually feeling worse than I did before. I’m more bloated and have this soreness in my stomach that I used to feel when I still ate gluten. Is this normal?

    Here is some background:

    I have been sick for the past 15 years and saw many doctors who could find nothing wrong with me. Two years ago I decided to try giving up gluten and felt a million times better! Recently though I realized that I was still sick, and my stomach issues started cropping up again. I also have anxiety, brain fog, and a lot of fatigue. I have several infections that will not go away even with antibiotics.

    I finally went to see a chiropractor who said that I probably have Celiac or gluten intolerance (I can’t be tested since I’ve already cut gluten out of my diet) and found that I’m intolerant to 5 of the 8 gluten cross-reactive foods, in addition to eggs, potatoes, and a few other things. He also said that my body is attacking my pancreas, which gives me high risk for diabetes. I am also positive for the MTHFR C667t mutation. I also (randomly) have the Epstein-Barr virus (mono).

    I started taking the following supplements with the advice of my doc:
    NeuroFlam, Neur02, Berberine, Perilegro, Glutagenics, 5-MTHF, OptiFerin-C, Vitamin D, and fish oil.

    Has anybody else had this experience? Is it normal that I’m feeling worse? I am more bloated than I was before and have that “sore” feeling on the inside of my stomach that I used to get while I still ate gluten. I’ve been pretty strict about adhering to the AIP diet and have been really excited to see benefits! I am going to stick to it, but was just wondering if anybody had suggestions. My doctor is too expensive to call and ask questions between appointments (I have had to move back home with my parents just to pay the doc bills).

    Thanks for your help!


    • Hi Juliet

      I know exactly where u are coming from. I’ve been ill for many years with numerous autoimmune diseases and tried 3 months paleo then onto AIP..,after 1 week I got pain in abdomen which went into my back. Went to emergency. Looks like pancreatitis..
      Now I think it has to do with higher fat I was eating on these diets…olive oil, red meat and coconut daily.
      See if u can at least get you Lipase levels checked and perhaps look up pancreas issues – it could be helpful.
      Good luck and keep positive x

      • Hi Georgie,

        Thanks for your response and I hope you’re feeling better now! I will definitely ask to get my lipase levels checked. Let me know if you find any solutions!! 🙂


  40. First of all, your website has been VERY encouraging, and has SO much information – THANK YOU!

    Long story short, I’ve fought yeast infections of all sorts on/off for most of my life. I have two children, both of whom I’ve nursed – my daughter is now 10 months old. She and I have fought thrush the entire time we’ve nursed. The only thing I’ve found to work for any period of time is using coconut oil on myself after nursing, and both of us taking probiotics daily. It seems to keep our symptoms ‘at bay.’ She also seems to have a sensitivity to dairy when I eat it, and now when she tries to eat those foods herself.

    I think I’ve finally come to the point where – enough is enough! I see so many symptoms of yeast-overgrowth in my entire family – but seeing it in my children is just heartbreaking! If it’s not enough for ME to feel better, making the change for my children will be well worth it. SO, THANK YOU for giving me a guide on ‘where to start.’ I’m over trying to cover up all our side-affects to unhealthy living by doctors trying this pill or that.

    Which – finally brings me to my question – should I continue to take my oral probiotic while going on the auto-immune diet? As well as my pre-natal vitamin that I take since I’m still nursing my daughter? Or, do I need to focus on the food, and the food only?

    Thank YOU so much for sharing your story, and making all this information available!

    Tasha McKeever

  41. Lauren (or whoever else might have experience with this),

    I have just been diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and am searching for something to start (GAPS, SCD, or AIP) relatively quickly. My doctors are trying to respect my desires to go natural with treatment, but are causing me worry that I might be making a bad decision by trying to avoid immediate treatment. My question is, if I am looking for the most effective way to address my Colitis, which diet should I start first? I understand that I can choose to change later and can play with different foods to see what is causing my problems but I am currently living a stressful life (demanding job, long hours at the office, planning a wedding and getting married in just a few months, and then balancing relationships and life in general) and that will not be changing for a little while. So I am searching for the smartest move to address my colitis and be kinder to my body. Can I hear others experiences or Lauren, your thoughts would be appreciated!

    • Hi Kaleigh,
      I have had Ulcerative Proctitis for about seven years. I have tried many different diets and protocols in the past, including SCD, Paleo, GAPS, AIP and for me AIP worked the best. Eventually you can customise the protocol for yourself and start reintroducing different foods. I tolerate nuts well, but not eggs for example.
      I also had a very stressful job, which I did not want to quit so for the first 5 years I was in and out of flares, depending on my stress levels. I have only gone into full remission that have actually lasted long after I have quit my crazy lifestyle and stressful job. You can read about how stress affects the body in The Immune System Recovery Plan. It’s pretty scary! I would like to add that I have always been very health conscious and have the cleanest diet going, but I believe that it is decades of chronic stress that caused my body to eventually “throw in the towel”. I also did a Candida Cleanse after I left my job and I have really benefited from it.
      I hope this information will be helpful to you!

  42. I choose not to eat meat, dairy or fish for environmental reasons. It is one of the TOP THREE causes of climate change. your proposed diet has NO options for vegans and vegetarians and it creates a craze that worsens climate change by creating a demand for factory-farmed meat and dairy (because be real people are NOT only buying expensive local pasture-fed meat and dairy). I really wish you all would think about the effects of your food choices on the world.

    • Well when youre facing ending up in a wheelchair due to an autoimmune disease, contributing to climate change is something I’m willing to do. And maybe you shouldn’t make assumptions about the products people are buying. People who want to get well ARE buying pastured and raw products because commercial farmed products are not health promoting. Maybe you should stop making assumptions and take your negativity somewhere else.

  43. GREETINGS ………to every body , i am MORRISON BELL from LONDON(UK). I was once diagnosed with LUPUS in September 2014. I back than i was having skin rashes all over my body, this was very unbearable to me , then life was without meaning to me due to my health status , i tried my possible best to get cured but all seems in vain, So all through those period of my life, i was unhappy.
    I still kept doing research on possible cure for LUPUS since 2014 though i knew science has no cure for it yet, few years ago while i was on search in the Internet i came across different testimonies on how this great man called DR.ODIGIE has been saving souls with his herbal medicine , people recommended that he has been using his medicine to cure LUPUS and different disease permanently and they advice that anyone who haven’t get in contact with him should contact him now for help.
    So After reading several testimony from different people concerning DR.ODIGIE medicine for curing LUPUS , i said to myself that God could use any means to heal his servant , So without any doubt, i contacted him about my LUPUS Diagnosis treatment ,i explained my problems to him, without wasting time, he told me that he is going to help me , So he prepared a herbal medicine for me which he sent to me and he told me to use it according to the instruction that i will see on it, so i abide to him, before i know it, i was beginning to feel some changes in my body , the skin rashes i had on my body was gone and so i went for medical check up and to my greatest surprise, i was healed and cured from the disease i tut then can never be cured from my LUPUS but DR.ODIGIE gave me reasons to live , I am so very happy now as i am sharing my testimony and i want to use this medium opportunity to tell anyone who is having this sickness LUPUS or any kind of disease like HERPES, HEPATITIS B ,DERMATOMYOSITIS . ACNE, CHRONIC pain, syphilis, gall stone and lot’s more should quickly contact DR ODIGIE on his email at:(drodigiesolutiontemple at rewrite the email address in a right form before contacting him . His Herbal medicine is one of a kind and i believe he can also cure you too just as he has cured me..THANKS

  44. When you discuss no diary, does that mean almond, cashew or coconut milk?
    Is egg whites allowed more so than eggs with yolk?
    I have Sjogrens syndrome and I’m looking for ways to heal the inflammation, gut issues, energy issues that I have and need to change.
    This information was very informative and I thank you. Any suggestions you can give would be great.

  45. Hi, just curious about this as we have an UC and PSC sufferer in the family and on research years ago I found the Breaking the vicious cycle book or should I say the eat well feel well book and there is some contradicting food advice there to what is suggested here. Not that he would change his diet anyways he point blank refuses as he does not believe in it, and neither his gastro nor his hepatologist recommend or suggest any kind of diet modification seeing he does not smoke or drink, they think smooth sailing take your medication…. but I find myself looking for answers, alternatives, new thing, continuously. And no matter what I find, everyone swears by it, but contradicts other similar approaches. I think maybe it is too individual to suggest a one diet fits all approach? After a brother on his side was also diagnosed I grow more concerned about food and diet especially for my kids and I am very aware of “good and bad” foods, over processed, GMO’S etc….but I am so confused and kind of at a loss here, no idea what to do or where to start….(We are in Ireland)

  46. My condition: dysbiosis, candida, heavy metals, hand eczema, adrenal fatigue, low progesterone and low DHEA, estrogen dominant

    I’m concerned about these diets and body pH levels: diets that emphasize animal proteins can cause the body to become acidic, fostering disease and candida.

    I have been following the anti-candida diet for the past six months. A few weeks ago, I tried eating a fourth cup of green apple and experienced bloating and brain fog for days after. Same with sprouted wild basmati rice. So it seems that my body is not tolerating sugars well, but I don’t know how long I’m to follow this diet (or GAPS, or AIP, or SCD), especially considering the liabilities.

  47. Thank you so much for this information. My body tends to have a very high inflammatory response. I have a number of chronic health conditions ever since I was a kid, ranging from asthma and lots of allergies to various GI issues, neuro muscular, thyroid, severe skin problems, and cognitive, memory and sensory processing issues. Several years ago I started seeing an immunologist who has developed a new marker which identifies individuals who have this high level of systemic inflammatory response. My mom, who had Alzheimers, my daughter, who has Autism and Epilepsy, and myself all tested with very high positives. We also learned about certain food sensitivities. Based on that we all cut out dairy, soy and gluten and a modified candida diet. We saw a lot of improvement. However, lately it is clearly not enough for me. I have been having very severe outbreaks of a blistering kind of ecxema , I can hardly walk and it’s very painful. My immunologist is recommending IVIG. After reading about the AIP diet, I just have this gut feeling (sorry, no pun intended) that this could really help. Here is my dilemma. My daughter is already doing the ketogenic diet recommended by her neurologist to control seizures. It really seems to be helping with that. I just feel daunted by doing two different difficult diets that oppose eachother at various points. My daughter’s fruit and veggies are much more limited than on AIP and she gets upset if there’s stuff in the house she can’t have. Remember she has Autism and is only 11. Meal planning is also very challenging as she can overload on Eggs with her diet and can have nuts and I can’t. There are some similarities, but enough differences between the diets to be very overwhelming. Any thoughts or suggestions? And I apologize for the length. I thought having a better understanding of our situation would help.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Lauren Geertsen, NTP

I’m an author, entrepreneur, and nutritional therapy practitioner (NTP). I began this website at 19, to share the steps that freed my life of chronic disease and medication. Now, Empowered Sustenance has reached 30 million readers with healthy recipes and holistic resources.

Lauren’s Books

Get simple steps fordelivered weekly

(plus exclusive coupons and other subscriber-only resources!)

No thanks, I don’t want to sign up.