What is AIP?

The AIP Diet, aka the Autoimmune Protocol or Autoimmune Paleo Diet, is a diet designed to help people manage symptoms related to their autoimmune disease. The main objective is to calm a person's overactive immune system while simultaneously reducing inflammation in order to allow the body to heal. It is a phased elimination diet where a person removes potentially problematic foods from their everyday meals before slowly, one-by-one, reintroducing those foods in order to identify possible triggers. While it was primarily created to help people suffering from autoimmune disease, the diet can be applied to almost anyone interested in discovering their own unique reactions to food.

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What are the phases of AIP?

There are three phases of the AIP Diet: Elimination, Reintroduction, and Maintenance.

 

The Elimination Phase consists of removing foods that could potentially trigger an overactive immune response or wreak havoc on the gut (e.g. leaky gut). It is advised to avoid these foods for a minimum of 30 days, or until your symptoms have significantly improved. The goal of this phase is to provide your body with nutrient-dense healing foods while simultaneously removing those that could be advancing your disease, illness, or symptoms.

 

The Reintroduction Phase is when you start bringing previously eliminated foods slowly back into your diet. This is done by following a methodical, multi-stage approach. The point of this phase is to identify which foods, if any, you’re reacting to. It’s best to keep a journal during this time to track potential symptoms. When you discover a trigger, remove that food again from your diet. This is your body either telling you that it still needs time to heal or that particular food is a problem and needs to be permanently eliminated (e.g. gluten for Celiac Disease).

 

The Maintenance Phase is the final landing place after identifying your trigger, mostly safe (i.e. can enjoy from time-to-time), and optimal foods. This results from your specific discoveries through the first two phases. By the end of the AIP journey you will have ideally uncovered a successful food framework to adhere to for the long term.

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Which foods are allowed on AIP?

Allowed Foods:

  • High-quality animal proteins (preferably grass-fed)

  • Fish and shellfish (preferably wild-caught)

  • Fruits and vegetables (excluding nightshades)

  • Mushrooms

  • Herbs and compliant spices (list below)

  • Honey, maple syrup, and coconut sugar

  • Avocado, coconut, palm, and olive oil

  • Vinegar

  • Grass-fed gelatin

  • Tapioca, arrowroot, cassava, coconut, tiger nut, and carob flours/powders

  • Green tea, and non-seed herbal teas

 
 
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Which spices are allowed on AIP?

Allowed Spices:

  • Asafetida

  • Basil

  • Bay Leaf

  • Chamomile

  • Chervil

  • Chives

  • Cilantro / Coriander Leaf (leaf only)

  • Cinnamon

  • Clove

  • Curry Leaf

  • Dill Weed

  • Fennel Leaf

  • Fenugreek Leaf

  • Galangal

  • Garlic

  • Ginger

  • Horseradish Powder

  • Kaffir Lime

  • Lavender

  • Lemongrass

  • Mace

  • Marjoram 

  • Onion Powder

  • Oregano ​

  • Parsley

  • Peppermint

  • Rosemary

  • Sage

  • Savory Leaf

  • Spearmint

  • Tarragon

  • Thyme

  • Turmeric

  • Vanilla (alcohol-free only)

  • Wasabi (additive-free)

Which spices are eliminated on AIP?

 

Eliminated Spices:

  • Allspice

  • Anise Seed

  • Annatto Seed

  • Black Caraway

  • Black Cumin

  • Black Pepper

  • Caraway

  • Cardamom

  • Capsicums

  • Cayenne

  • Celery Seed

  • Chili Pepper Flakes

  • Chili Powder

  • Chinese Five-Spice

  • Chipotle Chili Powder

  • Coriander Seed

  • Cumin Seed

  • Curry Powder

  • Dill Seed

  • Fennel Seed

  • Fenugreek Seed

  • Garam Masala

  • Juniper

  • Mustard

  • Nutmeg

  • Paprika

  • Poppy Seed

  • Poultry Seasoning

  • Red Pepper

  • Russian Caraway

  • Star Anise

  • Steak Seasoning

  • Sumac

  • Taco Seasoning

  • White Pepper

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How long does AIP take?

The AIP diet is a personal health journey that takes patience, determination, planning, and fortitude. While it’s impossible to predict how long you will be on the diet, you should aim to stick to the elimination and reintroduction phases for a minimum of three months. Before you get too discouraged to try, remember that this is a foolproof method of discovering your triggers and potentially reversing your disease, illness, or symptoms. It truly is empowering and my recipes are here to help you along the way!

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