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I first began to explore the paleo diet when I first got derailed from my clean eating. I was thinking about how I should go on my elimination diet again the next summer so I could feel and look as good at my wedding. Plus, I had rushed the introductions and I wanted to retest a few things.
I had been skeptical of paleo, but the more reading I did on the Whole30 website (my initial introduction), the more sense it made. But I had a problem. A problem that I encounter almost everywhere I try to eat. Tomatoes are super healthy and delicious. People love using them in food. And I can’t eat tomatoes.
As I explored the site, I stumbled across the The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook by Mickey Trescott of Autoimmune Paleo. But this isn’t just any collection of recipes – this is a collection of recipes that is free of allergens – not grains, dairy, eggs, nuts, seeds, nightshades, etc. No nightshades! I just had to have this cookbook. Although I wouldn’t be able to go on the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) for awhile, I was very excited to continue my research into paleo and elimination diets.
Who knew that I would eventually get to know Mickey and be able to receive a review copy when she came out with a print copy of The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook!
First thing’s first. Why am I so excited about this book and this diet? Well, as I mentioned above, the Autoimmune Protocol is a strict diet that cuts out many foods that are allowed on the paleo diet, but can still cause problems in certain people. This is a good diet for people who haven’t seen quite the results they were looking for going paleo, and it is especially recommended for people suffering from an autoimmune disease (hence the name). In addition to cutting out processed foods, grains, legumes, and sometimes dairy as on the standard paleo diet, AIP also cuts out all dairy, eggs, nuts (including coffee and chocolate), seeds, nightshades, and NSAIDS (like ibuprofen). Even more importantly, it adds in foods that are healing to the gut and the body, such as fermented vegetables, bone broth, and organ meats.
Mickey’s beautiful book (which lays open, by the way – very useful in a cookbook!) details her own struggles with autoimmune disease and the healing she found from going on this diet. She knows that it is not easy – many of us don’t have a lot of time or energy. Many of us feel trapped when on such a strict diet. So Mickey explains the whys behind this diet, what it is, and how it can change your life.
Most importantly, she makes this diet accessible to those of us who are just starting out. She starts out with an incredible useful chart detailing what to avoid and (even more helpful!) what to include and discussing what our bodies need for healing, then moves on to a thorough discussion about reintroducing foods. This has always been the most confusing part for me, and Mickey breaks in down in an methodical way that will help you learn the most from your reintroductions. Going much slower than my previous elimination diet, it is easier to gauge just how a food affects you. This book provides the information needed to help you be successful on the AIP diet in an accessible manner. Not too much information to confuse you, and not too little to leave to wondering.
The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook
The main part of the book is, naturally, the cookbook! With how strict the Autoimmune Protocol is, simply giving a good supply of recipes is an amazing resource. With 112 recipes, this cookbook has plenty to get you through the first month or more. But Mickey takes it a step further and helps you stock your kitchen and prepare for this journey. Recipes for bone broth, fermented vegetables, kombucha, and various coconut products, a list of safe brands for pantry items, and shopping tips help you stock a safe, AIP kitchen.
This cookbook is an automatic win because there is no need to scrutinize ingredients – you know that everything in it is safe for the Autoimmune Protocol. With helpful headers that tell the tools, time, servings, and difficulty for each recipe, as well as gorgeous pictures and the ingredients prominantly displayed on the side, it is easy to tell what recipes will be easy for you to make. Each recipe is also accompanied by storage information, including if it freezes well, which is very helpful for me!
The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook contains a wide variety of recipes to fit your tastes, budget, cooking style, and company. From kitchen staples like sauerkraut, rendered fat, and coconut butter to egg- and grain-free breakfast ideas to sauces and dressings to hearty meals to snacks and treats, this cookbook has it all! With the help of The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook, you will not feel deprived!
After all of this, the most helpful part of this book for me are the meals plans. Mickey provides two four-week meals plans and their corresponding shopping lists. These meal plans are made for one person, but can of course easily be adapted for however many people you are bringing along on your journey. These meal plans are wonderful because they take out the guess work and the “I hate this, I can’t eat anything!” Yes, you can, just look at what is on the meal plan! There is plenty of food to prepare and you know that your diet will be balanced and will give you the nutrients you need. And most importantly for sticking to the diet, there will be plenty of variety to keep you from getting stuck in a boring rut.
Are you ready to get started?
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