I’m so excited about this post today! A fellow AIP blogger who I’ve come to love and respect, Angie Alt of Alternative Autoimmune, is stopping by for a Virtual Book Tour! Angie has written an Autoimmune Protocol book that is available HERE on Amazon. And I’m happy to say I’ve added it to my Amazon Affiliate aStore too, so you can even get directly right from my site! I’m SO happy for Angie – she’s worked so hard and her successful book sales are showing the fruits of her labor! The book is a mix of recipes and storytelling about the autoimmune battle and journey to healing. It is absolutely a resource I wish I had when I first got started. I did an interview with Angie that I know will encourage and enlighten any people either doing the autoimmune protocol or thinking about starting it!
PS – Did I mention her book is on SALE right now? It retails for $35, but is marked down to $22 today! Merry Christmas to us!! :)
1. OK. First things first! Tell me about your project! And what sets your book apart from most cookbooks?
The big difference is that I write about A LOT more than food. Autoimmune diseases can be really lonely and misunderstood illnesses. The autoimmune protocol can also be, at first, a lonely and confusing method of healing. I decided to write about the emotional side of the journey with both disease and healing. I tried to write as honestly and openly as possible with the hope that it will be the connection, answer, or support another autoimmune sufferer needs. It’s also a guide book on how to do AIP from elimination phase through reintroductions with helpful charts, especially on how to ease into the elimination phase of AIP week-by-week and how to identify a food reaction by possible symptoms.
2. It’s no secret that the autoimmune protocol is not easy to follow. You and I have one of the same diagnoses – celiac. Most people just think, “Eat gluten free and you’ll be fine!” Why take it a step farther? Why paleo? And why the autoimmune protocol?
I decided to do it, because basically I was desperate! I was at a very low point with my autoimmune battle and I thought trying AIP could not be any worse than what I was already dealing with. The traditional gluten-free diet recommended to most Celiacs was not working for me and my severe reactions to foods were ruling my life. I did not want to live in fear. It turns out that AIP was totally worth it! My life was transformed by it.
3. Who do you think can benefit from the autoimmune protocol? What do you say to those whose doctors have told them diet won’t help their condition? And how do they begin?
I think anyone suffering with chronic illness can benefit from AIP, even if it is not autoimmune in nature. To those whose doctors say food doesn’t matter, I say, “Boloney!” By the way, you should totally avoid bologna! Seriously though, it is completely unreasonable to think that food, the building blocks of our bodies, does not contribute to illness and healing. The science is very solid. As far as beginning, it is just that simple . . . start! I really encourage people not to let perfectionism prevent them for trying the thing that may transform their life.
4. Tell me about the changes you saw when you did the autoimmune protocol.
Well, the very first thing that happened to me was that crippling panic and anxiety I had been wrestling with for years completely ended after the first three days. It was very dramatic and made it worthwhile, even from my family’s perspective. After that the healing just got better and better. It was reflected in lab results, but I would have continued regardless, because I could feel it in my cells. It has brought so, so many benefits to my life from improved health to much greater happiness and enormous personal growth. Plus I get to be part of a really big, supportive community of folks walking the same path!
5. What foods have you been able to reintroduce? What foods give you the worst reactions?
I have been able to reintro some forms of dairy, including cheese in small quantities, small amounts of wine and hard cider, chocolate, occasional coffee, white rice and white potato, almonds, and soy-free eggs on occasion. I haven’t gone further with the nightshades than white potato, I haven’t tried other nuts, and for some reason cumin gives me a crippling headache. I’m really happy with the success I’ve had, but it took over a year to even begin reintros.
6. Finally, give us one final bit of autoimmune wisdom! What do you say to someone who was just diagnosed, feels hopeless, or at the end of his or her rope?
I’d say, “I get it.” Then I’d tell them to put on their big girl panties, ‘cause the way forward is not for wimps, but it is going to be worth it.