The Autoimmune Protocol
First Let's discuss Autoimmune Disease...
Autoimmune disease is an epidemic that affects over 50 million Americans. Meaning roughly 1 in 6 people suffer from autoimmune diseases, and 75% are women. Some Autoimmune diseases that you might recognize are: Celiac disease, multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and psoriasis, among many others (see complete list here).
Autoimmune disease occurs when your immune system backfires, and instead of protecting you from foreign invaders, it attacks your own tissue. This results in inflammation and destruction of your cells. The name of your autoimmune disease is determined by what tissues are attacked. For example, In Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, the thyroid gland is attacked, in Rheumatoid Arthritis, the tissues of your joints are attacked, and in psoriasis, proteins within the layers of cells that make up your skin are attacked.
The risk factors that contribute to the development of autoimmune disease include our genetics, diet, environment, and lifestyle. Your genes only account for 25% of your risk of developing an autoimmune disease, while the other 75% comes from your environment, your diet, and your lifestyle. This is good news! This means that autoimmune disease is directly linked to our food choices and how we decide to live life. It also means that we can manage and reverse autoimmune disease simply by changing how we eat and making more informed choices about sleep, activity, and stress.
What is AIP:
The Autoimmune Protocol, typically abbreviated AIP, is a powerful strategy that uses diet and lifestyle to repair gut health, balance hormones, and regulate the immune system, giving the body the opportunity to heal. AIP, is a modified Paleo diet, with an even greater focus on nutrient density and stricter guidelines for which foods should be eliminated. The goal is to flood the body with nutrients while avoiding any foods that might be contributing to disease or interfering with healing. The AIP is designed as an elimination diet. That means foods on the exclusion list are eliminated for a period of time, then carefully reintroduced to see if they trigger symptoms.
How AIP works:
The Autoimmune Protocol works by addressing four key areas known to be important contributors to chronic and autoimmune diseases: Nutrient density, Gut health, Hormone regulation, and Immune system regulation. 70-80% of our immune system is in our gut, meaning, if we heal the gut we can help balance the immune system. The focus is on removing stressors and strengthening the body’s defenses. By eliminating inflammatory foods while incorporating therapeutic, nourishing foods, and addressing lifestyle factors like exercise, sleep and stress management, we give your body a break, allowing healing and repair to occur.
Who AIP can help:
This is not just for us folks who already have a diagnosed autoimmune condition(s), anyone can benefit from a 30 day AIP reset. The autoimmune protocol encourages you become more in-tune with your body, and more aware of how different foods may be contributing to your symptoms. Following this nutrient-dense, gut healing way of eating can help prevent progression of autoimmune disease, manage debilitating symptoms, and has the potential to ultimately reverse chronic conditions. Although there is no cure for autoimmune disease, there is hope that your current symptoms are not permanent.
Knowledge is power.
I firmly believe that the more information you have, the more motivated you become.
I will provide all the tools and information you need to understand the "why's" behind AIP.