Sunday, December 28, 2014

My AIP Journey Part 1

As I begin my 4th week of the Autoimmune Protocol Diet, I thought I take a moment to explain a bit about what it is (for those who don’t know), why I decided to do it, and how it has been going. It gets a bit sciences, so if you just want the recipe, feel free to skip to the bottom of the post.

First, here is a little overview of what is the Autoimmune Protocol Die. The best resource I have found is through The Paleo Mom’s website. She explains how those who suffer from autoimmune diseases have issues with their immune systems inability to differentiate between proteins from your own body and foreign proteins. The symptoms are then caused basically because your body is attacking itself. As I have learned through my visits with my NaturoPath as well as the The Paleo Mom, is that dependent on which of these proteins/cells are battling is what determines the disease.

I know going in to my first visit with my NaturoPath that I was diagnosed with Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome. While there is not a great deal of research on it, there can be a few links to links between PCOS and autoimmune diseases such as Hashimoto and Grave’s Disease. The good news is that I have already made many adjustments in my diet such as removing grains, gluten, most dairy, and all things processed which are advised for those dealing with autoimmunity. However, in my most recent visit, he and I discussed that because of my many genetic variants my body is producing way too much Histamine.

To explain this more I need to first explain how we discovered the high levels of Histamine. In my genetic testing we found that I have a double variant in Diamine Oxidase (DAO). Because of the double variant, my body is not producing enough of DAO which is the enzyme used to metabolize histamine. Histamine has several functions as it is “an amine that is produced as part of a local immune response to cause inflammation. It also performs several important functions in the bowel and acts as a neurotransmitter or chemical messenger that carries signals from one nerve to another.”

“If DAO is low, exposure to an irritant in the intestines produces an unimpeded histamine reaction which can cause headaches, stomach aches, flatulence, and diarrhea. Persistently high amounts of histamine in the intestines can cause leaky gut and systemic inflammation and has been associated with many conditions such as Crohn’s disease, Ulcerative Colitis, allergies, food allergy, and colorectal cancer.” (As stated by Dr. Kate Thomsen)

What this all means is I have a lot of things working against me, mostly my body battling against itself. At this time I have not been diagnosed with a leaky gut or any the other conditions that follow, however, that is not to say I am not already beginning to suffer from them. These findings led me to move from just a Paleo diet to the Autoimmune Protocol diet by first healing my gut through eliminating foods that cause inflammation and gut issues. It has a very strict elimination phase with very clear lines of what you can and cannot have through these printable guidelines. After at least 30 days you then begin to add in one item at a time to determine if it is something you can continue to eat or must completely eliminate from your body.

For the past three weeks I have been strictly following this plan. There have been good and bad moments. Overall, I definitely am noticing a few changes in some of the symptoms I’ve struggled with, but I know I still have a long road ahead. Along side the AIP diet, I am also working with my NaturoPath and taking supplements to help my body with learning out to work properly. Here is just sneak peak of what my week look likes in supplements.

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