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Autoimmunity on Primal

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  • Autoimmunity on Primal

    Hey there,

    I'm new to the MDA forum, so I'm sure this has been discussed before, but maybe people will still like to weigh in.

    I'm a long-time voyeur of the whole Primal and Paleo lifestyle. I've always known it made sense, and that it would improve my condition ("unspecified autoimmune arthritis" - don't you love it?), but it took me nearly 3 years of gradual adoptions to really jump into the Primal pool. So now, 1 month in, I'm feeling better than I probably have in my entire adult life. However, I had a recent arthritic flare-up and I'm uncertain what may have caused it. I am currently removing dairy and eggs for a month to see if there is a sensitivity. As a result of the flare-up however, I came across the Autoimmune Protocol and I was curious if anyone has any experience with this - or with autoimmunity on a primal diet. Like I said, I'm new to all this and at this point, I'm the only person I know dealing with autoimmunity strictly through diet. Any insights, tips, etc is greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  • #2
    Dr Terry Wahls is treating autoimmune diseases with Paleo principles. She has MS and got herself out of a zero gravity wheelchair and is walking and cycling again.
    Watch her TEDx speech on you tube.
    I have just finished her book: ''The Wahls Protocol: How I Beat Progressive MS Using Paleo Principles and Functional Medicine'' Her protocol is more severe than the Primal Blueprint, I love the Primal Blueprint because it is so accessible and user friendly. But if you have a serious disease, then serious measures may be needed.

    I hope this is of help to you and that you will continue to great health.


    • #3
      Thank you for the resources. I will definitely check them out. It's been frustrating dealing with a flare-up and not knowing it's cause. I'm always interested to hear other people's experiences with autoimmune arthritis.

      Sent from my SCH-I535 using Marks Daily Apple Forum mobile app


      • #4
        Autoimmunity on Primal

        Take a look at the Paleo Approach by Sarah Ballantine. She covers all the why's I really like the Wahls protocol best, but I like the Ballantyne explanations the most. She has a lot of information on her website:


        • #5
          My husband has/had psoriatic arthritis. He believs his first flare up was caused by going too low carb. He wasn't ketogenic but still lower carb than we had been eating for many years. It allowed him to lose 40 pounds easily, but then he ended up with psoriasis and psoriatic arthitis. Of course, there isn't really a scientific way to tell the exact trigger, so it's hard to say why. After tinkering with his diet, he has discovered that wheat, dairy and potatoes (white not sweet), are all triggers for his autoimmune issues.

          We recently did a whole 30 and that really helped clean up his last remaining symptoms. (He has now been off embrel for almost 6 months!) We have added a few things back since finishing it, but are still eating pretty close to the whole 30 guidelines. You might check out doing a whole 30 following the auto immune protocol. It's a good way to find out trigger foods. It wasn't the easiest thing to do, but it's helped my husband a million percent! Good luck!


          • #6
            Hi, I just joined this forum and am about a month and a half into primal eating, but about to start the full autoimmune paleo protocol diet outlined by Sarah Ballantine tomorrow. I bought her book and have been reading everything I can about the protocol (AIP). I have Hashimoto's thyroiditis and other issues like extreme fatigue and joint pain. I am curious to see if I can improve these issues with the AIP diet.

            The difference between the regular primal/paleo diet and AIP, is that you also eliminate nuts, nightshades (including spices like cayenne and paprika), eggs, and dairy, and there is more focus more on nutritionally dense foods like offal, bone broth, and veggies. After a certain amount of time, you can reintroduce the above foods to see how your body reacts. The general theory is that autoimmune disease (and other diseases) are often the result of a leaky gut, so the diet focuses on healing your gut first and foremost, as well as improving other lifestyle issues like sleep, stress, etc.

            I have my fingers crossed that it will help me identify food intolerances that might be causing my symptoms.

            You should Look at out Sarah's website for more info: There are also a lot of great recipes on her website.
            Last edited by Sunny_daze; 05-08-2014, 03:07 PM.


            • #7
              I have RA. I have only been doing paleo a short while. In general I am doing ok (off all meds bar prednisone) but still working out what my triggers are, even after all these years (was diagnosed 30 years ago though I was in natural remission for 20 of those) My RA is very reactive. If I consume something that causes a problem I generally feel it within a few hours. It still can be hard to figure out triggers though! I also flare from environmental things such as trying on clothes (from the chemicals they put it them to keep them 'fresh') and topically with any thing with almonds in it. I am interested in aip but have do do one step at a time I have to say I love the paleo diet though. I have waaay more energy and am happier in general which is a great thing!! GL Ellie


              • #8
                There's an entire cookbook based around recipes for the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol:

                The Autoimmune Paleo Cookbook
                "The cling and a clang is the metal in my head when I walk. I hear a sort of, this tinging noise - cling clang. The cling clang. So many things happen while walking. The metal in my head clangs and clings as I walk - freaks my balance out. So the natural thought is just clogged up. Totally clogged up. So we need to unplug these dams, and make the the natural flow... It sort of freaks me out. We need to unplug the dams. You cannot stop the natural flow of thought with a cling and a clang..."


                • #9
                  Thanks Drumroll


                  • #10
                    Thank you to everyone for your suggestions. It's reassuring to read other people's experiences with AIP and Whole 30.

                    When I started eating Primal it was like someone flicked on a switch. I had boundless energy and optimism. My joints no longer ached and my thinking was clear. I thought I had found the key. Then about a month in, I decided to try the resistant starch thing. For a week I added in a small amount of green banana flour to my smoothies. I had no ill effects until overnight, my joints flared up (including some new aches I hadn't experienced before). I went from energetic to dragging ass. And my mood was in the dumps - everything seemed difficult and I couldn't motivate myself to do anything. Has anyone else experienced autoimmune flare-ups with resistant starch? I immediately quit taking it once the flare-up occurred and then began removing eggs, dairy, nightshades and nuts in accordance with the AIP. I'm still struggling with some low-level joint pain that I can't for the life of me pin down. I feel like I'm eating virtually nothing but fat, meat, offal, gelatin, vegetables and some fruit (berries).


                    • #11
                      Check out I believe she has managed her rheumatoid arthritis using the AIP protocol and has some good information on her site. Best to you!


                      • #12
                        Skye, I hope you and others here will post updates and let the board know how you do on the AIP. I am always amazed at the results I read about regularly. The lifechanging effects experienced by countless people make it seem insane that such a way of eating is questioned and argued - and, more importantly, the fact that diet can both make us sick and "cure" us. The proof is in the (dairy free for many of us) pudding! Good luck to you, I predict that you will experience an increase in health and quality of life!

                        I'm curious as to the responses you might receive in answer to your question regarding resistant starch - you might want to consider asking it on the Resistant Starch thread. It's a monster, but there's one hell of a wealth of knowledge within it and quite the collection of brains to pick!
                        Life is not a matter of having good cards, but of playing a poor hand well.

                        - Robert Louis Stevenson


                        • #13
                          Thanks GoJenGo. I posted my question yesterday in the Resistant Starch thread and tatertot was quick to offer some excellent observations. Sounds like I've got some work ahead of me - balancing an unbalanced gut microbiome. I'm not even sure where to start haha.


                          • #14
                            I have PA and have recently started eating Primal as well. I too am interested if anyone else has had problems with resistant starch.

                            So far, cutting grains, dairy, and oils has been working for me. Nightshades (not potatoes) are still in my diet, but I am going to experiment eliminating those for a time and see what happens. I have not been eating this way long, but am excited to see how things may change for me soon.