Well, I’ve completed my first week of the AIP diet and I must say, it’s really not easy! Hats off to the many people that manage to keep this diet up for many months, and even years! So far I have been lucky and haven’t had any “detox” symptoms like headaches or anything, I think it’s because I’ve been off added sugar and processed foods for quite a while. Hopefully I’m not speaking too soon! The tricky part for me has been the organisation of following this diet. I can’t just grab something so if I don’t want to go hungry I need to have ready-to-go, cooked food to hand at all times. First world problems, hey.
What I’ve missed the most is yoghurt, eggs, nuts, cheese and coffee. Apart from the coffee, these food items are my main go-to foods for snacks, breakfast or a quick lunch, and I have had a hard time replacing them. And coffee is coffee, it’s just so lovely! I live within scenting distance of 3 or more amazing coffee roasters so I just breathe deep whenever they are roasting!
Chilli is also another biggie – I think I must add it to pretty much everything as most meals I made last week I thought, “hmmm, this could do with a pinch of chilli”…before slapping my hand away from the jar! I haven’t really missed chocolate too much yet…or anything else, but it is early days.
Breakfast and snacking were tricky ones for me, particularly as I do best when I have regular “doses” of protein in my diet. What I did was replace the protein from the eggs, nuts and cheese with bacon and fish. So for breakfast I now have something like chopped beetroot stalks and leaves, spinach and mushrooms fried in coconut oil with crispy bacon. Just change up the veggies for whatever you have available and swap the bacon for tinned salmon (all my budget will allow!).
Snacks aren’t too much of a problem as I find having 3 cooked meals a day quite filling! But on those days when I do just feel like something extra, I have a banana or an apple or leftovers.
Lunch is generally leftovers from dinner or soup that I’ve made, I usually throw in something extra, like a handful of shredded coconut to my pimped pumpkin soup – recipe to follow – or extra greens to leftovers, to fool myself that I’m not having the same thing twice…..or three or four times!
Dinner hasn’t been too tricky, I mainly rely on slow cooked or casseroled meat and veg for evening meals anyway so I’ve just kept on with that. I’ve also modified my weekly staple “bolognaise” meat sauce (please don’t let an Italian hear me call it that!), replacing the tomato with beetroot – recipe to follow. I should say this wasn’t my original idea and I’d love to credit whoever did come up with it but I can’t for the life of me remember who it was! So apologies to that clever person – and thanks.
I also make sure I have enough bone broth for the week, meaning I boil up a batch once a week, and I use this as the base for soups and my meat sauce and also for slow cooking meat and veg in. Yum – just think of all that extra goodness! I also have a couple of cups of kombucha (I have a cinnamon one on the go at the moment) and some sauerkraut each day.
The websites of Mickey Trescott, Paleo Mom and AIP Lifestyle have been hugely inspiring, not that I’ve actually cooked any of their recipes….yet…but it’s good to see that there’s a lot of choice when it comes to AIP meals. Whenever I think it can’t be done, I just look at their recipe pages and I’m back on track!
What are your favourite AIP dishes? Do share! xx