Man! It’s been a long time, I know! Before I get into talking about the second half of my AIP reintroductions, I want to take a teeny bit of time to explain where I’ve been for the last few months! Basically, life got a little hectic, as it has a habit of doing from time to time. Oh, life.
What’s Been Happening Lately
So, I have exciting personal news: My boyfriend and I bought our first home! We moved to Texas 21 months ago, and I think that at the time, we weren’t really sure if this was going to be a “we’ll stay here for a couple of years, maybe” kind of move or a permanent move. But, my boyfriend was getting anxious to invest his money in something worthwhile and to stop throwing it away on rent. We had a discussion about whether we see ourselves moving back to Ohio eventually, and we came to the decision that this is where we want to be. The lease on our apartment wasn’t supposed to end until the beginning of July, but we decided to meet with a couple of different realtors to get a feel for the market (which we already knew is crazy where we live) and to get an idea of how we should go about preparing. But then, we started looking at homes “just to see,” and that led to looking at homes on the MLS portal all the time and asking our realtor to set up showings a few times per week… Anyway, long story short: We closed on our home about seven weeks ago and have been slowly but surely getting settled!
In addition to that consuming a lot of my time for a couple of months, I also felt like I needed a break from blogging. Admittedly, I had run out of inspiration for blog post topics and didn’t feel a lot of motivation to write posts. I also wanted to take some time to think about which parts of my business are working best for me right now and which parts need to take a backseat for a while. That being said, blogging has been put in the backseat while I focus more on a couple of other aspects, but I do have inspiration now for several different posts, so yay for that! 🙂
Back to AIP Reintroductions
Let me get back to the reason you opened this post: the second half of my AIP reintroductions. About three months ago, I published this post with Part 1 of my AIP reintroductions. I detailed the first several weeks of my reintroductions and how they went for me, and I promised you a follow-up post, which I’m just now getting around to writing. 😉 Sadly, I was not nearly as diligent about keeping track of how the remaining reintroductions went as I was about the first several in my first post. But, I’ll do my best to pick up where I left off and give you as much information as I can recall about how the last reintroductions went.
The Remaining AIP Reintroductions
If I’m reading my previous post correctly, I left off when I was close-ish to halfway through reintroductions. So, I’ll pick up with eggs, because that seems to be where I left off. I have to admit that I didn’t do a very good job of reintroducing egg yolks by themselves. If you read my Part 1 post, I mentioned that I was planning to make mayo with the yolks. Well, that was a total flop! The mayo didn’t turn out at all, and I didn’t want to waste ingredients trying again. What I ended up doing was using an egg yolk as a wash for breaded chicken thighs. But, that’s all I consumed (one breaded chicken thigh per day for a couple of days), which isn’t reeeeeally how you’re supposed to do AIP reintroductions. *Shhhh!* But, I had no issues when I reintroduced the whole egg a few weeks later, so that was exciting! I was a little nervous about that reintroduction, because I know some people do discover sensitivities to eggs after the AIP or other elimination diets. Actually, the egg reintroductions stand out most in my memory as the most successful reintroductions–I didn’t notice anything that made me question if they were having a negative effect on my health.
Next, I’ll talk about my reintroduction of nuts and seeds. As we all know, there are a wide variety of both nuts and seeds, and it would take FOR-EV-ER to reintroduce all of them. Plus, in my mind it doesn’t even make sense to reintroduce foods I wasn’t eating prior to the AIP. That being said, I decided to reintroduce only one nut and one seed: almonds and pepitas (also known as pumpkin seeds). I chose to do the almond reintroduction with almond butter (duh), and when I did the pepitas, I just snacked on them or added them to salads. I experienced no noticeable issues with either of these and have since eaten a couple of other types of nuts with no issues.
Thanks be to the cacao seed, I had no issues with reintroducing chocolate. Although I personally can’t tell much taste difference between carob and cacao, I still use carob powder from time to time. But, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t resume my habit of consuming a daily square of dark chocolate. In addition, I experienced no issues with white potatoes, which I reintroduced in their mashed form. I really missed white potatoes, and I’m thankful that they were a successful reintroduction. Mashed cauliflower is tasty and all, but there’s nothing quite like real mashed potatoes, ya know?
My biggest reintroduction fear was the category of nightshades. I was so worried that these reintroductions would go terribly, probably because I have a couple of friends who can’t tolerate nightshades at all, which they learned after doing the AIP for a period of time. I think I accidentally consumed a small amount of nightshade spices a week or so after I first eliminated them from my diet, a conclusion to which I came after developing joint pain in my right hand for about a week. I discovered that a pre-made burger from Costco that I’d eaten in a quick and easy dinner one night had “spices” on the ingredients list. I checked in with the coaches in my SAD to AIP in SIX group, and one of them informed me that joint pain is a common symptom of nightshade intolerance. But, when it came time to reintroduce nightshades…once again, I didn’t experience any noticeable negative reactions. These reintroductions included green, red, and yellow bell peppers, paprika, chili powder, and tomatoes. I’m a little wary that nightshades might be causing me inflammation, which is hard to determine, so I really don’t know. I think the only way I might be able to figure it out is by eliminating them again, but I’m playing around with dietary modifications (macros, really–trying to find a daily amount of carbs that makes my body happy). I started weight lifting again about six weeks ago, too. Therefore, I think it might be hard to determine if any perceived weight loss or loss of inflammation/bloating is due to exercise and dietary changes or to eliminating nightshades.
Lastly, I tried reintroducing a few foods that aren’t even Paleo, because they were foods I enjoyed with varying frequency prior to doing the AIP. These included oatmeal, brown rice, white rice, and corn. I didn’t do dedicated reintroductions with white rice and corn, just to give a disclaimer. To my relief I experienced no problems when reintroducing white rice and actually found that it made me feel quite good. But, oatmeal and brown rice both caused me digestive issues. I’m not sure why, but I continue to try to eat oatmeal from time to time, mainly when I’m in a pinch for a meal and have no other quick, easy-to-make options. I really should stop doing that, because it gives me an upset stomach every time. This makes me sad, because I used to really like oatmeal. But, such is life, I suppose. I’ve really only consumed corn in the form of corn tortillas and corn tortilla chips. I seem to do okay with it, unless I eat too much. I think keeping a mindset of “I can only eat so many of these before I need to hit the brakes” will be helpful for the occasional consumption of these treats.
So, there you have it! Can I definitively say that the AIP healed my gut enough during the six-and-a-half months that I did it that I was able to reintroduce almost everything successfully? I’m not sure that that’s the case entirely. There’s a good chance that I just don’t have sensitivities, intolerances, or allergies to these foods (which is wonderful). I also didn’t notice much or any improvement/difference in some of my more persistent Hashimoto’s symptoms, like hair shedding and cold hands and feet. But, am I glad I did it anyway? You bet! I experienced other benefits from doing the AIP, and I’m thankful for that. I don’t currently have any plans to do another round of the AIP. After sticking strictly to it for six-and-a-half months, I’m burned out on it for the time being. I made it work for me during that time, and I had a lot of delicious food, despite the “restrictiveness” of the diet. However, I know that the AIP is there, in case I do decide I need to go back to it for a while. Now that I’ve done it once, I have all of the resources I need for another successful attempt at it, if need be.
Have you tried the AIP? What motivated you to do so?
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