I recently received a review copy of “The Paleo Approach” by Sarah Ballantyne. Sarah runs the blog The Paleo Mom, where she chronicles her own health struggles, her research (as a PhD), and her protocols for reversing autoimmune disease.
The Paleo Approach
Her book came at a providential time, as I just found out I have Hashimotos thyroid disease (autoimmune disease-strong family history in our family) and I’m working to reverse it naturally. The things I was already doing to help with this fit perfectly with what Sarah talks about in The Paleo Approach: determining food sensitivities, healing the gut, and addressing lifestyle factors.
Of all the books I’ve read in the last two years (and I’ve read over 100), The Paleo Approach is definitely one of the most thorough and well-researched. Throughout the book, Sarah covers in detail:
- What are autoimmune diseases and how do you know if you have one?
- The causes of autoimmune disease
- Leaky Gut and gut dysbiosis related to autoimmune disease
- Foods that can cause inflammation, especially in those with autoimmune disease
- Diet and lifestyle factors to help reverse autoimmune disease
Many people may think that this book isn’t applicable to them since they don’t have an autoimmune disease, but as Sarah points out, many of these symptoms can be associated with the early stages of autoimmune disease (and the best time to catch it):
- mood issues like anxiety and depression
- low blood pressure
- digestive problems
- gallbladder problems
- blood sugar issues
- headaches and memory problems
- joint or muscle pain
- skin rashes
- sleep troubles
- thyroid problems
- weight gain
- recurrent yeast infections
Sarah recommends a very anti-inflammatory diet for the short term and suggests avoiding: grains, dairy, eggs, soy, legumes, processed foods, sugars, sweeteners, sugar, spices derived from seeds, alcohol and caffeine. After a month or so of this diet, she recommends re-introducing these foods slowly to gauge a reaction.
The Bottom Line
Unless you’ve eaten a clean, real-food, low-inflammatory diet your entire life, trying the protocols in this book for a month may have a tremendously positive effect on your health. If you have the early stages of an auto-immune disease, you can catch it early. If not, you haven’t lost anything!
Have you ever tried an autoimmune paleo protocol? How did it go?