Have you been following the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) for a while and have only seen marginal improvements? Maybe you’ve been doing this for months and haven’t noticed any differences at all. If that’s you, you’re probably feeling totally defeated, fed-up with the whole thing and are soooo ready to throw in the towel. I don’t blame you.
Let me be the first to tell you that it’s not your fault. I’m going to say that again: it’s not your fault babe! Let’s put it this way: you can’t brute-force your way into healing. I tried following this mantra for years, just thinking that if I did everything “perfectly” then I would finally feel better. You know what happened? Not only did I not feel better, I started spiraling into unhealthy toxic and borderline disordered-eating behaviors.
No matter how hard you AIP, if you’re not seeing the results you’re hoping for, that is usually a good sign there is something else going on. It’s time to start troubleshooting.
What is Troubleshooting?
As defined by the Cambridge Dictionary, troubleshooting is “the process of solving problems, especially problems in a complicated system.”
Well, a body with autoimmune disease is one of the most complicated systems I know! If you’ve been asking yourself, “Why am I not getting better?” then it’s time to start problem solving. Troubleshooting takes time. I mean A LOT of time. So it’s important to remain consistent and patient with the process.
Troubleshooting is often best done in collaboration with a qualified practitioner. There are many things you can start exploring on your own to fine tune the AIP process and make sure there aren’t any missing elements that could be hindering healing. However, deeper investigation requires adding a practitioner to your team to help guide you in this deep dive process.
Some Areas to Start Troubleshooting on Your Own
No one is perfect and “perfection” is not a standard we should continually strive for when healing. That being said, it is important to periodically check in with yourself to see if maybe there are some areas of improvement that could be hindering your healing. Here are a few areas to explore and questions to ask yourself as you start to troubleshoot. NOTE: There is no judgement attached to these questions. Their purpose is to promote a self-check in on how you feel like you’re doing and determine if some adjusting is appropriate.
- Have you been complying 100% with the elimination phase of the Autoimmune Protocol and have been in elimination for at least 30-90 days?
- Do you feel steady energy throughout the day or feel “hangry”, shaky, or lightheaded in between meals?
- Have you double checked the ingredients in any supplements, spices, or pre-packed foods you consume?
- Are you including healthy fats, organ meats, seafood, and glycine rich foods (bone broth) multiple times a week?
- Do you eat a variety of foods and vegetables included in the elimination phase?
- Do you drink plenty of water throughout the day?
- Are you chewing your food thoroughly and taking time to sit & enjoy your meals?
- Are you getting 8-12 hours of quality sleep each night and wake up feeling rested?
- What does your bedtime routine look like? Does it promote calming and relaxation?
- Do you move your body daily?
- Are you working to decrease and appropriately manage stress in your life?
When is It Time to Work with a Practitioner?
If you’ve made it through this life, confidently addressed each area and still are not seeing measurable improvement, then it’s time to work with a practitioner. They will have the ability to guide you in a deeper investigation of your body to determine any underlying dysfunction or areas of need that are keeping you from healing.
A good place to start would be a Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, Certified Health Coach, or Functional Medicine practitioner. One of the things I love about working with clients is helping them create order from chaos, pinpoint which areas of their bodies need targeted support, and problem solve their healing so they start to see continued improvement.
I am always accepting new clients and you can find out more about how to get started working with me here.
It is important to note that FNTPs and Certified Health Coaches do not diagnose or treat disease.
When searching for a Functional Medicine practitioner, this directory is a good place to start looking for someone in your area.