I have another inspiring guest for you on this week's AIP Spotlight! Meet Lexi!
This awesome lady has a fantastic blog over at AYCE To Better Health which you should definitely check out! Curious about her site name? I was too! I love what it stands for! "All You Can Eat to Better Health". How fitting for a blog about healing with the Autoimmune Protocol! She is a fellow Hashimoto's girl, and I find it neat to personally relate with how she began the Autoimmune Protocol.
Make sure you also follow her Instagram (@aycetobetterhealth) account for some extra AIP inspiration!
Now, let's get right down to it. Here are Lexi's real thoughts, feelings, and tips she shared with me. I know you'll love her positivity and practical suggestions!
To start, tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Lexi Haverly and I reside in the Atlanta area with my husband, Chris, and puppy, Ender. I am currently studying nutrition and working my way towards a nutrition coaching or counseling degree. Besides cooking, I enjoy spending time outdoors hiking or climbing, crafting, and attempting to grow my own little garden.
How long have you been following (or did follow) the Autoimmune Protocol, and what prompted you to try it?
I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s in September 2014 following a crazy time of purchasing our first home and getting married (PS, not recommended to do those at the same time). Before getting diagnosed, my body had completely crashed for a little over a month and the diagnosis began with my TSH being off the charts and then I found a doctor to measure my antibodies. In November, my mother-in-law bought me The Paleo Approach book after hearing someone talk about it. I started AIP the day after Thanksgiving that year and by Christmas noticed a difference in my health. I never looked back!
What have you found most challenging about following the Autoimmune Protocol? What helped you overcome the challenge?
Liver and sugar. I’m still struggling to eat offal, but I’m getting better about it through repetition. A lot has been wasted, but I’m finally able to hide it in small amounts in food. I’m still struggling with limiting my sugar intake, but I would say I’m much better now than I was pre-AIP. I feel like there’s always ways to improve your diet, even on AIP.
Other than food, what aspect of AIP living have you found to have the biggest impact on your health?
Although I’m still learning to prioritize self-care when life gets busy, taking care of me first in many situations has made a huge difference. I now know that I have a lot more to give to the world when I am well rested and healthy.
Share 1 thing you wish you had known when you started the Autoimmune Protocol.
I wish I would have known all the convenience foods available and the amount of information available online from various blogs. I went into it old school with only two books right before Christmas, it was not easy but I was determined to feel better.
What exciting or rewarding results have you seen from following AIP?
Oh my goodness, there are so many! My favorite by far is getting rid of the ‘fog’. It’s like my past life is this one big “daze” that I have trouble remembering. I also used to fall asleep during every movie/tv show and had trouble sleeping at night. Losing weight and inflammation initially was a bonus too and it has been steady for almost two years by simply sticking to compliant foods.
What's one of your favourite AIP resources?
Paleo on the Go has become one of my favorite resources to get delicious, nutrient dense meals that I hardly have to do any work to prepare and that travel really well. I wish I had known about them the past two holiday seasons.
Name one of your go-to AIP recipes. Why do you love it?
Hmmm… my go to recipe would have to be my guacamole. My favorite thing about it is that it goes with almost everything, will make the blandest of foods taste good, and helps me get my healthy fats in. I also frequently eat it with plantain chips or use it for topping tacos. I thought I reintroduced tomatoes successfully when I created the recipe, but it tastes just as delicious without AND less chopping is always a bonus!
Click on the photo below to go to Lexi's recipe!
What are your top 3 kitchen tools for AIP cooking?
My top 3 tools would have to be the Instant Pot, Immersion Blender, and Food Chopper. All 3 make my life easier. I use the Instant Pot almost daily, the Immersion Blender is perfect for making creamy soups without using a ton of dishes, and the food chopper helps me out when I need to get things chopped quickly – perfect for onions.
Now's your chance, share one AIP related pet-peeve with us.
I cringe when people around me begin talking about low calories and eating only low-fat. One time I suggested some meals with coconut ingredients to people and they said they can’t eat that because the fat in those meals is through the roof regardless if it’s considered healthy or not. One day, one day. Until then, I’ll continue to spread the word a little at a time.
It can be challenging to incorporate both AIP and standard western medical views into our treatment plan. Do you have any tips for working with your doctor while following the Autoimmune Protocol?
I used to work in the alternative medical field and many traditional doctors are very difficult to work with whether you’re a colleague or patient. Most importantly, don’t give up and don’t let the doctors “bully” you into dismissing how you feel. Search and search for doctors that will work WITH you and if there’s no one in your area, often time it’s worth it to drive to see someone to get diagnosed/stabilized. Educate yourself on your illness so that you can ask the right questions and request bloodwork as needed.
We know our thoughts & emotions play a large role in AIP healing. Do you have a favourite phrase, or mantra, if you will?
“You can’t pour from an empty cup” is a quote that has really stuck with me about self-care, which is a huge part of AIP. I used to always run on empty and I had nothing to offer to the world because I was always too tired or too busy. Now that I take care of myself first, I am able to spend time with loved ones and actually be present physically and emotionally. I am able to offer support for others. I am able to love like I never could before.
Thank you, Lexi!
I especially love her practical suggestions regarding doctors and self-care! Learning to take care of yourself to be better able to take care of others is something I can relate to, it really resonates with me. What did you relate to in her interview? Share your comments with us below!
Make sure to check back next week to see who my next AIP Spotlight interview is with!
Wishes of health and happiness,
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The Emancipated Epicure, Bethany. I'm a Foodie & Autoimmune Warrior who loves to cook. Working at healing with the Paleo Autoimmune Protocol.
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