Diet is a huge component for overall health as well as healing from any chronic illness or autoimmune condition. My first diet overhaul came when I was diagnosed with Celiac Disease in 2012. I promptly started a gluten free diet but never felt good on it. I always felt tired and spacey after eating the gluten free replacements. I quickly learned that all those carbs were pure sugar and if I really wanted to heal I had to switch to a healthy, clean diet. I found AIP (Autoimmine Paleo) and began the strict elimination phase. I felt great after the initial detox symptoms and stayed on a strict version of it for many months. Once I felt ready, I began the re-introduction phase. Little by little I tested foods out to see what I could incorporate back into my diet, and what was going to have to be left out for good or until I healed more.
I stayed AIP for just under 4 years, along with my reintroductions which included eggs, potatoes without skin, some nuts (cashews, pecans + walnuts) and occasional grass fed butter. In the beginning, the diet changed my life. I felt great even after I added in my reintroductions. But I felt I got to a certain plateau with the diet. Maybe I had become allergic or sensitive to some of the foods I was limited to? Maybe it was the fruit I was eating in the morning with my breakfast, maybe it was some of the foods that potentially had mold or mycotoxins I was eating. I am still unsure to this day what it was, but I had lost the edge I once had.
What I did know is that I needed to do more and I needed to clean up my diet even further. I considered going back to the elimination phase of AIP but did not know how much I would gain from it since I was eating pretty close to it and did not feel symptomatic from any of the foods I had added back in through careful reintroductions. I looked into various diets such as the Histamine Diets or FODMAPS but decided on the Bulletproof Diet as my next frontier and am so glad I did.
The Bulletproof Diet was started by Dave Asprey. He himself had a similar journey to mine and healed himself from Mold and Lyme Disease. The Bulletproof Diet is based on a Ketogenic Diet but one of the things that intrigued me the most about it is that it looks at toxicity of foods and takes those toxins out of your diet so that you can be as clean as possible. As I dove into the Bulletproof Diet so many things made sense. It made the AIP Diet seem elementary compared to what the Bulletproof Diet uncovered and overcame.
I have now been Bulletproof for close to 10 months and am feeling better than ever. I even reintroduced coffee successfully and have been drinking Bulletproof Coffee with my breakfast in the morning and feel great!
Why I Find The Bulletproof Diet Superior To AIP
It Looks At Mold And Toxicity In Foods
Most people are exposed to low doses of mold with every meal we eat. The more mold you eat, the more damage it does to your body. 30% of population, has a genetic predisposition to not be able to detox mold and I am one of them. Symptoms from mold toxicity can include brain fog, fatigue, visual disturbances etc. Even if you do not have a genetic predisposition to mold, it is still very toxic to your body and over time exposure to high levels can lead to cancer, kidney disease and even brain damage. Mold is prevalent in grains, coffee, chocolate, nuts and fruit. Bulletproof is not just a low carb, paleo diet. It is a low toxin diet that keeps toxins out of your body before they make you sick.
It Cuts Out All Forms Of Sugar, Including Fruits
We are all taught that fruits and veggies are good for us in any amount. The AIP diet does not put such an emphasis on avoiding fruits. Fruits are all high in sugar and some fruits can even be high in molds. The timing of when you eat fruit is also important. If you eat sugar or carbs early in your day you are setting yourself up to feed your bad gut bacteria all day. Feeding your bad gut bacteria causes you to start storing fat instead of using it for fuel. It also causes you to be hungry sooner then you should be. It's best to start your day with healthy fats and consume carbs and fruit at night or for dessert. I used to eat berries with my breakfast each morning and since cutting fruit out I feel much more clear-headed and energized throughout the day. I now indulge in fruit as dessert, or at night as a treat on occasion.
It looks At All Anti-Nutrients And How To Avoid Them
Anti-nutrients are plant compound that reduces the body’s ability to absorb essential nutrients. AIP does a great job at removing lectins and phytates which are found in grains and legumes. The Bulletproof diet takes anti-nutrients one step further and also removes oxalates and mold toxins. Oxalates are found in raw cruciferous vegetables such as kale, chard, and spinach. They form sharp oxalic crystals when it binds to calcium in your blood and can deposit anywhere in your body and cause pain in your muscles. They can also cause kidney stones. It's best to cook cruciferous veggies to avoid consuming oxalates. Mold we already covered earlier in this post.
It Considers Cooking Food As A Form Of Processing Food
Cooking can produce a lot of toxins on your food. The Bulletproof Diet aims to cook your food in the least toxic way possible in order to eliminate inflammation.
Cooking fats and protein in particular, is a huge factor in if that food will be inflammatory. Proteins can become denatured, which means they lose their structure when they are cooked and heated. When protein is intact and not denatured it boosts Glutathione Production which is your body’s master antioxidant.
Anytime meat is cooked above 320F it produces some amount of carcinogenic compounds, especially grilling meat so it's best to cook at low temperatures.
Fats are particularly susceptible to heat as well. When they are heated they oxidize. It's best to heat your fats as little as possible to keep them intact to get the best health benefits from them.
Bulletproof Coffee Beans Are Mold Tested
Coffee is not part of the AIP Diet in the Elimination Phase so this is not initially a concern, but as you start reintroducing foods I think it's important to take this point into consideration. Coffee, Cocoa and Nuts are notoriously moldy and can cause issues. As you reintroduce them and react to them you may not actually be reacting to the food itself, but mold toxins on the actual food!
I had my own experience with this recently. I have been drinking only Bulletproof Coffee since I reintroduced coffee. I was recently in Barcelona and “cheated” with some espresso at various cafes. The first 2 were higher end cafes and I felt great from the coffee. I started to get a bit cocky and started to doubt that mold on coffee was really that big of an issue.
Well, I proved myself wrong with my 3rd coffee cheat. I was tired from all the sightseeing and needed a little bit of a pick me up. We stopped at a corner cafe and I had an espresso. It didn’t taste great and within 10 min I started to feel so sick! I was nauseous, sweaty, dizzy and just sick. I didn’t feel better until we got back to our hotel and I could take some Charcoal to mop up whatever was making me sick. Fortunately charcoal always helps fairly quickly, but boy was it an eye-opener of what moldy coffee can do! My boyfriend also felt sick from his coffee as well so there was definitely something up with it.
Bulletproof Coffee Won’t Crash Your Adrenals
You may worry that coffee can stress your adrenals and that if you suffer from adrenal fatigue, you should not drink coffee. Bulletproof Coffee works around this notion in a couple different ways. First of all, mold toxins found in coffee have a profound effect on adrenal dysfunction. According to WHO, one of the most common mold toxins in coffee accumulates in the adrenals more quickly than any other organ other than the lungs. In effect, mold toxins target the part of your adrenals most responsible for helping you burn fat. Since bulletproof coffee beans are mold free, you don’t have to worry about mold hurting your adrenals.
Another way that Bulletproof Coffee does not fatigue your adrenals is due to the high amount of healthy fats from the grass fed butter. Your body does not experience a famine or time of scarcity when you are consuming healthy fats. When your body is not hungry and in survival mode, it puts less of a strain on your adrenals.
It Uses A Lot Of Fresh Herbs For Protective Reasons
The Bulletproof diet uses a lot of fresh herbs. Aside from great flavor fresh herbs are anti-inflammatory, have antioxidants and can also help keep your gut bacteria balanced. Some herbs even help keep delicates fats intact such as Rosemary and Thyme. Dried herbs have been irradiated to prevent spoilage but this can also cause them to lose their antioxidant properties to harbor a lot of mold.
Bulletproof is more a Ketogenic Diet then AIP is, but it allows you to have carbs if you need them. It especially encourages women with Thyroid issues to consume carbs later in the day.
On the Bulletproof Diet you primarily get most of your calories from healthy fats. The majority of your plate should be veggies and some high quality protein. The Bulletproof Roadmap (above) does a great job showcasing which foods are most Bulletproof and should be consumed the most.
50-70% of calories from fats
20% of calories from veggies
20% calories from protein
5% calories from fruit
The diet also has guidelines around what time of day to eat certain foods to gain the maximum benefit from them. For example, carbs are best at night to not feed your bad gut bacteria, fruit for dessert at dinner and healthy fats in the morning to give you energy and mental clarity
The diet does include a lot of grass-fed butter or ghee. This could be problematic if you have a dairy sensitivity. If you believe you are sensitive to dairy (butter) you can try eliminating it at first and adding it back in. You can also use Ghee which has little to no casein which is what tends to be the biggest issue for dairy sensitivities. If both ghee and butter don’t agree with your body you can use more coconut oil.
So what are the main differences between Bulletproof and AIP? Here is a handy chart that highlights the differences. A few key points to keep in mind:
Eggs: Eggs are not allowed on AIP, but are not a staple on the BP Diet so if you know you are sensitive its ok.
Butter: Grass fed butter is significant on the BP diet. See note above to trying Ghee or Coconut Oil
Coffee: If you are not willing to test out BP Coffee you can try tea or the no coffee latte which is made with coconut milk. I do encourage you to try the BP Coffee though since its mold free and you may actually be reacting to mold, not the coffee.
Are you ready to give the Bulletproof Diet a try? If so make sure to check out my 30 Day Bulletproof Challenge. I have everything ready for you including meal plans, shopping lists and weekly webinars that you can watch on your own time.