Biohacking Update: 8½ months into the Autoimmune Protocol

Today is my wedding anniversary.

8½ months into the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP), the best anniversary present I could have is a husband that looks like this:

Matthew 4 cropped

Not bad for a 46-year old arthritic guy!

Just saying.

We remain fervently committed to the AIP, so we can’t go out to our favourite restaurant to celebrate this year. But that’s more than okay. We’re going to rent some paddleboards & before we go out paddling, we’re going to put some SPCA-certified short-ribs in the slow cooker.

It has been years since Matthew could even contemplate paddle boarding.

Granted, August & September have typically been his best months, so we expect he’ll experience a decline as winter sets in. But we’ve learned to compare each month with where he was a year, 2 years, 3 years ago, so we won’t think of the increase in symptoms associated with winter as something to be discouraged about.

Okay, I’m lying. It’s super discouraging when his health declines & we both dread the winter. But he’s so much better than he’s been in 6 years that we’re also kind of perpetually celebratory.

I’m really grateful to Eileen at Phoenix Helix & Sarah at The Paleo Mom for documenting their personal experiments with the AIP & continuing to share research and information through their blogs. That’s where we found what we needed to get started.

8½ months after committing to a long-term AIP experiment of our own, we’re getting used to the idea that we might one day get our life back.

Not the same life. A different one. A better one.

Because we’ll know how hard-won it was. How precious it is.

We’re nowhere near there yet. But today, going paddleboarding feels close enough.

Find updates on our AIP experiment here:

Find the recipe for our Anniversary Short-Ribs here:

Slow Cooker Short Ribs & Greens (AIP & WahlsPaleo+)

 from petra8paleo

Mmmm, short-ribs...

Mmmm, short-ribs…

  • 4lbs bone-in short ribs
  • 2 tablespoon Himalayan Salt
  • 3 cups Bone Broth
  • 2 bunches greens (chard, kale, mustard, collards)

Lay the short ribs in a baking dish and sprinkle salt over top. Turn them to ensure all sides get lightly salted.

Preheat broiler to 500.

Pop the baking dish under the broiler & brown the Ribs, turning once or twice, for a total of 10 minutes.

Transfer the Ribs to the slow cooker & add the Bone Broth.

Turn the slow cooker on low and cook for 8-11 hours (overnight or until your daytime adventures are done).

Chop the greens.

Remove the short ribs to a plate and add the chopped greens to the slow cooker. Put the short ribs back in and let the greens cook for 15 minutes.

Serve it up.

The liquid in the pot will be very rich. You’ll want to ensure your greens are gloriously sauced in it. You may wish to pour the rest of the hot liquid into a container & refrigerate for tomorrow’s greens.

Me & Matthew


19 thoughts on “Biohacking Update: 8½ months into the Autoimmune Protocol

  1. Thank you for sharing your brave journey and….. gorgeous photos. It is obvious that you revel in each other`s company! Happy anniversary and
    right on with everything you are clearly so successfully doing. Somehow it`s weird not knowing you ofcourse and yet wanting to congratulate you on your wedding and with your progress as if I did. I hesitated but I`m glad I just did. Warmly from overseas, the Netherlands. Jessica

  2. Hey lovely Petra (& now, Matthew too!) Happy anniversary from Syders. Here’s hoping this coming year is the best one yet for you both.

    I’m sensing there may be a book in your future, P. ‘The Vancouver Island Chronicles’…?

  3. Congratulations to you and Matthew! The difference is really amazing! I am so delighted for you both and I am getting used the to perky Petra in her new incarnation! It is pretty sweet! I hope Matthew’s health continues to improve, even with the coming of winter xo

  4. I want to say thank you for your articles/blog and recipes [?]

    I am finding AIP is working for me as well. I took a long time to become compliant with it as I had to work through my angst about being ill and being forced to make changes. In retrospect my illness has been a blessing in disguise, as I am in a much better place than I could have imagined, both mentally and geographically and I’ve laid a solid foundation for the rest of my life. I have grown to love my new way of eating and I have met a lot of people who are changing the way they eat too so we support each other and it’s great!!!

    Thanks again, Lea

    • Thank you for sharing this, Lea. Both the resistance we often need to overcome about getting compliant (angst about being ill and being forced to make changes as 2 perfect examples of the forms that resistance can take); and that weirdly, a severe, chronic illness can become a blessing in disguise (because most people don’t make the radical lifestyle changes that create real well-being ~and community~ unless they absolutely have to).

  5. Pingback: Biohacking Update: 12 months on the Autoimmune Protocol | petra8paleo

  6. Pingback: Link Love: 50 Paleo AIP & GAPS Slow Cooker Recipes | Phoenix Helix

  7. Pingback: Zucchini & Carmelized Turmeric (AIP)~ | petra8paleo

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