Category : Paleo Diet

See How This Company Is Making the AIP / Paleo Diet Easier to Manage!



Delicious AIP & Paleo CARAMELS! 


It really is the little things that make LIFE SO SWEET!
It’s not everyday I can introduce you to one of my favorite products in the AIP/Paleo world, Sweet Apricity Caramels!

Such a divine little treat.

I never thought I would find a tasty snack again after going AIP, which led to my creating Power Balls.  Now, there is something else amazing on the market that even received approval from “The Paleo Mom” – Sarah Ballantyne!

While we generally limit treats on AIP and keep it to a minimum, let’s be real, AIP and Paleo can be so hard.  Sometimes we just need a little pick-me-up.

These Caramels are the perfect assurance to convince us that it’s going to be ok and you’re going to make it.

Sweet Apricity is run by an amazing girl who poetically explains:

“We wanted to create an indulgence our bodies would celebrate, rather than punish us for. Something that feels like a reward for the sacrifice of giving up our once loved dairy, gluten, eggs, nuts, and seeds. Here is our offering – the culmination of that intent and desire – sweet, salty, creamy caramels. It’s the warmth of the sun when it feels like winter.”

Doesn’t that just sum it up?!?


And Sweeten Up Your Day a Little!

Want to Attend the World’s Most Awesome Paleo Event? (With Me, Tony of Kasandrinos EVOO…and the Rest of Your Tribe!)

Here’s your big chance!  Over the course of three days, Paleo f(x)™ is hosting an amazing event that will feature multiple stages and an exciting vendor fair. You will be able to attend keynote presentations, mastermind panels, cooking demos, and workshops.

These events will be led by all your Favorite Paleo Superstars!  This means cutting ­edge health practitioners, scientists in a variety of fields, coaches and gym owners, New York Times best­-selling authors, popular bloggers, community and sustainability activists, biohackers, chefs, and more in the Paleosphere. We’re talking Robb Wolf, Melissa Hartwig, Sarah Ballantyne, Diane Sanfilippo, Dallas Hartwig, Michelle Tam, Mark Sisson…the list goes on. It’s incredible and I can’t help but fan-girl a little. I can’t wait to attend and bring one of you with me!

It all takes place in the heart of Austin, TX, from May 27-29, 2016, with thousands of attendees from around the world.

This event has SOLD OUT for the last 4 years in a row. But now is your chance to not only win a ticket to the event, but a Super Power Prize pack valued at over $500.00 that includes:

  1. One Premiere Ticket to Paleo f(x)™ ($367.00 value!)
  2. Box of Paleo Angel Power Balls
  3. Kasandrinos Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  4. Paleo Angel Power Balls T-shirt or Tank
  5. Caveman Coffee or Tea Package

Enter HERE!
This giveaway ends on May 18, 5 pm PST so get your entry in now!
a Rafflecopter giveaway


Giveaway ends March 18th, 2016 at 5:00 PM PST. Open to Residents of the US only.  Prizes will be mailed to winner. We do reserve the right to add products to this giveaway, but will not deduct any.  Winner will be selected by and be notified by email. Winner have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is selected. Please note that Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC are not responsible for sponsors that do not fulfill their prizes.  Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC have represented each sponsor with the expectation they will fulfill their prize and in a timely manner.  Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC will contact the sponsor regarding your prize(s).  Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC, in most cases, are shipping their items to you directly.  Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC will make every effort to assist you obtaining your prize.  If there is an issue with a sponsor, please notify the Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC you won a prize from within 30 days for assistance; after that we may be unable to assist you.  The product offered for the giveaway is free of charge, no purchase necessary. Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC’s opinions are their own and were not influenced by any form of compensation.  Instagram and PaleoFX are in no way associated with this giveaway.  By providing your information in this form, you are providing your information to Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC and only them. Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC do not share or sell information and will use any information only for the purpose of contacting the winner. Winner of this contest is responsible for their own transportation and lodging to Austin, Texas. If winner cannot attend, ticket MAY NOT BE SOLD.  It can be given to another person as long as Kasandrinos International and Paleo Angel LLC are notified within 48 hours. If notification is not given, another winner will be selected.

For the Love of Chocolate…Eat More CAROB! Why We Avoid Chocolate on the AIP Diet

So you’ve taken the plunge and decided to try the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) diet, or maybe you’re transitioning from the regular Paleo diet, or maybe you’re still thinking about AIP and learning.  Regardless, we know that it’s not going to be easy.  There are so many restrictions, and perhaps one of the cruelest restrictions of all is NO CHOCOLATE?!? I know—dagger in my heart!  Well, don’t panic just yet! You’re going to be ok!

First of all, please remember that AIP is meant to be an elimination diet that you undergo for only a period of time (30 days, 60 days, 6 months…whatever you decide). IT IS NOT FOREVER!

Second, there is a pretty damn tasty way around this “no chocolate” form of cruel and unusual punishment.  The answer is CAROB.  But more about that later.  As a preliminary matter, let’s discuss the reasons why chocolate should be AVOIDED on AIP at first, and then you can decide for yourself!

Even if you’re not going to do AIP, there are reasons you may want to eliminate or moderate your consumption of chocolate and replace it with alternative items…like Carob!

Reasons to AVOID Chocolate while on the elimination part of the AIP diet:

  • Phytic Acid: Chocolate is very high in phytic acid.  You know, that pesky anti-nutrient that is also present in tree nuts, grains, legumes, and seeds. Just the word “anti-nutrient” makes me want to avoid it! But what this really means is phytic acid can mess with your gut flora and gut barrier by inhibiting digestive enzymes. This makes your gut more permeable and can lead to an overgrowth of bacteria.  Not good. More and more research is showing that gut permeability and gut flora issues may be huge culprits in autoimmune issues.
  • Caffeine: While chocolate does not contain a ton of caffeine, nevertheless, it does include enough that we should avoid it for the first part of the AIP diet.  Caffeine raises cortisol (fight or flight hormone) levels which leads to all kinds of problems that can affect your sleep, digestion, and even mood. It can make you depressed. It can also cause your immune system to flare up (hello, autoimmune disease) and elevated cortisol levels lead to higher stress levels. Depression, added stress, on top of an already stressful autoimmune disease – no thanks.
  • High Fat: Chocolate is high in fat, and as with anything in life, if you eat too much, you might gain weight. While I definitely believe fat is phat and NOT the devil, moderation is key.
  • Lack of Nutrient Density: Have you read all those articles entitled: “6 reasons chocolate is good for you,” or “8 reasons to eat more chocolate.” And then they start talking about about antioxidants, minerals, and some other BS because…well, you want to eat more chocolate, and they are telling you what you want to hear.  These are probably the same people who tell you drinking more wine will allow you to live longer. Believe me, I loooove chocolate.  And I love wine.  Chocolate and wine together? Amazing!  So I’m really not trying to be the grinch of chocolate (and wine), but come on, do you really believe they are GOOD for you? Of course when I’m craving these things I want to believe they are good for me so I can fully indulge without guilt.  But I think deep down, we all know it’s not truly good FOR you. In moderation, chocolate may not be “that bad” for you, but “not as bad” does NOT equate to “good for you.” Sorry, folks. Chocolate gives you comfort, temporary happiness, relief, and an escape. But when you compare the nutritional density of chocolate with may other foods on the AIP diet, chocolate just can’t compete. You’re consuming near empty calories.
  • Gluten Cross-Reaction: A cross-reaction can happen when your body starts to mis-identify certain foods and react as if you’ve consumed gluten. If you can’t tolerate gluten, you may have a problem with chocolate over time. The protein structure of chocolate is similar enough to gluten that it makes it onto the “potentially cross-reactive” list.
  • Crappy Chocolate: When you buy a chocolate bar at the store, do you even know if are you eating the real thing? Forget the Hershey Bars and M&M’s…I don’t even think I need to discuss what’s bad about those, considering there are ingredients in them that I can’t pronounce. But I’m talking about the fancy, beautifully packaged bars that you buy at a health food store or a high-end chocolate shop. Even the ones that say 90% Dark Chocolate and taste pretty bitter. Most of these bars include a little bit of pure chocolate, combined with a LOT of things that are far from ideal: sugar, soy, dairy, nuts, other additives.  Don’t believe me? Pick up a chocolate bar and sugar (in some form) will probably be one of the first 3 ingredients listed. That means the product is high in that ingredient (FYI ingredients are always listed in the order of highest to lowest amount). It is very rare that you’ll find consumable chocolate in a pure form, without all these detrimental extras.

Well, what is a chocolate lover to do with this dire list?  If you’ve decided you truly want to pursue AIP and feel better, I really think it’s worth eliminating chocolate for a period of time. I know many, many people that have re-introduced chocolate back into their lives with no problems and stayed in remission with their autoimmune disease. So don’t despair. Especially because in the meantime, there is CAROB!

What is CAROB?

Carob is basically a delectable chocolate substitute! They taste the same! Or pretty darn close. Yes, carob is a bean, which is a legume and not allowed on AIP or Paleo.  However, carob powder only uses the POD of the carob bean. Carob has zero caffeine and includes other important micronutrients like:

  • Vitamin B
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin E
  • Calcium
  • Magnesium
  • Iron
  • Potassium

All things your body needs. It mimics the taste of chocolate with a fraction of the sugar. And it actually does contain high amounts of antioxidants as well as dietary fiber. It contains zero dairy and has been said to help lower cholesterol.  So to sum it up…Carob > Chocolate.

Still on the fence? Well, I decided to put Carob to the test by conducting an experiment on a very small sample…of one.  My boyfriend. He LOVES Power Balls. Sometimes I think he’s going to eat me out of business. He loves them all. Blueberry, Snickerdoodle, Vanilla, he can’t get enough. But the one flavor he holds above all others? CHOCOLATE. Always chocolate. Don’t even ask how many he can eat in one sitting.

The other morning, before we went to the gym, I casually offered him a Power Ball as a pre-workout snack to fuel his training. His eyes widened in excitement when he saw the rich, brown-colored, chocolatey-looking Power Ball that I was holding out. He immediately popped it in his mouth with a big smile and chewed…and gulped and smiled.  I asked him what he thought of the Power Ball. His response was, “It’s my absolute favorite flavor, I’ve already had a million of these, it’s as good as it always is.” He had no idea it was a CAROB Power Ball!

I fooled my chocoholic boyfriend! Satisfied, I thought to myself: my work is done. Carob for the win!

Deletable, rich, chocolatey taste without the autoimmune issues of chocolate! Carob is a healthy, nutrient-dense substitute for chocolate. It mimics the taste and satisfies any chocolate-lover’s craving.

Carob Power Balls are made in very small batches to ensure freshness, so they sell out quick! Grab your Balls by clicking ===> HERE!

collagen powder paleo angel

Collagen Protein: The Lazy New AIP Autoimmune Protocol Super Food

Collagen Protein and Gelatin are practically considered a super food in the AIP Autoimmune Protocol world, but what exactly is the stuff and why is it necessary?

The Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) is all about healing the gut, and I used to think of it as an elimination diet—what not to eat.  Then, I shifted my focus to what I should eat to make sure I consumed the right nutrients and really heal. When I was first told that collagen protein heals the gut, I immediately wanted to try it.  The only problem was I didn’t understand exactly what it was and why I needed to add it to my diet.

I did a little research and had an interesting revelation: it’s basically what my Chinese mother had been promoting to me for years, but in the form of bone broth!  My mom has been a huge advocate of bone broth for as long as I can remember, and she is a prime example of its benefits.  People always mistake her for my “sister” (the one I don’t have), despite the fact that she is well into her 50’s (shhhh).  This would probably be the perfect place to insert some kind of joke about Asians not aging…but in all seriousness, bone broth has consistently been my mom’s answer for everything, from achy joints to sagging skin, and even as post-pregnancy nourishment.

While there are plenty of articles and recipes for bone broth, that still doesn’t explain this new super ingredient in white powder form that has been floating around the blogosphere.  After reading more about it, I have deemed it the “lazy or busy person’s alternative to both broth!”

Here is an easy breakdown for those of you wondering about some of the same things I was.

What is Collagen Protein? 

Both collagen hydrolysate and gelatin refer to a type of connective tissue found only in animals and humans.  The collagen made for consumption is produced by cooking down this connective tissue (usually from cow or pig). Yes, you know what I’m talking about—these are those rubbery parts of a steak or the cartilage on a chicken drumstick that are usually too tough to chew and are discarded. You have more collagen in your body than any other type of protein.  A decrease of collagen protein in our bodies over time can cause all kinds of issues, from wrinkles to weak joints. Collagen protein contains high amounts of glycine and proline, which in turn, build more connective tissue.

You may have seen different brands carrying the “hydrolysate” or the “gelatin” in different colored containers, but the two share the same amino acid profiles.  The difference is that the hydrosolate is produced in a way that allows it to dissolve into liquids without gelling and is more quickly absorbed by the body. This soluble version is convenient to add to beverages like tea or smoothies. The gelatin version may be used to make gummies, fruit roll ups, and other fun recipes.

Collagen protein offers gut-healing properties, and most importantly, provides a nutritious and natural alternative to whey or plant based proteins (usually restricted on the Paleo/AIP diets). There is no real complete protein powder that is compatible with AIP since whey and egg are eliminated.  Collagen provides a good protein supplement, and is particularly convenient to add to Paleo/AIP beverages.  It’s really not a good idea to have a smoothie or shake without protein or fat because our goal should be to balance our blood sugar, not to set up a spike-and-crash.

Why Use Collagen Protein?

Some of the benefits of using collagen protein include:

– healthier hair and strong nails

– improved digestion

– joint comfort and mobility

– healthy immune response

– improved skin

– improvement in cellulite

– allows for better sleep at night

– healing of the mucosal layer in the gut

The last reason, healing the gut, is why collagen protein is strongly recommended for those with autoimmune issues.  An underlying issue in autoimmune disorders is “leaky gut,” and collagen heals the gut barrier.  Because these health benefits are predominantly derived from the amino acids, it really doesn’t matter whether you opt to use the hydrolysate or gelatin form.

Collagen Protein Powder versus Bone Broth

In my humble opinion, bone broth wins, hands down. Just ask my mom. She’s still not entirely comfortable with the powdered forms that I like to use for convenience, but she is also one of those amazing people who are super efficient in the kitchen and are all about making natural soup stocks and bone broths.

With my hectic lifestyle, it’s just not feasible to make broths all the time.  Also, sometimes, when it’s 110 degrees outside on an average July day in Las Vegas, it’s not surprising that I just don’t feel like having bone broth. And sometimes, I’m just lazy (but oh so grateful when my mom drops off a fresh batch of broth for my freezer).  It’s so easy and convenient to sprinkle some collagen protein into my smoothie or tea.  It’s even more fun to incorporate it into my baking! As a side note, recipe development can be full of trial and error when it comes to baking with collagen (that awkward moment when you pull some beautiful, fluffy Paleo muffins out of the oven only to bite into one and realize it has the texture of a dog’s chew toy…trust me, I speak from hours and hours of failed recipe development).  After lots of experimentation, I’ve figured out how to include both forms of collagen protein in my Paleo Angel Power Balls.

I personally love the brand, Great Lakes Collagen Protein Hydrolysate (and the Gelatin).  I know Vital Proteins has become quite popular lately.  Some people argue it’s “better” in some ways, but plain and simple, it gives me tummy aches! I don’t know why. I’ve tried it numerous times and it never fails to leave me feeling a little uncomfortable.  But I’ve never had a problem with Great Lakes.

collagen protein paleo angel power balls aip autoimmune protocol paleo diet recipe

We use collagen protein in POWER BALLS as an amazing way to get an extra 12 Grams of Protein into your diet! They are delicious and nutrient dense.  Perfect for breakfast on-the-go or a quick snack.

In any event, collagen protein has some amazing gut-healing benefits, and the powder forms have made it very easy to get some into your diet.  Give it a shot and let me know when you begin to notice stronger nails and smoother skin. Hey, the lazy way is better than nothing!

paleo angel power balls aip autoimmune protocol paleo diet

To Nourish and To Educate – AIP Autoimmune Protocol

Welcome to my AIP Autoimmune Protocol & Paleo blog!

This is a place where I will share my research on wellness and autoimmune issues, as well as AIP Autoimmune Protocol and Paleo recipes.

Learning about AIP Autoimmune Protocol and Paleo over the years has completely altered my view on health, nutrition, and the world around me (to learn more about my path to AIP Autoimmune Protocol and Paleo, read my story here). It’s not just about food, but all kinds of everyday items that we use and things that we do. This knowledge has made an incredible impact on my life, and I can’t wait to share and discuss this with all of you.

This lifestyle is something I am truly passionate about, and I know everyone in the industry says that, but really — nothing gets me more excited than reading and talking about the impact of our food and environment on our health. That sounds so nerdy, but the biggest reason I get so excited is because of how much it’s changed my own health. I’ve had life-altering autoimmune disorders since a young age, and when I finally made the connection between my diet and my health problems, it kind of blew my mind. I never knew just how far it could reach. I know I’m being a bit vague here, but a discussion of my personal autoimmune issues is lengthy and deserves its own blog post, which is coming soon.

I tell people that I founded my company, Paleo Angel, with the mission to nourish and to educate. I want to nourish people by making Power Balls, a convenient and nutritious AIP Autoimmune Protocol and Paleo food; and I want to educate the millions of people out there suffering from autoimmune disorders who have yet to make the same connectiopaleo angel autoimmune protocol aip paleo recipe dietn I did between food, environment, and their illness. Whenever I hear about a friend, or a friend of a friend, who is suffering from an autoimmune disorder with no control over the symptoms, I feel this urgent need to meet them and tell them all about the healing power of AIP Autoimmune Protocol/Paleo.

I am not a medical expert or a biologist by any means, and I always rely on those with the proper training and background for their knowledge and research. It is through other bloggers and researchers that I have learned as much as I have, and I feel grateful for all their work. I hope to build on their work and open up more discussions on these issues, so please come along and learn with me!

-Paleo Angel

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