Mikaela is a writer, sometimes runner, wife, step-mom and autoimmune Paleo enthusiast. She is recovering from severe Crohn’s disease using real food, laughter and long walks on the beach. Her favorite seasonings are turmeric, ginger and cinnamon.You can find more stories and recipes on her blog, Slightly Lost Girl as well as keep up with her latest antics (and find out what she had for breakfast) on Facebook and Instagram. She also runs the first TPA (The Paleo Approach) Approved blog in Spanish, where she shares information about the autoimmune protocol (and delicious recipes) all in Spanish! You can find her Spanish language blog, La Chica Paleo and also Spanish Facebook and Instagram pages! She believes that knowledge is the best medicine and that by understanding the roots of illness and making positive choices we are capable of finding our own way towards health.
There is something about the crisp fall air that makes me crave decadent beverages served up by smiling baristas wearing green aprons. For a brief period of my life I actually was one of those baristas and despite having unlimited free drinks during my shift I didn’t quite manage to get tired of them! My favorites were always the seasonal specials that appeared around the holidays. I no longer indulge in those kinds of treats for health reasons but have found a way to recreate one a couple of my favorites! I am here today to share my AIP (autoimmune protocol) Nocha recipe which is sure to get rid of those holiday mocha cravings. But first, a little update:
About six months ago I wrote my own Real People, Real Paleo post on The Paleo Mom site to tell my “not quite success story.” I had been following the AIP for quite some time and frankly was fed-up. I was tired of hearing about people instantly fixing all of their problems with a Paleo diet and resentful of the fact that my results were not nearly so drastic or instantaneous. I had seen improvements in my Crohn’s disease symptoms, but was far from remission.
I am excited to report that I am doing much better! I am still not in perfect health, but have slowly continued to get stronger, healthier and more energetic. The biggest change however has not been physical, but rather mental. My outlook has changed. One day I made a whiny comment about the fact that I “wasn’t a success story” yet. One of my dear friends, who is also reversing an autoimmune disease using The Paleo Approach, responded by saying: “Any progress is success in my book!” Yes Eileen (Eileen blogs at Phoenix Helix), I am quoting you. At first I felt ashamed for having complained, (even though this was not her intention) but then I began to think about the importance of her words. For me this was a turning point; I needed to stop focusing on what had not improved and the symptoms that I was still fighting and turn my attention to the improvements that I had made – every small victory! Every day that I get out of bed and walk to the kitchen without wincing from joint pain is a battle won. Every night that I sleep through without waking up to go to the bathroom is a sign that what I am doing is working! Sure, I still have days where I feel resentful of my illness and wonder, “why me?” but those days are few and far between. It has been a long time since I cried myself to sleep in pain and desperation….something that was a routine occurrence just a year ago. Since my improvement has been so gradual it is kind of like watching my hair grow… I don’t look in the mirror and think, “Wow, my hair is growing!” But someone who hasn’t seen me in a few months will notice that I look much healthier….and am less likely to fall asleep at the dinner table.
The Paleo Approach is not a miracle cure. It is not a pill that will solve all of your problems overnight, but it is real. It is the clearest and most logical way to find health and recover from autoimmune disease. When I looked at the autoimmune protocol as a means to an end or a quick fix for my health problems I wanted to give up and convince myself that it didn’t work, but as I continued to research (and read Sarah’s book over and over) I realized that not only was this the only way for me to recover my health, quitting would be illogical and probably land me in the hospital…. AGAIN, which is not one of my favorite places. The Paleo Approach isn’t just a diet; it is an education that can help us to understand our bodies. It is not something that “works” or “doesn’t work” but rather a starting point for us to continuously work towards finding the best options for our own individual health puzzles. If it isn’t working, we need to find out why…. not give up. When we are fighting chronic (or even “incurable”) illness, any progress is success!
Now for the recipe! As the autoimmune protocol becomes more mainstream, there are many great AIP snacks, treats and other delicious indulgences that I never had even dreamed were possible. Unfortunately for those of us who are still in the initial phases of the autoimmune protocol, most of these recipes while AIP friendly, go way above the 20 grams of sugar that Sarah recommends. I have found that for me, eating fructose a great way for me to get an uncomfortable distended tummy, nor can I tolerate the AIP flour substitutes (plantains, or arrowroot/coconut flour). Does this mean that I don’t ever have any treats? Not at all! Last month I discovered a way to make an AIP Pumpkin Spice Natte (one of my favorite pre-AIP fall treats was the original pumpkin spice latte). Now that we are rolling on into the holiday season I decided that if I could pull off an AIP Natte, why not an AIP Nocha? Without further ado, I present the AIP Peppermint Nocha!
- 1 C of freshly brewed hot “Base” (you can use Roasted Dandelion Root tea, Oolong tea, Black tea, or coffee depending on your tolerance)
- 2 T coconut oil or coconut butter
- 2 T carob powder
- 1 tsp. maple syrup (optional)
- 1-2 drops peppermint extract
- Add your hot “base” and all of the ingredients to the blender.
- Blend for 15-20 seconds.
- Serve in your favorite mug!
Be extra careful with hot liquids in the blender! They have a tendency to spray everywhere if you aren’t careful…
Coffee is NOT AIP so if you are following the autoimmune protocol use one of the other options 🙂