Book Review: The Paleo Approach – Much More Than an Autoimmune Protocol

Book Review:  The Paleo Approach – Much More Than an Autoimmune Protocol post image

I had been meaning to read Sarah Ballantyne’s book, The Paleo Approach for a long time – since it was published. I’m almost done with it now and can’t believe what a gift this book is to anyone with any health issue. This book is much more than an autoimmune protocol – it is a veritable treasure of critical scientific information that Sarah has adapted and made totally accessible to the average person.

More Than An Autoimmune Protocol

This book is a reference book, a must-have for your library. In this book there are many explanations for current health issues that are explained so simply, it can be used as a reference for other reading.

For example, there is an entire section on the difference between the glycemic index and the glycemic load (p. 121, 206-208) that makes it so simple to understand, even a 5th grader would get it!

The numerous health issues explained in The Paleo Approach are way beyond what you would learn from a conventional medical book. The Paleo Approach take the very best of many excellent healing diets and protocols and presents them to the reader in the clearest form possible.

In Sarah’s own words (p. 176),

The Paleo Approach takes the best of the best – only those ideas from the most successful alternative diets that are supported by high quality unbiased scientific research – and presents it in a thoughtful, comprehensive way. It incorporates all the key aspects of health into one strategy so you don’t have to cut and paste them together yourself.

I love this because if she would have written this book 10 years ago it would have been perfect for me. As it was, I stumbled upon the Specific Carbohydrate Diet, found the Weston Price Foundation and the GAPS diet and have been incorporating those principles into healing protocols for my patients with great success.

However, I can now also recommend The Paleo Approach as the first order of business (though I still love Dr. Natasha Campbell McBrides, GAPS diet book).

Because the Paleo Approach is so extensive, all the options are there, ready to be considered as part of an individual’s healing protocol.

Better yet, you can do this without the advice of a doctor or nutritionist because it is a road map  that you can use as your own best health advocate. This book is all about diet and lifestyle changes that support healing.

Beyond Autoimmunity

As I mentioned before, this book is a reference book – it is beautifully packaged with illustrations, graphs and charts that help to see the entire picture at a glance. It’s not all about autoimmunity.

There are many conditions and symptoms that indicate a possible autoimmune condition that may be brewing. Symptoms are a way for your body to tell you that things are not right. It is always better to try to nip this in the bud before a full blown autoimmune flareup. What are these symptoms? Just to mention a few:

  • Allergies
  • Asthma
  • Digestive complaints of all kinds from diarrhea to constipation
  • Fatigue
  • Headaches and other neurological problems
  • Chronic yeast infections
  • Mood problems
  • Skin conditions
  • Blood sugar fluctuations
  • Weight issues

These complaints indicate imbalances in the gut which is part of the underlying cause for autoimmunity. See more about the cause and the triggers for autoimmunity here.

Conventional medicine still tells us that there is no known cause for autoimmunity. That is simply not true. It’s all in the scientific literature that is thoroughly documented in The Paleo Approach.

The Cause and the Cure

The Paleo Approach is divided into two sections. The first section deals with the science behind the possible causes of autoimmunity. As I have mentioned, this is a highly referenced book. There are almost 20 pages with 50 plus references on each page! This will give hours of further reading if you so chose. As a clinician I appreciate this treasure trove of references.

The second part is all about the cure. Truthfully, you cannot cure an existing autoimmune condition, but you can put it into remission. For years. That is the goal. With diet and lifestyle changes you can manage an autoimmune condition so that your body is gaining health at all times.

The Paleo Approach meticulously discusses the optimal diet, the highest quality foods, which foods to avoid if you have an autoimmune condition and which foods are required for healing.

My Favorite Features

I love the book as a whole and as a work of science and art. The illustrations of some of the scientific concepts are extraordinary! I love the easy to follow charts, especially of the foods you can eat (many!). I also love the chapter review at the end of each chapter. This comes in handy when trying to integrate all you have just read.

There is also a troubleshooting checklist that is extremely helpful for those who are following and not making progress. This can happen are various times on your journey to recovery.

Sarah writes about her recovery from an autoimmune condition (and much more) at her blog,

If you are troubled about certain health conditions or symptoms that you or someone you love is experiencing, this is a MUST READ!

If you have an autoimmune condition you HAVE TO READ THIS BOOK!

Where to ORDER The Paleo Approach

Check out Sarah Ballantyne’s soon to be released new cookbook The Paleo Approach Cookbook: A Detailed Guide to Heal Your Body and Nourish Your Soul. You may Pre-order Here and lock in the lowest price!

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Leave a Comment

  • Jay June 21, 2014, 3:52 pm

    I Like This Book , Thanks 🙂

  • Debbie June 30, 2014, 6:53 pm

    Sounds like a very good read. Will have to get a copy. Thanks

  • Julia Snyder July 11, 2014, 5:49 pm

    Looks like a great read. I am really into books on healthy living to get ideas from. I recommend Tom Schneider’s A Physician’s Apology and that prompted me to really get my health in order. Sometimes you just read something that triggers you to make changes. Thanks for the review! Schneider’s site is for info on his book.