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AIP Kitchen Tour is a monthly feature in which we profile a member of the AIP community and their kitchen setup in hopes that it will further inspire us to get our kitchens organized and set up for success! We’ve interviewed folks who are making the AIP lifestyle a reality in everything from college dorms and small city apartments, to large households with non-AIP family members, and everything in between. Through these interviews, we hope to share how they make it happen across a variety of budgets and living situations, and give the community a wealth of inspiration. Read more Kitchen Tours here!
Name: Margaret Romero
AI Disease: Lupus Nephritis
How long have you been eating AIP? 6 months, and gluten-free for 9 years
How has the AIP changed your life?
It helped reduce inflammation markers, cleared my skin and eliminated mild digestive issues. I’m used to traveling with gluten-free food and cooking most of my meals at home so that never really changed.
Have you successfully reintroduced any foods?
Yes! Eggs, almond milk, and occasionally goat cheese. But I don’t eat eggs everyday. I have them on rotation, so I eat them maybe 1 to 3 times per week max.
Size of your kitchen: 11 x 14 feet
Favorite thing about your kitchen: Tons of natural lighting and lots of cabinet space.
Least favorite thing about your kitchen: No dishwasher!
Are there any cheap gadgets or little tools that you have found make AIP easier?
Yes, I love using the spiralizer for making zucchini “pasta” or cucumber in my salads. A mini Cuisinart is great for making dips and homemade salad dressings. And I love my NutriBullet for making fruit or veggie smoothies in the mornings along with my powdered supplements.
What is the biggest thing that changed in your kitchen setup when you adopted the AIP?
I use my deluxe dehydrator to make kale chips more than I used to.
If someone was just starting to invest in some useful but more expensive kitchen tools, which one would you tell them to buy first?
I use the Blendtec blender to make super easy purees, hot soups, or smoothies. Also, I love non-toxic ceramic non-stick cooking pans and my All-Clad pots in all sizes.
Are there any tricks you have learned to make AIP work in your space?
Because I’ve been gluten–free for so long, I already had made modifications by replacing my toaster oven and purchased all new containers to store coconut flour and other gluten–free/paleo flours/foods.
How do you deal with food for family members that are not AIP?
They are already accustomed to the fact that I am gluten-free, and they don’t really notice a huge difference except that I don’t use certain ingredients in my cooking like I used to. If they are cooking for me, then they know not to include those ingredients in my meals. And because I love to entertain for friends, they have never complained about the lack of taste or flavor in my cooking and don’t seem to notice the difference!
Are there any tools or appliances that you’ve stopped using now that your diet has changed?
Not really, I still never use the microwave, not even to warm up leftovers. I use my toaster oven a couple of times per day or heat up food in a non-toxic ceramic pan or cast iron pan.
Do you have any tips for those starting an elimination diet and setting up their kitchens for the first time?
Donate all your non-paleo foods to friends and family. Then plan a fun trip to the supermarket, try a new cooking tool(s), and maybe pick up one or two new AIP cookbooks. Maybe even find a cooking class. Then, while you are still learning, invite some friends over and have a small tasting menu and experiment. And take your time, it only gets easier!
Would you like to be featured in an AIP Kitchen Tour? We feature members of the community who are willing to share the real spaces where they cook, as well as their stories of transitioning to this lifestyle. If you are interested, fill out our interest form!