The carnivore diet thread

Are you on the carnivore diet?

  • *grunts in the affirmative*

    Votes: 46 64.8%
  • No, I am gey.

    Votes: 25 35.2%

  • Total voters
    71

Leonard D Neubache

Owl
Gold Member
So I'm sure that forum member Michael Witcoff has gotten sick of us hijacking his plant-based diet thread. Due to the fact that the only other carnivore diet specific thread bears the name and unholy utterings of the heretic Jordan Peterson as well as imagery of his vile seductress of a daughter I thought it would be reasonable to start this pure thread in its place.

I would appreciate any advice or anecdotes people had about this dietary regimen whether they're fundamentalist carnivores or merely skirt the edges of it like I do.

In terms of my personal experience with it I think it's excellent in terms of health gains but can be very boring to maintain. I never thought I would miss vegetables and rice but their absence began to be noticed easily in the first week of the diet. I admit that I tend to fall off the wagon a fair bit with sugary products and I also eat dairy products but other than that it's all meat.

Here are some of my personal observations health wise:

Energy levels have increased
Better concentration and reflexes
Mood is more stable and positive
Less sleep is required to feel rested
Vision has improved (no longer have moments where I think "damn, I guess I'm going to need glasses soon")
Wounds heal faster and immune system appears to have improved
Look better (seems to have taken about five years off of me and my wife)
Reduced seasonal hayfever symptoms

Other observations:

Red meat seems to be leagues ahead of any other protein source. I don't feel sated unless I eat red meat. Chicken and fish just seems to get me by but red meat is what seems to give me a real energy boost.

I'm eating a lot less in terms of sheer volume. When I first started I was filling up the plate as though I wanted to replace the lost vegetables and rice with more meat but I quickly found that my stomach adapted and shrunk to just take the typical portion of meat it would normally get (a little bit more than normal perhaps) and ignore the absence of the large body of vegetable and grain matter. I'm also down to one meal a day plus small snacks or two meals a day tops. Generally I will snack on small amounts of meat or dairy in the morning and eat a meal at night or vice versa.

Digestion: I don't want to be one of those guys who insists on describing his turds in graphic detail. Suffice to say, less in, less out, and there have been no impediments or nasty surprises of any kind. Food comas are also a thing of the past. If I eat a sensible sized serving of red meat I actually feel immediately more energized than before.

I'm interested to hear from any veterans of this diet what they've done to keep it interesting or if there are any particular meats that really seem to have excellent effects.

This year I'm going to start experimenting with organ meats. One of the real benefits of this diet is that you generally tend to eat only one type of major ingredient at a time so you become really sensitive to the effects on your body of the things you're eating.
 

The Wire

Kingfisher
Gold Member
Leonard D Neubache said:
This year I'm going to start experimenting with organ meats. One of the real benefits of this diet is that you generally tend to eat only one type of major ingredient at a time so you become really sensitive to the effects on your body of the things you're eating.


My biggest issue has been finding really high quality meat. I researched trying to get a hold of some legit local raised product but its been a real pain to get some. I would especially like to get some organ meats.
 

Diocletian

Woodpecker
The Wire said:
Leonard D Neubache said:
This year I'm going to start experimenting with organ meats. One of the real benefits of this diet is that you generally tend to eat only one type of major ingredient at a time so you become really sensitive to the effects on your body of the things you're eating.


My biggest issue has been finding really high quality meat. I researched trying to get a hold of some legit local raised product but its been a real pain to get some. I would especially like to get some organ meats.

Not sure what country you're located in, but at least in the US Kroger's chains often have chicken livers in the poultry case. You might also check out your local Hispanic/Asian/Middle Eastern/etc. markets, those types of places often have organ meats.
 

porscheguy

Ostrich
I’m 95-98% carnivore.
I eat conventional grain finished domestic (US) beef. I’ve tried grass fed/finished from the US, Uruguay, and Australia. I don’t care for the Australian beef at all. Could just be the particular source. Although the nutrient profile is better on grass, grain fed is fine. I have to work within budgetary limitations like most people.
I do eat a lot of horseradish.
I’ve been eating this way since 12/1, or about 5 weeks.
I’ve had one dedicated cheat day on Christmas.
I transitioned quickly because I had done keto on and off throughout the year.
The worst of my cravings were over in the first week. I still have the occasional craving, but it’s not intense, easily managed, and short in duration.
When I started on 12/1 I weighed 195lbs. 5 weeks later I’m at 183/184.
I sometimes have a whey protein shale to put a contrasting taste in my mouth, but I will probably eliminate it once the container is empty.
I’m not anti vegetable, but I do view them as unnecessary and would prefer to not partake for the most part.
My athletic performance was down 5-10% my first week, but is now back to normal and slowly/steadily going up.
I had reduced my smoking drastically already, now I have quit.
I didn’t have any significant physical health issues to start with.
Mentally I thought I was good going in to this, but this is where I’ve seen my biggest improvements. I never get angry. Stress is at best a momentary distraction. I feel a need to push myself harder than ever. But it feels natural, motivated by a desire to be better for the sake of being better. I feel an unbreakable resolve.

I look at friends I’ve known from childhood. Many of them are doing much better than me in terms of money and career. They go on expensive vacations to tropical islands in February. The drive expensive cars and have nice houses. By all outward appearances they seem to have it all. But many of them are fat, and getting sicker by the day from their standard American diet of processed junk food. I would rather have a modest existence with excellent health, versus being sick but wealthy.

I had originally done this as a 30 day challenge. Two weeks in and I knew I could never go back. That’s the one downside. I can’t unsee what I’ve seen.
 

porscheguy

Ostrich
I should also add:
Energy level remains constant throughout the day. I believe this has a major impact on overall outlook on life.

Hunger doesn’t exist like it used to. Now it’s a very subtle feeling that can be ignored for hours.

No more eating until full. Eventually you just slow down and lose the desire to eat any more. And this happens well before you’re physically full. Being physically full is actually an unpleasant feeling.

Food intake is not tied to activity. I don’t have to eat after a strenuous workout. I just eat whenever I’m hungry.
 
Looking forward to seeing how this develops. Genuinely curious. If it's not too much to ask, I would be interested in seeing the following blood panel tests at some point, once you're settled into the diet:

* blood ferritin levels (check out P D Mangan book Dumping Iron if you end up with too much ferritin)
* fasting glucose levels
* LDL levels
* T levels (mostly since you're in your 40s and I wonder if carnivore diet would boost T levels)

Other than that, good luck! Should be interesting.
 

porscheguy

Ostrich
I’m not worried about cholesterol because I don’t plan on taking a statin.

Fasting glucose is 88.

T level can change a lot day to day. But I will say that some days I feel like a teenager.
 

SlickyBoy

Hummingbird
I'm not pure keto, but I do eat a lot of meat. Getting rid of the processed foods, particularly sugars and carbs, may have been as effective a change as the mild paleo I've been doing the past few years. Quality and cut of the meat makes a big difference in terms of taste, not sure about protein levels though - never gave it much thought. As for reducing turds (hey, you went there), that's got a lot to do with how much fiber you eat, so not sure it's an accurate measure of how much food you eat, generally.

I've also significantly cut down on alcohol consumption, but it's hard to beat a glass of full bodied red with an aged porterhouse. If getting rid of excess weight is part of your goal, cut out the nightly booze as part of the program - particularly NPC brews like IPA. Way too much carb & alcohol combined.

If cholesterol is a concern, ditch the regular butter and cheese and see where that gets you. I'd do whatever I can to avoid statins like the plague.

Anybody here follow P. D. Mangan? I find his blog & twitter feed useful.
 

scorpion

Hummingbird
Gold Member
I tried strict carnivore for a couple of months. Overall I didn't like it, but it did have some advantages. The main problem I had was the sheer lack of variety. I was mostly eating eggs, bacon, ground beef and steak with some organ meats thrown in. It was nice to not have to think about what I was going to eat, but after a few weeks I didn't enjoy eating at all. Which contributed to the next problem I had, which was losing weight. I was already lean and muscular when I started carnivore and was not trying it for weight loss purposes, but I still ended up losing about 10-12 lbs. inadvertently. It was just very difficult for me to get enough calories in, especially once the monotony of the diet set in. I also noticed less energy and strength in the gym, but it's possible my adaptation period simply wasn't long enough for me to acclimate.

That being said, there were some noticeable benefits. Carnivore definitely seems to be useful for helping to resolve any weird or lingering digestive or auto-immune issues. I had some kind of leaky gut thing going on and it went away after my period of carnivore. Another big benefit was the mental clarity. It felt like my brain was just operating a little faster. It's hard to explain until you feel it. It's kind of like how you don't realize your house has a smell until you leave for awhile then come back. You don't realize that you probably have some brain fog/mental sluggishness that you've accumulated over the years until you go carnivore and it disappears.

Some changes that weren't really positive or negative: I can also verify that you will shit a lot less. Maybe a small-medium sized amount every 3 days. Your body just absorbs almost everything. I also had a noticeably enhanced sense of smell. Not everyone gets this but from what I've read it's not unusual. This sounds cool but it was actually more annoying than anything. You start smelling all sorts of things you really would rather prefer not to.

I would recommend carnivore to anyone who wants to lose weight, who is curious about diet and nutrition and likes to experiment on themselves, or anyone who has lingering digestive or auto-immune issues. I would NOT recommend carnivore to athletes, weightlifters, or anyone who has a social life that includes a lot of eating and drinking with friends and family. I view carnivore as more of a dietary prescription to be followed for a limited period of time rather than as a permanent solution. I think if you're a healthy person it's needlessly restrictive. These days I still eat a lot of meat and eggs but have no issue including a low to moderate amount of carbs, primarily pre and post-workout. I find this gives me the best balance for overall health, strength performance and lifestyle (i.e. I don't feel overly restricted and have no issues with eating whatever I want in moderation during social occasions).
 

Leonard D Neubache

Owl
Gold Member
roberto said:
I thought RVF was pro Peterson?

I'm so fucking confused these days.

WE DO NOT SPEAK OF HIM IN THIS HOUSE!!!

j/k It's a touchy subject but if you search the various JP threads up and put aside a month or so to pick through the hundreds of pages of bickering then you'll be up to speed.

But obviously not before you've washed your room and cleaned your benis.
 
I’m a fan of the carnivore diet. When I went from keto to carnivore, my digestion got a lot better. No more heartburn from juicing all the time and my poops got better too. I just cut chicken out because I’m starting to take the Omega 6 risk seriously. So now my diet will be red meat, fish, and eggs.

It does gets boring though. I miss hamburgers.
 

Aizen

Kingfisher
Orthodox
The idea is to be getting the majority of your calories from meat, but leave a little wiggle room for other food sources, generally to be consumed in a social context. This way you get the benefits of a near-carnivore diet without going insane from social isolation/meal monotony. The best combo I've struck was 2 beef steaks, chicken wings, the occasional omelette, and 90% dark chocolate. Felt like a superhuman and never got bored of the diet.

100% carnivore - not for the faint of heart.
 
That’s true. 90% carnivore is better than what 90% people are eating. And we have options that make social life bearable. Still, a lettuce wrapped burger isn’t the same.

Some other things I eat regularly:
-Dairy. Kefir, yogurts, milk, etc
-Fermented plants. Kimchi, Kombucha, etc.
-Low carb alcohol. Dry ciders/wines/sake, spiked seltzer, hard liquor/kombucha (my fave)
-Coffee. I might cut this too.

Other things I miss:
Cashews, almonds, sunflower seeds, beer.
 

kel

Ostrich
I'm not strict carnivore, but largely carnivore. I eat a lot of dairy, as well (cream in coffee, sour cream in scrambled eggs, grass-fed butter eaten like it's a candy bar, some cheese) and eggs, and before and after gym I have some fruit or sweet potato. Some nuts, too. I mostly eat very simple food (ribeyes are expensive, but it's nice to be able to just sear a thing and eat without any extensive preparation) but once or twice a week I'll make a curry or stew by braising meat (mutton shoulder, mostly) very slowly and I'll include some carrots, occasionally sprouted chickpeas, and (at the end, not with the braising) broccoli or a green or kimchi. I'll also get some seafood from time to time if it's quality and on sale.

This is after years of veganism. I was about as healthy as a vegan can be, but I'm glad I stopped (and am working towards becoming a farmer, raising grass-fed sheep and layer hens to start).
 

AlreadyGone

Sparrow
I'm largely carnivore, although I do eat oatmeal and a few greens. Most of what I eat is either steak or fish, tend to lean more towards the fish just because I can prepare it in a variety of ways so the flavor doesn't get too old.

Was a junkfoodivore for a long time, luckily a high metabolism kept me from becoming overweight. Hoping that a more carnivorous diet will help me some how gain a bit of weight.
 

BlastbeatCasanova

Kingfisher
kel said:
I'm not strict carnivore, but largely carnivore. I eat a lot of dairy, as well (cream in coffee, sour cream in scrambled eggs, grass-fed butter eaten like it's a candy bar, some cheese) and eggs, and before and after gym I have some fruit or sweet potato. Some nuts, too. I mostly eat very simple food (ribeyes are expensive, but it's nice to be able to just sear a thing and eat without any extensive preparation) but once or twice a week I'll make a curry or stew by braising meat (mutton shoulder, mostly) very slowly and I'll include some carrots, occasionally sprouted chickpeas, and (at the end, not with the braising) broccoli or a green or kimchi. I'll also get some seafood from time to time if it's quality and on sale.

This is after years of veganism. I was about as healthy as a vegan can be, but I'm glad I stopped (and am working towards becoming a farmer, raising grass-fed sheep and layer hens to start).

If you were healthy and it was working out for you (I assume) what made you go back to consuming animal products?
 

kel

Ostrich
BlastbeatCasanova said:
If you were healthy and it was working out for you (I assume) what made you go back to consuming animal products?

  • I was about as healthy as a vegan can be, but I'm still way healthier now. This all happened right around the time I started lifting, who knows if I'd be as strong as I am now on my old diet. And I get this just by eating simple, quick to prepare foods (a ribeye, scrambled eggs, etc) . I do like cooking, but it's nice to be able to choose to do it when I want and still be able to enjoy nice food that just tastes good without a lot of trouble for my everyday meals. As a vegan to eat both healthy and delicious food you gotta spend a lot of time in the kitchen.
  • It became clear to me that industrial plant agriculture is worse for the environment and kills more animals than animal agriculture - even "conventional" animal agriculture, to say nothing of the pasture-raised stuff I get. I still don't take joy in killing animals, but I understand that all life is predicated upon death and that I'm minimizing the death and destruction I cause, while supporting small, responsible farmers instead of industrial agribusiness which, despite all the hippie branding, is who's at the top of all vegan food. I'm planning on raising animals of my own, in fact, when I move out to the country to get out of the city before society gets any uglier than it is already. Even if I wanted to, it's not really practical to be self-sufficient via plant agriculture, and plant agriculture is very hard. Raising a few pastured sheep and some chickens for eggs is comparatively easy and gives you much more nutrient dense food (and responsible animal agriculture builds top soil. It nourishes land, whereas rowcropping commodity crops for soy/wheat/corn based vegan stuff deteriorates the soil which must then be artificially fertilized).
 

Leonard D Neubache

Owl
Gold Member
My minor moments where I cheat the diet by grabbing a handful of nuts or potato chips or something like that seem somewhat akin to what my nomadic ancestors would do while on the trail. They did eat nuts and berries and stuff like that they could scavenge along the way. Granted there were no potato chip plants but I'm personally not concerned with minor levels of non-meat consumption. I've never felt like garbage after eating a handful of doritos.
 
SlickyBoy said:
If cholesterol is a concern, ditch the regular butter and cheese and see where that gets you. I'd do whatever I can to avoid statins like the plague.

I wouldn't be concerned with cholesterol. The body does a lot of things it shouldn't be doing when you go SAD, and clogging your heart with cholesterol's one of them. As long as you're mostly carnivore, you'll be ok. Chug those eggs.
 
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