I Decided to Do a 6-Week Carnivore Keto Diet Challenge
A couple months ago, I decided to stop eating vegetables. No, I wasn’t going crazy...I was going on the carnivore diet!
This post is part of a series about my six week carnivore diet experiment. To read more about my experiment, check out one (or all!) of my other helpful carnivore posts:
What is the Carnivore diet?
Simply put, the carnivore diet is eating animal products only and no plant foods. That means no grains, no fruits, no vegetables...just meat, eggs, butter, and cheese. Just like most diets, there are variations—some going to the extreme of only consuming beef, salt, and water—but the basic principle is to only consume animal products. There’s also carnivore keto, which allows some plant oils, such as avocado, coconut, and oil.
Why I Decided to Try a Carnivore Diet
I’m not going to lie to you—when I first heard of the carnivore diet, I thought it was nuts. I mean, just eating animal products? No veggies? No fruit? Seriously, just meat??? It sounded like a heart attack waiting to happen, not to mention the vitamin deficiency. I wrote it off immediately as extreme.
But then, pictures started popping up on my IG feed of people in the #carnivoreclub (my name, not theirs). I couldn’t believe what I was seeing...the bodies and weight loss transformations were impressive, to say the least. The more I dove into the #carnivore hashtag, the more I saw stories of people who had success with keto but who had completely leveled up by going carnivore.
Hmmm, I thought to myself. I wouldn’t mind leveling up.
As many of you know, I’ve been keto since 2014 and I swear by a lower carb diet, as it’s helped me lose weight and stave off the chronic lifestyle diseases that my doctor had started warning me about. Although I felt I was at a good, healthy weight, I’d be lying if I said the “after” pictures weren’t appealing to my vanity.
I thought hey, why not try it? Some people have been carnivore for years...a month of eating animal products only won’t kill me, right? (Seriously...right?)
I decided what would work for me was a combination of the different principles—for my experiment, I chose to eat animal products, some plant oils (avocado and olive, sparingly), coffee, and tea. I also allowed myself natural low carb sweeteners (erythritol, monkfruit, stevia), because I can only make so many compromises.
My rules for the experiment were:
- Animal products only for 30 days*, which meant all ruminants (beef, lamb, bison, etc.), poultry, and seafood, as well as low carb dairy (butter, cheese, heavy cream, etc.)
- Seafood and organ meats at least once per week
- Exercise at least 5 days per week (my regular schedule)—a mix of strength training and conditioning with an optional bike ride on the weekends
- 3 passes to drink low carb alcoholic drinks, because it’s summer and I am not a monk*
As far as my macros, I kept them simple. Because I was working out pretty hard, I decided to aim for 1g protein for each pound of bodyweight, and I allowed myself to go up to that many fat grams as well.
I never actually reached these levels because that turns out to be a lot of food for me, so I usually averaged closer to 130-140g protein and 100-120g fat.
Because I was primarily interested in the diet’s effects on body fat and muscle, before I started, I turned to the most accurate body comp measurement tool I know: DEXA scans from Composition ID. Mitch did my initial body scans, and I was ready to rock and roll.
Would I see changes in my body? Would my performance in the gym suffer? Would I meet my early death from a massive heart attack?
Only one way to find out…stay tuned for my results!
*Although I initially planned to do 30 days, I decided to go a full 6 weeks because I was enjoying it so much.
(While you’re waiting for my results, here are a few of the IG posts that inspired me!)
What do you think? Have you or would you ever try a carnivore diet? Let me know in the comments!