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Does your gut have issues? Are you considering adopting the carnivore diet to improve your gut health? The uptake of diets that include zero carbs, animal protein, and fat is on the rise.
The all-meat diet is considered great for building muscle, aiding weight loss, and solving digestive health issues. But wait, is this the right diet for you? How does it impact your gut? Stay with me for more on this kind of diet.
What is the Carnivore Diet?
A nose to tail carnivore diet involves consuming only animal protein and doing away with all plant foods. It’s a meat intensive diet and includes fatty cuts of meat, fish, ground beef, seafood, eggs, and animal fat like butter, tallow, or suet (beef kidney fat).
To make it sustainable you need a variety of high-quality red meat, white meat, and connective tissues that are rich in collagen that is good for your skin and stronger bones.
A word for dairy users. It can trigger or worsen skin conditions like eczema, autoimmune issues, or even cause mood change and weight gain. If you are going to consume dairy consider the A2 variants from goat, sheep, or buffalo. Most cow's milk has A1 variant casein protein that can trigger immune issues. So if you can’t tolerate milk just do away with it.
The Gut Microbiome in Carnivore Diet
There is no bottom-up approach to look at the gut microbiomes. I don’t think there is enough research data to say this is a healthy microbiome, you need more of this organism or less of this organism.
We can’t really build a healthy gut from the ground up and say you’re missing Rasaburia or Acamancia or other factual bacteria and therefore you don’t have a healthy gut. It doesn’t seem to work that way.
The idea of a healthy gut is when someone's digestive system is doing well, no gas, no bloating, no constipation, and regular bowel movements
Overall the carnivore diet appears to heal and improve the gut.
Carnivore diet success
Thousands of people are getting to the carnivore diet. From their stories it's evident that the diet is helping them lose body fat, reverse autoimmune disease, and heal their gut.
Anecdotes from Joe Rogan, Jordan Peterson, Mlkhaila Peterson, and Shawn Baker shows that carnivore diets work. They have written books, articles and featured in podcasts giving their dietary experience.
They all cite testimonies of how this diet treats depression, anxiety, arthritis, diabetes, obesity, gut issues, and more.
It's believed that human ancestors ate a lot of meat and fish with almost no carbs. The high-carb diet is to blame for the high rate of leaky guts. Other popular low-carb diets like Keto and Paleo just limit carb intake but the carnivores diet aims at zero carbs.
Why Does the Carnivore Diet Work for Your Gut?
The carnivore diet works based on the notion that less is more. This is because it helps people to eat less. Despite meat being tasty, you cannot overeat it as it makes you feel full.
This in effect means the carnivore diet works for your gut as a result of its calorie intake restriction.
The restriction effect results from the following factors.
- Meat being satiable makes people feel full quickly.
- It eradicates the temptation to overeat.
- Carnivore diet just like the ketogenic diet is protein intensive with zero carbs.
- Carnivore diet eliminates craving by influencing key appetite hormones; leptin and ghrelin.
- Dietary repetitiveness which is eating similar food consistently lessens caloric intake by expanding food adjustment.
- Regular eating of the same kind of food reduces the excitement from the food hence less bingeing and consequently less eating.
Additionally, corn, wheat, gluten, soy, and dairy are some of the most common allergy triggers. The carnivore diet works by eliminating these triggers thereby relieving inflammatory symptoms in individuals. It also removes sugars and other refined carbs which are major causes of digestive issues and weight gain.
Therefore, the success of the carnivore diet can be explained by the effect of caloric restriction on the gut microbiome. This is because the caloric restriction is directly linked to the improvement in the gut microbiome and reduction of inflammation.
Benefits of the carnivore diet
- Aids in weight loss as it puts you into ketosis to suppress appetite and help burn calories.
- Leads to reduced inflammation
- Higher testosterone levels in men as a result of high fat
- Improved digestion by cutting out plant antinutrients which are highly indigestible causing digestive distress.
- Improved mental clarity and focus
- It’s a simple way of eating as there is no need to calculate macros or count calories.
How to Implement the Carnivore Diet
How do you implement a carnivore diet?
Short term vs long term
Implementing the carnivore diet in the short term involves trying it for up to 3 months. In this case, the carnivore diet is used as an elimination diet to identify allergies, intolerances, and other food-related sensitivities.
Adopting it in the long term will involve eating animal protein only for more than a year.
Just like any other change, dietary changes require mental and social preparations.
Optimal Nose to Tail Carnivore Diet
I call it the Ferrari version of the carnivore diet. It's eating a variety of meat all day. Grass-fed animals are great as they are a great source of soluble fats, vitamin E, Vitamin K2, Omega-3 fatty acids, EPA, DHA, and DPA that are essential for gut health.
Here is a typical nose to tail carnivore diet by Paul Saladino
He basically eats two times a day for breakfast and dinner.
- 6 raw eggs
- 100g beef suet with sea salt
- 2oz raw liver
- 2oz kidney
- 60z ribeye steak
- 40oz testicle
- 150g beef suet
- 8oz ribeye steak
Sounds crazy right? But this is his proud diet.
Tips for successful implementation of carnivores diet
- Be sure to incorporate organ meats, broth, and bone marrow for balanced nutrition
- More often than not, go for low heat and moderate cooking techniques
- Pick the highest quality field raised, 100% pasture-fed natural, and regenerative animal products.
- Attempt a strict carnivore diet for 2-3 weeks before gradually expanding the eating routine.
- On dairy avoid milk and yogurt they have heavy, carb- lactose use only pure cream cheese and unsalted butter.
- Eat nothing from vegetables with very little amount of flavoring onions, garlic, spices, or herbs.
- No need for supplements of any kind. Drink a lot of water, don't add salt or anything.
- Eat brains and liver sparingly they are full of carbs.
The carnivore diet is a restrictive diet consisting of meat, fish, eggs, and limited quantities of low lactose dairy. It’s believed to aid in weight loss and gut issues.
Although this is genuinely theoretical, more individuals seem to report doing well on an all-meat diet in the long term with no cases of supplement inadequacies.
John Hansen from Queensland Australia on December 02, 2020:
I had never heard of the Carnivores Diet, though I have tried Keto though. This was. Very informative, thank you for sharing.