(Obligatory disclaimer that none of the following should be construed as professional medical advice. Don’t sue me, bro!)
Here‘s a good introduction to the carnivore diet. (Here‘s a video introduction.) You can also check out MeatRx, this website, Shawn Baker’s podcast (and Instagram), Diagnosis Diet, and World Carnivore Tribe, among many other resources.
What are the possible benefits?
- Fat loss (and muscle gain)
- Lower risk of heart disease, stroke, hypertension, cancer, and diabetes
- Better mental health, including more energy
- Better oral health (look at this headline!)
- Proper skeletal, oral, brain, and general development for infants and children
- Slower aging
- Improvement with many other health issues, from acne to multiple sclerosis (check out the list at the end of this FAQ)
- Less time and money wasted on Big Medicine and Big Pharma
What’s the evidence? In short:
- We’ve been eating meat for two million years. “Literally from our teeth to our rectums we are designed for meat”—not for large amounts of sugar. Carnivore/keto is true paleo.
- Thousands of people are losing fat and improving their health with carnivore.
- You can’t trust the medical establishment. It is groupthinkish and biased. (In some unexpectedly weird ways.) Despite what it’s told us for decades, we’ve known that carnivore can work for a long time.
- Is all meat the same? No. For a number of reasons, most carnivores tend to gravitate towards fatty red meat, especially beef, as their staple food. Fresh fish (preferably wild) is also good.
- What about saturated fat and cholesterol? “The cholesterol hypothesis has failed to stand up to the standard of falsifiability.” “[I]f you have ‘high cholesterol’ you do not have a cholesterol problem—you have a carbohydrate problem.”
- What about cheese and eggs? Most people do fine with them. (Here‘s more on eggs.) Just avoid milk.
- What about fruit? For the most part, modern fruit is Frankenfood. (Though low-sugar berries are fairly harmless.) What about vegetables? Many people do fine with them, but many don’t. (This list gives a good sense of some of the potentially harmful compounds found in many fruits and vegetables.)
- What about vitamins and minerals? “Fresh meat contains all vitamins required by the human metabolism.” Liver is the best multivitamin known to man. (Worried about calcium, especially for kids? Eat cheese or bony fish. Worried about fiber? You probably shouldn’t be. More on fiber here.)
- How strict do I have to be to see results? It depends. Most people see lots of benefits on just 80-90% carnivore.
More questions? Check out my longer FAQ.
Does carnivore work for literally everyone? No. Should everyone give carnivore a try? Yes. It’s made my life much better. Maybe it can help you, too.
Exercise: WEIGHTLIFTING AND HIIT
Muscle is good for you. Weightlifting is one of the best things you can do for your health. It helps your mental health almost as much as therapy and antidepressants. Here are the main things I’ve learned about weightlifting:
- If you’re just getting started, don’t worry too much about the details. Just find a program you can stick with consistently. (I started with 5×5.) As you progress, you can fine-tune things to your own preferences and goals.
- Progressive overload!
- Compound exercises > isolation exercises. Bench press, deadlift, squat, etc.
- What matters most is sets performed to (near) failure, not a large number of sets. (You don’t have to spend tons of time to see results. Thirty minutes three times a week is more than enough for beginners.)
- Eat lots of protein (≈ 0.8-1 g/lb/day if possible—if you’re doing carnivore/keto, this shouldn’t be too hard.) Creatine and HMB help, too.
- I prefer longer rest periods between sets (sometimes even 5+ minutes).
- I also prefer mixing up rep ranges.
- Form matters. And if you really want a challenge, slow down your reps.
What about cardio?
- Find something you enjoy and can stick with.
- That said, high-intensity interval training > low-intensity cardio. Takes less time and less wear and tear on your joints.
Here are the main things I’ve found to be helpful for good sleep based on my own research and personal experience:
- Make sure you are getting enough sleep. (How much is enough? Listen to your body!)
- Go to sleep and wake up at roughly the same time every day. (Don’t hit the snooze button! But also, if possible, don’t set an alarm.)
- Avoid artificial light before bedtime. (Wear blue light blockers a couple hours before going to bed.) Also make sure your bedroom is dark while you are sleeping.
- Eat well (i.e., carnivore/keto) and exercise.
- Get sun during the day (especially in the morning) if possible.
- If necessary, take 300 µg melatonin a few hours before bed.
- Finish eating and drinking a few hours before bedtime.
Men, avoid ibuprofen.