Carnivore Diet Basics | What Happens During the First Week | Benefits & Results After 30 Days | Carnivore Diet Success Stories | Carnivore Diet Pros and Cons | Intermittent Fasting and Carnivore Diet
It’s called many names, but the carnivore diet focuses on one thing: eating meat. More specifically, it is a low-carb diet (sometimes no carbohydrate diet) where your diet consists of only animal products.
The carnivore diet has gained significant attention recently for its amazing results on overall health and fat loss. Even carnivore diet 30-day results might surprise you!
But, this meat diet really isn’t anything new as our ancestors ate this way for centuries.
The basic premise is that our bodies function more optimally when we eat the way that our ancestors did. Advocates of the carnivore diet state that with a limited variety of food to digest and process, the body can focus on other tasks resulting in mental clarity, increased energy levels, and better digestion.
Well-known proponents of the carnivore diet include Joe Rogan, Shawn Baker, and Jordan Peterson, claiming that they feel their best while on this diet.
So, what are some carnivore diet 30-day results you can expect to see? In the article below, we will explore what carnivore dieters can expect after 30 days, share success stories, and review some pros and cons of the carnivore diet.
Carnivore Diet Basics
The carnivore diet is a no frills kind of diet. It’s pretty straightforward, as the only things that someone will eat while following this food plan is animal products. There are different versions of this diet that are more or less restrictive on what animal products are consumed.
For example, the lion diet, which is a version of the carnivore diet, only includes beef, salt, and water. This is the most restrictive form of the carnivore diet. Other versions allow more variety in animal products including some dairy products, fish, and even honey. The majority of your calories come from animal fat and a lesser amount from animal protein (including amino acids).
The carnivore diet is often compared to the ketogenic diet since both encourage the body to enter ketosis from very little carbohydrate intake. However, the carnivore diet is much more restrictive than the keto diet. The keto diet allows for 50g of carbs per day to include vegetables and fruit but the carnivore diet depends completely on animal products for calories and most versions restrict fruits and vegetables.
Carnivore dieters must ensure they are getting enough calories by consuming enough fat from animal products. That’s why the foods that are consumed include organ meats, heavy cream, grass-fed beef, butter, and bacon.
For a more complete food list, check out this Carnivore Diet Shopping List.
What Happens During the First Week?
The first week on the carnivore diet can be a big adjustment. It’s challenging even for those who have been following a keto diet and may already be in ketosis. However, if you have been following a standard American diet, or this is your first time going into ketosis, it can be especially challenging.
Many experience what is called the keto flu during the first week of a very low carbohydrate diet. These symptoms can range from fatigue, dizziness, sugar cravings, and digestive issues including constipation or diarrhea. Your body will need a few days to adjust from eating a wide variety of food groups to primarily just one. Additionally, by going into ketosis, your body is moving from using glucose for energy into using stored body fat for energy.
After the first few days to the first week, many people experience a breakthrough and notice higher energy levels, reduced sugar cravings, and better digestion. Some may even notice body weight changes during this time.
Health Benefits and Results After 30 Days
1. Weight Loss
Weight loss is one of the reasons many try the carnivore diet. It’s for a good reason too because most people experience a reduction in body weight while on this diet. Since you are consuming mostly animal fat during this time, the body undergoes ketosis and staying in ketosis for the first 30-days is sure to lead to substantial weight loss.
2. Better Blood Sugar Control
Similar to keto, the carnivore diet can improve insulin levels by keeping them stable throughout the day. With the removal of carbohydrates, there is less opportunity for blood sugar to spike and then crash. When insulin levels remain stable, this reduces the risk of developing type 2 diabetes in addition to better health.
3. Improved Digestion
Many individuals who struggled with digestive issues on other diets find relief on the carnivore diet. The absence of fiber and plant-based foods can reduce gastrointestinal distress, and the nutrient-dense animal products can support better digestion.
4. Better Sleep and Overall Health
Better sleep is a common benefit seen while on the carnivore diet. Similar to the improvements seen in sleep while intermittent fasting, with improvement in hormone balance there is often improvement in sleep quality. Improvement in skin issues is also a common result of the diet. In a study of self-reported data, participants saw a decrease in risk factors for heart disease. It’s important to note that this study had many limitations and further studies are needed.
5. Relief from Autoimmune Disease Symptoms
Many people try the carnivore diet as a form of an elimination diet to improve autoimmune disease symptoms. Certain food triggers from dairy, gluten, and even fruits and vegetables can exacerbate autoimmune disease symptoms. Diets such as keto and carnivore can lower inflammation levels which can improve immune function.
Carnivore Diet 30-Day Results: Success Stories
Most in the carnivore community are very excited to share their personal stories of their transformation after the carnivore diet. It’s important to remember that individual results can vary. Below are a few success stories that highlight the amazing results that can happen on the carnivore diet.
Kerry started the carnivore diet as an experiment of sorts. He had been on the keto diet for several years, yet didn’t quite feel his best and struggled with different skin conditions. He has also dealt with a chronic condition involving his heart and wanted to support his heart health through his diet.
He had heard about the carnivore diet through various sources and decided to give it a try for 30 days. After the 30 days were over, he felt like a new person. He felt he had so much more energy, he experienced better sleep, and even improved symptoms from arthritis in his food. He even lost 20 pounds while following the diet, even though that was not his primary goal.
Andrew spent the month of August on the carnivore diet. He felt that the diet was difficult and it was the most disciplined he had ever been with his food choices.
However, he ended up losing 20 pounds and felt that it worked better than anything he had tried in the past. He also felt that the carnivore diet improved his mental health as he spent more time focusing on exercise and reading books.
Rachel decided to try the carnivore diet, but it ended up turning into 90 days! She changed her entire life including her diet, mindset, and activity levels.
She completely cut out sugar, carbs, alcohol and processed foods. She feels this is the healthiest she has been since high school and now feels like the best version of herself after a 30 pound weight loss.
Dawn started her carnivore diet meal plan at the end of December. She says that during the first week of January, she felt much more mental clarity and felt that a lot of her health issues came from all of the carbohydrates she had been eating beforehand. She also incorporated exercise for 5 days per week and focused on better sleep. She feels like her body has transformed in the 30 days of the carnivore diet and has lost 9 pounds.
Pros and Cons of the Carnivore Diet
- Effective Strategy for Weight Loss: The carnivore diet can lead to rapid fat loss and reduced body weight.
- Maintain Energy Levels: Many report better energy levels than they have had in years while on the diet.
- Improved Blood Sugar Control: It can be beneficial for individuals with blood sugar issues.
- Better Digestion: Relief from digestive issues (after the first week or so) is something that many see improvements in.
- Potential for Autoimmune Relief: Some individuals experience improvements in autoimmune symptoms.
- Elimination of Food Groups: The diet excludes entire food groups, which can lead to nutrient deficiencies. Fiber, for example, is very limited in this diet which can cause digestive issues such as constipation.
- Monotony of Foods: Eating so much meat day in and day out can really take a toll on you if you previously enjoyed a variety of foods in your diet. This may also make it difficult to follow this diet long term.
- Social Challenges: Eating out at certain restaurants may be very difficult while following the carnivore diet. It can be socially isolating as well.
- Limited Research: There are very few, good scientific research studies proving the health claims of the carnivore diet. More research is needed to understand the long-term effects that the carnivore diet may have.
Intermittent Fasting and Carnivore Diet
Many have found even more success in combining the carnivore diet with intermittent fasting. There are a wide range of benefits to intermittent fasting including improved hormone function, heart health, and better sleep. Intermittent fasting can be an effective health and weight loss strategy on its own, but its benefits can be enhanced when combined with other diets such as keto and carnivore.
However, it’s best to try the carnivore diet on its own in order to get through keto flu and get used to the diet before trying intermittent fasting.
Read here on what to eat while on the carnivore diet and intermittent fasting.
As you can see through the stories of Dawn, Rachel, Andrew, and Kerry, trying the carnivore diet can give you a complete transformation of your body and overall health. There are many reported benefits to the carnivore diet such as increased energy levels, better mental clarity, and improvement in skin issues.
However, there aren’t many research studies to back up these claims and more research is needed in the future.
As always, it’s important to consult your healthcare provider before starting any extreme diet to ensure that this plan will work with your health goals. If you are interested in the carnivore diet, give yourself a 30-day challenge to commit to this eating plan and you may be surprised at the results!