Jumping On The Meat Bandwagon
In amidst of churning out all these carnivore guides, I realised I hadn’t provided any updates on my personal progress. That’s a shame, because I have been sticking to the diet and fiddling around to make it as optimal as possible. Fasting, carb-ups, pre-workout cocktails, I’ve already gone through the kitchen sink over this short period. There have been quite a few revelations that are worth sharing. So I might as well postpone the one-man conveyor belt, and take the time to give my hot takes on the spiciest new trend of 2020.
Here’s are the meat of the stats so far.
Carnivore Diet Results From 14 Days
- Average Calories – 1900
- Average Fasts – 20 Hours
- Carb-Ups – 1-2 Times Per Week
- Steps – 16, 000 Per Day
- Weight Loss – 3 Kg
- Waist Size – 0.8 Inch Down
- Cravings – Significantly Down
- Mood & Energy – Stable
I do feel a little regret for not jumping on this boat at the very beginning, just so that one day I could hold my hand up and say that I was one of the originals. But in fairness, it’s been a thing for as long as we humans have been a thing. And going back a few years, carnivore was more of a topic for backwoods message boards. I think it’ll be this year where it can really start to catch the flame, just as long as Covid doesn’t hit the meat industry too hard.
Why I Chose To Go Carnivore
I never make abrupt changes to my fitness patterns, it’s always a case of evolving from one idea to a similar one. When I committed to the beef craze, all of a fortnight ago, I’d already been on a meat-based ketogenic diet for 10 weeks. On some days, I’d be eating 90% meat. But I can’t look back and call that a carnivore programme. It really is necessary to go all-in. Ultimately inflammatory foods, plants for short, can still cause immune responses at the smallest of doses.
Why does this happen? I’m going out on a limb, but I’d guess it’s the years of exposure and damage that resulted in pre-programmed responses ready to get flared up at the slightest opportunity. It sucks, but that’s just how life can be sometimes. My gut isn’t the best for whatever reason, so there’s a narrow margin for error. Sometimes what the body really needs, is the complete elimination of that foreign invader. It’s just too beat up to cope.
My Results On The 10 Week Keto Diet
- Average Calories – 2300
- Average Fasts – 22 Hours
- Carb Cheat Meals – 2-3 Times Per Week
- Fat Cheat Meals – 3-4 Times Per Week
- Steps – 10, 000 Per Day
- Weight Loss – 10 Kg
- Waist Size – 2 Inches Down
- Cravings – Unstable
- Mood & Energy – Dipped
There’s no way to knock these results. Slashing my weight down by 11%, a little over two months, that’s about as fast a rate as I could hope for. I suffered towards the end, but that’s just part and parcel of dropping down to 8% bodyfat.
At the end of the last keto week, my diet included beef, pork, eggs, a few greens, and a range of low-carb flours. I got to the end, clocked in at 79.2kg, then ate my back up to 85 within 2 weeks.
So the post-diet phase turned into a disaster of a rebound, and I can guess that it was a combination of excessive fasting and a few micronutrient deficiencies. In any case, I managed to add nearly 6kg without needing any carbs to get there. With all the recipes I’ve experimented with, I’ve crafted out an unfortunate skill for making low-carb desserts that trump the real thing.
Fixing The Rebound
The latter phase of the keto diet threw up a few problems with cravings, energy, and portion control. Everything unravelled once I took my foot off the pedal and tried to eat normal. So rather than just trying to stabilise on maintenance calories, I decided to figure out the kinks in the diet. That meant a few more weeks of cutting calories, but with a few different approaches.
I brought down the average from 2300 to 1900. So this seems backwards, right? You’d expect the suppression to spark up again, except it hasn’t. Give it time because this is still early days, but I doubt I’ll run into the wall again.
Increase Nutrient Density
Over the keto phase, I was still eating plenty of filler, calories that fit the low carb requirements but didn’t really add much in the way of micronutrients. That’s completely changed now. I’ve dropped all the plant products, save a few spices. As a result, each meal now writes off a huge swath of my RDA needs.
Dropping Pork And Chicken
Since pork and chicken have significant amounts of linoleic acid, an Omega 6 fatty-acid, I’ve pretty much taken them off the menu. I miss them, but I’ve already felt better for it. Whereas some foods can be classed as empty calories, polyunsaturated fats are downright damaging. There’s more inflammation, insulin resistance, less satiety, and a lowered rate of fat oxidation. And as a bigger plus, that left more space for steak.
Raising Beef Tallow
While some vegetable oils can cause issues, saturated fats have been treated terribly since the 1950s. And the funny thing is, they have the opposite effect to all the Omega 6 downsides I mentioned. Eating saturated fats increase insulin sensitivity, satiety, and hike up the rates of fat loss. Don’t believe me, just eat a stick of butter and see how warm your body feels in the aftermath
Moving On With Carnivore
There’s some risk to lingering in a deficit, but I want to give carnivore a chance to impress. Right now I’m looking to call it quits after next week, then reverse diet back up to maintenance. At which point I’ll remain on a complete carnivore diet, as I’m wary of the same problems with cravings cropping up again. In any case, I’m excited to see how much better I can look and feel without dumbbells in tow.