Tinkering with The Carnivore Diet
Before going carnivore, most people have experimented with various diets. Going from Keto to Carnivore is one of the most common paths. You probably wouldn’t be considering a carnivore diet if you didn’t have that curious experimenter mentality. The one that searches for answers, bucks the status quo, and calls their own shots.
Good for you.
You may have experimented with adding fats to foods if you’ve done keto, things like adding butter and MCT in coffee, or tried intermittent fasting protocols (IF), and take numerous supplements.
I’ve done them all.
If you are like me, you probably have an idea about how many calories you should eat, what macro ratios to follow, how often and how much to eat.
Our natural tendency is to instantly want to modify, measure, and manipulate a new diet to what we have learned and tested to be best.
We want to experiment with The Carnivore Diet but we want to add in our own flare like:
- Intermittent Fasting
- Bulletproof Coffee
- MCT Oil
- Cheat meals
- Supplements (vitamins, ect…)
With the Carnivore Diet, you absolutely don’t want to do this.
Believe me, no one was more analytical than me.
No one was more worried about getting fat than me.
That said, these diet methods that I and many others have used should not be used with the carnivore diet initially. They interrupt the body’s ability to interpret hunger and natural satiety signals, which often results in not eating as much as the body needs to properly deal with adaptation and healing.
There are many metabolic processes that need to be adequately supported in regaining proper homeostasis and surviving the adaptation period.
Many people feel very hungry when starting, yet are afraid to eat. Afraid of getting fat. Believe me, I understand.
It is common for people to need to eat twice as much when starting as they eventually do once their systems have healed. This could take 30 days or 3 years.
The adaptation period is different for everyone. Adaptation is not like a light switch.
It’s not like you will either be fully adapted or not. Different systems take different amounts of time.
For example, it may take your gallbladder 2 weeks to onramp to a high fat diet where you finally can get off the toilet (unless you take the necessary precautions..) but your testosterone may be in the toilet for 6 months until it is roaring again like a 17 year old male. Females – this is equally relevant for hormonal rebalancing.
Once hormonal systems have re-balanced in proper homeostasis for thriving, you’ll be glad you hit the “reset” button.
If you are worried about fat gain, tell yourself you are doing an experiment (I think you should give yourself 90 days).
- The First 30 days = Adapt (Level 1)
- The Next 30 days = Heal (Level 2)
- The Final 30 days = Thrive (Level 3)
If you want to go back to diet restrictions after the experiment, do so.
I even have a “tinkering” method for carnivores who are thriving, yet want to get “carnivore cut” – you can – I’ll help you (see the Meat Health Masterclass at the end), but let’s get healthy first.
Hunger talks in many languages like feeling weak and tired, or irritable and depressed, or via poor concentration and brain fog.
Listen to the body.
Take the hint – Eat.
It’s the solution. It’s the cure.
The thriving carnivores I know threw out all worry and preconceived notions about diets, supplementing, caloric needs, macros, and dogma…and ate meat until satisfied.
They erred on the side of eating too much rather than not enough.
It is common to have some cravings early on, but these go away.
However, if you try and tinker – they likely won’t.
If you’ve done keto or LCHF or you name it, you are probably aware of the amount of mad cravings, hunger, and intervention tricks that go on.
I would know – I was a master at them.
Almost everyone I know that uses forced protocols to reduce food intake, to try and curb cravings, rides an unsustainable rollercoaster that never ends.
They never come to realize what it actually feels like to overcome metabolic dysfunction.
It feels amazing.
For my first physique competition, I got very lean. Competition prep is the definition of food and calorie restriction. It’s “controlled starvation.”
After the competition, I was going to let myself have a treat.
I didn’t know about the psychological impact from extreme food restriction.
It is nearly impossible to stop at one treat.
With “one treat” the floodgates burst opened. My body fat was higher 3 days after that competition then when I started the prep 16 week earlier.
I didn’t know it at the time, but this is extremely common among bodybuilding/fitness community.
Interestingly, I see this exact same thing with keto/LCHF/ZC/Carnivores that use methods of forced restriction. Eventually they give into “one treat” which is never “one treat.”
Besides what is mentioned in this article on carnivore symptoms and cures, don’t interfere with your body’s natural rebalancing until you’re healed. Once healed, I tell people they can loosen up with “tinkering tests” because they KNOW what it feels like to be healed. So they KNOW if their tinkering has positive or negative impacts.
Supplements are not only NOT needed, but they will interfere with restoring your proper homeostasis including vitamin and mineral levels.
You are going to need to ignore common held beliefs around daily requirements of x,y, and z.
Here’s the thing: daily requirements for a SAD diet can’t be strapped onto a carnivore diet. When you add sugar and plants to a diet the body has to compensate and external supplementation might make sense to balance and help the assault from these foods. This does not translate to someone on a carnivore diet. Proper nutrient blood levels in a carnivore necessarily must be different than non-carnivores.
I already know – you’re going to be tempted to continue taking your MCT, BPC, whey protein, collagen, creatine, BCAAs, beta alanine, caffeine, magnesium, zinc, B vitamins, fish oils, D3, C, and probiotic – but do an experiment – set them aside.
Don’t Start If…
If you aren’t willing to eat enough meat to stay satisfied without manipulation, you should not start a carnivore diet.
You will suffer and you won’t get results.
Do Start If…
If you are willing to set aside conventional wisdom to Hunt for your Superhuman…
Let’s do it. And the best place to start is here, with the Meat Health Masterclass: