What is the Carnivore diet, myths aside? Will the Carnivore diet result in weight loss? Is an animal-based diet good? Is the Carnivore diet actually healthy? What are the Carnivore diet’s benefits and side effects? Do male and female Carnivore diet meal plans differ? You’ll find answers to all questions you have about the Carnivore diet here for FREE. So, keep scrolling!
Table of Contents
What Are Different Types of Diets?
There are myriads of diets out there, and even everyone is creating their own versions of them! Also, many of them are similar in basics but differ in details.
Many may think all diets are for losing weight, but ‘diet’ is eating routines, which are followed for special reasons in some cases, reasons like health, gaining or losing weight, etc.
Some focus on healthy foods, some on only animal products, others on only vegetables and so on. The following list mentions the main types of diets.
Mediterranean Diet: This diet follows the eating habits of people in countries surrounding the Mediterranean Sea. It allows fruits, vegetables, whole grains, fish, and healthy fats such as olive oil.
Vegan Diet: This diet allows no animal products, from meat and dairy to eggs and honey. Its primary source is plant-based foods, i.e., fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes.
Vegetarian Diet: This diet is similar to a Vegan diet in that it excludes meat but welcomes other animal products like dairy and eggs. Two main subcategories of a Vegetarian diet are Lacto-vegetarians (eating dairy but no meat) and ovo-vegetarians (eating eggs but no meat).
Paleo Diet: Those on this diet follow the eating habits of the people living in the Paleolithic era, i.e., they eat meat, fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds and avoid processed foods, grains, and dairy.
Keto Diet: On this diet, dieters need to consume high amounts of fat, go moderate with protein, and avoid carbohydrates as much as they can. As its name suggests, the Keto diet moves the body to a ketosis state to burn fat for energy, not carbohydrates.
Carnivore Diet: This diet is also known as Lion Diet and allows various foods made with meat, poultry, seafood, egg and limited amounts of dairy and bans all plant-based foods.
One of the main questions that dieters ask worldwide is that among all these diets and many others available, which one is the best for weight loss? Keep reading to find out.
It’s no secret that the best way to lose weight is by combining physical exercise and diet. The following diets are reported to be the most effective for weight loss compared to other diets.
Calorie-Restricted Diets: Reducing calorie intake is a common way to lose weight. These diets allow all foods but restrict the number of calories, i.e., limited portions of food.
Low-Carb Diets: These diets focus on limiting the intake of carbohydrates and rely on protein and fat instead, which reduces hunger and stabilises blood sugar levels.
Low-Fat Diets: These diets are similar to Calorie-Restricted diets as they both aim to decrease calorie intake.
Mediterranean Diet: This diet allows whole foods like fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and healthy fats like olive oil.
Intermittent Fasting: Diets that include intermittent fasting need the dieter to avoid food at certain periods during the day.
The thing is that the easiest and most efficient diet among these mentioned here is a low-carb diet. Let’s learn about it in more detail.
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What Is A Low-Carb Diet?
As you can guess by its name, a low-carb diet limits carbohydrate intake, which is limited to about 130 grams a day, but it varies based on each individual’s body structure, goals and needs.
A low-carb diet results in weight loss by decreasing blood sugar. Also, it relies on protein and healthy fats found in meat, fish, nuts, seeds, and healthy oils.
Some kinds of low-carb diets allow some non-starchy vegetables and fruits, but others avoid them altogether. Let’s see what different types of low-carb diets are and how they differ.
What Are The Types of Low-Carb Diets?
Atkins Diet: It is a low-carb, high-fat diet focusing on protein and healthy fats. The Atkins diet includes four phases, which gradually increase the intake of carbohydrates.
Ketogenic Diet: It is a very low-carb, high-fat diet that moves the body into a state of ketosis to use burn for energy, not carbohydrates.
Low-Carb, High-Fat (LCHF) Diet: It is a low-carb diet that includes healthy fats of nuts, seeds, and oils and moderate protein intake. It also limits carbohydrate intake.
South Beach Diet: It is another low-carb, high-protein diet that includes three phases, with the first one being the most restrictive.
Paleo Diet: It prioritises whole, unprocessed foods, including meat, fish, fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. No processed foods, grains, or dairy are allowed in this diet.
Carnivore Diet: It is another very low-carb, high-protein diet that allows only animal products, including meat, fish, poultry, and eggs while excluding all plant-based foods.
Among these low-carb diets, animal-based ones have gained a lot of attention in recent years. Let’s elaborate on them and see what makes them special.
What Is An Animal-Based Diet?
An animal-based diet is based on animal products, from meat to seafood, eggs and dairy. Animal-based diets are in contrast to plant-based diets, which allow foods from plants, like fruits, vegetables, grains, nuts, and seeds.
One of the good things about animal-based diets is their diversity, and dieters can make a wide range of foods with animal products. Also, some people only consume meat and fish, while others prefer to eat dairy and eggs as well.
The important point to note is that not all animal-based diets are low in carbohydrates, and some are moderate or even high in carbs. The following list tells us more about the benefits of animal-based diets.
Nutrient Density: Animal-based foods are rich in nutrients like protein, iron, vitamin B12, zinc, and omega-3 fatty acids. Our bodies need these nutrients for muscle growth, immune function, and brain health.
Satiety: Animal-based products are usually more filling than plant-based foods, i.e., the dieters feel full for a longer period, need to consume less food, and can reduce their overall calorie intake.
Convenience: Animal-based foods are for lazy or busy dieters as they don’t long to be prepared!
HEALTH NOTE: Just remember that moderation is the key to a healthy and balanced diet, and using everything in excess can have negative effects on your health.
Let’s get to know some of the most popular animal-based diets.
Types of Animal-Based Diet
Low-Carb, High-Fat (LCHF) Diet
One of the most favoured diets among the ones mentioned here is the Carnivore diet, and it is loved for its simplicity, yumminess, and effectiveness. It comes in various formats, which we’ll elaborate on later in this article, but its basic model is called a True Carnivore Diet. Let’s see what it is!
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A true Carnivore diet (aka strict Carnivore diet or a zero-carb diet) is one of the popular animal-based diets that allows dieters to eat only animal products, including meat, fish, poultry, eggs, and dairy products.
A true Carnivore diet
Is extremely low in carbohydrates,
Is high in protein and fat,
Is effective in weight loss,
Improves energy levels, and
Boosts digestive health.
However, consuming animal products in excess can have negative effects on health, which is why you must consult a nutritionist or health specialist before going on any diet to choose the best one fitting your situation.
As you may have understood by now, Keto and Carnivore diets are very similar in nature as they both prioritise meat, but what makes them different? Keep scrolling to find out.
What Is The Difference Between Keto and Carnivore Diet?
Keto (Ketogenic) diet and the Carnivore diet are both animal-based diets emphasising high fat and low carbohydrate intake, but here are their differences:
Food Variety: The Keto diet allows for animal products and some plant-based foods like vegetables, nuts, and seeds. However, the Carnivore diet merely allows animal products.
Macronutrient Ratios: Typically, the Keto diet includes 70-75% fat, 20-25% protein, and 5-10% carbohydrates, while the Carnivore diet contains higher protein levels, with a ratio of 70-80%, 20-30% fat, and almost zero carbs.
Ketosis: Both the Keto and Carnivore diets result in ketosis, i.e., the body burns fat instead of carbohydrates. However, the Carnivore diet does so a lot faster and creates deeper levels of ketosis as it avoids carbohydrates altogether.
Sustainability: The Keto diet is generally considered more sustainable as it lets dieters consume a wider variety of foods and nutrients.
Considering the above points, especially the last one, is a Carnivore diet really healthy?
No health institute has conducted a survey on the Carnivore diet’s long-term benefits or risks yet. But some dietitians claim that consuming too many animal-based foods without being accompanied by plant-based foods may lead to nutrient deficiency in some cases.
The following subsections list the benefits and possible side effects of the Carnivore diet.
Carnivore Diet Benefits
Weight Loss: Following the Carnivore diet, you must consume low amounts of carbs and high levels of fat and protein, reducing the calorie intake and increasing satiety to accelerate weight loss.
Improved Digestion: Cutting fibre and plant-based foods can help alleviate digestive issues like bloating, gas, and diarrhea.
Increased Energy: There have been reports on increased energy levels and mental clarity on the Carnivore diet.
Blood Sugar Control: Eliminating or even reducing carbohydrate intake can help regulate blood sugar and decrease insulin resistance.
Potential Therapeutic Benefits: There have been reports on the positive effect of the Carnivore diet on autoimmune conditions like inflammatory bowel disease and rheumatoid arthritis.
Nutrient Deficiencies: Lack of fibre, vitamins, and minerals can increase the risk of constipation, nutrient deficiencies, and other health issues in some people.
Chronic Diseases: Consuming animal products in excess can increase the risk of some chronic diseases, including heart disease, cancer, and diabetes.
Microbiome Disruption: A lack of plant-based products may disrupt the balance of gut bacteria and cause some digestive problems.
Increased Cholesterol Levels: Consuming too many animal-based products may increase the levels of LDL cholesterol, increasing the risk of heart disease.
It is needless to say that the potential side effects of the carnivore diet vary from person to person and are dependent on various factors, including each individual’s health status, genetics, and the quality of the diet.
To minimise potential risks, you must consult a healthcare expert and start with a balanced Carnivore diet, not a restrictive version. Yes, the Carnivore diet comes in different types, as mentioned in the previous sections, and you don’t have to start with a restrictive one. Let’s learn more about the types of the Carnivore diet.
What Is The Best Type of Carnivore Diet?
Carnivore Diet: The basic Carnivore diet (the zero-carb) allows animal-based foods like meat, fish, eggs, and dairy without any foods from plants like fruits, vegetables, and grains.
Lion Diet (Ruminant Meat Only): This variation of the Carnivore diet allows you to eat like a lion, i.e., to consume only ruminant meat like beef, lamb, and venison. Other animal-based and plant-based foods are banned from this diet.
BBBE Diet (Beef, Butter, Bacon, and Eggs): As its name suggests, this diet allows beef, butter, bacon, and eggs and bans other animal-based and plant-based foods.
Sardines Fast: This variation of the Carnivore diet just allows sardines and water for a short period, usually 3-5 days, and is used for detoxification or weight loss.
Egg Fast: This variation includes eating eggs, cheese, and butter for a short time, usually 3-5 days, and is an easy way to lose some extra pounds shortly.
Fat Fasting: The fat fasting variation is to lose fat in a short time and includes consuming only high-fat animal-based foods, like fatty cuts of meat, eggs, and butter, for only 3-5 days.
So, the question that may be popping into your mind now is which Carnivore variation is the best. The following section will answer this question.
Different types of Carnivore diets come with various pros and cons, and choosing one as “the best” depends on each individual’s status, goals and preferences.
But one of the questions that even you may have is if the Carnivore diet is really leading to weight loss. Let’s scroll to find out if it really works!
Yes, a Carnivore diet can help you lose weight because it focuses on increasing the fat intake and decreasing carbohydrates by allowing animal-based foods and avoiding plant-based foods.
Why must you minimise Carbohydrate intake? Because by reducing the intake of carbs found in grains, fruits, and vegetables, your body is forced to burn fat for fuel instead of glucose, which is how this diet leads to weight loss.
Another benefit of using this diet for fat loss is that the high protein and fat content of the Carnivore diet increases satiety and decreases overall calorie intake, which again results in weight loss over time.
Also, studies have shown that high-protein diets are useful in preserving muscle mass during weight loss, which is also super beneficial for maintaining metabolic health.
Having said all this, don’t forget that weight loss is a complex process affected by various factors, including genetics, lifestyle, and individual metabolic differences.
While the Carnivore diet is a beneficial weight-loss technique for some, it may not be as effective for others because of the above reasons.
Again, before making any radical change in your daily eating habits, it’s essential to consult a healthcare professional to choose the best strategy that goes with your specific needs and situation to minimise the risks. But how many meals a day can lead to weight loss?
How Many Meals A Day Should I Eat on The Carnivore Diet?
Some dieters on the Carnivore diet prefer two to three meals a day, depending on their level of physical activity, body mass, and satiety while others practice intermittent fasting or eat only one meal every day.
If you can’t figure out which one is better for you, listen to your body's hunger and satiety signals and eat until you feel full and satisfied, but never in excess. It’s good to stop eating a bit sooner than you’re 100% full.
Also, some Carnivore experts recommend avoiding snacking between meals to maximise fat-burning and metabolic flexibility. Speaking of metabolic performance, how long is it safe to stay on the Carnivore diet? Is it short-term or long-term?
How Long Can I Stay on A Carnivore Diet?
Some individuals go on the Carnivore diet for a short time and use it to lose weight, reset their eating habits or take care of some health problems like gastrointestinal concerns. However, there are others who follow a Carnivore diet for a longer period and as a lifestyle choice.
The only important factors determining the length of a Carnivore diet are your health and preferences. You need to keep it as long as you’re maintaining the necessary nutrients from animal-based products or supplements prescribed by a healthcare professional.
So, whether I follow a short-term or long-term Carnivore diet, when can I see the weight loss results I’m looking for? Let’s see in the following section!
How Soon Do You See Results on The Carnivore Diet?
Your current health status, weight, physical activity level, eating habits, goals, needs and preferences affect the time it takes to see the results of the Carnivore diet.
Many people start spotting the changes in their body composition, energy levels, or digestive symptoms in the first few days or weeks of going on the Carnivore diet. Others may take longer to adapt to the high-fat, low-carbohydrate diet and may experience symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, or constipation during the initial transition period.
In terms of weight loss, some dieters experience significant changes within the first few weeks of following the Carnivore diet, while others’ bodies may take a more gradual or moderate approach to weight loss using this diet.
So, the question is how much protein and fat should we consume on a Carnivore diet to see the fastest results? Does intaking more protein and fat lead to faster weight loss?
How Much Protein and Fat Should I Eat on a Carnivore Diet?
We can’t say if you consume more protein and fat, you lose weight sooner and similar to other factors mentioned above, determining the amount of protein and fat you should consume on the Carnivore diet depends on each individual’s needs and preferences.
But as you know, the Carnivore diet needs the dieters to consume high amounts of fat, go moderate with protein, use low or zero carbohydrates, and supply most of the calorie intake from animal products.
Some recommend consuming 70-80% of your daily calories from fat, and the rest from protein, i.e., you can eat about 1-2 grams of protein per kilogram of body weight per day, and adjust your fat intake to meet your calorie needs.
Again, remember that the ideal macronutrient ratio varies from person to person and depends on age, gender, activity level, metabolic health, etc. Also, remember to have variety in the kind of animal products you use to get a wide range of nutrients necessary for your body's health.
It’s no secret that to see results on a Carnivore diet and to provide the necessary protein and fat, you need to follow Carnivore diet recipes that contain meat, but what kind of meat is the best? The following section will let you know!
Meat on The Carnivore Diet
The Carnivore diet lets dieters consume various kinds of meat like beef, lamb, pork, chicken, turkey, fish, and seafood. Organ meats like liver and kidney are also allowed on this diet as sources of essential nutrients.
The "best" meat on the Carnivore diet is the one that best suits your health condition and goals. But usually, beef is considered a staple in the Carnivore diet as it’s rich in nutrients and fat content.
Grass-fed beef is a high-quality meat preferred over grain-fed beef for containing higher omega-3 fatty acids and lower levels of antibiotics and hormones.
The question is how much meat we can or should consume per day on the Carnivore diet.
How Much Meat Should You Eat in a Day on the Carnivore Diet?
Again, the needs and conditions of each individual is the most important factor determining the amount of meat a Carnivore dieter should consume every day.
Some people eat two to three meals a day, while others practice intermittent fasting or have one meal. In terms of portion sizes, some prefer 1-2 pounds of meat every day, while others recommend eating until you are full.
Needless to say, you need to listen to your body, consult a healthcare specialist, eat enough to meet your energy needs and stay healthy, and avoid eating in excess. Also, remember to consume different types of meat to get a wide range of nutrients.
Another good source of protein allowed on the Carnivore diet is eggs. But how many eggs can a normal person eat a day on this diet? Scroll to find out!
How Many Eggs Should I Eat on A Carnivore Diet?
Eggs are an integral part of the Carnivore diet as they are rich in protein and fat, and luckily there is no upper limit to the number of eggs a typical person can eat on a Carnivore diet, as again your individual needs and preferences are in between.
Some may choose to use eggs as their main source of protein, i.e., many eggs a day, but others may limit their intake to a few eggs per week or avoid them altogether in case of allergy or sensitivity.
You can start with 2 - 3 eggs a day and see the results. It’s important to listen to your body, monitor changes, and stay alert to any unwanted effects. If you see your body is taking eggs fine, then go with it! Talking to a healthcare specialist is also a safe way.
Other important foods allowed on the Carnivore diet are dairy and drinks. Let’s see what kinds of dairy products and drinks are the most optimal for Carnivore dieters.
Dairy on The Carnivore Diet
The following dairy products are the most popular and nutritious on the Carnivore diet.
Do we need to use supplements on the Carnivore diet, or the foods we consume based on the Carnivore recipes are enough? Scroll to find out!
Supplements on The Carnivore Diet
Some believe that taking no supplements is necessary on the Carnivore diet as the animal-based foods are nutritious enough, but others believe that as the diet won’t allow plant-based products, dieters need some supplements to avoid any health issues.
In either case, you need to consult a nutritionist or healthcare professional to see if you need any supplements and, if yes, which ones. Anyhow, the following supplements are among the most popular ones used by Carnivore dieters.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
So far, we’ve covered the most important foods allowed and banned on the Carnivore diet. But what about salt and sugar? The following section tells us what the Carnivore diet’s attitude toward salt and sugar is.
Salt and Sugar on The Carnivore Diet
Carnivore dieters are free to consume salt, as it is an essential mineral for many bodily functions. However, some Carnivore dieters tend to cut back on salt or avoid it altogether.
In contrast to salt, sugar is not allowed on the Carnivore diet, as it is a plant-based product found in processed foods, which are both banned on this diet.
However, some individuals with sweet tooth prefer to use limited amounts of sugar in the form of honey, maple syrup, or other natural sweeteners.
Apart from the foods allowed or banned on a Carnivore diet, some wonder if there is a difference between male and female Carnivore diet plan. Let’s see in the following section!
Male and Female Carnivore Diet Plan
Contrary to what some claim, there is no specific difference between a male and female Carnivore diet plan, but there are differences for each individual, i.e., no matter whether you’re a male or female dieter, you need to change the diet or choose the variation that suits your age, weight, body structure, activity level, health conditions, and goals.
If you wonder how you should find the best Carnivore foods from one day to a whole month, check the following section!
In addition to this 30-day Carnivore meal plan, you need recipes to make Carnivore-friendly meals. The recipes not only follow the rules of this diet but also bring variety to your table to let you enjoy the Carnivore diet while providing the necessary nutrients. The following section introduces the easiest, fastest and best recipes for the Carnivore diet.