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Thank you for being welcoming


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I posted a query on carnivore way of eating here: https://www.crsociety.org/topic/16838-cr-with-zerocarb/

Even though it doesn't adhere to CRON I generally felt welcomed in this community. I wasn't censored. I noticed that pretty much every "carnivore" community (on reddit, facebook, etc.) were pretty unwelcoming to any conversation around introducing non-carnivore foods. This makes genuine discussions around elimination diet or even idiosyncratic conditions where say a low-fat vegetarian would be better than high-fat carnivore (like those twin girls who healed their skin on the former) impossible. These carnivore communities act like echo chamber reinforcing beliefs and ejecting any one that says against their beliefs.

So thank you for not repeating their mistakes!

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It's not just those, it happens in other communities as well... if you don't adhere to "their way". I've seen this in raw food/vegan forums as well as low carb forums. The main thing we have in common around here is CR, but even then, we all do different levels of CR and it's not even agreed upon what is actually best. We're just part of an experiment and all points are quite interesting.

While I'm really skeptical about a total carnivore diet being the best approach for health and longevity, I'm still interested in seeing the results (and I say that as a vegan! lol). I heard Jordan Peterson and his daughter benefited hugely from it. They claim that their autoimmune problems went away... but I wonder if those effects were are the result of weight loss and reduced calorie intake and not the meat. 

If you still use Facebook, stop by in the CR facebook group


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I recently listened to the Joe Rogan episode hosting Rhond aPatrick. First part was on the carnivore diet.

It actually says that it can mimick CR and dietary restriction, by various mechanisms, but it's all related to eating less calories, because of lack of variety and greter satiety. But then there are also many concerns.

I admire Joe Rogan since, although being a declared carnivore, he seemed very willing to provide unbiased information about the potential benefits but also the serious pitfalls of such a diet.


The Carnivore Diet
  • “The diet could be dangerous without any long term evidence or scientific studies’
  • The diet does seem to improve autoimmune disorders
    • Why does it work?
      • Calorie restriction and fasting have been shown to allow for significant improvements in autoimmune diseases
        • People eat less when they eat a high protein diet
          • You have less insulin production, which changes your leptin and ghrelin levels (the satiety and hunger hormones, respectively), which causes you to eat less
        • Studies show that when people are given the same food every single day, naturally they start to eat less, and calorie restrict themselves
      • It replenishes the immune system through apoptosis
        • While fasting, or just calorie restricting to very low levels, entire cells are cleared away through a process known as apoptosis
        • During a 72 hour fast, animal studies show you can clear away about 30% of the immune system and replenish it with brand new healthy immune cells
        • Organs shrink during the fasting, and then re-expand when you eat
        • Autoimmune cells may be selectively killed off first, and replenished with non-autoimmune cells
      • It produces changes in the microbiome
        • The microbiome has been linked to autoimmunity in things like arthritis and multiple sclerosis (MS)
          • One study showed that when people with MS fasted every other day for 7 days, they experienced profound changes in the gut microbiome
          • They grew gut bacteria which produce more butyrate (this is a short chain fatty acid which gut cells love – it’s good for them), which helps the immune system produce for T-regulatory cells
  • There are negative changes, in terms of the gut microbiome that occur when following a carnivore diet
    • People that go from a high fiber, to a high protein (or carnviore diet), will tend create an environment in the gut that allows for the presence of more bacteria that ferment amino acids (like putrefactive bacteria)
      • Why is this not desirable? – Some species of putrefactive bacteria have been linked to colon cancer
        • These bacteria create genotoxic agents known as putracine and cadaverine which damage the DNA inside colon cells
      • By eating fiber/vegetables along with meat/protein – this promotes the growth of lactic acid producing bacteria (bifiodo, lactobacilius etc.) , which limits limits the growth of putrefactive bacteria
  • There are other ways to cure or help autoimmune issues, without going on such a restrictive diet
    • Do a prolonged fast 1x a quarter, depending on how severe the issues are
    • Do a fasting mimicking diet (FMD) once per month
    • One study showed that going on a ketogenic diet for three months, also improved symptoms of autoimmunity
  • “At the end of the day, there’s no data” – Going on a carnivore diet may be harmful long term
More of Rhonda’s Concerns with the Carnivore Diet
  • Rhonda has concerns about micronutrients (check out these Podcast Notes where Rhonda talks more about micronutrients)
    • Micronutrients (30 particular vitamins and minerals) are essential
      • They run our metabolism, are involved in making neurotransmitters, etc.
      • 22% of all enzymes in your body require a micronutrient to function
      • You don’t make micronutrients in your body, so you have to get them from your diet
      • How are RDAs of micronutrients set?
        • First, the EAR (estimated average intake) is looked at – you look at a given population, and determine how much of a given micronutrient the population needs so that 50% of the population has adequate levels
        • The RDA is set from that, 2 standard deviations above
        • For each micronutrient it’s different
        • “RDAs are set to prevent acute disease, but what about promoting optimal health”
    • Many micronutrients are much more concentrated, and easy to get, from plants
      • The biggest one of concern is vitamin C
        • Vitamin C is important for making collagen, converting dopamine to norepinepherine (important for the fight or flight response), and is an antioxidant
          • Scurvy happens when you don’t have enough vitamin C for collagen production (this is thought to be about only 10mg/day – it doesn’t take much)
          • So people on a carnivore diet are probably getting enough Vitamin C to prevent scurvy. but perhaps not enough to cover all the other things vitamin C is required for
        • Vitamin C has two forms – ascorbic acid (the reduced form – aka the antioxidant) and an oxidized form (dehydroascorbic acid)
        • The RDA for vitamin C is 90 mg/day for men and 75 mg/day for women
          • It’s been shown in guinea pigs, there are biological differences (even 10 fold) into how much vitamin C they required
      • Vitamin E is also a concern
        • Vitamin E helps recycle vitamin C and vice versa
        • It’s an antioxidant, but is also important for maintaining cell integrity – it’s located inside the cell membrane and prevents normal oxidative processes from happening there
        • The RDA is 15 mg
        • Nuts are the best source (almonds) of vitamin E, and sardines
      • Folate too…
        • Folate plays an important role in making new DNA
          • So low levels of folate, can lead to DNA damage – this is very hard to measure, and you don’t even know it’s happening
        • Enzymes to repair DNA damage require magnesium
        • Beef liver is a great source of magnesium
    • If you lack micronutrients…
      • There are enzymes that are required to prevent and repair DNA damage, and then there are enzymes that require a micronutrient to prevent short term disease
      • If there’s only so much of a micronutrient around, it will be used for the latter
  • What is you just ate a bunch of organ meat to get the micronutrients you’d be missing from vegetables?
    • You can do it – but it’s difficult, and most people probably won’t do it
  • By not eating vegetables, you’re missing out on key fiber that the gut needs
    • “We evolved eating plants”
    • There’s all these other things present in plants that people following a carnivore diet are missing out on – falvonoids, polyphenols, phytochemicals, etc.
    • You’re missing out on SULFORAPHANE
      • Broccolli sprouts are the biggest source, but it’s also present in brussel sprouts
      • Sulforaphane activates a variety of enzymes which help get rid of potentially harmful compounds in the body
      • Humans given sulforophane extract show an increase of glutathione (a master antioxidant) in the brain – it plays a huge role in preventing brain aging 
      • Sulforaphane has been found to improve symptoms of autism
    • There are literally so many beneficial things that come from eating vegetables – too many to mention
      • “Why would you want to eliminate a massive source of bioavailable nutrients” – Joe


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