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    Welcome to Carnivore Talk! An online community of people who have discovered the benefits of an animal-based ketogenic diet with the goal of losing weight, optimizing their health, and supporting and encouraging one another. We warmly welcome you! [Read More]

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Research, research, research.
Read about carnivore and come to a complete understanding about how to do it and how it works in your body. Then, understand how your body functions in regards to how glycogen and fats work on your metabolic health.
Get on utube and follow the carnivore doctors such as Ken Berry, Shawn Baker, Anthony Chaffee. They, and others of their ilk can help you get started down the right path. Then there are numerous utube carnivore influencers that share their stories, successes, failures, tips and methods to help you stay motivated and knowledgeable. Immerse yourself in the knowledge available to you.
Carnivore is not a magic bullet. Carnivore is not a diet. Carnivore is a way of eating which enables your body to undo years of metabolic damage, abuse from calorie restricted diets, and metabolic disregulation. Carnivore is primarily about health and healing.
Yes- it is true that the weight will come off. But! It will do it when it wants to. For some people it happens fast, for others slow because we are all different.

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On 11/18/2023 at 4:37 AM, Debashis said:

What advice would you give to someone considering or starting a meat-based ketogenic lifestyle for the first time?

Are there things they should be cautious about? Let your knowledge flow here.

My starting advice would depend on your answer to where are you coming from? What is your current diet?

If you are vegetarian interested in the benefits of carnivore, or currently eating the standard American junk diet, I would recommend a gradual transition to carnivore. Something like this....

Week 1: Cut your carbs to 100g or less per day. Remove all sugars, grains, and seed oils.
Week 2: Cut your carbs to 50g or less. Start eating 3 meals a day with NO snacking in between.
Week 3: Cut your carbs to 20g or less. Start focusing on filling half your plate with fatty meat, and the other half low carb veggies.
Week 4: Cut your carbs to 10g or less. Now 3/4th of your plate is fatty meat and 1/4 is veggies.
Week 5 and beyond, only eat animal products. It will basically be zerocarb or trace carbs.

The reason for this is because if you switch suddenly, you might experience what is called the "keto flu" which is a run down groggy feeling that lasts a few days to a few weeks. Also, your bowel habits will change, and this slower transition will help you understand these changes are fine (you will go sit down just a couple times a week instead of multiple times a day). 

Now others prefer to jump right in. I think that's what @Geezy says he did. And that is okay to. You just have to power through the transition phase. But once you are fat adapted, you should feel great and energized most of the time.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Okay. I'm a noob at this (well, sort of. Like I said before, I did do Adkins for a couple of years with no problems).

The way I understand it, the goal is to reduce your carbs to zero as well as get through the transition eating only animal products. I prefer to jump right in like @Geezy did and get on with it. So far, I haven't had any sugars or carbs and have made up my mind to eliminate everything that is not animal based (Milk is animal based but has lactose, so it is out).

In my research and quest for further understanding, I watch a lot of YT videos on tips and tricks to navigate through this new adventure. This is where I am coming into some confusion, and I know there are variations of the carnivore diet. But some of the stuff I've seen others do has me scratching my head. So, I am assuming I am missing something and therefore the confusion.

The bottom line is I see others eating stuff that has been processed with sugars or dextrose, etc. To my understanding, that would be a red flag to go that direction. For instance this ham:  spacer.png 

When I scan the shelves, I see something like this and it interests me. So I start checking the label.



Pork, Water, Raw Sugar, Sea Salt, Vinegar, Blend Of Sugar And Honey (Cane Sugar, Honey), Maple Sugar, Natural Flavor.

From the ingredient list, it tells me this one is off limits. But then if you go to the nutritional label:


Nutrition facts

14.0 servings per container
Serving size 2oz (56g)
Amount per serving
Calories 60
% Daily Value*
2% Total Fat1.5g
3% Saturated Fat0.5g
  Trans Fat0g
11% Cholesterol35mg
21% Sodium500mg
0% Total Carbohydrate1g
0% Dietary Fiber0g
0% Vitamin A
0% Vitamin C
0% Calcium
0% Iron
*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a serving of food contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.

According to this, it has 0% carbs. So even though the ingredients include all those sugars and honey, since the carbs are 0%, is it okay to consume on this diet?

I see ambiguity in other products as well. A lot of deli meats are processed with dextrose, yet many are eating them. So, this brings up another question concerning 'should I' or 'shouldn't I'. Plain yellow mustard has zero carbs, zero sugar. Is it okay to use mustard? Olives with pimentos have zero sugar/zero carbs. Is it okay to eat olives? Jalapeno slices (*in the jar in brine) has 1g of sugar but zero carbs. I used to put these in my scrambled eggs for breakfast. Since it is zero carbs, it is okay? That ham had 1g of sugar.

Then there is an ambiguity with some dairy products. I've read several places that kefir is on the 'okay to eat' list. But when I look at the label (this is the plain unsweetened one) it says there is 8g of carbs (3%) and those 8g are sugar.

I look at a mayonnaise jar and it says zero carbs/zero sugars. But it is made with seed oil. So to me, this is not okay to eat because we are trying to eliminate all seed oils. BTW, what about olive oil? It's not seed oil and it's zero carbs/zero sugar.

I have also noticed that some people will not use any kind of spice except salt. Then others will use spices to broaden the tastes of the meats they eat. And as far as I know, spices are all zero carb/zero sugars.

Apparently, I am missing something. I'm not trying to make excuses to eat the things I used to eat. I want to do the diet correctly. If it's allowed, I'll do it. If it's not, then I won't. So that is my dilemma.


Thoughts anyone?


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Your confusion is totally understandable Steven. I felt the same way in the beginning.
What I came to understand was there are no set rules to eating this way because it all boils down to individuality.
What works for my physiology may not work for yours.
Remember, this is an elimination diet. Start with a foundation of clean meats, salt and water. Stay clean for 90 days. Introduce something that you like for few days and see how it affects you. No problems? It can stay. Issues m? It’s gone forever. Build on it from there, slowly.
You have to build your own diet/lifestyle plan according to your needs, not anyone else’s.
I personally avoid all sugars and sugar alternatives but if a little sneaks in once in awhile I don’t worry about it. In something like sugars used in a cured meat it’s not that much. I make my own bacon and before carnivore my brine/cure required a lot of brown sugar and maple syrup but after the curing process was over most of it was rinsed off. There was still some residual sugar but considering the slight amount on the surface of each slice I don’t believe it’s enough to do much harm unless you are super sensitive to it.
With all that being said I still avoid sugar as much as possible. If given a choice I wall always go without.
The only items I allow in my diet that are not carnivore is one cup of bulletproof tea in the morning and some spices. Those spices must be sugar and sweetener free.
I eat meat of any kind, eggs, cheese , cream and yogurt sparingly and pork rinds fried in lard.
The only fats I use are ghee, lard and tallow, which I make myself.
I do not allow vegetables, seeds, seed oils and sugar (if at all possible)

Now here is a concession that I might make if I went to a restaurant and there were no steaks or any meats that weren’t clean enough to suit me. I would consider jalapeño poppers as long as they’re not breaded and deep fried. Bacon wrapped and stuffed with cream cheese is tolerable for me and doesn’t affect me but I would only eat that I’d there was no other alternative.
Find your path, just start from a clean foundation.

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8 minutes ago, Geezy said:

Stay clean for 90 days.

It sounds like this is the only path then. Before starting my diet, like everyone, I was able to eat what I wanted but all that came with the consequences I wish to reverse. 90 days seems like a long time to endure, and I fear getting bored with not being able to change up the flavors as much as I'd like to. I understand the concept and it makes sense. Apparently, our physiology changes during the 90 days and we have to start over with things we may have been able to eat before with no problem to ensure there isn't a new undiscovered problem waiting to manifest itself.

15 minutes ago, Geezy said:

You have to build your own diet/lifestyle plan according to your needs, not anyone else’s.

This makes perfect sense. Like I said. I just don't want to become bored with the limited flavors that only salt yields. I love eggs and I used to add a ton of things to them, especially omelets. Bacon is another one of my all-time favorites. 

22 minutes ago, Geezy said:

In something like sugars used in a cured meat it’s not that much.

If I can eat some of these processed deli meats during my 90-day journey, that would help relieve some of potential boredom. When I checked at the grocery store, it seemed like over 95% of the meats were cured with some sugar or dextrose. It was a shocker for me.

27 minutes ago, Geezy said:

There was still some residual sugar but considering the slight amount on the surface of each slice I don’t believe it’s enough to do much harm unless you are super sensitive to it.

Right now, I don't think I am sensitive at all to it. But that could change after 90 days.

All in all, I am jazzed for this diet, and I really want to do it correctly. I will have to keep watching YT for recipes that are allowed during the 90 days of total elimination. Thanks for answering, it really helps out.

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