There were a few reasons why I decided to try carnivore, but one of the big ones was resolving my food addiction.
Sugar detoxes or low-carb ways of eating like keto have all been great, helping me to lose weight and feel amazing, but as an Abstainer rather than a Moderator, it’s hard for me to moderate the tastier foods, and over-consumption of those tends to send me off the rails.
I’d heard of other people whose food addiction resolved on carnivore, so I decided to give it a try for just 30 days, as an experiment. My husband John was 25 days ahead of me on his own carnivore experiment. I read The Carnivore Diet, which gave surprisingly compelling answers to all my questions (“But plants! What about fiber? What about Vitamin C?!”), and inspired me to try it out.
I made my own little gold star chart, with a gold star sticker for each carnivore meal, to keep me motivated.
I did some spices, and black coffee, but no dairy or eggs, so just meat (all kinds), salt, and water.
And, HO. LY. COW. ?
It’s kind of blown my mind.
I knew lots of these things would happen, but the degree to which they’ve happened surprised even me.
I feel better than I have in as long as I can remember.
How I Feel on Day 30
- Energy: I have so much energy, but “energy” doesn’t really describe it. It’s more like a warm, glowing sense of well-being, a feeling of possibility, incredible motivation, and at times, euphoria. Unexpected, but hands-down the best benefit so far.
- Winter Blues: My Seasonal Affective Disorder is still there, but more like a mild nagging background noise rather than a debilitating weight. I’m feeling happy and motivated, and this is usually my worst time of year. I’ve been more productive in the last 20 days than I had for the last 20 weeks before carnivore.
- Acne and redness: Acne on my face has all but disappeared, and friends comment that my skin looks “amazing” and “radiant”. I’ve always felt super self-conscious about my skin, so this made me nearly shed a tear of happiness! ?
- Fat loss: I’ve lost 1.5 inches on my waist and 2.5 inches on my hips, and lost 11 pounds.
- Clothes fit differently: I’ve had to buy new bras since my old ones no longer fit in the band, my pants are baggier, and my wedding ring is looser.
- Sugar & carb cravings: I don’t crave sugar or carbs anymore. I can look at foods with sugar and not care about them at all.
- Fasting: I can go hours between meals; no more constant grazing. I’m not perfect, but I’m getting better at eating only when I’m hungry.
- TIGER BLOOD PRODUCTIVITY: I happily work from about 6 am to about 1-2 pm and have the courage to tackle the important things. Before, in my winter torpor, I had basically zero motivation.
- Sleep: I fall asleep easily and wake up feeling rested. I’m a natural early bird, so I’m getting back in my comfortable pattern of a 5-6 am wakeup and a 9-10 pm bedtime. If I wake up in the middle of the night, I can fall back asleep easily.
- Appetite for protein: Significantly improved, and no more reflux. At the beginning, just the thought of steak made me want to gag, but now I can eat it easily.
- Bloody noses stopped: I’d been getting spontaneous bloody noses nearly every other day, especially brought on by stress or crying. I haven’t had one since I started my experiment.
- Candida: Systemic candida overgrowth was a huge annoyance, but my symptoms (some of them a little TMI, so I’ll spare you) are pretty much gone now.
My progress isn’t 100% linear (it never is, right?!). A few things I’m still working through…
- Energy dips: Though I feel great overall, around my cycle I had 2-3 days where I was tired and needed naps. This may change over time, but if it’s only around my cycle I’m not too worried about it.
- Body fat: I still have some body fat to lose, though my body seems to be rebalancing itself pretty rapidly.
- Emotional eating habits: I still find myself thinking I want “something snacky” in the evening even if I’m not actually hungry, or getting up to make a coffee just out of habit. I’m sure I’ve had way too much in the last 30 days, even though I drink decaf!
This has been a totally fascinating experience. I’ve learned so much, and I’m questioning a lot of assumptions I’ve had for years. I plan to just keep continually learning and experimenting and being open to my mind being changed.
From here, I’m going to try another 30 days. And of course, I’ll do another update then!
This time, I’ll do just meat, salt, and water (no black coffee or spices). Salami, pork rinds, bacon, and sausages are delicious, but I was probably over-relying on them.
They worked great as transition foods to help me stick with it for the first 30 days, and now that I’m past that hump, I’m ready to take it to the next level.
After the next 30 days, who knows? I’m always considering this an experiment, and I’ll do it as long as I feel good and it’s sustainable for me.
If a carnivore experiment is something you want to try for yourself, I hope you stick around! I made a printable Carnivore Shopping List for Costco you can download for free. ?