When you think of carnivores, you probably think of meat, meat, and more meat, but there is more to the carnivore diet than just meat. The keto carnivore diet is one of the different versions of the ketogenic diet. There are several reasons why people adopt a keto carnivore diet, from digestive issues to weight loss and fitness goals. Let’s explore this keto diet.
What is the Keto Carnivore Diet?
At its core, the keto carnivore diet is an ultra-low-carb diet that emphasizes the consumption of animal products. There are several different ways to follow a keto carnivore diet, but most proponents take elements from each diet and combine them in a way that works for their lifestyle.
Some people eat exclusively meat for part of the week and transition to a keto diet for the rest of the week. Others may follow a primarily carnivore diet, introducing the occasional vegetable and condiment, but limiting carbohydrate intake to maintain consistency with the requirements of the keto diet. Keto carnivores combine aspects of both diets to best suit their bodies and lifestyles.
Keto Carnivore Food List
Start including these foods on your weekly grocery list.
- Meat: beef, pork, goat, lamb, wild game, chicken, duck, turkey.
- Animal products: eggs, bone broth, bone marrow, lard.
- Dairy: cheese, yogurt, butter, ghee, sour cream, milk.
- Fish and seafood: sardines, salmon, tuna, crab, squid, oysters.
- Seasoning: salt, pepper, mayonnaise, garlic powder.
- Beverages: water, coffee, tea.
- Nuts, seeds, and oils: flaxseeds, brazil nuts, pecans, coconut oil.
Keto Carnivore Foods to Avoid
Avoid these foods on your keto carnivore diet:
- Grains: corn, rice, wheat, barley.
- Legumes and beans: beans, lentils peas.
- High-carb fruits: apples, grapes, oranges, bananas, and grapes.
- High-carb vegetables: potatoes, carrots, eggplant, yams.
- Sugary processed foods: breakfast cereals, cakes, cookies, ice cream.
- Sweetened beverages: sodas, juices, alcoholic drinks, hot chocolate.
Keto Carnivore Diet Benefits
High-protein, low-carb diets (such as keto carnivore diets) have been reported to be effective in promoting healthy weight loss, improving metabolic health, and enhancing cognitive function.
Weight loss is associated with high-protein and high-fat diets because these macronutrients make you feel fuller longer after a meal. In addition, protein may increase your metabolic rate, which can lead to increased calorie burning.
Keto carnivore diets have been reported to have benefits for heart health, blood sugar and cholesterol. A low-carb and high-fat diet has been shown to greatly improve biomarkers associated with heart disease.
Since you eliminate sugar and most carbohydrates on a keto carnivore diet, it’s easy to see why it’s so helpful for blood sugar management. The less sugar and carbohydrates you consume, the less sugar you will have in your blood.
Many people on a low-carb diet plan also experience a reduction in total cholesterol, a reduction in triglycerides, and an increase in HDL.
Low-carb diets, such as the keto carnivore diet, may enhance cognitive function. Studies have shown that ketogenic diets can improve memory and are associated with improved memory performance in older adults at risk for Alzheimer’s disease.
Keto Carnivore Diet Drawbacks
Like any other diet on the planet, keto carnivore is not for everyone. If you think there is no benefit to omitting plants from your diet, then don’t follow this diet. But if you’re convinced that this diet can eliminate some of your health/fitness issues, then give it a try.
Here are some possible drawbacks to know (especially if you are a complete beginner):
- Flu-like symptoms. If you still eat more carbohydrates than you need, you will experience flu-like symptoms collectively known as keto-flu. These symptoms include brain fog, nausea, fatigue and dehydration. Note that these will not last. Eat plenty of meat, stay hydrated, and get enough sleep.
- Taste fatigue. Following a restrictive diet, such as keto carnivores, can lead to taste fatigue. It occurs in people who enjoy a variety of foods that include vegetables, fruits, and processed snacks that are keto-friendly. To overcome taste fatigue, explore a variety of animal-based foods and recipes.
Is the Keto Carnivore Diet Healthy Long-term?
It is difficult to know the long-term health effects of following a carnivore diet plan because there are few evidence-based studies to support such claims or risks.
The longest study looking at the health effects of a very low-carb, high-fat diet was for up to six months. This is not enough time to really understand the benefits or risks of a carnivore diet over time. Many people who have followed this diet for more than a year report that their lab work is in the healthy range. There has not been any research done on these claims to say exactly how healthy it is to eat an all-meat diet.
The carnivore diet will not be for everyone. If you choose to try this new meal plan, talk to your healthcare provider and monitor your blood work to see how it affects your health.
The keto carnivore diet is a low-carb eating regimen that combines a keto diet with a carnivore diet. It can be of great benefit to people who want to lose weight, improve metabolic health and enhance cognitive function.
While it may not be sustainable for some people’s lifestyles and preferences, it can be beneficial for those who wish to go the carnivore diet route without having to fully commit to extreme restrictions.