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The Ketogenic Diet is a pretty niche field, although it has been progressing nicely over the years. I follow a lot of facebook groups etc, for tips and to see what people are trying. There are some overlapping groups and viewpoints that you regularly see with Keto. For instance, Paleo, Primal, Intermittent Fasting and Carnivore (which has noticeably been getting a lot of traction recently).
Typically the Carnivore Diet is meat and fish only, with maybe a few spices, seasoning and butter for cooking. Carnivore and Keto are certainly brothers in the eating world. They both require you to eat fatty meat and limit carbs. Its just that you pretty much scrap carbs altogether on Carnivore, although their are trace carbs in meat and eggs for example but it is very low. Hence why calling Carnivore a zero carb diet isn’t strictly true.
Now I will die of scurvy or some vitamin deficiency wont I, if I stop eating vegetation? Afterall we are omnivores are we not? Well when you look into it, not really. We are more opportunists. Our greatest leaps and progression is definitely down to our hunter side, not the gathering. It was eating fatty meats or organs that helped us, not the handful of nuts. I think the romanticized thoughts of us as hunter gathers is that, the men went out to hunt during the day. Whilst the women gathered fruit and veg to accompany the meat for a nice campfire meal at night. What is actually closer to the truth is that the men and women both went out to hunt, and the gathering was strategic at certain times of the year or if all the meat legged it. For example fruit was consumed in the autumn to fatten us up for the winter, if you have grown your own fruit before you realize it is not available all year round like in the supermarkets.
Our teeth suggest we are omnivores don’t they? Again not really, it is more to do with our head shape, jaw and digestion tract. Molars can help the eating of veg of course, but they are also very important to grind down meat, for us to digest better. So don’t listen to a vegetarian who throws that on in your face.
Now I am a firm believer in keto, and I feel best when I am on a real food ketogenic diet. Which is simply a lamb steak cooked in butter, with some side veg. I kind of still believe that the reason keto work is the fatty meat yes, but also the vitamins and nutrients from vegetables. However I only think that because I have always been told that you need vegetables. The problems is these sources are the same government guidelines that I know for a fact are quite frankly horseshit. So I believe these guidelines when it comes to vitamins and minerals, but totally discount there guidelines on carb and fat intake.
With very little research you can find out a lot about vegetables, that defy the mainstream logic. Just some examples are:
- Protein – the availability of protein in vegetation is pretty poor. Yes it is there but you struggle to get at it. Your body gets protein from meat very easily. So by including vegetable protein in your daily calculations, you are probably selling yourself short.
- Vitamins and Nutrients – again yes they are there but we cant get as much of them as we think we can. Not only that vegetables also have anti nutrients, meaning some actually have a negative net effect on the body. I recently read an article that suggested do not eat tomatoes and cucumbers together in a salad, as when combined they actually leach minerals and vitamins from your body not provide them. Another example is that plants contains anti nutrients that actually interfere with absorption of zinc and calcium. I did not know that until today!
- Day of the Triffids – plants actually don’t want to be eaten, sorry vegans. They have actually developed mechanisms to make them unlikely to be eaten so they can reproduce. Humans just ran upshod and developed cooking, potatoes wouldn’t be very popular without cooking would they.
- Scurvy – us British were great at preventing scurvy by using citrus fruits. However did you know that when the prevention failed, they actually cured scurvy by giving them fresh red meat. If the sailor was worthy of course.
- Fat Soluble – some vitamins need to be transported by fat to be absorbed, another tick for meat vitamins.
- Vitamin C- now I don’t care what anyone says, we need Vitamin C surely! Well here is another kicker. The RDA of vitamins and minerals is based on people on a Standard Western Diet aka a boat load of carbs. Guess what happens when you reduce carbs, yup your body is more efficient and needs less than the government RDA in a lot of cases. Did you know glucose and Vitamin C fight for the same blood transportation system. So the more glucose (carbs) that is in your body, the more Vitamin C you need to survive. So people on Keto need less than someone on the Standard Western Diet, and someone on the Carnivore Diet needs less Vitamin C than someone on Keto.
- Pound for pound there are more vitamins and nutrients in meat than vegetables. Then there are the vitamins that can only be found in meat, eg B12 and K2.
So basically we do 100% need vitamins and minerals, it is just we might need them to go through a cow first to be useful.
So I am going carnivore for a week or so, to see how I feel. If I am craving an aubergine at the end of it, then I know I might be missing out on something my body requires.
Check these articles out, about the Carnivore Diet: