Interview with Lynn
1) Introduce Yourself.
I am a 64-year old woman, a retired adjunct professor of English, current literary writer exploring fantasy fiction. My primary role right now is one of care-giver. My 88 year old father has Parkinson’s Disease, COPD, and heart disease and needs someone around full time. I have an adult son with Down Syndrome as well. My writing has suffered a bit lately as I struggle with these developments. It’s imperative I protect my health so I can care for others. I have Hashimoto’s thyroiditis which is my only health problem to date. At present, I have very low blood pressure (110/60 most of the time, sometimes lower, never ever 120/80 or higher), high cholesterol, though great ratio, high HDL, very low triglycerides, fluffy cholesterol size, low blood sugar (no metabolic syndrome). I now weigh 118, with normal BMI.
I blog about diet, writing, dreams, philosophy and miscellaneous fare. But I always include things about my diet and well-being journey since it is the key to all the rest!
2) How did you eat before Carnivore.
I used to eat fairly “well” according to most conventional medicine folks. Low fat, minimal red meat, whole grains and fruits and vegetables. I felt terrible and hurt all over. Was not really overweight per se, but I was not in good shape. Then I moved into Paleo eating about two years ago. I felt somewhat better but didn’t lose any weight. And I still hurt and had headaches. Graduated to Keto and felt better yet, lost about 12 pounds and plateau-ed. I decided to try Carnivore. (I have listened for years to people like Dr. Mercola, Chris Kresser, Dave Asprey, and my personal favorite Mark Sisson.)
3) Why did you try Carnivore to begin with.
I tried carnivore just as an experiment. Having a lot of allergies and auto-immune issues, I wanted to see how I felt without plants. I had listened to Mikhaila and Jordan Peterson talk about how much better they felt and thought it would be an interesting experiment.
4) How do you personally approach the Carnivore Diet.
I eat all meat including seafood like oysters, mussels, shrimp, fish, beef, lamb, pork, wild game of all sorts, chicken (I don’t feel as good on chicken). I am not fond of organ meat except chicken livers, so don’t get much of them. I also eat heavy cream and cheese and sour cream. Eggs. I love eggs. I cook with strained bacon fat and butter mostly. I DO have an occasional glass of wine or liquor and I use spices on meat and seem to do well. I also rotate a very limited keto diet into my regimen and I fast one day every week or two. I also limit my eating to about six hours most days.
5) What benefits have you seen since starting the Carnivore Diet.
I went about 56 days without cheating and lost six pounds more and I don’t seem to gain weight when I cheat anymore, even for a couple days at a time. My mood definitely improves on strict Carnivore. I have moments of euphoria even when things are completely stressful. My skin improved, much less dry, wrinkles disappeared (well, improved). I slept better and needed less sleep to feel good. I woke without that feeling of dread. My muscle tone improved vastly even though I have always exercised. My hair is thicker. My overall energy improved and most exciting, I had almost no body aches and pains. My lower back had begun to be an issue, a disk problem, and some cysts, so this was fabulous.
My c-reactive protein is very low, inflammation markers went down. I recently had a Lifeline screening test and I have no peripheral artery disease, normal carotid arteries, and no plaque in abdominal aorta. No heart rhythm problems (this is despite the fact that my mother died of a brain aneurysm at my age, my father has stents and blood clots everywhere, and my younger brother has had a mini-stroke, and has a 5.2 aneurysm in his thoracic aorta that may require open heart surgery–they all eat (or ate) a regular western diet. Due to my brother recently discovering this aneurysm, I will have an echo soon to be sure I don’t have this since it can be genetic, but I do not anticipate anything due to everything else being so good. I will report in if people wish to follow me.
6) What negatives have you found with the Carnivore Diet.
Well, people think you’re nuts. I’m sure everyone thinks the social aspects are the biggest down side. (I’m a libertarian). Liberals think you are a monster and don’t care about the planet and that you are making some political statement (nothing could be further from the truth and I’m not certain you can’t make a good case for the environment eliminating GMO and pesticides on plants and grazing animals). Conservatives just think you are nuts period.
Health wise, my numbers remained good EXCEPT my cholesterol went from 284 to 446! This unnerved me quite a bit. I have to be honest. Even though nobody has yet studied people eating grass fed meat who have high cholesterol from those eating french fries fried in trans fats and junk food, I was still a bit nervous, so I took Berberine and added a bit of salad in and my cholesterol went to 246! Right about where I want it (people who have cardiac events do not have high cholesterol on average). So now I rotate in and out of keto/carnivore –limited keto. Mostly lettuce, a bit of broccoli, mushrooms.
7) Do you exercise on the Carnivore Diet, if so how do you find it and what do you do.
I have always exercised. I was athletic as a child and I still do full body exercises, weight lifting type twice a week, strength or meditation yoga three-four times a week, and I walk a lot. I didn’t notice much difference in my exercise ability except that I could suddenly build muscle when I had some problems with that before.
8) What piece of advice would you give someone who is interested in trying this diet, but hasn’t taken the leap yet.
You do feel a bit poorly first week or so, headaches, but after that, you’ll feel fabulous. Jordan Peterson’s wife developed kidney cancer–no idea if her diet was involved. But I do worry some about cancer. In order to activate autophagy and AMPK pathways and shut down MTOR part of the time, I am a believer in fasting and exercising –as well as rotating the diet some. It will be a long time before we know much about cancer and carnivore.
9) Do you think Carnivore will ever be accepted as a mainstream diet
Possibly for a huge segment of the population. However, when I did my 23 and Me studies, I found out people have three types of muscles. I have an “elite athlete” style muscle. So it makes sense to me that different people would do better on different diets. Whole foods is the key, but I expect that studying nutrition will get more specific and tailored to individuals. I hope doctors will have one on staff soon. But to think one diet suits all seems ridiculous.
10) Anything you would like to add, and where can people follow you.
I wish everybody well on this journey. It’s great you have this website and everyone shares experiences because there is so little information out there to date. Thanks, Steven!
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