As a strong proponent of the carnivore diet, I am always impressed by the numerous success stories that people share about their experiences on this way of eating. In this review, I will be examining a particular carnivore diet success story that was previously posted on my website. The individual in question is Don Matesz, a practitioner of Oriental medicine and nutrition counseling based in Scottsdale, Arizona. Don has been following a carnivore diet for several years now, and his experience offers a wealth of insights into the potential benefits and challenges of this way of eating.
Summary of Don Matesz’s Carnivore Diet Success Story:
Don Matesz had been experimenting with various plant-based diets for over 40 years, but he found that none of them provided relief from his seasonal allergies, dermatitis, and psoriasis. In fact, his conditions worsened over time, and his serum cholesterol levels declined. In late 2016, a blood test revealed that Don had low globulin and phosphorus levels, indicating protein deficiency and dietary deficiency in phosphorus and vitamin D. In March 2017, Don started adding small amounts of animal products back to his diet, and in May of the same year, he adopted a hypercarnivore diet.
Don’s hypercarnivore diet consists primarily of meat, eggs, and dairy products such as milk and yogurt. He typically eats 1-2 pounds of meat daily, along with 4 or more eggs, 1-2 quarts of whole milk or whole milk yogurt, some cheese, butter, and cream, bone broth, and eggshell powder. Don has experimented with excluding dairy products, but he has found that including them has helped in healing his skin. He generally avoids plants, especially nuts, seeds, beans, and grains, but he does drink tea and coffee and occasionally eats small amounts of low-sugar fruit, cooking herbs, or cooked or fermented vegetables.
Benefits of the Carnivore Diet for Don Matesz:
Healing of Psoriasis:
Don’s psoriasis has been a persistent problem for over 40 years, and he found that none of the plant-based diets he tried provided any relief. However, since adopting a hypercarnivore diet, Don has experienced gradual healing of his psoriasis over a period of more than a year. While the healing process has been slow, it is noteworthy that Don’s psoriasis has continued to improve over time.
The reason why the carnivore diet may be helpful in healing psoriasis is likely due to the elimination of plant-based foods that may trigger or exacerbate the condition. Many plant-based foods contain anti-nutrients, such as lectins and phytates, that can interfere with nutrient absorption and digestion, and trigger inflammation in susceptible individuals. By eliminating these potential triggers, the carnivore diet may help to reduce inflammation and promote healing of skin conditions like psoriasis.
Reduced Fat Mass and Improved Muscle Mass and Strength:
Don found that, despite following various plant-based diets for over 40 years, he was unable to reduce his waist circumference to what it was when he was in high school. However, since adopting a hypercarnivore diet, he has been able to achieve this goal. In addition, Don has experienced improvements in his muscle mass and strength compared to highly plant-based diets.
The reason why the carnivore diet may be helpful in reducing fat mass and improving muscle mass and strength is likely due to its high protein content. Protein is an essential nutrient for building and repairing muscle tissue, and it is also very satiating.
Overall, the benefits that Don has experienced on the carnivore diet are quite impressive, ranging from healing of skin conditions to improved bowel function, reduced fat mass, increased muscle mass and strength, and more. It is important to note that while these benefits are significant, they are also specific to Don’s experience and may not be the same for everyone.
The carnivore diet has shown promise for those looking to improve their health and wellbeing, particularly those with specific health issues like Don. While more research is needed to fully understand the long-term effects of this diet, the anecdotal evidence from those who have tried it is quite compelling. As with any significant dietary changes, it is important to consult with a healthcare professional before beginning the carnivore diet to ensure it is safe and appropriate for your individual needs.
It is important to note that this interview with Don Matesz is an old post, and we do not know if he is still on the carnivore diet or if he has maintained the benefits he experienced while on it. It is also important to remember that every individual is different, and what works for one person may not work for another. This review is not intended as medical advice, and it is always recommended to consult with a healthcare professional before making significant changes to your diet or lifestyle.
Original Post // Don Matesz: The Hypercarnivore’s Epic Success Story That Will Leave You Stunned!
Interview with Don
My name is Don Matesz. I am 57 years old and have been fitness and health oriented for more than 40 years. I have Master’s degrees in philosophy and Oriental medicine and a nutritionist certification from the American Academy of Nutrition. I practice acupuncture, herbal medicine and nutrition counselling in Scottsdale, Arizona. I was one of the presenters at the first Ancestral Health Symposium in August 2011.
How did you eat before carnivore?
Over 40 years of experimenting with diet, I have eaten many variations of plant based diets, including lacto-ovo vegetarian, whole foods omnivore, macrobiotic, paleo, and strictly whole foods vegan. In 2011 I adopted a whole foods plant-based vegan diet and continued that for more than 5.5 years, during which my health and vitality declined along with my serum cholesterol. In late 2016, while still on that diet, I had a blood test which showed I had low globulin, a sign of protein deficiency, and low phosphorus, indicating dietary phosphorus and vitamin D deficiency. I started adding small amounts of animal products back to my diet in March of 2017. I continued eating a whole foods plant based diet, but with some animal products added, until May of 2017, when I adopted a hypercarnivore diet.
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Why did you try carnivore to begin with?
Almost all of my dietary experimentation was aimed at reducing, reversing and recovering from seasonal allergies, dermatitis and psoriasis, which I have had in some form for as long as I can remember. So long as I ate plant based diets, the conditions did not improve or got worse, unless I used medication (either pharmaceutical or herbal). During the last year or so of the 5+ years that I ate a whole foods plant based vegan diet my psoriasis and dermatitis got markedly worse and started spreading. In Spring of 2017 I read a post on ZeroCarbZen.com by Candi Leftwich, who reported obtaining almost complete relief from Crohn’s disease and psoriasis by eating only meat, fat and water for 3 months. At that point I realized that I had tried to heal my condition by restricting amounts or types of animal foods and eating whole plant foods for long periods many time over nearly 40 years, but I had never tried severely restricting plant foods for any length of time. Even when “paleo” I had eaten a “produce dominant diet” with plenty of fruits and vegetables. So I decided I needed to try a highly carnivorous diet to heal my skin.
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How do you personally approach the Carnivore Diet?
In biology and general language, the word “carnivore” means meat-eater, but does not specify how much meat is eaten. Biologists distinguish three main types of carnivores: hypocarnivores, which obtain less than 30% of their food from meat; mesocarnivores, which obtain 50-70% of their food from meat; and hypercarnivores, which obtain more than 70% – i.e. 71-100% – of their food from meat. In Nature, most hypercarnivores eat some minor amounts of plants.
I eat a hypercarnivore diet. I eat meat, eggs and dairy products, including milk and yogurt. I eat 1-2 pounds of meat daily, usually 4 or more eggs, 1-2 quarts of whole milk or whole milk yogurt, some cheese, butter, and cream, bone broth and eggshell powder. I have experimented with excluding dairy products, but I have gotten the best results in healing my skin by including whole milk yogurt and whole milk, generally 1-2 quarts per day, along with bone broth and eggshell powder to obtain a calcium intake ranging from 1500-2500 mg daily. I use salt and also supplement with magnesium because my water supply is low in magnesium. I generally avoid plants – especially all nuts, seeds, beans and grains – but I drink tea and coffee and sometimes eat some small amount of low sugar fruit (like berries or melon), cooking herbs or cooked or fermented vegetables that I know I tolerate.
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What benefits have you seen since starting the Carnivore Diet?
- No more bloating, flatulence, or loose, explosive stools. Although it took almost 6 months for my bowels to adapt to the elimination of fiber, now my bowel function is better than ever; so far as I can remember.
- Healing of psoriasis. This has been a gradual process over more than a year, which is a drop in the bucket compared to the 40 years during which I have had this disease.
- Healing of a knee injury that would not fully heal when plant based.
- Improved overall skin quality (better moisture without needing to apply lotion). For example, for as long as I can remember before carnviore my elbows were always dry and rough. Now they are smooth and soft.
- Reduced fat mass. Reduced my waist circumference to what it was when I was in high school. This had been impossible on every plant based diet I tried.
- Improved muscle mass and strength compared to highly plant based diets.
- Far more satisfied with meals. No longer looking for “something” after stuffing myself full of plants.
- Greater tolerance for heavy labor/training and quicker recovery.
- Greater libido.
- Less frequent need to eat. Almost never need to eat more than two meals in a day, and some days can eat just one large meal a day and be done.
- Meal preparation is easier and less time consuming.
- Shopping for food is easier and less time consuming.
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What negative have you found with the Carnivore Diet?
- Muscle cramps. Due to the drop in insulin levels, one loses more salts in the urine than if eating a plant-based carbohydrate-rich diet. Presently I live in Arizona so I lose a lot of fluids and salts in sweating. If I don’t get enough salt I get cramps. I have had to learn to use more salt on my food than I did when plant-based. I also take salt in water when cramps occur, or before, during and after heavy sweating.
- If you are vocal on social media, you will be attacked by vegans.
- Sometimes hard to get other people to understand why I eat almost exclusively meat, eggs and dairy. So many people believe these are the most toxic foods.
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Do you exercise on the Carnivore Diet, if so how do you find it and what do you do?
I do strength training including bodyweight training and gymnastic strength training. I had immediate improvements in training when I adopted the hypercarnivore diet. Only have a drop of energy or stamina if I neglect my salt intake.
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What piece of advice would you give someone who is interested in trying this diet, but hasn’t taken the leap yet?
- Be patient. The carnivore diet is about eating the most nutrient dense foods in alignment with your biology. Realize that if you have been eating any form of plant-based or plant-rich diet for many years, it will take some weeks or even months to fully adapt to an animal based diet.
- Focus on health, not weight loss. This diet is for restoring health, and a healthy body composition is a side effect of establishing health by eating a nutrient-dense diet.
- Focus on eating enough meat, eggs, and dairy to feel satisfied. If you focus on eating enough meat and fat to reach satisfaction, rather than focusing on restricting other foods, your body will experience what it feels like to be properly nourished, and you will gradually lose your desire for what doesn’t really satisfy your nutritional needs.
- Focus on whole foods, not added fats, and don’t fear protein.
The point is that this diet is not about controlling your food intake with your will power according to ideas and beliefs you have about what is good or not good to eat. It is about properly satisfying your body’s nutritional requirements with the most nutrient dense foods – animal products. When you achieve this proper nourishment, the desire or need to eat lower quality foods will diminish and eventually disappear.
I think most people are best served by these steps:
- Start by increasing your intake of red meat, eggs and, if you tolerate them, fermented dairy products, aiming for at least 70% of your diet from those foods. Eat as much as you enjoy, to satisfaction. Don’t limit your portion size by ideology.
- Eliminate starches (bread, pasta, potatoes, cereals, etc.), nuts and seeds, and all plant-based oils. If you are hungry, eat more meat, eggs or dairy products.
- Continue to eat any low-sugar fresh fruits and cooked vegetables you enjoy.
From there, let your senses of hunger, taste and satisfaction determine what and how much of any fruits or vegetables you want to eat in addition to eating animal products. When in doubt, increase the nutrient density.
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Do you think Carnivore will ever be accepted as a mainstream diet?
No, not in our current culture. Too many special interests depend on sales and consumption of plant products for profit. Most likely those interests will do their best to demonize this “unbalanced” diet.
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Anything you would like to add, and where can people follow your journey
I wrote a book on my experience and the science that supports this way of eating. It is titled The Hypercarnivore Diet and is available on Amazon.
Follow Don on:
Facebook: Full Range Strength
And of course YouTube
Thanks for reading, Steven
If you enjoyed this blog post and want to dive deeper into the carnivore diet, don’t hesitate to check out my other media, sites, and affiliate links for more insights, success stories, and support. Remember, I’m not a doctor, so always consult with a healthcare professional before making any significant dietary changes:
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