The weight loss community is getting more ridiculous by the day with new diet fads and bizarre weight-loss tricks being invented on the daily.
After keto’s popularity, some people have taken the low-carb, restrictive diet to extreme heights by introducing a new eating approach that relies solely on meat consumption – behold the carnivore diet.
Pure-Protein Diet for Weight Loss
Travis Statham is one of many Americans who started following the Ketogenic diet to lose excess body fat and even though he did lose 15 pounds after following the strict low-carb, high fat diet for six years, he finally began to wonder why he needs vegetables in his diet after all. To him, salads were never as satiating as meat so he decided to cut them out completely and eat nothing but steaks and burgers.
Statham doesn’t have any breakfast when he wakes and skips straight to lunch which often consists of a McDonald’s cheeseburger – but without the bun or the veggies. For dinner, he cooks up one and a half pounds of steak seasoned heavily, but with no greens or salad on the side.
The only plant-based food in his diet is coffee, and apparently, the no-veggies, no-carb diet has done wonders for Statham’s body. The 29-year-old software developer says that eating pure protein helps him maintain his body’s muscle mass while the fat content in the meat keeps him satiated for longer.
There are an increasing number of conspiracy theorists, tech experts and health freaks who believe that eating a meat-only diet can help them achieve their ultimate primal state. A Facebook group under the name ‘World Carnivore Tribe’ has over 14,000 members now and social media is buzzing with conversations on the controversial topic.
Doctors and psychiatrists have also jumped on the meat-eating bandwagon and have reported amazing weight loss results from the fully carnivore lifestyle. Dr. Drew Pinsky says that he lost a few inches off his waist after following the diet for three weeks.
The carnivore diet relies mostly on red meat, fish, pork and chicken. The protein is cooked with plain vegetable oil, and in some cases, can be incorporated with dairy such as butter and cream-based sauces.
A meat-only lifestyle can be quite pricy, especially if you’re eating almost two pounds of steak every day and have to consume additional protein to compensate for the lack of carbs and other micronutrients. Some carnivores even go the extra mile and eat only organic grass-fed beef which is high in omega-3 – but can also be more expensive than regular meat.
Skeptics of the Carnivore Diet
Despite the growing popularity of the diet, many nutritionists are skeptical of its health benefits. Keeping your body in a constant state of ketosis where it only burns fat and protein for energy isn’t a healthy way to live. Our bodies are naturally built to run on glucose which is why carbs are considered a necessary component of our diet. Moreover, red meat contains a high saturated fat content which can raise cholesterol levels and increase the risk of heart diseases and strokes.
According to cardiologists, people following the carnivore diet develop high levels of LDL cholesterol, which develops plaques inside the arteries, brain and heart. Nutritionist Kristen Smith stresses on the importance of having a balanced diet rich in protein, whole grains, healthy fats and fresh fruits and vegetables for long-term sustainability.
Shawn Baker, a former doctor who had his medical license revoked on the basis of incompetence, is one of the biggest proponents of the diet. He has his own YouTube channel with almost 10,000 subscribers where he promotes carnivorous lifestyle and even charges $200 per hour for one-on-one counseling regarding nutrition.
46-year-old Steve Bell, a project manager at a utility company says that ever since he met Baker, his life has been changed for good. Bell has been surviving on just ground beef and rib-eye steaks which have helped him drop over 50 pounds so far. Of course there are days when he just can’t resist carbs and has a cheeky portion of bread with his meat. But mostly, he feels satisfied with eating just protein and is planning to continue his diet for the rest of his life.