The meat diet is a new food method that is gaining more and more followers in the United States. The base: animal meat above all things.
Those who follow the meat diet claim that this regimen has benefits such as eliminating body fat and increasing the synthesis of hormones related to muscle growth.
This article describes the benefits and contraindications of the meat diet to saying yes or no to this eating method.
Meat Diet: What is it?
The carnivorous diet is a restrictive diet that only includes meat, fish, and other foods of animal origin, such as eggs and dairy.
It excludes all other foods, including fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts, and seeds.
Followers of the meat diet also recommend eliminating or limiting dairy intake to foods with lactose.
Shawn Baker, a former American orthopedic physician, is the best-known proponent of the carnivorous diet (3). Today the doctor was removed from his license due to concerns about his competence.
The assumptions about the benefits of the meat diet stem from the belief that ancestral human populations ate meat and fish primarily and that high-carbohydrate diets are to blame for today’s high rates of chronic disease.
Today no research has confirmed the health benefits of the carnivorous diet.
Benefits of the meat diet – (If any)
Followers of the meat diet claim that it can have benefits such as increased hormone synthesis, loss of body fat, and increased libido. These justify it due to the effect of minimizing carbohydrate foods.
However, science disagrees. Scientists consider red meats and sausages to be one of the worst foods for health, followed by sugars and hydrogenated vegetable oils. (4,5,6)
One of the only benefits of this diet is that there is no lack of Omega-3 fatty acids since all meats are high in their content.
Carnivorous Diet – Contraindications and Side Effects
There is sufficient scientific evidence to say that one of the contraindications of the meat diet is to increase the chances of contracting colon and stomach cancer. (5.6)
Just 50 grams of cold cuts and sausages a day are enough to increase the risk of chronic coronary diseases by 42%. (1) In addition, contracting parasitic diseases is more excellent. The contraindications and side effects of the carnivorous diet are:
- Increased chance of colon and stomach cancer
- Increased likelihood of coronary heart disease
- Risk of parasitic and autoimmune diseases
- Frequent gastritis
- Increase in high cholesterol levels
- Difficult to focus
- Mental disorders (depression, bipolarity)
- Possible vitamin C deficiency
- Excess iron in the blood
Meat diet and cancer
In the meat diet, animal organs, red and processed meats are the predominant foods.
The World Health Organization has classified processed meat products: sausages, cold cuts, and salami as type 1 carcinogens. In other words, they are significantly more likely to have cancer. (1)
According to the WHO, diets rich in processed and red meats could be responsible for 50,000 deaths caused by cancer a year globally.
In the case of lean red meat. Current research is inconclusive. At the moment, low-fat red meats have been classified as 2A carcinogens. This means that the probabilities exist but have not been fully confirmed.
Either way, everything indicates that one of the most severe consequences of following an exclusively carnivorous diet is cancer.
Foods are allowed and prohibited in the meat diet.
Foods forbade in the carnivorous diet:
- Liquid dairy
- Cereals and pseudo-cereals
The allowed foods are:
- Red meat
- White meats
- Processed meat products
- Fruits, to a lesser extent
- Cheeses to a lesser extent
- Bread in a smaller proportion
Meat diet menu example
The following table provides an example of a meat diet menu with a contribution of 2500 Kcal per day.
|DIET OF LA CARNE Menu diary|
|Breakfast||Scrambled eggs 3 mL
Butter 10 g
Bacon 20 g
Black coffee 200 mL
|Lunch||Red meat filet 200 g
Virgin olive oil 30 mL
Sausages 100 g
|Afternoon snack||Ham 150 g
Cheese spread 30 g
Fruit 1 unit
Almonds 20 g
|price||Eggs 3 units
Sautéed liver 200 g
Butter 20 g
Serrano ham 100 g
Carnivorous vs. Paleo vs. Ketogenic Diet
The meat diet is a low carbohydrate diet. It is the main similarity to the paleo diet or the ketogenic diet. Regarding the contribution of micronutrients: vitamins, and minerals, the meat diet is the worst.
In the ketogenic diet, foods are permitted vegetables like tomatoes, avocado, broccoli, and many fiber foods. This type of food allows for softening and improving digestive processes, something essential when increasing the amount of meat in the diet.
The paleo diet is similar to the meat diet in that industrial foods are not allowed. However, fruits and certain cereals are permitted. These ensure no lack of essential vitamins for connective tissue health, such as vitamin C.