6 Things You Should Never Eat On The Carnivore Diet (And What to Eat Instead)
We all know not to eat carbs, vegetables, and processed foods on the carnivore diet, as it can negatively impact our health. But there are foods you’re eating right now that you might think are healthy but are preventing you from reaching optimal health.
Today, we’ll be exposing these foods while suggesting what to eat instead. Let’s dive in!
1. Farmed Fish Is Toxic
No other food is so similar, yet so different.
Wild-caught fish is amazing for your health since it’s an anti-inflammatory and contains a ton of nutrients like;
- Omega 3 Fatty Acids
- Vitamin A in the form of retinol, which is better absorbed by the body than beta-carotene.
- B vitamins
- And DHA, which is considered to be the reason why humans evolved to have such big brains.
Now, farmed fish is wild-caught fish’s evil twin.
Remember all the benefits of eating wild-caught fish? Well, farmed fish is the complete opposite.
Why Shouldn’t I Eat Farmed Fish?
The most toxic part of a farmed fish’s diet isn’t the antibiotics or pesticides, but the pellets they’re fed on a daily basis. These pellets contain chemicals like dioxins, toxaphene, and PCBs that cause severe defects like bleeding eyes and deformed jaws.
The documentary titled “Fillet-Oh-Fish” created by Nicholas Daniel shows us how fish farms work and the poison fish farmers feed these fish.
A fish farm can also contain over 2 million fish in a tiny space. This makes it easy for diseases to spread. To prevent this, fish farmers will pump these fish full of pesticides and antibiotics. And guess who eats these pesticides and antibiotics? Us!
Famous Norwegian environmental activist Kurt Oddekalv says;
“The farming of salmon is a disaster for both the environment and human health.”
Toxicologist Jerome Ruzzin supports this claim. He tested several different food groups and found that farmed fish contained the most considerable amount of toxins and carcinogens at unnaturally high levels. It had 5 times more toxins than any other food product.
Now that we know farmed fish is only killing us, but the environment, what do we do about it?
What to Eat Instead
Stop eating farmed fish and start buying wild-caught fish from local fishermen. Most local fishers don’t have the capital and infrastructure to set up fish farms, so it’s cheaper for them to catch wild fish.
Another great alternative is to start catching your own fish. It’s an awesome hobby, you get to spend time with the people you love, and you know that your fish isn’t pumped full of toxins.
Now that we aren’t eating farmed fish, let cover something that almost every carnivore drinks. Coffee!
2. Avoid Coffee
Coffee is the most contradictory thing you can consume while eating a carnivore diet.
Coffee basically seeds from the coffee cherry tree, compressed into a cup. It’s the opposite of eating like a carnivore. Coffee is also a drug that people can get addicted to and often experience withdrawal symptoms if they try to quit.
Why Shouldn’t I Drink Coffee?
Coffee is a bunch of seeds compressed into a cup, and like we carnivores know, seeds are highest in anti-nutrients.
Like I said in my last post, living things don’t want to be eaten. Unfortunately, seeds can’t run away from you, so they evolved to survive in the digestive system and fecal matter of predators so they can grow into another plant.
While in the digestive system, these seeds can decrease absorption of nutrients like…
- B vitamins
- And potassium.
Coffee is also the manifestation of an inflammatory plant. Ever notice after you’ve drunk a cup of coffee, your stomach feels upset and you need to head to the bathroom? This is inflammation doing its job, which is bad news for people suffering from gut issues like leaky gut syndrome.
Another reason why you should avoid coffee as a carnivore is because it’s unnatural. You’re taking thousands of seeds, full of anti-nutrients, and compressing them into a cup. Our ancestors could never stuff down a hundred seeds at once, so why should we?
And that’s why coffee is the exact opposite of the carnivore diet. Carnivore promotes nutrient density, reduced inflammation, and eating as our ancestors would. But coffee robs our bodies of nutrients, triggers inflammation in the gut, and is an unnatural drink to consume.
Other side effects of coffee include;
- Heart palpitations
- And chronic headaches.
What to Drink Instead
Drink water or bone broth and simply stop drinking caffeine altogether.
Water will hydrate your body while bone broth is a carnivores latte. It contains a ton of nutrients like zinc, calcium, potassium, and sodium, which can help you through withdrawal.
If you rely on caffeine to power you through work, then don’t go cold turkey; instead, start tapering off. If you usually drink 4 cups of coffee per day, start drinking 3 cups a day for a week, then 2 cups for another week, until you reach 1 cup a day. From here, you can start drinking decaf coffee for a few weeks since it still contains small amounts of caffeine.
If you don’t rely on coffee to be productive, just stop cold turkey. After a few days, your body will start killing off old adenosine receptors, making you feel more energetic and productive.
3. Avoid Drinking Alcohol
Alcohol is the most destructive thing people drink regularly without realizing it.
Alcohol, second to caffeine, it’s the most abused drug in the world. Yes, it is a drug.
Why Shouldn’t I Drink Alcohol?
Alcoholic beverages are mainly made of rye, corn, wheat, rice, or potatoes. All these foods are inflammation-causing carbs that spike insulin and blood sugar levels. If you’re on a carnivore diet and you’re trying to get and stay in ketosis, going out every weekend can cause your body to continue using carbs for energy, keeping you out of ketosis.
Other drawbacks of alcohol include;
- Increases risk of developing fatty liver disease
- Negatively affects the thyroid function
- Increases insulin and cortisol, which are the fat-storage and stress hormones
- And lowers testosterone and increases estrogen levels in men
But not all alcoholic beverages are born equally. Beer has a more substantial effect on male testosterone and estrogen levels than hard liquor like vodka.
Drinking tons of alcohol, especially beer, can also trigger inflammation in the gut and digestive system. This makes beer the drink to avoid if you’re struggling with a leaky gut syndrome or other gut problems.
Also, who likes waking up with a pulsating hangover?
What to Drink Instead
The solution to this is simple yet unrealistic. But I’ll tell you anyway. Stop drinking alcohol!
Now that I know most carnivores aren’t just going to stop drinking their favorite drinks, so here are some tips on how to reduce your alcohol-related health problems.
- Only drink alcohol in social situations. It doesn’t matter if you enjoy eating your classic carnivore bacon and eggs with a cup of Irish Coffee. Get rid of it! Opt for some decaf coffee or if you’re a hardcore carnivore, drink bone broth!
- Drink a few glasses of water before you go out for drinks. This will keep you hydrated, lowering the risk of alcohol poisoning.
- Avoid beer if you’re suffering from any gut issues like leaky gut syndrome. It will cause havoc on the lining of your stomach as your brain sees beer as a threat, triggering inflammation. Rather drink hard liquor like vodka or tequila.
- Don’t drink sugary alcoholic drinks. It might taste great, but it’s packed with fructose that’ll spike your blood sugar and trigger inflammation.
- Stop drinking alcohol 4 hours before bedtime. Drinking alcohol before you sleep may allow you to fall asleep quicker, but it’ll reduce the time you spent in REM sleep. As a result, you’ll wake up feeling like you never slept in the first place. If you’re heading out for drinks, set the alarm for 4 hours before bed and start drinking non-alcoholic beverages.
4. Processed Meats Often Contains Additives
Not all meat is created equal.
A carnivore who mainly eats wild-caught fish, organ meats, and muscle meat, will have far better health than a carnivore eating bacon and sausage all the time.
Processed meat is any meat that’s chemically altered to increase shelf life or flavor.
Why Shouldn’t I Eat Processed Meats?
Although processed meat is carnivore-approved by Dr. Shawn Baker, I’d steer clear from them since most processed meats like hot dogs, salami, and sausage contain additives and fillers that can negatively impact your health.
These additives include;
- And soy.
These are things we carnivores try and avoid, but it’s found everywhere, even in our meats.
The main goal of the carnivore diet is to reduce inflammation. But the wheat and gluten found in most processed meats can trigger inflammation since your body thinks it’s under attack.
Inflammation is healthy and normal since it’s your body’s way of protecting itself. If you get injured, your body will trigger inflammation to stop you from losing a lot of blood and recover faster.
But this is something your body should do every once in a while. If you’re eating processed meat that contains wheat and gluten, your body thinks it’s under attack all the time and is always in a state of self-defense. We call this chronic inflammation and its root of all disease.
Another common filler in processed meat is soy. Firstly, soy is a legume, and legumes are well known for their unnaturally high levels of antinutrients like lectins. Soy can also cause serious health problems. In men, soy can cause lower testosterone levels while increasing estrogen, leading to low libido, decreased energy, and gynecomastia also known as man boobs.
For women, higher than normal estrogen levels can lead to a higher risk of breast cancer, decrease fertility, and disruption of your period.
Also, if you’re eating processed meats, you’re missing out on key nutrients that you would’ve gotten if you ate real meat. These nutrients include…
- Vitamin A
- And B vitamins.
What to Eat Instead
Simply cut out all processed meats and opt for organ meats, wild-caught fish, and muscle meat. These meats reduce inflammation, increase nutrient density in your diet, and they’re tasty.
5. Steer Away From Lean Cuts of Meats
Lean cuts of meat like chicken breasts, sirloin, and tenderloin aren’t unhealthy, but they’re unnecessary and can prevent you from experiencing one of the main benefits of going carnivore; entering ketosis.
Why Shouldn’t I Eat Lean Meats?
Ketosis is when your body burns fat for energy, not glucose. Ketogenesis is when your body turns your body fat, or the fat you eat, into ketones, an alternative fuel source to glucose.
The benefits of ketosis include;
- Quicker and easier fat loss
- Lower blood glucose levels, which is great for diabetics
- Increased leptin levels, making you fuller for long
- Lower insulin levels
- And increased mental clarity
The problem with eating lots of lean meats is that excessive amounts of protein can kick you out of ketosis. Your body starts converting some amino acids into glucose through a process called gluconeogenesis.
If you want to reap the benefits of ketosis, you should get 75% of your calories from fats, 20% from protein, and 5% from carbs. Eating lots of lean meats will lower your fat and increase protein consumption.
What to Eat Instead
Instead of spending loads of money on the leanest cuts of meat, start buying fattier cuts of meat. It’s tastier, it’ll get you into ketosis, and it’s easier on your pocket.
The fattiest cuts of meat are;
- Pork belly
- Lamb chops
- Untrimmed ribeye
- And pork shoulder
Avoid lean meats like sirloin steaks as it can prevent you from entering ketosis, and stick to fatty meats and organ meats for their nutrient density and anti-inflammatory properties.
Another great way of increasing your dietary fat on a budget is to eat a lot of egg yolks. They’re super cheap and contain 5 grams of fat per yolk.
6. Avoid Sauces As It’s Often Full Of Junk
Sauces may seem innocent, but they often contain a lot of toxins that can cause serious harm to your body if you’re sensitive to them.
Why Shouldn’t I Use Sauces?
Most sauces like ketchup, barbeque sauce, and mayo contain over 10 grams of sugar per serving! That’s a ton of sugar. If you’re on a low-carb carnivore diet and you’re dipping your ribeye or beef liver in sauce daily, then that’s enough to trigger inflammation and knock your body out of ketosis.
In addition to sugar, most sauces contain vegetable oil, soy oil, high-fructose corn syrup, and MSG. These substances are toxic, and there’s no point in eating a high-quality carnivore diet if you’re dipping your food in this poison.
Talking about poison, vegetable oil is added to almost every sauce, and it’s the most toxic thing you can consume.
The most common vegetable oils used in sauces are;
- Soybean oil
- Canola oil
- Corn oil
- Sunflower oil
- And cottonseed oil
And don’t let the name fool you. It’s not even made from vegetables. It’s made by extracting the oil from thousands of seeds by pressing them in a machine. This is clearly unnatural and unhealthy since our ancestors never had access to this amount of seeds.
The consequences of eating sauces full of vegetable oils are increased inflammation, increased oxidation, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer. This is everything that the carnivore diet is known to manage or cure.
Another silent killer in your sauces is high-fructose corn syrup.
The problem with high-fructose corn syrup is that it can only be processed by your liver cells. So it goes straight to your liver, which triggers the production of triglycerides and increases oxidized cholesterol. Also, it’s the leading cause of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
When fructose enters your gut, it creates little holes in your intestinal lining, which leads to or worsens leaky gut syndrome.
What to Use Instead?
The best thing to do is to stop using sauces. The carnivore diet is already full of tasty meats. Why do you need a sauce to add more flavor?
If throwing away your sauces isn’t an option, shop around for a zero-carb sauce that contains no vegetable oils, high-fructose corn syrup, or other preservatives.
If you’re eating like a carnivore and struggling with leaky gut, high blood glucose levels, or weight-loss, the problem might be that you’re eating foods that aren’t meant to be eaten on a carnivore diet. Try cutting out these food products and see if your health improves.