Becoming a Carnivore, by Kelly Hamilton, C.H.N.

Becoming a Carnivore

by Kelly Hamilton, C.H.N.

This is my personal account of how a zero-carb, meat-based, full-on-carnivore diet has changed my life. In less than a month.

I’d like to start off by saying that I am by no means a doctor, therefore I am incapable of diagnosing anyone with anything, nor recommending any sort of diet protocol to help fix anyone that’s dealing with… anything. I am merely a Certified Holistic Nutritionist, who knows a thing or two about quality food, and has done years of experimenting with nutrition. 

WHY I STARTED.

To really get things going, I will list the myriad of symptoms that I have been dealing with over the last five or six years or so.  Some intermittent, and some persisting the entire time, or even my entire life.

  • Bloating – like legit “6-month pregnant” style after every meal
  • Intestinal bleeding (that showed up in my stool on and off for a few years)
  • Itchy skin
  • Chronically dry and very itchy, scabby scalp that resembled psoriasis
  • Fatigue/low energy
  • Seasonal allergies (came on around 5 years ago or so, bad enough to make me HATE the spring)
  • Hormonal issues that included: amenorrhea (no menstrual cycle for two years) and then severe dysmenorrhea (extremely painful, VERY long, and awful menstrual periods – safe to say I made up for the lost time)
  • Cystic back acne
  • Weight fluctuations and a particularly hard time losing weight despite efforts
  • Mood imbalance
  • Mild depression/anxiety

Basically, I felt as though I was a train wreck. I tried a host of different approaches to solve many of the problems. I followed a strict ketogenic (high fat low carb) diet, a cyclic ketogenic diet, a simply high fat diet, water fasting, bone broth fasting, taking ALL of the supplements, playing around with different shampoos, cutting out random food groups, a strict elimination diet free of all allergens – each trial with very little success to be perfectly honest. (Although, the high saturated fat, which remained a staple throughout the last 4 years brought my period back initially, so I will give credit here where credit is due.)

And then a coworker told me about a podcast they had listened to with a girl who had cured some far more serious chronic health problems by going full carnivore. It sounded crazy enough, thus, I decided to give it a go.

THE MIRACLE CARNIVORE DIET.

I concluded that my carnivore diet would now consist of: quality, locally sourced meat, cooked in only butter, and Himalayan pink salt. Oh, also herbal tea, and organic coffee.

The following is a chronology of what took place next. It’s not all nice, but it’s all real. 😐

I had been doing a ketogenic diet prior to this for about two months, with less than 30g of carbs, so I suspected the adjustment would be seamless. Let me tell you, it was not.

Day 1-2:

The first two days, I felt pretty ok other than my still prevalent seasonal allergies.  My bowel movements were weird and less “together” than usual but I was feeling alright.

Day 3:

By the third day, I was dragging my butt. My bowel movements were now (*disclaimer* TMI) straight water and bile, needed the bathroom ASAP, and there were multiple per day. #fun On top of this, my entire body felt as though I had the flu – deeply achy muscles, and my lower back/sacral area hurt so bad I could barely walk. My head was foggy and I felt like concentrating on anything was impossible. I was sweating so bad at night that I had to get up and change a couple times. I started napping a lot, which is very unlike me.

Day 4-6:

These symptoms persisted for a few more days, which sounds like enough to make a person up and quit. However, what also happened by day 4 is that my severe seasonal allergy symptoms mostly cleared up. My back that had been riddled with zits, was clear for the first time in, like, years, my joints felt much more mobile, like they’d been so inflamed for so long I hadn’t known the difference. My mood felt more stable, and I had less anxious thoughts. I also dropped almost 5lbs by day six (likely water retention and inflammation, but still, it felt good). The itchy scalp “psoriasis” had vanished, which might very well be the best part since I’d had that for my whole life.

Day 7-13:

Once the chronic diarrhea cleared up 😐 , which took another couple of days, I had ZERO bloating. I also now had the flattest stomach I can remember having.

Day 14+:

The energy took an additional week or so to come back, but by day 14, I was feeling like a new person entirely.

It has been just shy of thirty days on the carnivore diet, and I am still feeling so much sharper in my thought processes, I have zero bloating, and all of the symptoms that had subsided have stayed away! There have been a total of 3 sporadic days where I fell slightly or completely off the wagon, and I have paid in symptoms the next days, including: itchy scalp, depressed mood, seasonal allergies, and some slight acne.

My hormonal system will probably take some more time to level out, it’s really too soon to know, but I feel hopeful that this might be the key to that, too.

THE PLAN.

I plan to continue with this “miracle” carnivore diet without cheating for at least two more weeks solid, at which point I will slowly grow my repertoire of foods one item at a time. #startingwithchocolate #justkidding #butimissit

I by no means feel (or know) that this diet could or should be used as a full time, forever protocol. To me it feels like a healing protocol. I will heal whatever gut related issues that I am dealing with by sticking to a meat-based, allergen and all plant-food-free carnivore diet, with the hopes that I’ll repair the potentially leaky gut I have, or whatever else is going on, and eventually be able to eat a “healthy” and balanced again.

WHAT A TYPICAL DAILY MEAL PLAN LOOKS LIKE FOR ME ON THE CARNIVORE DIET:

For now, I am honestly loving the foods I get to eat, and I feel like I rejoice in the lack of decision fatigue on where and what to eat. I have saved a ton of money on food already, despite what you might think since it’s all meat, and I have basically retired my bad snacking habit.

I really try to vary the types of meat that I consume, but so far my preference is for red meat. Also, I regularly consume cod liver (weirdly enough, I love it now), salmon, sardines, and pork/boar sausages. Among some others here and there.

BREAKFAST:
Coffee blended with 2 tbsp of salted grass-fed butter

LUNCH:
– Herbal tea blended with 2 tbsp of salted grass-fed butter
– 2 boar sausages
– 1/2 lb of beef meatballs, doused in butter and salt

DINNER:
– 1 medium sized steak
– 1/2 can of cod liver, 1/2 can of salted salmon mixed together

“DESSERT”:
– another herbal tea or bone broth with 1-2 tbsp of butter

And voila, only about 100-150g of fat, 60-70g of protein, and <1g carbs later.

CARNIVORE DIET RESOURCES.

Again, I am not a doctor, I am simply a short term success story of this awesome diet protocol. If you’d like to read some more amazing testimonies check out meatheals.com.  Or, read the story that convinced me, by Mikhaila Peterson, here.

For some legit doctor advice, check out the work of Dr. Shawn Baker, MD. He’s been following the protocol himself for an extended period of time, and he’s acquired some really promising insights. He was on “The Joe Rogan Experience”, which you can check out either on the Podcast app, or online here.

Best Steak Recipe, Ever. 

I named this as spontaneous, because that’s how it usually happens for me. I LOVE steak, but I typically stock up on all my meat once a week and freeze it, planning to save the sirloin steaks for days where I’m really treating myself to help keep myself on a budget. This usually results in me wanting a delicious, juicy steak like, right now – spontaneously. So, I have developed this steak cooking protocol, and now I rarely pre-plan because it’s so much better than any other steak cooking recipe I have ever tried.

Our Meat Selection

Our Meat Selection

We have a wide selection of meat at Health Essentials.
We do our best to source all of our meat as locally as possible from the most natural sources available. At Health Essentials in Victoria, we carry a wide selection of meat in our store. We have everything from Locally Sourced Organic & Grass-fed meats, wild-Sourced Kangaroo.  We are what we eat eats. So, if we ensure that the animals we consume have the diet they were naturally meant to, we will ensure the health of the meat that we get from them.  All of the local farms that we work with commit to sustainable, humane and top of the line practices – and we’ve talked to them all personally about it! 🙂

selection of meat Victoria selection of meat Victoria 2

The Key to a Heart Healthy Valentines Day….

Eat Your Heart Out This Valentine’s Day. 

Wait…. WHAT? How is that romantic in any way?

good-date-gone-bad-featured1Okay, okay. It’s not necessarily your run-of-the-mill option for a romantic dinner, but as it turns out heart actually has a texture similar to steak, and who doesn’t love a good steak dinner?  In comparison to most other organ meats, most people agree that heart is actually one of the easiest to consume.  AND since it is so ridiculously good for you, you’ll feel AMAZING after consuming it.  Don’t you want to feel amazing while on a hot date?

Why you should consider eating heart this February 14th:

preparedheart-770x449

Nutrient Density

Nutrient density plays a major role in determining the health of our food.  Unfortunately, somewhere along the line, we lost our instinctive draw toward foods that are higher in nutrient content.  Talk to your grandparents…. almost a guarantee that they consumed some type of organ meats in their youth, and more than likely, they loved them.

For whatever reason, the health-media world has given organ meats a really bad rep… This is probably why, as a population, we’re so turned off of eating these important food components.  In traditional tribes, being granted with permission to eat organ meats was a privilege few would regularly encounter. These precious parts were reserved for tribe leaders, the sick, the elderly, and pregnant women.

Being a red meat, heart is naturally high in protein, B Vitamins, zinc, selenium and iron. Where it really stands above all, though, is it’s extremely high content of CoQ10.

Coenzyme Q10

coq10
CoQ10 (or Ubiquinol – its active antioxidant form) is a natural antioxidant that is found in EVERY cell in the body, and in particularly high concentrations in organ meats.  CoQ10 assists in energy production and utilization of oxygen in cells.  Heart contains the highest amounts of this important metabolic compound, due to the high volume of work that it does.

CoQ10 can be consumed in low concentrations in various meats, and can be take as a supplement.   The highest concentration of this vital antioxidant is found hearts of animals, where it is utilized most; therefore, eating heart is great for YOUR heart. 

 

New to cooking and consuming heart? This tasty slow-cooker recipe can help you ease into it!

Ingredients:

  • 1lb Island Bison Grassfed Ground Bison
  • 1lb Island Bison Grassfed Bison Heart
  • 1L Boned Broth Beef Broth
  • 1tbsp Amano Shiro Miso Paste
  • 2 cloves Organic Garlic (sliced)
  • 1cup VegiDay Organic Tomato Paste
  • 1lb Organic Tomatoes (diced) 
  • 1/4cup Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
  • 1/2 tsp Bragg’s Sprinkle Seasoning
    1 Leek (sliced)
    1lb sweet potatoes (chopped)
    1/2 lb carrots (chopped)
    1 bay leaf
    1/4 cup fresh basil
    1/4 cup KiwiPure Grassfed Butter
    Himalayan Pink Salt to taste

Method:

1) RINSE THE GRASS FED HEART & TRIM THE WHITE-ISH SKIN OFF THE HEART.
2) CHOP THE HEART INTO SMALL PIECES AND SET ASIDE.
3)  BLEND THE BROTH, GARLIC, TOMATO PASTE, SEASONING, CHERRY TOMATOES, & AMINOS IN A BLENDER UNTIL FAIRLY SMOOTH.
4) PLACE THE VEGGIES, BAY LEAF & MEAT IN A SLOW COOKER AND POUR THE BLENDED MIXTURE ON TOP.
5) SET SLOW COOKER TO LOW FOR 6 TO 8 HOURS, OR HIGH FOR 4 TO 6 HOURS.
6) COVER AND LET COOK, STIRRING ONCE OR TWICE THROUGHOUT COOK TIME.
7) SERVE IN BOWLS & ADD SALT, BUTTER & FRESH BASIL TO TASTE! ENJOY!