The Truth About the Carnivore Diet: Fad or Future of Nutrition?
In a world engrossed with instant fixes and fad diet trends, the carnivore diet became a controversial craze. With claims of health benefits and improvements, its popularity on TikTok has surged.
But is it really beneficial, or is it just a dangerous trend that everyone should do cautiously? Here, we’ll dig into the carnivore diet, its principles, debates for and against it, and its potential risks and benefits.
Shawn Baker, MD, popularized this diet in his book, “The Carnivore Diet.” It involves consuming just an-all animal diet without any plant-based food.
This means those who do this only eat fish, meat, and eggs while totally avoiding fruits, vegetables, and grains. In its purest state, this diet only includes water and meat.
— Dr Shawn Baker 🥩 (@SBakerMD) April 30, 2023
However, take note that the complete elimination of all the other food categories can result in upset digestion and some health concerns. It is advised to do this gradually in a few weeks.
Supporters of the carnivore ivory diet claim several benefits. These include better skin conditions such as diminished eczema and acne, weight loss, less inflammation, and fewer autoimmune diseases.
However, nutritionists and experts still warn of the diet’s missing nutritional balance and possible long-term health effects. A senior dietitian at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center, Dana Ellis Hunnes, strongly advises against this fad diet.
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She emphasized the harmful effects on heart health, microbiome, and brain function. In addition, Hunnes also noted the absence of thiamin, fiber, antioxidants, folate, vitamins, minerals, polyphenols, probiotics, and prebiotics.
These are essential components in vegetables, fruits, and other plant-based food. If these nutrients are missing, they can react to compromised cell function, digestive issues, and increased risk of health conditions like cancer.
With social media’s influence, this diet has gained many supporters. In particular, TikTok has the #carnivorediet viewed over 645 million times. Users’ videos like @roryskitchen recorded his 30-day journey of eating just bone broth, meat, salt, and water.
Replying to @Chef guez Day 6 of 30 Days of the Carnivore GAPS Diet. Nothing very exciting happened today tbh. Just been grinding out content and building the infrastructure/behind the scenes of this new thing we got going on. Will start prioritising sleep once I am on top of all the videos and editing and new website with recipes and all the stuff involved for Rory’s Kitchen. I would not recommend doing a life changing protocol and doing daily content in this style with it too 💀😂 At least my skin didn’t break out like it normally does. That’s a plus. Still tired af and not feeling like doing anything physical. I’m sure it’s just a phase. C u for day 7. Oh and I’m filming YT vids in a couple of days for y’all to answer all your questions finally! #roryskitchen #carnivorediet #liondiet #theliondiet #gapsdiet #gutandphysiologysyndrome #gutandpsychologysyndrome #guthealth #grumpyguts #thecarnivorediet
This post has gone viral, garnering millions of views, according to a USA Today report. Personal accounts and posts of success stories like these added to the diet’s popularity.
Health professionals and nutritionists share the same skepticism over the diet’s benefits. A clinical nutritionist specializing in chronic inflammation, Barbara Sobel highlights the importance of a balanced diet with plant foods.
Moreover, she noted that removing food triggers is not enough. Sobel also emphasized that nutrient-dense foods are essential for creating a healthy system, promoting gut healing, and reducing inflammation.
A nutritionist with Ph.D. in nutritional science, Akua Woolbright, said that instant improvements that some individuals claim from the carnivore diet might be due to eliminating unhealthy processed foods in their diet.
While this dietary approach has taken the internet by storm, assessing its possible pros and cons is essential.
Advocates of this trend claimed that it led to weight loss, better skin conditions, and reduced inflammation. Even though some individuals reported the same benefits, it can be associated with eliminating particular food that might trigger adverse effects on their bodies.
Also, it’s important to note that these personal accounts don’t have scientific proof.
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Medical experts and nutritionists expressed concerns over the nutritional deficiencies this growing trend can cause. By eliminating fruits and vegetables, the body will lack of essential vitamins and minerals.
These are vital for good health, including immune functioning, proper digestion, and disease prevention.
While the carnivore diet continues to capture public interest, the debate around it also persists. While supporters claim its transformative benefits, medical experts are concerned about missing nutritional balance of the diet.
Just like with other diets, balance is essential. It is vital to consider a nutrient-dense, well-rounded diet that includes fruits, vegetables, and other plant-based foods. While the carnivore diet worked out for some, it’s essential to try it cautiously, and consulting your nutritionists is still the best option.
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