15 Weeks Carnivore Diet Update

I made it through Halloween and Thanksgiving!

During the last few weeks, the cold arrived, typical for this time of year. I don’t do well from November to March because of the cold and darkness. I should probably move south. Anyway, it’s been harder to stay motivated and on top of tasks. Something as simple as neglecting to go to the store for beef has led to a little cheat here and there. However, these have been revealing:

A spoon of cashew butter caused stomach cramps and bloating.

I suspect chocolate (Lily’s sugar-free dark chocolate) bothers me. I wake up stuffy the way I used to. I have a lot of environmental allergies, and I know chocolate is high in histamine, so I wonder if that’s the main issue there. I should learn to keep chocolate as a very occasional treat.

Cheese isn’t a problem except for the way it hinders bowl movements, so it needs to be very minimal in my diet. This happens to many people, I know. If it doesn’t happen to you, I’m jealous!

A chicken wing from a store that had a tiny amount of flour added to the coating caused a good deal of bloating. Note to self: don’t forget to read labels.

A small bite of banana while low caused bloating and cramping.

Needless to say that the above experiences all led to me feeling worse and encouraged me to hop back on the never-cheat-train.

More Observations

My second menstruation experience on the carnivore diet was different than most of my periods. This time I had zero cramps and I usually have plenty of very painful cramping which started up last year after having been gone for years. Ah, lady hormones and the maddening confusion they cause…

Eating meat has become easier over the weeks and months. If I happen to have tough meat, I can just swallow cubes and digest it without any problem.

I found that steak tips cooked in an instant pot are pretty good and cheaper than whole steaks–which admittedly are by far the most satisfying. I never knew what the difference was between cuts. Now I know I prefer the porterhouse, followed by the ribeye, and the flank iron. For some reason I didn’t enjoy a filet mignon I found on sale. Too lean, perhaps? Due to my discovery of steak I’ve been eating what is on sale and having eggs in the morning. Sometimes I have burgers. It doesn’t cost more than how I used to eat (all that variety adds up!), but that’s because I’m not a big person and don’t need a lot of food. This is costly for others, for sure. A tall, active male would be spending quite a bit on food!

I think I might be having less joint pain, but I can’t be sure, and I’m not confident saying so. I will keep putting attention to this, though. Coincidentally, my knee has stopped hurting. It’s been hurting consistently since I tore a significant tendon back in March and in the last few weeks, it hasn’t said a thing, which is terrific because maybe now I can do something other than light walking for a change.

Some Labs

I have just been to the doctor for labs and haven’t received them so far except for my A1c, HDL, and LDL numbers. My A1c is 5.5% which is up from 5.1%. This is due to two reasons. One: I had a stressful couple of months unrelated to diet and two: the carnivore diet helped me almost completely avoid lows, and my A1c changes partially reflect that. My HDL went up from 64 to 70 which is great and my LDL, as would be expected, went up from 115 to 145. I will be interested in seeing my triglycerides soon as well as all the other lab results. I can update on that, later. I have heard that LDL isn’t super reliable for assessing risks and that it tends to go up when losing weight and changing the diet and then it may go back down. I don’t know, but will be following these numbers.

For reasons I’ll share in coming posts, I’ve stopped the carnivore diet (has nothing to do with the diet). I will be reintroducing vegetables and more nuts now.

Thank you for reading. I’m grateful I’m alive and silly enough to try things most people would wildly advise against. The journey is packed with lessons and increased self-awareness. I do think I’ve gained something from this experience.

 

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