Carnivore Diet Vs Keto Benefits, Risks, and Food lists

The carnivore diet is the new trend in the diet space that it’s a simple meat and animal products only diet which means you cannot have any fruits and vegetables or carbohydrate foods.

It is also described as a high protein and low carb diet. So, seasoned carnivore dieters who take it very seriously will only eat meat and drink only water. However, others include a small amount of dairy (such as cheese & eggs) and a few cups of coffee without sugar in their diet.

Although the carnivore diet has been rising in popularity lately, it’s been around for hundreds of years, if not thousands of years.

We’re going be talking about my experience with keto and carnivore what I found to be the pros and the cons of each and who might be better suited for one or the other. If you’re new to my channel then welcome, my name is Kait. I’m a health coach and I post videos on a high-fat, low, carb way of eating intermittent fasting, all that good stuff. So, if you want to see more make sure to click that subscribe button, so at the start of August, I did a full 30 days, actually a little bit more than that. It was probably more like five weeks of 100 % carnivore no plant food whatsoever.

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Carnivore Diet Vs Keto Comparison

I felt really good eating this way. I won’t go too much into it here. If you want to know more about my experience and how it went, I have a whole carnivore playlist that you can check it after the first five weeks. I started to reintroduce some plant foods back in so just like a few vegetables and avocado MCT oil, a little bit of nuts here and there just things like that. How I eat now is probably about 75 % animal products, and the other 25 is plant products, so a little bit of a mix between the two.

I think that both have a lot of benefits to offer. So, if you want to hear more about the pros and the cons of each then keep watching, so I’m just gonna quickly define the two before we start. So keto is high fat. Low carb way of eating. That gets your body into ketosis, and carnivore is a way of eating that is an only animal product, meat, fish, eggs, dairy, that’s pretty much it generally with carnivore.

You still want to be consuming a lot of fat. I found that when I was eating 100 % carnivore, I was still in ketosis, but yeah. That’s just a really basic summary of the two, so we’re gonna start with Quito and the pros of Quito. First, the most obvious benefit of Quito is being in ketosis. Ketosis has been proven to have so many benefits: everything from blood sugar regulation, weight, loss, improved insulin, sensitivity, improved brain function.

Those are just a couple of the benefits. Another good thing about keto is: there is a lot of variety. If you are just starting to look in Aikido, you may be like what the heck I’m having to cut so much out of my diet, but really there aren’t keto alternatives for just about everything. Keto is also really easy to do once you understand it once you understand macros and just sort of wrap your head around the whole thing. It is also pretty easy to eat out once your keto and again once you’ve wrapped your head around everything and now for the cons of keto, in the beginning, there is a pretty big learning curve if you are coming from a standard American diet or you just really aren’t too familiar with macros, or maybe you’ve never even heard the term before it can be pretty overwhelming, but once you get over that learning curve, it just becomes so much easier, and that being said, there is also a transition period.

When you are switching from your previous diet into keto, that can be a little bit tough another con with keto is. It is pretty easy to go overboard with size, although fat is very satiating. There are certain foods that are pretty easy to overconsume things such as nuts, butter, dairy, and cheese. All of these things are very calorically, dense, and yeah really easy to overconsume. This is a pretty common reason why people hit plateaus on keto they’re just way, overdoing it with the heavy whipping cream.

The next con is that it can be done in an unhealthy way, because this way of eating is based around macros. A lot of people think that, as long as a food fits into those macros, they are doing the right thing, and that may not be the case if your diet is made up of mainly hot dogs and bad oils. I really believe that to be getting the maximum benefits from this way of eating or any way of eating, really that you need to be eating quality. Our health is the most valuable thing that we have and we really need to treasure it. I believe that Kido can be beneficial for a huge chunk of the population, anyone who’s looking to lose weight, anyone with type-2 diabetes or other blood, sugar or insulin issues.

If you’re looking for more consistent energy throughout the day, if you’re looking for more brainpower, more mental clarity, more focus and also, if you’re, an endurance athlete that is actually one of the reasons I started looking into keto, I’m a cyclist and having to refill your Glycogen stores every hour and a half or else risking bonking is it is just such a pain.

Now I can pretty much do a ride fasted and go 3-4 hours before I probably should eat, but I could keep going. It is a fantastic, fantastic feeling. Now, let’s get into the pros of carnivore, so with carnivore, you experience all the benefits of keto plus more a couple of things I experienced when I switched from Kyodo carnivore was my sleep was just amazing. I mean it wasn’t bad before, but when I was eating carnivore, like 100 % carnivore, I could fall asleep easily.

I would sleep through the whole night and then wake up with tons of energy. My hunger cues were also completely in check. I ate when I was hungry, I stopped when I was full. It is really hard to overeat when you were eating carnivore. I was also never ever bloated, and I realized this is because I wasn’t consuming any fiber and fiber can sometimes lead to being bloated.

carnivore diet

Carnivore is also very beneficial if you have an autoimmune disorder, my partner has psoriasis, and even after just one week of eating carnivore, there were noticeable improvements. Another pro of carnivore is that it is really easy. I mean that in the sense that you don’t have to think or plan or spend a lot of time in the grocery store, you have very limited options and that just makes things so simple meat is also very nutrient, dense, so you’re getting a lot of bang for your buck, with what you’re eating and also all the vitamins and minerals are really easy for our bodies to absorb some of the cons of a carnivore diet, the first one being that there is really no variety. I mean this is a pro and a con. It’s a pro because it makes things really simple, really easy, but it’s also a con because it can get a little bit.

Tedious can get a little bit boring. I know I’m gonna have some comments being like. I could eat rib eyes all day. Long, I’m so saying she hated there, so delicious and I do agree with you. They are very satiating, but I know the concern of getting bored is there, and I know that is an issue that some people have.

I really think that a lot of it is the mindset, though, if you go into it thinking I’m going to be bored. What am I gonna eat? Yeah, you’re gonna get bored, but if you go into it thinking, okay, this is how I’m gonna eat and that’s that end of the story, it’s gonna be a lot easier. It’s also pretty hard to eat out when you’re eating carnivore. The only things you can really have at restaurants are like a steak with no sauce, and you need to make sure that it’s cooked in butter.

I mean, I guess you can also have eggs or some other form of meat, but yeah. You can’t have anything on top of it and that does make eating out a little bit of a challenge. Don’t get me wrong, it can get done, but it’s definitely difficult. It can also be expensive, it doesn’t have to be, but it can be. There are ways to make it more affordable that you can buy your meat in bulk.

I’ve seen things such as, I think it’s called cow sharing, where a group of people will pull their money together. They’ll buy like a whole cow for a really good price, and then they sort of split it, so everyone gets a chunk of it. I don’t know, however, many like eight or ten people. Another con is that there’s no fiber a lot of people say that taking out fiber is a good thing and I think that’s true for a period of time, although fiber does have benefits, don’t get me wrong. I think that fiber is way over-emphasized in our diets.

We do not need as much as we’re consuming, but there are still benefits now. I just want to start this off by saying that this is just my opinion on groups of people who may benefit from carnivore. I do not know if carnivore is suitable for everyone, and I do not know if it is suitable long term. I know for myself that in the short term it was amazing. I experienced a lot of benefits.

I felt really good, but that being said, my experience could be different from yours, whereas, with the keto diet, where there are lots of studies proving the benefits, there are no Studies on carnivore. Now that doesn’t mean it’s not effective and that there aren’t benefits. I think the best thing we can do is try these things out for ourselves, see how we react, see how we feel so. People, I think who would benefit from the carnivore diet. Is anyone with autoimmune issues?

Pretty much carnivore is just like an extreme elimination diet. If you want to figure out what your triggers are for your autoimmune issues or other food sensitivity issues you’re having, then you can try doing carnivore for a period and then adding some things back in. I also think that anyone who’s been doing keto for a while and has hit a plateau. They might be able to benefit from carnivore, as I mentioned before. I found that it just reset my hunger cues and really made me tap into if I’m hungry and if I’m not.

If you have gut issues, eliminating the fiber for a period of time can also help, and then there are also those with anxiety and depression. I know there’s a lot of anecdotal evidence of people seeing improvements with their anxiety and their depression from eating carnivore.

 I think that may just come down to them, eliminating the foods that were maybe triggered, but I’m not a hundred percent anyways if you’re struggling with either of those you might want to try it for a period of time and again introduce things slowly afterward.

What is the Carnivore Diet?

The carnivore diet is a more extreme version of the keto diet. The goal is to cut out glucose and turbocharge the body’s fat-burning capabilities. To be clear, there is no carnivore diet science and scientific proof. Instead, this fad presents non-specific medical research as proof to convince people that it’s the ultimate solution for weight loss and so more…

Benefits of the Carnivore Diet 

Since the Carnivore Diet excludes carbs, it eliminates cookies, cakes, candy, sodas, pastries, and similar high-carb foods. These foods are low in beneficial nutrients and infrequently high in calories. Thus, they ought to be limited in a very healthy, diet.

High-sugar foods also can be problematic for people with diabetes, as they’ll spike blood glucose levels. In fact, limiting refined carbs and sugary foods is commonly recommended to manage diabetes.

However, the entire elimination of carbs on the Carnivore Diet isn’t recommended or necessary for diabetes management. Instead, eating smaller amounts of wholesome, high-fiber carbs that don’t cause spikes in glucose is usually recommended.

As summary, the Carnivore Diet doesn’t include refined carbs or sugary foods, which may spike your glucose levels. Still, completely avoiding carbs isn’t necessary to manage your glucose.

Downsides of the Carnivore Diet 

Due to its highly restrictive nature and complete elimination of the bulk of food groups, there are many downsides to the Carnivore Diet. 

  • High in fat, cholesterol, and sodium Given that the Carnivore Diet consists solely of animal foods, it will be high in saturated fat and cholesterol. Saturated fat may raise your LDL (bad) cholesterol, which can increase your risk of cardiovascular disease.

However, recent studies have shown that top intakes of saturated fat and cholesterol don’t seem to be strongly linked to a higher risk of heart condition, as was previously believed.   

Still, consuming high amounts of saturated fat on the Carnivore Diet is also of concern. No research has analyzed the consequences of eating animal foods exclusively. Therefore, the consequences of consuming such high levels of fat and cholesterol are unknown. 

  • Moreover, some processed meats, especially bacon and breakfast meats, also contain high amounts of sodium. Eating lots of those foods on the Carnivore Diet can result in excessive sodium intake, which has been linked to an increased risk of high blood pressure, renal disorder, and other negative health outcomes.  
  • May lack certain micronutrients and beneficial plant compounds The Carnivore Diet eliminates highly nutritious foods like fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains, all of which contain beneficial vitamins and minerals.    While meat is nutritious and provides micronutrients, it mustn’t be the sole of your diet. Following a restrictive diet just like the Carnivore Diet may result in deficiencies in some nutrients and therefore the overconsumption of others.  

What’s more, diets that are rich in plant-based foods are related to a lower risk of certain chronic conditions like cardiovascular disease, certain cancers, Alzheimer’s, and type 2 diabetes. This is not only because of the high vitamin, fiber, and mineral contents of plant foods but also their beneficial plant compounds and antioxidants.  

  • The Carnivore Diet doesn’t contain these compounds and has not been related to any long-term health benefits. Does not provide fiber, a non-digestible carb that promotes gut health and healthy bowel movements, is just found in plant foods.   Thus, the Carnivore Diet contains no fiber, which can result in constipation in some people.

Additionally, fiber is incredibly important for the right balance of bacteria in your gut. In fact, suboptimal gut health can cause a variety of issues and should even be linked to weakened immunity and gut cancer.   Overall, following the Carnivore Diet may harm your gut health. The Carnivore Diet could be especially problematic and not a fit for some populations.

  • For example, those that have to limit their protein intake, including people with the chronic renal disorder, shouldn’t follow the diet.   Also, those that are more sensitive to the cholesterol in foods, or cholesterol hyper-responders, should take care about consuming such a large amount of high-cholesterol foods.   
  • Furthermore, certain populations with special nutrient needs would likely not meet them on the Carnivore Diet. This includes children and pregnant or lactating women. Lastly, people who have anxiety about food or struggle with restrictive eating mustn’t do this diet.  

Foods to eat in The Carnivore Diet  

Carnivore diet

The Carnivore Diet includes only animal products and excludes all other foods. Specifically, someone on the Carnivore Diet can eat:

Meat: beef (such as beef jerky), chicken, turkey, organ meats, lamb, pork, etc.

Fish: salmon, mackerel, sardines, crab, herring, etc.

Other animal products: eggs, bone marrow, bone broth, etc.

Low-lactose dairy (small amounts): heavy cream, hard cheese, butter, etc.

Water According to some proponents of the diet, salt, pepper, and seasonings with no carbs are allowed. In addition, some people choose to eat yogurt, soft cheese, and milk, but these foods are typically not included due to their carb contents.

Foods to avoid in the Carnivore Diet

carnivore vs keto

All foods that do not come from animals are excluded from the Carnivore Diet. Restricted foods include:

Legumes: beans, lentils, etc.

Nuts and seeds: almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, pistachios, etc.

Grains: rice, wheat, bread, quinoa, pasta, etc.

Vegetables: broccoli, cauliflower, potatoes, green beans, peppers, etc.

Fruits: apples, berries, bananas, kiwi, oranges, etc.

High-lactose dairy: milk, yogurt, soft cheese, etc.

Alcohol: beer, wine, liquor, etc. Sugars: table sugar, maple syrup, brown sugar, etc.

Beverages other than water: soda, coffee, tea, fruit juice, etc. While some people incorporate some of these foods, a true Carnivore Diet does not permit them.  

What Is the Keto Diet?  

The keto diet is a low-carb diet. It is similar to other low-carb diets, but it requires you to eat even fewer carbs than you would on other diets. Many people find the keto diet incredibly hard to follow because of how restrictive it is on carbohydrate intake. By lowering your carbohydrate intake, you must make up those calories by eating a high amount of healthy fats and protein. In other words, you make healthy fats and protein the star of your meals, not carbohydrates. Food like bread, pasta, potatoes, and carrots are removed from your diet, while foods like steak, avocados, and nuts are added. Although cutting out carbohydrates is hard, at least you can still eat a lot of the yummy, filling foods that you love, like burgers and chicken.  

For quite a detailed and explanatory guide of the Keto Diet, you may visit our post:

Easy Keto Diet Guide for Beginners.

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Dr.Denise Winters
Editor in Chief Experienced in health journalism with knowledge of wellness and healthy living.

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