Paul W. Nilsson

Hey everybody,

My name is Paul W. Nilsson. I was born in 1979 in Sweden. When I was about 4-5 years old I was rushed to the hospital in the middle of the night I had my first asthma attack. So from that day forward and all the way to 2017 I have had asthma. I started with a Ventolin asthma inhaler with a spacer.

I was the popular kid in school (not) a freak yes. I had to take it with me everywhere. I spend more time in the children's hospital than in school. On the plus side I was in the newspaper as I was in the first group of kids that was in asthma camp (a new concept in Sweden at that time, I think). As I got older and the medicine got better, I was now taking asthma Turbuhalers 2 times a day.

Bricanyl is used to widen the trachea.

Pulmicort counteracts asthma problems by countering inflammation.

As an adult, I was now taking Seretide 500mg 2 times a day.

Salmeterol: is a long-acting respirator. Breathing tubes act on the airways in the lungs to keep them widened and make it easier to breathe. The effect lasts for at least 12 hours.

Fluticasone propionate: is a corticosteroid (cortisone) that reduces swelling and irritation in the lungs.

Once a year every year all the way to 2017 I had a checkup. I got a clean bill of health, but I had 3 asthma attacks and had to use the inhaler.

All of my life I've eaten home cooking "healthy" foods taking care of my body and health (now I know I wasn't). I started an all carnivore diet, no: fruit-veggies-seeds-starch food-sugar-leafy green-roots.

From November/December 2017 to now, August 2019, I have not had a single attack or have to take asthma medicine!!!

Twitter: @pallevisionfitness
Instagram: @pallevisionfitness

Lee Crocker MD

I'm a 67 yo physician, trained as a cardiac anesthesiologist who has been carnivore for 1 year. My previous medical history, included hypertension, coronary artery disease, Diabetes T2 with multiple problems associated with diabetes including visual problems, renal problems, cardiac, hypertension, significant peripheral neuropathy with muscle wasting and obesity. I also had some joint disease which limited my exercise. If I were to choose an overarching diagnosis is would be Metabolic syndrome. All of the above are included in that diagnosis.

My cardiac disease had advanced to the point of unstable angina. I had a stent placed in a minor artery 2009 and another in 2018 in the circumflex. I also had disease in the LAD but it was too small to stent. My right coronary was vestigial from birth. This picture is terminal. I was living on Nitrites like nitro-glycerine and Imdur ever increasing doses, beta blocker ARB diabetes drugs thyroid replacement and omperazole for gastric asthma. I was morbidly obese. In effect I was dying and likely would be dead within a year.

My metabolic syndrome or at least pre-metabolic syndrome dated back at least to residency or probably before. My exercise history was I wrestled in HS was a distance runner in college and post college, a weight lifter in my 40's and 50's till I became injured, but metabolic syndrome was present throughout. Metabolic syndrome is NOT exercise or lack of exercise related. I treated my diabetes with pills and diet and followed the standard "heart healthy" and starch based diabetic diet, complete with eschewing meat and animal fat.. I ate those cookies and thngs that are advertised as legit for this diet and the fats were seed oils dressed up as margarine etc. I was clearly in a state of inflammation. I tried Crestor but it gave rhabdomeyolysis.

In August last year I knew I had one last chance. I had managed to preserve my heart muscle through a lot of biochemical manipulation, but my time was running out. My symptoms were increasing as were my drug dosages and eventually I would have an infarct and kill off some muscle. I had an EF of 55% and normal wall motion on echo the day I went carnivore.

I basically went into training to survive heart surgery. There is a calculator on the Thoracic surgery academy's website that calculates risk and I entered my risk variables, got my risk scores and my risk of surgery was not good. The diets recommended by AHA and ADA clearly were defective and did nothing to improve my risks. My disease only got worse. After carnivore I went through induction, living on ribeye. I ate only ribeye for a couple months then eventually added a hamburger once in a while. No cheese no eggs no cheating. In 9 months I lost 65 lbs. I weighed less than what I weighed in medical school 40 years ago. My diabetes resolved and my A1c was 5.4. Previously is was as high as 9. My hypertension improved. I went off diabetic drugs and thyroid replacement but still needed the beta blocker and nitrates. My joint pain improved as did my exercise tolerance. Since I have neuropathy I can't run but I own a treadmill and a weight vest and between elevation and weight load I could achieve HIIT easily with heart rates to about 180 (remember I'm 67) and a normal blood pressure response to hard exercise. In other words despite severe disease I had achieved pretty good cardio vascular fitness as well as improved endurance and strength.

I found the carnivore diet interesting in its energy efficiency. A glucose based life has associated a parameter called a respiratory quotient which is a measure of CO2 production vs elimination and CO2 production is a measure of metabolism. The respiratory quotient can be judged by respiratory rate and heart rate for a given exercise load, both readily measurable while exercising. Since I could hold metabolism constant by adjusting my work I could determine subjectively my respiratory quotient as I acclimated to carnivore. The results were dramatic. My workouts became easier even as I got stronger and I could feel my muscles working more efficiently. I trained for 9 months, and halved all my risk scores in the calculator.

In the 10th month my cardiac health deteriorated. A diet was not going to resolve 40 years of damage from disease, at least not in time to save my left ventricle from infarct so I selectively became a candidate for bypass surgery and I want to stress elective. It was urgent but my 9 months of preparation mattered. Heart surgery is a risky business no matter what and I had a little rocky course recovering. The hospital diet nearly killed me. It was all carbs all the time and then they would measure my blood glucose, give me some insulin and feed me carbs all over again. A completely stupid protocol. I was in sorry shape post op and went home on more drugs than when I came. At home re-induced on carnivore and started shedding drugs. My unstable angina is gone. My ejection fraction remains at 55% and my wall motion is normal. I didn't stoke or have neuroloic sequella from the pump run. I work out an hour/day including weights since my joints are better and am down to 3 drugs, a beta blocker ARB and some baby aspirin.

My recovery is not all due to diet, but my disease Metabolic syndrome was completely due to diet. Completely due to grains and juices and fruits other starchy veggies, dairy and seed oils. My disease was from "eating healthy" and all the nonsense and politics wrapped up in that. The SAD or AHA or ADA diets completely miss the actual hormonal causes of the disease and the standard treatments make it worse, and then the patient is blamed for not getting better, when the treatment is wrong.

Jason Jurmann

Hello,
I struggled with food and alcohol for the first 35 years of my life always going to both for comfort in every area of my life. Four years ago I was on my death bed literally, had a freak accident almost take my life. At that time I was severely depressed, 300lbs, no self esteem, felt worthless, pre-diabetic, alcoholic, etc.


After the doctor saved my life I realized how quick we could be taken out, and how fragile our life really is, so I decided to make changes to get my life back and ensure that my kids had their father around for a long time. I found the ketogenic lifestyle first, and I seen major improvements with my health in almost every area I dropped over 100lbs, regained confidence, gained self esteem, etc but after 2 years of living the Ketogenic lifestyle I was stuck gaining and loosing the same 20lbs, and still felt like food had some control over me.


After seeing Dr Baker on the Joe Rogan show I decided to give Carnivore a try and in 2018 I experimented several times with 30+ days of strict Carnivore. Carnivore was working I felt myself getting leaner, increased energy, mental clarity improved, libido improvements, but the biggest thing that Carnivore gave me over Keto was I finally lost the addiction to food, those non-caloric sweeteners just keep cravings around, and since im a carbaholic I had to ditch them 100%.

January 23rd 2019 I switched to a 100% Carnivore lifestyle and to this date the change is amazing to me, and I have zero desire to ever leave this lifestyle, Carnivore is a game changer and I'm completely hooked! 150+ days of Carnivore!



Jason Jurmann
Founder & Principal,
Primal Voyage LLC
Website: https://primalvoyage.com/
Instagram: @primalvoyage

Emma

Thank you to everyone who has played a role in promoting awareness of the carnivore diet.

I'm now 42. For my entire life until several years ago, I suffered from crippling digestive issues that were completely fixed by a nearly carnivorous diet. I had constant gut pain; seriously evil diarrhea multiple times daily; socially disabling gas; and severe mental and emotional problems, which I believe were diet-related, as they all resolved with very-low-carb eating.

I had tried being vegetarian and vegan for some years, for ethical reasons. My husband went vegan, too (his choice, I swear). We lost our health -- we had grey skin that bled easily, our nails cracked off, our hair fell out, and we were completely fatigued, with a strange feeling of heaviness in our limbs. People sometimes asked my husband if he had cancer. But the science said that we were getting all our micronutrient requirements, and blood tests showed that we weren't deficient in anything our doctor considered important.

I gave up my stubborn ideology when I read David Gillespie's "Big Fat Lies", which explained that saturated fat and cholesterol are needed by every single cell for the integrity and strength of the cell wall and cell membrane. That single piece of information helped me understand how young and how manipulated the biological sciences are.

I am extremely grateful to the animals I consume. On carni, it struck me repeatedly how sacred the act of eating another living being can be. I hope that environmentally sound, healthful and humane farming methods become mainstream.

But what I would like to highlight here is how going from very-low-carb to carnivore helped me overcome a health crisis last year.

My husband and I got gastroenteritis after eating out. His case took a week to resolve, but a month later I was feeling worse and worse, with increasing stomach pain every time I ate. I cried in my doctor's office, feeling desperate for help. She told me it was stress and prescribed me a proton-pump-inhibitor antacid, which I later discovered would worsen the acid-production cycle.

I tried carnivore instead. And I was better the next day.

I wasn't fat, but over the next six months I lost 5kg (about 11 pounds), which took me down to weights I hadn't seen since my teens. After the first month, I had so much energy! I have always gone to bed as early as I can, but on carni I was doing Tracy Anderson workouts at 10pm through sheer wired joy.

I've put all the weight back on after reintroducing dairy in an attempt to substitute it for alcohol (not successful!). I hope to cut both again soon. I come back here regularly for the inspiration to start again.

I'm incredibly grateful to meatheals.com for providing a platform for sharing people's stories. Thanks to everyone who puts their experience out there.

PS: On carnivore I was rarely hungry, so it seemed a no-brainer to try intermittent fasting. I did so twice, each time for a fortnight, separated by a period of months. I had no trouble with the fasting aspect, but each time I seemed to trigger crushing, black depression that I hadn't experienced for a decade, and which resolved as soon as I made myself eat more. I'd just like to put that out there for anyone who finds themselves on a downward mental spiral while experimenting with diet. Maybe it's a female thing.

Stephen F.

I am 25, 175lbs, stronger, happier, with better skin and digestion, than I’ve had since I was 17. Growing up, my family, in an attempt to chastise me or tease me, gave me a sort of nickname regarding food: “cookies, cakes and candies.” I loved sweets, and was known to eat all my brothers’ winter oreos or popsicles, cereal, or what have you. In high school and college I would legitimately have cereal as 1/3 of my diet (or more), along with bagels, bread, ice cream, etc. In high school some of my best friends made fun of me because I would sometimes even come prepared with a bagel in my pocket. Then in college, everything started hitting the fan and my world started spinning: I began to have constant, I mean constant, stomach pain all day long, from the morning I awoke to going to sleep. Some friends in college persuaded me, along ethical lines (not nutritional) to try vegetarianism and veganism, so I was the former for a year and a half and the latter for 8-10 months— it was horrible. I ate tons of fruit, granola, cereal, soy ice cream, cider— I was rail thin, weak, tired, and eventually became very sick.
In Summer 2014, after a year of veg/anism, I went abroad and returned with a fever that stayed and left me almost bedridden for over a month; the apartment I was living in had black mold, and I didn’t have much energy each day. I brushed it off and got back to school, but friends around me realized I wasn’t myself— my energy was gone, I was becoming more irritable and withdrawn, I had panic attacks and my stomach constantly hurt all day long. It eventually got so bad that I needed an ice pack strapped to my chest just to sleep, had various GI tests, got my gallbladder removed, and had constant searing back pain as well (which I also needed an ice pack just to sleep too). It was the worst couple years of my life, and I felt like there was no way out— praying and meditating alone and with friends, celebrating Eucharist at Church, being with friends, playing music, hiking and reading poetry were the only things that gave me solace as I became sort of a recluse.



Problems:

  • Hypoglycemia (probably pre-diabetic)
  • brain fog, poor memory, low mental acuity
  • low energy, chronic fatigue
  • intense anxiety, panic attacks (was medicated) for years
  • depression and mood swings
  • GERD
  • IBS
  • diarrhea for years
  • chronic stomach pain
  • failed gallbladder
  • Skin eczema/rashes (sometimes bled)
  • low libido (hormonal imbalance)
  • chronic back pain
  • headaches
  • lip sores
  • eye inflammation
  • easy sunburn
  • some random tumors/cysts
  • anemia
  • poor dental health

My mom and brother had been off of gluten and sugar for years by the time I was in college, they were nominally following Robb Wolf and the Paleo movement, but they did not know or practice a Keto or Carnivore Way of Eating. By 2017 I started eliminating foods and keeping a food journal, starting with gluten, then all grain, then cruciferous veggies, then nightshades, legumes, and on and on. By December 2017, I was in shambles, and my roommate told me about one of his best friends who had Crohn’s and reversed it with the ketogenic diet. I was desperate, and had been addictively reading about nutrition, fasting, and ketosis (I did just barely come across carnivore at this time, but I brushed it off because it seemed too intimidating, I loved sugar). After fasting all day Christmas Day 2017 and feeling much relieved, and then jumped into keto, hands to the plow no looking back. I starting feeling better and better, every week, month, and quarter I would keep saying, “Man, I haven’t felt this good since I was 18!” By around October 2018, after reading about Carnivore for a couple months, I was yearning for something more streamlined, easier, nutritious, and satiating, to get me to the next place (still had some residual anxiety, tiredness, skin issues, etc)— so I went to Carnivore and it just got better and better. My strength, mental acuity, and skin got even better. (Before keto- 2 pull ups, on Keto- 7 pull ups, on carnivore- 18 pull ups).

Improvements:

  • No digestive issues whatsoever
  • Best mental focus, attention, and mood since high school
  • no brain fog or headaches
  • best strength I’ve maybe ever had
  • much improved dental health
  • anxiety and depression are gone!
  • normal libido (hormonal balance)
  • little to no sunburn after hours in direct sunlight (first time in my life)
  • tumors/cysts disappeared
  • no back pain
  • no eye inflammation
  • clear and really smooth skin
  • steady energy all day

I am now absolutely loving this WOE and I don’t really see ever leaving it— although I am like 95% carnivore, I have some onions, garlic, mushrooms sometimes, and once a month or two I’ll split a sweet potato or make avocado pudding with friends. Meat does continue to taste better and better (I am soon going to get a quarter of beef!). I am eternally grateful for the work of Shawn Baker, especially Joe Rogan hosting Mikhaila Peterson (my first major exposure to Carnivore), the Zero Carb subreddit, Dr. Darren Schmidt, and countless others for making this possible, as well as friends and family, who have supported me through this hard time and brought immense healing. I’ve now been on keto for a year and a half and on zero carb for 9 months and am so filled with awe and so thankful.

Peace

Michael Quartuccio

Hiking in September.
Hiking in September 2018 at 286 pounds - before starting the Carnivore Diet

I am 55, I'm 6-2 and 228 lbs. right now. Six months ago I was 283! I drive semi cross country for a living, big luxury truck with sleeper and all. Fridge, microwave, TV all that stuff. It's very hard to eat right on the road. I've tried just eating grocery store food in the truck, but I still would overeat and rarely lost weight. Donuts and snackcakes and anything else. I used to go to Sheetz (gas station chain) and order like 8 loaded hot dogs with fries or chips and a half gallon of chocolate milk. I would literally eat myself sick but couldn't stop! Acid reflux was always an issue, I would take Prilosec twice a day, Tums, Maalox whatever. Many of you know this all too well. I've known for years I'm grain sensitive but what can you do? They are very hard to avoid! I wore 2XL T shirts but they were getting tight.

264 pounds - January 2019

One day I was ready to buy a 3XL shirt, but I stopped myself. I said "No, this has to stop right now!" I refuse to get bigger. I stumbled onto Dr. William Davis video and then stumbled onto maybe Dr. Jason Fung or some keto video. I said "hey maybe I can try this". I started a keto-ish diet on Nov. 25, 2018. It morphed into mostly carnivore, and mostly once a day eating. I didn't plan that. Chicken and turkey weren't filling me up, so beef it is now! I eat 2-3 lbs. of fatty ribeye daily now with maybe cheese and walnuts or pecans as snack. Black coffee and water only. I take several minerals, fish oils and a few multivitamins. I fry in animal fat or butter only. Not much fasting so far.

#MeatHeals

June 2019 - 228 Pounds - Still want to get down to 209
  • I've lost 55 lbs. in six months!
  • I feel better than ever.
  • My itchy dermatitis went away.
  • My chronic sudden crap attacks are gone.
  • My acid reflux(GERD) is gone
  • My arthritis is improved but not gone.
  • I swear my vision is slightly sharper, can't be sure.
  • I sleep better.
  • The bloating and extreme fatigue are gone.
Michael weighed 199 back in 2001.

I do have some pancakes with syrup maybe twice a month. They are my weakness, but maybe one day I will stop that also. I am in control now of my life!

Cobus Kriel

My name is Cobus Kriel and I am 45, and I've been a carnivore for 5 months.

Cobus Kriel

5 years ago I was experiencing pain on my liver. I was drinking 5 litres of Coke a day. I tried to cut back but was not successful. My doctor at the time sent me for a sonar scan. He told me he is not so sure its the Coke that cause my illness and said he would like to do further tests. The scans indeed showed an enlarged liver and spleen.

I never went for a follow-up with my doctor. I was fearing the worst. I tried a vegan diet but could not make it past six months before going back to pizza or whatever was on the menu.

I discovered the Carnivore Diet on YouTube (Joe Rogan/Dr Shawn Baker interview) and decided to give the Carnivore Diet a go.

After just two weeks the change was starting to happen.

#MeatHeals

  • I lost 12 kg (26 pounds) mostly in the first two months
  • I am now at 77kgs (169 pounds), my ideal weight - I'm 187cm(6'2") tall.
  • I do 300 push-ups every morning.
  • I have some muscles now which I did not have before.
  • All pain on my liver disappeared within the first two months. I believe it was non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and that the organ fat burned away and thus the inflammation and organ enlargement disappeared.
  • I also have no sugar cravings.
  • I only drink water.

I share my carnivore diet story every day and point people to this website, YouTube videos and The Big Fat Surprise book by Nina Teicholz. I believe this information can help people make informed decisions to improve their health. I look forward to read Dr Baker's book on the carnivore diet.

Cobus Kriel

Thank you Dr Baker for the great work you do. If nobody reaches, nobody get touched. If we found what helped us we should unselfishly share it with people. We pray for miracles but sometimes the miracle comes in a form you might not suspect.

Hippocrates said: "Before you heal someone ask if he or she is willing to give up what made them sick in the first place."

Twitter: @cobuskriel3

Jeremy Wagley

I am 36 years old and 5'9" tall. About a year ago I was in the worst physical and mental shape of my entire life. Though I had a little excessive body fat, you couldn't always tell just by looking at me what state I was in. I had, at that time, recently found a desk job as an engineer, after working in a manufacturing shop for almost 20 years. So, my health started declining even more. My joints and pains increased. I was tired all the time. Always hungry. My mood was always on the lower side no matter the situation. And, just trying to do a little bit of exercise seemed so hard that I would often give up right away feeling helpless.

One night I was sitting on the couch and watched an interesting documentary on low carb diets. I won't say which one in case that's not allowed. But, it seemed to make a little sense. And, I felt so bad in every aspect I said why not try it? Even if it's a small change and it makes one thing easier. The next day I dove head first into low carb. Not knowing really anything about the details. At the end of the first day, I was really hungry. But, other that that I had lost 5 pounds of water weight and noticed that my day flown by faster than usual. That's where this journey began.

I have always had a little trouble retaining information from reading. Though not enough to hinder any success in school or my career. So, I decided to look at YouTube to see what was out there for quick and easy information on this. At the same time, being of an engineer mindset, I decided to document my progress. Not really thinking that it might help others in the future. But, for my own motivation if I wasn't feeling it one day. Or, maybe for reflecting on what had happened if I happen to fail. I started by taking a picture in my bathroom mirror after the first day. Downloaded an app to track my macros that allowed pictures of meals and recipes to be attached. And, found a few good sources of information online.

Throughout the first 4 months I had gone through all sorts of physical and mental changes. Starting with my electrolytes flushing out. Then studying more and fixing it. My body slowly transitioned to burning fat instead of glucose. Which at first made me really tired. But, studied more on this problem and held in strong. I had the usual beginning symptoms of diarrhea for a little while. And, I couldn't sleep. I just didn't feel like it. At the end of this 4 months, everything started to lift. Like a weight on my shoulders I didn't even know was there. And, because of all the questions I had along the way, I had studied so much that I had a large number of videos, studies, and we sites saved for my reference. Along with that came many more names of professionals in this field that gave new strength to the idea that I indeed had control of myself. And, that everything was not hopeless.

I had been finding more and more in information about the carnivore diet along the way. And, though not really having too many problems when I ate vegetables, I never much gravitated toward them. After reaching my goal weight and loosing 85 pounds. I had enough information and was in a perfect state to try this new thing. I then started carnivore and  a small workout routine.

Though I had not had the luxury of getting any blood work done, I am very in tune to what happens and how I feel with anything that goes in my mouth. I have been on this new regimen for a little over a month, and I  have now lost a total of 90 pounds since the beginning. I'm down 10 pant sizes. I am almost never hungry. I have energy all day. My focus is better than when I was at teenager. My libido has increased substantially. I have virtually no inflammation. No more joint pain. A small benign lump on my testicle has disappeared. The floaters in my eyes have decreased in number. My skin is clearer. And, my mood has normalized. I have more patience and understanding now than ever before. Over all I just feel healthy in every way.

In my journey I have found that although studying others is important, it is more important to study your own body. Everyone is different. And, the N of 1 is ultimately what's going to make the difference when you really want to change your life for the better.

I hope my story helps even just one person wondering if all this is real. It's only real if you let it be real. And, that's the first step. Be open to new ideas and study everything.

Day 1 - 234 Pounds

Mr. V

I want to share my story with people and hope it may be able to encourage and inspire someone who may be in a position where I used to be. So where do I begin? I am currently 41 years old and probably in the best shape of my life of my adult years. I grew up always having a love for food. Over the years that love became an addiction to food. I have always loved meat but I was born in the Mediterranean before I moved to the US as a kid. One thing we ate every day was bread. Being poor that's the main thing we could afford with some veggies etc. That habit developed over my lifetime where I would indulge in carbs (mainly bread). Many times I could devour a whole loaf of fresh baked bread in one sitting. (french loaf). Why am I starting my transformational story from my early childhood? Because I would like to help others be able to find where the Root of your situation began.

So fast forward to more current years. In June 2016 I really felt bad and unhealthy. My weight ran up to 280lbs at 5'10 and 38 years old. I was also a heavy smoker with at least 2 packs a day. At nights I would wheeze just trying to breathe, and would wake up in the middle of the night with uncontrolled coughing until I could catch my breath. While many would be quick to say "oh my, you need to stop smoking," they never really knew or understood the underlying problem of my high carb intake. Yes, I'm not going to say that smoking wasn't part of the equation to my lack of ability to breathe, yet smoking alone was not the problem. I was obese according to the doctor's model. I finally decided to put aside my macho side and made an appointment with a doctor about my current unhealthy condition. What finally made me make this decision? Was it the fact that I could barely breathe? Or the fact that I could barely sleep at night without choking in the middle of the night? Was it the frequent shits everyday, at least 3 times or more? No... what finally made me make that call for that doctor appointment is when I started feeling little shocks going on in my brain. Have you ever had static shock on your hands after you walked on carpet and touched something? Well imagine that happening inside your head and you get those shocks. That was my "wake up call".... or so I thought.

So June 2016 I see my doctor and she recommended we do several blood tests so we can see where my levels were. July 2016 I went back in to go over those numbers. Main numbers that we discussed:

  • HbA1C was exactly 6.3, literally, on the Diabetic line.
  • My Triglycerides were 1253, keep in mind the normal should be < 150.
  • My HDL cholesterol was at a whopping 23
  • My LDL cholesterol was near 200.
  • My blood pressure 147/100.

I was put on 10mg lisinopril. Needless to say, this doctor's visit made me think about where I was, and where did I want to go in the future? One thing I truly love and admire about my doctor is the fact that she was not quick to put me on medication. She consulted with me and said to cut down or eliminate my carbs, eat lean proteins and more fruits/vegs. ( I know she was only recommending what she was taught through mainstream) but she did mean well. So after getting that devastating truth, I was gung ho to get healthy. Yeah right.... Well, I would go see my doctor every 4 months and I would go through bloodwork and see little progress only to lose that progress the next visit.

Mr. V Before
Mr. V Before

So fast forward 2 years and we get to July 2018. I went to see my doctor again and go over my bloodwork numbers. All the work I had put in over the past 2 years with my yo-yo dieting has led to my key numbers going back up and in the wrong direction and my weight back up to 280. After seeing the disappointment in the doctor's face, I got really emotional and very angry with myself because I felt her disappointment. I felt my energy shift that day due to that disappointment from my doctor and myself, and vowed to actually make a shift in my perspective and live, because if I didn't, I would surely be dead in the near future of numerous complications.

So how did I follow through on this shift of perspective and life? One day I saw someone retweet something Dr. Baker had posted where he was promoting a #carnivorediet. I glanced and read it and was like WTF is this dude talking about. Surely that's not healthy eating only meat. (hahaha) So I started reading through his tweets and started thinking to myself: "nothing else seems to be working why not give it a try?" I started the carnivore way of eating in August 2018, was strict carnivore for the first month and BOOM, I lost 15lbs. Hell yea! After the first month, I decided to go low carb / keto way of eating and started to learn about IF. I started walking during my first month to build stamina before I joined a gym and started exercising. I signed up for HIIT boot camp program at the gym and slowly started working on myself. The knowledge and education I gained on Twitter by following Dr. Baker, Dr. Wrigley, P.D. Mangan, Ted Naiman, Travis Statham and many others that are too many to list has been paramount in my transformational journey. I have just recently became more vocal on Twitter regarding this WoE and looking to share my story and help others any way I can.

My life before I began my transformation in August 2018 was non-existent. Most of my adulthood has been spent overweight and unable to have an active lifestyle. I was very sedentary and would eat like there was no tomorrow. I let my wife down as a husband, a lover, and a life partner. I let myself down because of my eating habits. My libido and testosterone were non-existent. My mental state was a wreck, I had anxiety, fear, lack of will for life, and lack of care for any endeavor/adventure. I felt like I had no penis or any balls and just went through life drifting along the waves. Thankfully in August 2018 everything changed.

Here I am today, June 1st 2019:

  • Went from 280lbs down to 217lbs for a total weight loss of 63lbs.
  • Did bloodwork mid April and HbA1C = 5.4
  • Triglycerides = 130
  • HDL cholesterol = 40
  • LDL cholesterol = 140
  • BP = 100/65
  • All my numbers are in normal range now.
  • My breathing has improved tremendously, I no longer wheeze, or get into uncontrolled cough spells, and I don't wake up in the middle of the night with nonstop coughing (I still smoke just nowhere near as much).
  • My mental state is amazing, with anxiety and fear subsiding.
  • I am more vibrant and excited about life, goals, my future, and my commitment to my wife as a husband, lover and life partner.
  • My testosterone has gone up, my libido has increased tremendously, and my hormones have been rebalancing which is allowing me to gain control over myself.
  • I no longer get cravings, or lose willpower and indulge in crap foods.
  • I decide when I want to subject myself to crap food if I decide to.

All of these changes came as a result of following amazing Doctors on Twitter and many others in the carnivore/keto community.  Of course I had to get off my ASS and do the work, but boy let me tell you how well worth the decision to change my life and live is.  How important is it for you to get healthy?  Who stands to benefit from a healthy, vibrant, thriving you?  Ask yourself these questions and just know that you can change yourself for the better as I did.  I am very thankful for Dr. Baker since he was the first person to open my eyes and guided me along this transformation journey.  Thank you all for reading.

Twitter: @VutopiaWellness

Adam Hagen

19th May 2019

Dear Reader,

I wanted to write about my weight loss, physical and mental transformation and the 7 year road I’ve been on. It hasn’t been easy, it hasn’t been terribly hard, but it has been difficult at times to not get discouraged and lose my way. I don’t know my true starting weight, I had stopped using the scale as the number never stopped going up, but I do remember the last number was 275. My now wife, and long-time partner of 15 years, had a loving and concerning discussion with me one night about how concerned she was about my weight and health. The next day I went to what I knew worked in the past, a low carbohydrate way of eating.

Rewind back to when I was 19, post graduation from culinary school. I had put on serious weight in culinary school, hitting 297 pounds, much more than the freshman 15 since I started culinary school around 220 pounds. This was relatively easy with an endless supply of freshly baked French delicacies such as croissants each day from the baking class. We “had” to try it all… and I sure did. There wasn’t much of an off switch when it came to consumption of calories.

My mother offered me $500 to lose 100 pounds. Game on. I set my sights on the prize and joined the local gym and hit it hard with cardio on the bike. I immersed myself in hours of racquetball 6 days a week, my cousin was my partner and was game if I was. I messed around with weights, but there was more fuck-around-itis than a legitimate lifting program, so not sure if any progress was actually made. This was around the year 2002 and Atkins had hit its popularity so the book was purchased and read and I followed the way of eating as best I could. The use of a carb counter was often too cumbersome back then before the handy apps that do the work for you. Looking back, the food I consumed resembled a bit of a PSMF. I consumed a lot of turkey burgers and salad with ranch dressing. My friends often ordered pizza and I found myself eating most of the toppings, much to their chagrin. It was much easier to simply not eat any carbs and stay away from the vegetables that had “too many carbs” than it was to keep track of how many I ate per day.

I found myself losing the 100 pounds and earning the cash. I used it to mostly purchase new clothing as I was feeling good about myself and needed a wardrobe to reflect how I felt on the inside. With the newly found confidence came the relationship with my aforementioned now wife. Along with the new relationship came enjoyment of food and alcohol. The pounds began to pack back on and over the next 8 years I ended back where I started, the 300 club. I had a fasting blood glucose in the prediabetic range of 120, was constantly inflamed, struggled with sleep apnea and snoring, my joints hurt constantly, I was unmotivated, unwell and unhealthy.

I started my new life very near Halloween as I remember turning down the candy, begrudgingly. I stayed strong and turned to the internet for ideas as the weather here in Washington during October and November isn’t exactly the best for outdoor activities. I found through searching for low carb, a fair amount of information about LCHF/Keto. There were a lot of resources, mainly the calculators to figure out macros and the app Myfitnesspal to help calculate what you ate into those macros. I remember that I had a target of 1800 calories per day.

For 8 months I lost a consistent 10 pounds a month. It came off quickly. I didn’t exercise, but a career as a sous chef had me on my feet 10+ hours per day on a hot line. The weight loss eventually slowed down and I hit my first goal of 220. Once that milestone was achieved I set my sights on 200 and then 190. I found intermittent fasting through the internet searches and dabbled with eating 1 big meal per day but it was not sustainable.

Once I hit a skinny fat 190 pounds I began to lift weights using the KetoGains protocol. I had lifted weights in high school and before when I lost the weight the first go around. I kind of knew what I was doing, but realized through trial and error that I was not being as efficient with my exercises as I could have been. I stayed consistent with my schedule and joined a 24 hour gym, often times hitting the gym after dinner service at 10pm or later.

Around this same time I posed a question on Reddit about my daily intake of sub 10 grams of carbohydrate and whether I was doing anything I should be worried about. A member said something to the effect of, “welcome to carnivore.” And they linked to another subreddit about a carnivorous way of eating. I dove right in. Steak, and as much as I want? Sign me up. I continued to lift weights, I did a small amount of cardio, mostly walking. My weight didn’t change much but I began to see my body composition change.

I eventually found a new company near me called DexaFit and they offered a membership to include monthly 3D body scans, DEXA scans, VO2 Max testing and RMR testing along with other “biohacking” take home test kits. I was finally able to quantify the changes my body was going through and see what effect the work I was doing was having. One of the take home kits was a DNA test from FitnessGenes. I saved up to purchase one and couldn’t wait to get my results back.

I eventually got my results and purchased a “tailored for me” workout program. Along with the program came a dietary guide. According to the DNA test I should eat a diet higher in carbohydrate and lower in fat. I thought I would try it as things had stalled and I was desperate for change and I wanted things moving in the right direction.

After getting tired of spending time commuting to the gym, having to shower and change, and then getting to work or home I decided to set myself up with a home gym in my garage. I built myself a power rack with plans I came across on the internet and I now have built myself a rather respectable gym in my garage with more equipment than I truly need. I used my new garage gym for a powerlifting 5/3/1 cycle and saw my deadlift get to almost 400 pounds, my squat never really got to a respectable level, 295 was the highest I got it to.

I stuck to the newly tailored DNA workout program for 12 weeks, the dietary regimen was harder to stick to. I noticed my body responding well, but metabolically I didn’t care for the changes because I had to eat every 3 hours in a classic bodybuilding style diet. If I missed my meals I would experience hypoglycemic episodes and mood swings due to hunger and blood sugar crashes. I stuck with it and eventually ended the program and had a DEXA scan to see how it went. I got down to 12% body fat and had visible abs for the first time in my life. My low body weight was 173 pounds. When the program ended came fall and the holidays. The weight crept back on as I indulged in all of the treats and revelry. I got close to a squishy 190 and said something needed to change so I went back to low carb.

During my high carb phase I focused on a paleo/primal style of eating but I struggled with gut issues, gas to clear a room, bloating and constant hunger. I didn’t experience these on keto or carnivore. I ended the program in an unsustainable place when it came to calorie consumption. The thing I often found with keto and carnivore was that even if I ate to “thanksgiving full” I wouldn’t gain weight. I really had to push the food consumption to gain weight, I did gain about 20 pounds one winter when I was overly stressed and ate far too much, but it eventually came back off. I thought I was gaining muscle along with the fat but the DEXA scans showed otherwise, they have proven to be a great tool to keep me honest throughout my journey.

I have found through the new popularity of podcasting an endless supply of daily motivation to keep me consistent and to help me not lose my way. My lifestyle has truly changed. I now find myself with new workout goals and I train bodyweight calisthenics 2 times per week with a full body circuit on Tuesdays and Fridays. Mondays and Thursdays I do a Tabata circuit. Wednesdays I do a brief HIIT cycle on my Schwinn Airdyne and on Saturdays I often spend the day doing consistent low level movement around the house or yard getting projects done. My goal is to do a small amount of work each weekend to upkeep things around the house. My wife and I recently discovered pickleball and have no problems playing that for 2 hours on a Saturday afternoon or going for a long hike in one of the the many pristine forests we have at our disposal.

I am still a chef, but my duties have changed and I have more of a desk job these days. I immediately asked for, and purchased a standing workstation to make sure I don’t sit all day. I still have a physically active job 3 of the 5 days of the week when I receive product for the restaurant and have to put it on the shelves, but it’s not like it used to be when I was on the line each night.

Right now I am sticking to what works and that means 1# of locally sourced from the farm beef and 4 pastured eggs, this I eat at 4 am after my morning workout. I usually eat a second meal, sometimes a 3rd. The second meal might be several pieces of bacon and/or sausage as it’s quick and convenient to grab some at work when I’m busy. My 3rd meal might happen around noon and will typically be another 12oz to 1# of beef and a couple more eggs. On the weekends I might indulge in a growler of locally crafted beer spread across the weekend and things are a little more lax when it comes to food consumption, but protein always plays a featured role and things stay low carb, likely never going above 50 for any given day.

Fasting has been a fairly consistent part of my new lifestyle along with the dietary changes. I rarely have less than 12 hours fasted each day and I prefer to do my exercises in a fasted state each morning (aside from the preworkout cup of black coffee). I have dabbled in one meal a day, 16:8 and have done one 3 day fast. It’s tougher and tougher to do extended fasting, I find my work has me stressed and physically active so I just go for as long as I can and do the best that I can. It’s also tough when there is great food around you at all times prepared by highly skilled cooks!

I heard good advice and that was to know your “why.” My why came from the talk with my wife and it’s transformed into a want and desire to be as healthy as I can, and to pay penance for my past dietary indiscretions (I was 100 pounds in the 2nd grade…). I’d also love to have a body fat at sub 10% levels! People on a path also need to find what will work for them and is sustainable in the long run. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. I didn’t get to 300 pounds in 6 months so it sure as hell isn’t going to fall off in that amount of time either.

I’m happy to say I no longer suffer from the things I used to and going to a carnivorous way of eating has seen many things clear up. I used to get small skin irritations on my thighs which I always thought were ingrown hairs from my pants rubbing on them but when I don’t eat a lot of dairy, they don’t appear, the less polyunsaturates I eat also seems to have an effect. If I eat a lot of chicken they will appear. I’m 36 and my face is relatively wrinkle free. Mosquitos don’t bother me as much as they used to when my blood was sweeter. I don’t burn nearly as easily and tan very nicely. My nails are strong and thick. My joints don’t hurt. I have no trouble performing glycolytic work (tabata, HIIT) or long slow fasted hikes or work around the house. I no longer snore. I don’t have to think about what I’m eating to maintain or lose weight. The weight seems to gradually come off if I just go to bed with the feeling of “I could eat” but without true hunger. I no longer limp my way from the car to the house after a long hard day of work. My mood is stable and in general am in a good mood more often than not. I perform at a high rate at all times keeping me sharp at work and a good performer in my field.

I could go on and on about my story, but I’ll end this anecdote by saying thank you for all that you do and keep fighting the good fight!

Sincerely,
Adam Hagen