Mark Strough

May 1st, 2018.

My Four Month N=1 (Self-)Experiment on going Zero Carb 100% Carnivore.

This is a lengthy article. So for just the Highlights:

  1. Meat-only way of eating healed my Rheumatoid Arthritis in weeks.
  2. No veggies, fruits, fiber, grains, nuts & etc.
  3. Just meat & water only. I have done a very limited amount of cheese. Tried eggs at about 6 weeks into my experiment, and it did not affect the RA, but they did not work well for me.
  4. My eating consist of about 90% beef, non-organ meats and the rest pork. High fat ribeyes & high fat ground beef are my mainstay. I only season with salt, pepper & rosemary.
  5. I feel GREAT!!!! Improvement in all areas of life too!!!! Nothing negative at all. PTL 🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻
  6. No more outbreak of kidney stones.
  7. Yes I am sticking with it!!!! Not because I need to but because I love this way of eating.

Here is a little background on why I chose to go Zero Carb 100% Carnivore(ZC). The reason I shifted from a Ketogenic way of eating is I wanted to see they effects on my Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA). I’ve kept it managed well for over 10 years but I had flare ups from over use & cold weather. Keto greatly helped my RA when I changed back to it in a strict fashion a few years ago. I was already about 85% to 95% Zero Carb Carnivore (ZC) while Ketogenic. Curcumin & Hemp/CBD Oil had helped my RA but it did not cure it or put it in remission and it was steadily progressing. After much research & talking to people with RA that had successfully done ZC with great success I decided to give it a N=1 (self-)experiment.

My thumb on my right hand was affected the most. I had lost most use of it, and the pain was horrible at times. I needed to address this soon because it is a progressive, crippling & very painful condition that will worsen with age. I had never taken any prescription or OTC medicines for RA & I did not plan to. My prognosis was not good long term under standard medical care & plus the many horrible side effects from the medicine used to treat RA. My joints all through my body was rapidly becoming less & less functioning and causing more and more discomfort. I had inflammation all throughout my body. I was feeling it everywhere. I tried to hide it & stay as positive as I could but I was feeling like a very old person. I was upset with myself because I am a person very knowledgeable on living healthy & treating issues with natural therapies, but I could not help myself very much with this condition. I knew so many were much worse than I were but I saw where my future was heading & it was bleak. I want to be able to enjoy life to the fullest with my wife & four kids.

I had done so much research on everything for RA. I tried many different things but nothing made a significant difference. I kept reading about a meat only way of eating for autoimmune issues such as Rheumatoid Arthritis & many other conditions.

I had done a Carnivore way of eating years before, twice and loved it. However, I did not do it for RA then, it was before I knew I had RA & before I had any noticeable symptoms. I did it for building muscularity & strength. Since the 1990’s I have been a HIT (High Intensity Trainer). Arthur Jones was the founder of this method. I learned of strength training in the early 1980’s from old magazines of Peary Rader, especially Articles written by or about Arthur Jones, Vic Tanney, Steve Reeves, Larry Scott, Mike Mentzer & Vince Gironda. Vince’s Steak & Eggs Diet really caught my attention. It made sense & I personally was wired to eat that way. I was born a Carnivore I think. So I greatly gravitated to his way of eating and I loved it. It worked for me and I felt great, performed great & looked pretty good. I did this until my Lifting Coaches convinced me I would die from eating that way. By the way Mr. Gironda looked great & lived very healthily in to his 80’s.

I also was exposed to ZC from of all things The Grateful Dead, actually their sound man, Owsley “Bear” Stanley, from the Grateful Dead so that was in the mid-1980’s. I was a Grateful Dead Fan. He was a huge advocate of ZC Carnivore Eating & had been doing it since the 1950’s. A true pioneer in the ZC Carnivore movement.

After college I gravitated back to my Zero Carb Carnivore roots. I loved it because I was single at the time & working long hours and it was simple to eat just meat. I can cook hamburger patties. I can order a McDouble & eat only the patties. I had less Decision Fatigue. This worked great until I met & married my future wife, Lori. She also “knew” I would die without veggies, fruits, whole grains, fiber & etc. So by 1997 I was back to large amounts of vegetables, fruits, whole grains & not near the amount of meat. Within a few years from then I started feeling the affects from my Rheumatoid Arthritis. It was getting worse and worse. I tried many natural herbs & therapies and some did help but only limitedly.

Around 2013 my right thumb had become almost totally non-functioning. The pain was horrible and getting worse every day. I was now having trouble doing one of my favorite hobbies, Combat Pistol Shooting. I was having an incredibly hard time loading bullets into my magazines & to press the magazine release button on the gun to be able to quickly drop a mag & replace it.
I was also having a very difficult time buttoning my shirts, holding anything, twisting caps off, practicing Martial Arts, playing guitar and etc.

As a Personal Trainer it was harder & harder to load plates, change weights & to assist my clients. It was even harder not to show the pain to my clients. My own training was incredibly difficult because of the high levels of inflammation I had & the excessive pain I had to go through to achieve Full Momentary Muscular Failure that I needed to get the proper intensity level for an effective session. My recovery post workout was horrible. I had to keep extending my time between workouts to be able to recover and to be able to function post workout. Most that do a HIT protocol workout one to two times per week. Some with less recovery ability or circumstances workout once every 10 days to 14 days. I went from a couple of sessions per week to once a week to eventually every third week. That extreme infrequency worked by far the best for my optimal strength levels, body composition & how I could function at my other activities. I also had to start using gripping aids such as straps & hooks to do my lifting especially with the Deadlift, Shrugs Rows & Pull Downs. My fingers would not allow me to grip effectively. As a person schooled in Old School Powerlifting I was ashamed I had to use these grip aids. Because of my experiences I had Confirmation Bias that everyone needed gripping aids when they did not. I am correcting this now with my clients that I inadvertently hampered them in full development of their grip & forearm development.

So my results have been beyond stellar and way beyond all my expectations!!!!! My Rheumatoid Arthritis is what I would classify in full 100% remission. My pain is totally gone. My movement is back to normal. My inflammation is gone throughout my body & in particular my hands & elbows. My long term Tendonitis (Tennis Elbow)is gone. My Hip pain is gone. My knee pain is gone. My energy levels are incredible. I am sleeping better than ever, except when I have too much energy. My cognition is vastly improved. My recovery rate is better than it has been since I was in my late 20’s and I am 49 years old. My strength numbers have increased. My body composition has gotten better. My digestion is perfect. My bowel movements are the best ever. My dry eyes are not a problem. My allergies have been so much better than in years past. I have not had any sickness since 2013 so I have a great immune system & since going ZC still no problems. I avoided the dreaded cold & Flu this season that was going around this winter. No outbreak of Kidney Stones which have been plagued with especially when eating plants containing Oxalates such as Collard Greens & Spinach. I’m now almost supplement-free. I will continue to supplement with Vitamin D & some minerals if I need them. My Super Supplement is called Ribeye 🥩 & Water!!!! Nothing got worse from this way of eating. It has all been positive!!!! I look forward to continuing this way of eating indefinitely. I truly enjoy this way of eating. PTL 🙏🏻🙏🏻

I want to thank the people & groups who have helped me in doing this way of eating the right way through advice, insight, testimonials, education & support.
Thanks to Vince Gironda, Owsley “Bear” Stanley, Joe & Charlene Andersen, Dr. Shawn Baker, Dr. Paul Mabry, Lawrence Neal, Corporate Warrior Podcast, Zeroing in on Health, Zero Carb UK, Zero Carb Doc, World Carnivore Tribe, and Zero Carb Zen. Especially grateful for my wife, Lori, in supporting this decision and trying it herself with amazing results too and being a great steak maker!!!!!!

To Everyone’s Healthspan,
Mark W. Strough

Jim Hirt

I have always worked out and am a big guy (6’7″). I started the ketogenic diet in June of 2015. Even though I was in good shape, I was still 270 lbs. I went down to 250 lbs with ketosis but for the last few years I have had an arthritic knee and finger that were painful every day.

I was on the schedule to have my knee replaced in November of 2017, even though I’m only 55, because I just couldn’t stand it any more. The pain was constant. I heard about the carnivore diet and Dr. Baker and began in December of 2017. I experienced relief quickly. My joint pain has all but vanished. It’s a minor miracle. I couldn’t bend my knee or my right forefinger with full motion but now I can. I have now gone down to 230 lbs and am so lean that I can’t believe it. I eat so much!

I would never have guessed that there would be such a disparity of results between ketosis and carnivore. My wife is also carnivore and has dropped weight and all of her joints feel great. I can’t believe that this worked so well. I will NEVER go back EVER! Thank you Dr. Baker for getting this message out.

Jack S.

I retired last December 2017. I’m 60 years old. My job was stressing me out, and I was eating everything in sight every night after work. I had reached a weight of 237 pounds, at the time of my retirement the end of December. My son who is a PE and health teacher turned me on to zero carbs and eating more proteins, which meant a lot of meat, eggs and bacon, etc.

We live in New York state, but spent January through March in Florida. The first thing I did on arriving was join a gym. I started my new way of eating, and also went to the gym literally every day. I worked on aerobic equipment in the beginning, and then moved on to weight machines. I am down to 206 pounds.

I had a doctor’s appointment last week. I purposely asked to have blood work before my visit to see if my efforts paid off. I was in shock with the results. My Total Cholesterol went from 205 down to 145. Granted, I am on a low dose statin, but even on that dose, my Cholesterol was always low 200’s. My Triglycerides went from 150 down to 80. My HDL went from 40 to 65, and LDL was down to 64. Also, my fasting blood glucose for the last few years was trending around 105, which is heading towards diabetic. My level this time was 93. Needless to say, my doctor was shocked and said I was doing amazing.

I have hypertension and am on two different drugs for that. He actually put one of those drugs on hold as he feels I don’t need it any longer. I will likely be coming off the statin soon too. With all the progress in weight loss, I no longer dread going to the gym, I look forward to it every day. I no longer crave pizza, chips and fast food. My wife also followed the high protein/low carb and goes to the gym and she has lost 20 pounds. I can’t see ever going to back eating the way I used to. This feels so good!

Mim R.

I’m 27 and I was suffering from so many autoimmune disorders since I was a kid including eczema, horrible rashes that covers my entire body, never-ending itchiness, severe acne on my face, cystic acne on my buttocks, vaginal area, and armpits (Hidradenitis suppurativa), back pain, extreme PMS, bladder inflammation (always feeling like I have to pee), extreme depression, crying, anger, and suicidal attempts (took anti-depressants since I was 15, but didn’t help), constant bloating, weight gain, intense sugar cravings, arthritis in my ankles and wrists, vaginal infections due to candida overgrowth, ovarian cyst, IBS, acid reflux, allergies, early graying of hair, and many more…

All of that is completely gone since I went carnivore. After elimination I found out that I severely react to gluten, dairy, soy, legumes, nuts, eggs, and grains. I tried low carb, but I was never 100% symptom-free until I gone full carnivore. If I eat something bad those symptoms come back. Ever since I fixed my diet I advanced so much in my career and personal life. I never knew it is possible to feel this amazing.

Patrick Kuehner

I am 33 years old. For a long time I consumed a lot of bad things on a regular basis: Mountain Dew, Monster, all kinda of carbs (especially rice; my wife is Asian). I wasn’t taking good care of myself.

In 2013, my body started rejecting the abuse. I knew this would be coming, but I didn’t expect it at that age. I was very active (military). Vigorous exercise for at least an hour every day. Then, I started gaining weight, and my knee got real bad. I had chronic tendinitis in my knee caused by Osgood-Schlatter (misdiagnosed many times as Chronic Osgood-Schlatter). I started getting stomach issues; diarrhea, inconsistent BMs, bloating, gas, heartburn (I never had heartburn!), trouble sleeping, hip pain, shoulder pain, and back pain. It all came to a head when I got diverticulitis. My diverticulitis was actually on the lower right side. So, everyone (including me, I did my research before going to the ER) thought it was appendicitis. It was like, “Oh. It’s appendicitis. No big deal. We’ll prep you for surgery. Meanwhile, we’ll take this CT just to confirm.” Well, that CT showed diverticulitis, not appendicitis. And, the doctor’s were freaked! They made me think that was way worse than anything else. Why? My age. They concerned about the pockets that form to create the diverticula, or if I had other issues. Scared the crap out of me. I had a colonoscopy on my birthday in 2014. Some minor polyps were discovered. I had surgery on my knee a month later to do a patellar tendon cadaver graft. I felt horrible. I felt like my body was giving up on me, and my knee never recovered.

So, started my journey towards trying become healthier. At the end of 2014 I started a calorie restrictive diet. Whole foods, low fat, lean meats, plenty of veggies and fruits…and, more resistance training. Yes, I lost a little bit of weight. I started feeling a little better, but I couldn’t sustain it. It was too expensive, and cravings started to kill me. And, I started feeling bloated all the time, gassy, and heartburn. Then, I started a high protein diet, and restricted my carbs. The advice at the time was like 20% carb, 30% fat, and 50% protein. Not exact, but basically stick with low carb intake and only whole grain products. I continued exercise as well. My knee had a brief period where it felt a lot better (but, still about 60%). Again, not sustainable. Same feeling with my gut, still too expensive, and my energy levels started dropping. I just couldn’t stop the cravings for Mountain Dew and energy drinks. I wouldn’t last a day without them. So, I tried going back to calorie restriction again, but extreme this time. No more than 1,200 calories a day. Still didn’t work. Unsustainable. This was over the course of 3 years. I had been back to the doctor with another case of diverticulitis, my knee had gotten worse again, my hip got worse, and I had some serious BM issues. I gave up. Just figured my body was breaking down and there wasn’t anything I could do about it.

So, since January of 2018, I’ve been listening to the Joe Rogan Experience podcast. I heard him speak about keto several times. High fat, when it was broken down seemed like it was a good idea. I looked into some things to get started, and realized it was a lot of counting macros. And, I just didn’t have the money to ensure I was on that kind of level. Then, a little over a month ago he brought up the Carnivore Diet briefly, and mentioned Dr. Shawn Baker. So, on Wednesday, March 21st, I listened to the episode with Dr. Shawn Baker. I was blown away. I started doing my research into evolution, brain size, digestive systems, and cholesterol. I realized what was Dr. Baker said wasn’t crazy. Finally, that Friday, I came home from work, and said no more carbs! Only meat and water. I ate just the meat of what my wife had cooked that night. Ended up getting hungry before bed. Ate some hamburger and eggs. The next morning I woke up starving! I hadn’t had an appetite like that in years! I had been eating for two reasons: random cravings, and I knew I had to. That day it continued. I was ravenous! I wasn’t bloated, I didn’t have heartburn, and I felt good! I could not believe that in just a few hours I was feeling that much better. I said to myself, I need to slow down, and not get too excited. Some of that had to be attributed to a placebo effect, right? Maybe. I don’t know. What I do know is the feeling continued for the last month. Also, that day, I drove almost 10 hours. Got out of my vehicle when I got to my destination, and my knee was fine! It wasn’t stiff, or painful at all!

Maybe it’s too soon to know everything. I’m only a month in. But, this is what I know: down 14 lbs., no bloating, no heartburn, I have an appetite, knee pain way less than before, no hip pain, no back pain, no shoulder pain, sleeping better, waking up easier, more energy, and I can afford it! It’s just so simple.

Jón Jakobsson

I was asked by the man that really started the carnivore movement in Iceland to share my story.

Then, let’s begin at the beginning. My name is Jón Jakobsson. I am 48 years old and from Iceland. I have always been fat. When I was a kid, I was fat until I discovered Judo, and then I got massive – huge, not fat, but powerful – and that lasted about 10 years or until I blew out my back. I had to undergo surgery for a slipped disk in my lower back.

The thing is I gave up Judo, but I did not stop eating like a competitive athlete, and it went out of control. When I was practicing Judo, I was 120-130 kilos and had a very little fat on me, I could eat about 12-15,000 calories per day, and still ate like that after I had given up the sport.

One of my worst days was when my weight got to 183 kilos my blood pressure was too high, and my sugar levels were as well.

My doctor decided to send me to a weight program clinic for 6 weeks. There I was taught that you could eat everything but in smaller portions and do that about 6 times a day. I have to mention that this program is mostly for people that are going to go for the GASTRIC BYPASS surgery. I spoke to the head doctor of this program (he actually was my home physician before he became the head doctor of this program) about the possibility of if I should go for this surgery, but the doctor said NO. He told me that I had top large of a frame, and this would not be good for me. I really was relieved that he said that.

So, after this program I got down to 140-150 kilos, and my sugar levels normalized and now I thought, well I’m on the right way, but NO, the last few years I have been around 160 kilos and still taking high blood pressure meds.

4 years ago, my sugar levels got too high again and my doctor put me on pills (Glucophage). It started at 1 pill twice a day, and I ended up taking 3 pills twice a day. I tried to stop eating sugar and lost 7 kilos, but all for naught and finally last year I got an extra pill (Januvia) to take once a day on top of the Glucophage and the doctor wanted me to try this for one month.

So now we get to the part why I’m telling you my story, the date is 4 January 2018, I have a new doctor and he is young 😊. I had heard about this “diet” (I personally don’t like to call it a diet) called carnivore diet from a friend of mine that had tried it out for a month before Christmas.

I went to my doctor and told him about this and he was a little sceptic but said ok to try this out.

Well at that time I’m 154 kilos sugar levels about 10 mmol/L.

My doctor wanted a thorough blood test, and that was scheduled later that same month.
So, I started to eat meat and lots of meat. I went for the blood test on 30 of January a week later the doctor phoned me and told me that my sugar levels where down to 8.4 mmol/L everything else was good. Me and my doctor decided to lower my sugar meds to 2 pills a day as I was only eating once a day (I did not need to eat more). I was feeling good in my body, full of energy, and my aches in my knees were gone (I always thought my knee aches were associated with years of practicing Judo). So, I continued with eating meat.

Last week I ran out of Glucophage and as I knew that I had a doctor’s appointment today I wanted to experiment a little and skip them until I would see the doctor.

Now I went to the doctor this morning and the first thing he said to me was, you lost some weight. I went directly to the scale and stepped on it 141 kilos. He measured my blood sugar levels with a little blood drop from my finger, 7.3 mmol/L and blood pressure 138/80.

So, I was happy about this and so was my doctor, and he is still a little confused that this happens by only eating meat. We talked about what to do next, he said that the next step is a thorough blood test where they will measure long term sugar levels.
He also said that I should stop taking Glucophage at least until after the result of the blood test.

And that’s that, I hope you guys can forgive this long ranting, but as a closing I only have to say MEAT HEALS.

Ethan Torgersen

My story is quite the roller coaster. Most of my life I had been obese. That all changed when I moved to Mexico. I ended up losing 65 lbs. I was very happy with the amount of weight that I was able to lose even though I was sick. When I moved back to the U.S. my stomach always hurt. My stomach was always bloated and cramping. I also was very gassy and felt sick when I ate. I had super bad acid reflex as well. Not only did I suffer with a chronic illness, but I also suffered emotionally. I had pretty bad anxiety and depression.

The doctors ran many test on me. They did many colonoscopies, endoscopies, many tests on my thyroid. They ran a gastrointestinal emptying study. They prescribed all kinds of pills. I felt as though these pills were making it worse. Finally they diagnosed me (uncertainly) with a form of IBS.

It wasn’t until I found keto that I was able to find some sort of relief. I stopped taking my medication and stopped going to the doctor, because I was sick of wasting money and having them not find anything. With losing all this weight it caused a form disorder eating. I was using keto to build muscle but was eating at a major deficit. I felt tired and was always so worried about counting calories and macros. The huge amount of veggies I was consuming also made me feel super bloated. Not only did I feel bloated still but bloated but I still had bad cravings.

It wasn’t until I found the carnivore diet that this disappeared. Even though I was a little nervous about gaining weight and putting on fat I decided I should try it. From the start I realized I was full for longer, I wasn’t bloated, I felt much more happier and my cravings that I had on keto were non-existent. My strength in the gym had increased a lot. I was able to up my deadlift from 375 lbs to 485 lbs while only weighing 163 lbs and after only a couple months of eating this way. Not only is my strength increasing, but my energy is constant, and I feel no need to supplement with any form of caffeine before workouts. I am gaining weight, but I realized that I was never giving my body what it needed. I restricted calories for over 2 years, and it is now rebuilding itself.

I am happy I have found an answer to my problems and found a way to overcome an eating disorder that I had struggled with for a couple years. I can truly say that meat heals.

Instagram: @fit_and_ketoned

Ethan before carnivory and a few months later

George Ramos

I would like to start by thanking Joe Rogan for having Dr. Baker on his podcast, because it was that day that I heard about such a simple and very effective carnivorous diet. After hearing such helpful and full of information, on Feb. 27, I started my journey in the world of a carnivorous diet and have lost 70 lbs. It feels amazing and also would thank Dr. Baker and my cousin Tony for helping me gain knowledge about this diet. It’s not just a diet but a lifestyle. #meatheals

Andrew Funnell

Like so many others here I watched Dr. Shawn Baker on the Joe Rogan Podcast.

After two months on this woe [ed: way of eating] I have lost 8kg of fat, gained a little muscle, but gained a lot more strength. My asthma and hay fever issues are almost totally gone, and I’m feeling great.
The ability to get away from the old cravings/crash cycle of my former woe to a now steady level of energy for the whole day is so calming.

Jeremiah Squier

In October of last year, I heard the Joe Rogan podcast with Shawn Baker. Shawn was talking about just eating meat. It sounded crazy, but I was willing to try it. At the time, I was close to 260-275 pounds, borderline diabetic, my cholesterol was over 250, my LDL 205, and my blood sugar and blood pressure were both high.

I was on the path to a heart attack and diabetes. So I started eating meat and slowly working out. I dropped 20 pounds in the first two months. Currently I’m down almost 50 pounds, my cholesterol is 205, my LDL 148, and both my blood sugar and blood pressure are normal. I’ve never felt better in my life. I even stopped taking sleep meds and anxiety meds. Who would have thought eating meat and not being lazy would do the trick? Shawn Baker is dead on and I have no doubt about being a meat eater now.