How Carbs affected me After Six Months as a Carnivore
As I mentioned in my previous carnivore blog post, I planned to put the diet on hold for the Festive period. Whilst I definitely enjoy this way of eating, there are certain things in life that go hand in hand, such as the Christmas and carbs! being strict carnivore for six months and switching to what was essentially going to be a DGAF (don’t give a fuck) diet actually worried me quite a lot!
Before eating my first non-animal based food, I had many concerns over how my body was going to react, both immediately on consumption, but also on-going for the 7-10 days I was going to be with my family gorging on all the things I’ve avoided for six months.
Being someone who fasts daily, and in the past included some longer fasts, there are loads of people who say you should break a fast with something light, usually fruit. Part of me considered this, however, last time I had fruit on it’s own, it really didn’t agree with me. Additionally, if I was going to have an adverse reactions, I wanted to get them out of the way before going home for Christmas, in the comfort of my own bathroom. So with that in mind, my first meal was sweet waffles with winter compote, fresh pear and candied hazelnuts from my favourite cafe, Mae & Harvey. I’m often in there working, and watching Natasha, Lia and Oscar serve up some amazing looking food and not being able to eat it myself was a good enough reason for me to break my diet there. From my first forkful, there was a party in my mouth! It tasted so good, and was everything I hoped it would be!
I braced myself for an immediate reaction, but to my surprise (and everyone else in Mae & Harvey), nothing really happened! An hour or so later, when I was back at home, I started on the 18 days worth of chocolates in my Stormtrooper advent calendar that I had left in the open doors for nearly 3 weeks. After only a few of them, I immediately needed the bathroom. It wasn’t explosive or anything, just that I had to go suddenly.
For the next few hours, after getting over the initial energy burst from the carbohydrates, I found myself with a slight brain fog. Nothing crazy, but it was definitely noticeable. I also got really vascular, with all my veins popping out along my arms. My Apple Watch showed a significant increase in my heart rate too, so there was definitely some sugar based energy expenditure going on.
One of the problems with being friends with many influencers, is that I’m often influenced into less than clever choices. So when Scott Can Eat posted about Dominoes new Cheeseburger Pizza on his Instagram, I couldn’t resist! I had actually planned to have pizza before heading home, because my family aren’t huge fans of it, so it was my only opportunity.
Now, ordinarily I can put away vast quantities of pizza, so I was surprised when I couldn’t eat it all. The fact that I didn’t force myself to eat it all is also a big change. I was always brought up to eat everything in front of me, which sometimes pushes me past the point of satiation. Shortly after I finished eating, I felt noticeably bloated, and needed the bathroom again, twice. For the rest of the evening, I had gas and bloating, and felt slightly uncomfortable.
The next day I met up with my good friend Pandora at Soho House for a long overdue catch up. I opted for Mac & Cheese, which came with a serving of fries. I had no trouble in finishing it all off, although Pandora did help out a bit. There were no additional negative effects that I noticed, thankfully. Later that evening, however, I did get some light heartburn, but nothing major.
So far so good… I had eaten a good amount of junk and I hadn’t died! I was ready to head home for Christmas with the family, yay!
The next week or so was basically a case of eating mostly sugar, with very little in the way of exercise, or even movement. With a table full of sweet treats within arms reach, this was definitely not a healthy, balanced, or any kind of advisable diet… but it was Christmas, so what the hell!
At meal times, mum adjusted the food ratio in order that my portion was far more animal based than previous years (thanks mum), so I was definitely still eating a good amount of meat, and not just entirely living on carbs.
Over the course of the week I noticed several things going on with my body. I felt the need to take naps, and was constantly tired. Not in an extreme way, but more so than usual. I was going to the bathroom several times a day, and passing significant amounts of waste. Clearly my body didn’t find what I was eating nutritious in any way and was just ejecting it. I had constant low level heartburn, and my muscles ached a lot more. I also got quite bad back pain when I woke up in the morning. During the evening, and at night, I found myself overheating regularly too.
December 27th was my birthday, and mum made me a Mars Bar cake! This was a chocolate chiffon cake, layered with chocolate buttercream and slices of mini mars bars, topped with salted caramel sauce, chocolate frosting, chocolate sauce, and more mini mars bars… it was epic!!!
A couple of days later, and it was time to return home. I gave myself a cut off for the diet. Once I was home, I was going to be back on the meat only carnivore diet. Even before Christmas Day, I actually was beginning to miss eating only meat. Sure, I loved all the sweet foods that I hadn’t had in ages, but the short lived pleasure didn’t outweigh the way I felt as a result. I’m definitely glad I took the break, however, as it helped me to put things in perspective.
Throughout the whole period, I was weighing myself, and to say I gained some weight over Christmas would be an understatement! By the time I got back to my place in East London, I was visibly fatter in the face. My stomach was bloated and significantly bigger than before the carbs, although the pinchable fat was pretty much the same as it was before. I’m assuming this is due to most of the gain being water weight, rather than anything else, so should come off pretty quick.
So what are my takeaways? The carnivore diet is my preferred way of eating, if not for any other reason than how it makes me feel 24/7. I’m glad I took a break, and that I know I can eat carbs from time to time without having any crazy reactions. I’ve been pondering how to continue this diet long term, without getting in the way of life enjoyment, and at least I know now that I have options.
I’ve been back on an all animal based diet for a week now, and a good chunk of the weight I gained has already dropped off. I do have some slight cravings again for sweets and ice cream, as I did before, but hopefully these will subside again over time. It’s nothing i can’t resist!
Related Carnivore Diet Posts
Carnivore Diet Week One
Carnivore Diet Week Two
Carnivore Diet Week Three
Carnivore Diet Week Four
Carnivore Diet Week Five
Carnivore Diet Week Six
Carnivore Diet Week Seven
Carnivore Diet Week Eight
Carnivore Diet Week Nine
Carnivore Diet Week Ten