As veganism and plant-based diets grow in popularity and effectiveness, we were bound to see increasingly absurd diets formed in an attempt to “counter” them. The Carnivore Diet is the new iteration of the Paleo and Keto diets, and effectively states that meat should make up the bulk of one’s diet, and is our optimal diet for losing weight and building muscle.
Let’s get one thing out of the way. A lot of people involved in the “Carnivore” scene like to refer to themselves as carnivores and the diet as a whole as “living like a carnivore.”
This couldn’t be further from the truth. It’s a fad diet. That’s all it is.
Even the most hardcore proponents of the Carnivore Movement don’t act anything like a real carnivore. Unless you do most or all of the following, you are not a carnivore:
- Consume all of your meat raw and bloody.
- Sheer flesh with your teeth and gulp large portions of it rather than grinding it down into smaller bits first.
- Have no problem with eating warm bloody organs like the liver, stomach, heart, intestines, spleen, and kidneys, and prefer these nutrient-rich parts to muscle.
- Crunch up and eat several bones on a regular basis during meals.
- Regularly eat small prey whole, such as mice and small birds. This includes fur and bones, because your stomach acid can easily digest these, right?
- Apprehend prey on foot. Attack and kill prey with your bare hands.
Obviously, humans don’t do these things. If you think because you can cook and season a steak (ultimately a tiny slab of musculature) with herbs and serve it on a plate, cutting it up with a knife and fork and eating it over the course of a meal, that this makes you a carnivore, you are not only delusional, you’re simply wrong on a scientific level.
Proper diet is determined by biology, not habit or customs. Just because we have developed crude ways to put flesh in our mouths doesn’t mean we are biologically meant to do it. On the contrary. humans possess literally none of the evolutionary adaptations necessary to properly hunt, kill prey, eat prey, and digest their bodies.
Let’s take a look at the reasoning behind the Carnivore Movement and see just what it is that’s attracting people in the first place.
The Forces Behind Carnism
If Keto has proven anything, it’s that with enough pseudo-scientific jargon and “big gains” videos on Instagram, you can sell any kind of diet to anyone if they’re unaware enough.
The Carnivore Movement is a kind of extension of Keto, in that it claims meat-eating is what our dieting should be based around.
Of course, there is a lot going on here behind the scenes. The Carnivore Movement is absolutely entangled with a bunch of other fringe and bizarre movements and ideas, such as the men’s rights movement, so-called “red-pilling,” hard conservatism, anti-intellectualism (chiefly, anti-establishment intellectualism), religious fundamentalists, anti-animal rights people, anti-environmentalists, agricultural establishment folks, libertarians, and even white nationalists.
In short, many of the same people who subscribe to carnism and consider it to be Gospel Truth also subscribe to a lot of other ideas and belief systems based on misinformation, propaganda, anti-intellectualism, and flat out lies. It’s a racket that plays very often to the lowest common denominator.
There are other sentiments involved with the Carnivore Movement though, not always so extreme. There are quite a few people who simply hear about the purported health benefits and just dive in. Hey, why not? Most of us eat a ton of meat anyway, so what’s the harm?
Truthfully, if you’re embarking on a carnivore diet coming from a typical Western diet full of processed garbage, you are going to be delighted at the results. But we’ll touch on that in a second. It’s simply important to note that many who do attempt pure carnism do it more out of a state of ignorance and genuinely wanting to help themselves lose weight or gain some muscle. Often it’s both.
This is to say nothing of animal sentience and the rights these animals have not to be enslaved and murdered, but to the carnist, it’s often our “natural right” to do such things. As usual, there is a great disconnect with nature and how reality operates, to say nothing of our biology.
Health Benefits From Eating Meat?
It’s true: if you are coming off of a classic American diet full of soda, chips, bleached grains, dairy, refined sugar, candy, and processed meat, getting into a carnivore diet might not only improve your health dramatically, it might save your life.
It’s not so much that the meat is healthy for you, however. Humans as a species can derive very little nutrition from cooked flesh. Not only are we simply not biologically designed to do so, there’s not even very much there to begin with that we can use.
Carnivores in the wild get the bulk of their nutrients from raw bloody organs like the liver, heart, stomach, and intestines. Muscle, which makes up the bulk of flesh that humans consume, is perhaps one of the least nutrient-dense parts of any animal. Add to the fact that cooking burns off upwards to 40% or more of the nutritional value of meat, and what’s left is essentially a charred slab of dead food. Some damaged amino acid chains, iron, and a few other trace vitamins and minerals. Nothing close to optimal nutrition, though.
Let it be known first of all that nothing on this Earth evolved to be able to consume cooked food. Yes, cooking was a great innovation by our species, because it allowed us to eat things we otherwise wouldn’t have had any means of eating. It is through cooking that we can make use of potatoes for example.
Ordinarily, these starchy tubers are fairly indigestible for us. Cooking kills bacteria and other toxins that form inside them, as well as removing some of the starch and thick fibrous compounds, making them easier for us to digest and derive nutrients from.
However, just because cooking makes some foods easier to digest doesn’t mean cooking is natural or normal. Our species depended on this tactic when we migrated away from the tropics and had to learn to cope with the elements during colder months. Cooking was a desperation tactic that enabled us to broaden what we could eat and also make use of animals for more than just hide and tools.
While there are some small birds and fish that humans likely did consume raw hundreds of thousands of years ago, this was again a desperation tactic. Similar behavior can be seen in apes when they feel the need for a certain nutrient, usually iron. The fact is, we’re not biologically designed to eat cooked food, because nature didn’t evolve any mechanisms around such a concept. No animal on Earth is equipped to properly digest cooked food, it’s an aberration.
Cooked food has less nutrients, broken compounds, and no living enzymes, which are one of the more important factors. On the subatomic or etheric level, it should be noted, cooked food is completely dead. There is no energy, no life, nothing moving. It is an empty shell with a low vibration.
The bottom line is this: anything that actually comes from nature and was once living is going to be healthier for you than processed and chemical-laden food, so there are health benefits to these fad diets like Keto and the “carnivore diet.” They are not, in and of themselves, healthy however.
Diet is Determined by Biology
There are quite a few proponents of carnism that swear humans are carnivores, that eating meat is natural and healthy for us, and that it is our “natural right.”
Truth be told, there is nothing wrong in and of itself to eating meat. Real carnivores have a place in nature, and evolved to pick off the weak and the sick in order to strengthen plant-eater genes and create stronger, not weaker, ecosystems.
Carnivores, real ones, operate with completely different behavior and biological functions than human beings. If you think of yourself as a “carnivore,” you are only deluding yourself.
Because of our disconnection with nature and wayward behaviors that are divergent from all of the other animals on the planet, we sometimes mistake this divergent behavior for an evolutionary trait or natural activity. It couldn’t be further from the truth, however.
The human body has not developed any biological adaptations for consuming and digesting meat.
There are vast differences between humans (fruit-eating monkeys) and carnivores. Jaw structure, sense of smell and sight, saliva pH, intestinal length, teeth, stomach acidity, and nutritional requirements.
Carnivores have strong stomach acid and short intestines. This means that they are able to kill harmful bacteria and also dissolve bones, feathers, cartilage, and hair in their guts. The short intestines ensure that they can excrete waste quickly before the meat putrefies in the gut.
Herbivores and frugivores, like us, have moderate to weak stomach acid and longer intestines. Our stomach acid is adapted to dissolving plant fibers, roots, nuts, seeds, berries, leaves, and fruit. Our long intestines allow ample time for helpful gut bacteria to work on the plant material and extract every bit of nutrition it can from them, without worry of harmful putrefaction.
Carnivores have very little lateral jaw movement. Their jaws are structured for extreme “up and down” movements, with strong hinges, which allows them to rip off and sheer great chunks of flesh, and then swallow it with minimal chewing. Most carnivores don’t really “chew” at all, that is an herbivore behavior.
Herbivores and frugivores developed great lateral jaw movement with small mouth openings and minimal “up and down” movement. These jaws serve to nibble and bite off hunks of soft fruit and leaves, in order to grind the pieces up further by moving them side to side, aided by our abundance of flat teeth and alkaline saliva, which carnivores don’t possess.
Carnivores lack digestive enzymes in the saliva.
Herbivores and frugivores, however, use the mouth as the start of digestion, with enzymes and lots of grinding to “prep” the food for the stomach, which has weaker acid than carnivores and omnivores.
Carnivores are built to deal with the highly acidic pH of meat. It does not compromise their body in any way, and they can eat their fill of it without developing any degenerative diseases.
On the other hand, plant and fruit eaters are not built to handle the high acidity of meat, and therefore must leech minerals from the bones every time meat or other acidic food is consumed. Not only this, animal protein harms the body because of the substances in it as well as the substances that it forces our body to over-produce, such as heme iron, phosphorus, sulfur, mercury, trimethylamine N-oxide, and the hormone IGF-1, to name but a few. Meat and dairy actually deteriorates our bones and weakens the overall structure of our body if not counteracted by large amounts of plants.
Humans have zero evolutionary adaptations for catching prey, and it should be noted, never did. We have terrible vision, terrible hearing, terrible sense of smell. No claws or talons. No threatening canine teeth. No hard bone protrusions like horns. No stingers or means of producing venom. We can’t run fast and we have very little in the way of bodily protection. We are to put it mildly, small supple tree apes, and always have been.
Carnivores meanwhile possess a wide range of evolutionary functions for catching prey, including strong vision and sense of smell, talons and claws, the ability to run quickly, lighting fast reflexes, a frame that supports running, and jaws that can rip through hide and crush bone.
If at any time humans had “adpated” to eating meat or were “meant to” eat meat, we would have adapted claws, shorter intestines, stronger jaws, and even a basic sense of smell and hearing to rival even the least adapted omnivores. The fossil record and history shows none of this.
We are tree apes that dined primarily on fruit and vegetable matter for millions of years. Like the bonobo and chimpanzee, we occasionally ate meat, such as termites and small birds. This was our diet. Period.
When we left the tropics and became more self-aware (some would say unaware), we realized we needed alternate food sources, and began performing deviant behaviors such as drinking milk and cooking dead animals that we killed by means of crude tools. This “food,” while enough to sustain us, was nothing close to an optimal diet and resulted in sickness, bone deterioration, inflammation, and early death. The only saving grace is that our ancestors also ate plenty of plant matter as well, and all of it was right from the Earth. No chemicals.
It is easy to call yourself a carnivore, but lacking even the most basic of carnivore traits debunks the entire idea that we were ever meant to eat meat. It’s simply a modern-day fiction.
Regardless of your beliefs, optimal diet is always determined by biology. Judging by human physiology, we are frugivores through and through.
The Carnivore Movement Must Stop Kidding Itself
Propaganda in any form is wrong. Period.
We should strive to live in a fact-centric society. There is nothing factual about trying to paint the human animal as a meat eater. At best, at the height of our meat-eating adaptations before we learned how to cook, there is no sign in the fossil record that we were ever more than frugivores that occasionally consumed meat the way cats occasionally consume grass: filling in tiny blanks in our diet when necessary.
Our closest biological relative, the bonobo, is a stark example of why carnism is absurd. This creature is no meat eater. Yet, like many herbivores and frugivores, it is capable of eating small amounts of meat when necessary.
Of course, on a fully alkaline diet of tropical fruits and leafy greens, a few termites and a bird here and there aren’t going to have any negative effects. Indeed, they likely supply the bonobo with just the right trace nutrients when they feel the biological need to seek them out.
Yet, the human animal has smaller fangs, a more supple body, a weaker bone structure, and a slower gait than even the docile bonobo.
This should tell you all you need to know about our optimal diet, and it’s not meat.
Our jaws are incapable of sheering flesh. Our stomachs are incapable of shielding us from the harmful bacteria that animals carry, which would result in us getting sick or even killed were we to attempt to chow down on the warm bloody guts of a cow or pig.
Stop. Fooling. Yourself.
You’re not getting any points by selling people a myth and contributing to the heart disease epidemic. You might think you are on the edge of some health revolution, but so did Atkins.
Spreading propaganda about our diet is perhaps one of the most unjust things one can do, because it directly contributes to mass unwellness and death.
Regardless of what pseudo-scientific jargon you’ve been fed that makes you think eating meat is okay, you must realize that at the end of the day, we’re not biologically equipped to consume it. Period. End of story.
It would take tens of millions of years at the very least for a full frugivore with docile leanings to “adapt” the traits necessary to be a full on carnivore. To begin with, it would have to stop cooking its food. Second, it would have to start hunting. No spears. No fire. No knives. No guns. Actual hunting.
What “hunters” fancy themselves as is a myth. A person walking around in the woods with a gun is not a hunter. That’s a cartoon character.
A hunter uses the raw adaptations of his or her body to fight the elements and terrain, sniff out and chase down prey, rip into their guts, crunch their bones, and consume the animal without need for cooking.
Humans often rely on real carnivore hunters, dogs, to do their dirty work because we lack any real sense of smell. Which is a sign in and of itself that we have no business eating meat.
Do yourself a favor. Seek health, not propaganda. There’s nothing wrong with saying “I bought into a fad,” because that’s all carnism is.
There will be a day when we all look back and see how absurd it is that humans ate meat at all. This is an inevitability if we are serious about creating an intelligent, compassionate, sane society that actually adheres to natural law rather than the made up fantasies that go on inside human minds.
Humans are frugivores. Nothing about seeing a baby rabbit makes our salivary glands work up. A bloody carcass on the side of the road doesn’t scream “meal” inside our heads.
Put two and two together and embrace a natural diet. Your body will thank you, to say nothing of the innocent animal lives that will be spared.
The founder of Digital Sages, Matt has an extensive background in self-mastery and has authored several books on the subject. His goal is to demystify important esoteric subjects and help people transform their lives through self-awareness and personal empowerment.