It may be obvious or maybe it’s not but – is the Carnivore Diet keto?
Firstly you may be wondering what is the Carnivore diet? Popularized by Dr Shawn Baker after his appearance on the Joe Rogan Podcast, the carnivore diet is a meat based diet. More than just meat based it’s more “anti vegan” as in not eating anything from the plant world.
There’s often talk about “meat based” and that is the real definition of a carnivore. In terms of animals, we have herbivores, omnivores and carnivores. Giraffes are herbivores (eats plants); pigs are omnivores (eats plants and animals); lions are carnivores (eats animals). Generally we believe humans are omnivores – eats plants and animals.
The popular way of considering the Carnivore Diet (note the capital C!) is eating meat, organ meats and animal derived food such as eggs, milk and even honey! So pretty much the opposite of what a vegan eats. (We’ll do a “Is a vegan diet keto?” post soon :)).
Meat (as in muscle meat) that you get from the butcher is pretty much zero carb. Seafood and eggs do have some carbs so it’s not quite zero carb although some people call the Carnivore Diet the Zero Carb Diet. Organ meats and dairy (yoghurt, cheese and cream) have some low levels of carbohydrates. Honey obviously has a lot of carbs! And milk also has carbohydrates. Pretty much all other carb sources are plant based (from sugar cane through to potatoes and even broccoli!)
Generally the Carnivore Diet is considered keto. It’s easy to be in a state of ketosis when eating from the animal kingdom. Avoid milk and honey and you would be keto. In terms of macros, you do not need to worry about the higher level of protein. Generally most Carnivore Diet advocates advise to eat protein and (animal) fat and do not count calories or macros.
So yes, the Carnivore Diet is keto (disclaimers apply – read above!)