Dr. Shawn Baker Warns Carnivore Diet is NOT for Everyone (who should NEVER try it)

Dr. Shawn Baker Warns Carnivore Diet is NOT for Everyone (who should NEVER try it)

Intro (00:00:00)

  • The carnivore diet is not for everyone.
  • People who may benefit from the carnivore diet include those with:
    • Autoimmune disease
    • Cardiometabolic disease
    • Obesity
    • Food addiction
    • Mental health issues
  • People who may not benefit from the carnivore diet include:
    • Healthy and happy individuals
    • Athletes who are well-adapted to using carbohydrates for performance
    • People in regions where meat is cost-prohibitive
    • Little kids
  • Childhood obesity is a significant problem, with 20% of children in the US being obese.
  • About half of the American population could potentially benefit from the carnivore diet, while the other half may not see any benefits.

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Carnivore & Mental Health (00:03:23)

  • Carnitine deficiency has been associated with major depressive disorder.
  • Gut inflammation leads to brain inflammation.
  • Zinc and iron are replete in a meat-based diet.
  • Ketones provide a stable source of energy, stabilizing mood.
  • Ultra-processed foods are harmful to the brain.
  • Nutrition plays a significant role in mental health disorders.
  • Low-carb, ketogenic, and carnivore diets can reduce cravings for alcohol, cigarettes, and recreational drugs.
  • Dr. Shawn Baker warns that the carnivore diet is not for everyone.

Dr. Chris Palmer (00:07:25)

  • Chris Palmer's research on mitochondria helped him understand metabolism, metabolic disorders, mental disorders, and the connection between them.
  • Mitochondria play a direct role in neurotransmitter production and regulation, inflammation, gene expression, and the human stress response.
  • Adverse childhood events and psychological stress impact mitochondrial function.

Ketones & Alcohol (00:10:05)

  • The presence of ketones, particularly acetate, can mimic the feeling of drinking alcohol in functioning alcoholics.
  • A ketogenic diet has helped many people overcome alcohol addiction, suggesting a potential role for ketones in addiction treatment.
  • The mechanism behind this effect is likely both the elimination of addictive substances and the impact of ketones on brain chemistry.
  • Eating a poor diet during recovery from addiction can hinder the process.

Carnivore Foods (00:11:46)

  • Shawn Baker is not a big fan of organ meats.
  • He believes that organ meats are not necessary for a carnivore diet.
  • He cites a Harvard study that showed that the addition or subtraction of organ meats didn't have a positive or negative outcome.
  • Baker believes that the absence of carbohydrates in a carnivore diet means that energy must come from somewhere, and protein is not a good source of energy.

Eggs & Dairy (00:14:00)

  • Eggs and dairy may cause issues for some people, especially those with autoimmune or inflammatory diseases.
  • The effects of eggs and dairy on individuals can vary.
  • Some people may react to certain dairy proteins more than others.
  • It is recommended to eliminate and reintroduce foods to determine individual sensitivities.
  • People with kidney disease or a history of kidney stones should avoid the carnivore diet.
  • Individuals with a history of gout or high uric acid levels should also avoid this diet.
  • Pregnant or breastfeeding women should not follow the carnivore diet.
  • Children and adolescents should not follow the carnivore diet.
  • People with certain medical conditions or taking certain medications should consult a doctor before starting the carnivore diet.

Adding Foods Back Into Your Diet (00:16:00)

  • People who are no longer metabolically deranged can start adding other foods back into their diet.
  • The time frame for this varies from person to person, it could be 3 months, 6 months, or even a year.
  • As people lose weight, they may need to adjust their food intake accordingly.
  • Food addiction is a real phenomenon and people need to change their relationship with food before they can successfully make dietary changes.
  • A strict elimination period is necessary for people with food addictions, but at some point, they may be able to start moderating their intake of certain foods.
  • Processed foods like Snickers bars and Ben and Jerry's ice cream are not recommended, but occasional treats like a piece of cake on a special occasion are acceptable.
  • Adding in whole, single foods like blueberries, fruit, rice, and sweet potatoes is generally not a problem.

Diet Tribalism (00:18:15)

  • Some people in the carnivore diet community can be loud and dogmatic in their approach.
  • This may be due to a defensive posture against criticism and a desire to share their positive experiences with others.
  • There is a tendency for people to become overly dogmatic about their beliefs, especially when they feel they have been lied to or cheated in the past.
  • Social media can contribute to this tribalism, as it provides a platform for people to express their opinions and defend their beliefs.
  • There is a lack of scientific knowledge about the long-term effects of the carnivore diet.
  • Some people make exaggerated claims about the benefits of the diet without sufficient evidence.
  • It is important to be cautious and critical when evaluating health claims, especially those that are based on personal anecdotes rather than scientific studies.

Long-Term Safety of Carnivore (00:20:45)

  • The long-term outcomes of a carnivore diet are unknown.
  • Carnivore diet can improve the health of individuals with severe illnesses.
  • Some individuals prioritize improved quality of life over potential increased risk of heart disease.
  • It is important for individuals to understand the potential risks and take appropriate measures to mitigate them.
  • No one can guarantee that a carnivore diet will lead to a longer life or prevent diseases like cancer or heart disease.

Vegetables (00:23:07)

  • Shawn Baker discusses his personal opinion on vegetables and their potential toxicity.
  • He acknowledges that vegetables contain compounds that can be problematic in high doses but also recognizes that many people have consumed vegetables throughout their lives without adverse effects.
  • Baker suggests that the current prevalence of toxic food and environmental exposures may contribute to some individuals' intolerance to vegetables.
  • He mentions that eliminating vegetables from the diet has improved the health of some individuals.
  • Baker expresses his personal dislike for vegetables and shares his experience of only grudgingly eating them as an adult.
  • He describes his preference for toppings rather than plain vegetables and highlights his aversion to eating raw vegetables.
  • Baker mentions that he rarely eats raw vegetables and prefers to cook them.
  • Roasted Brussels sprouts are mentioned as an exception to his general dislike of vegetables.
  • Baker shares an anecdote about his last vegetable consumption being a Brussels sprout in France in 2016.

Lipid Energy Model (00:25:15)

  • Calories matter, but they are not the only thing that matters.
  • Hormones play a role in weight management.
  • Protein has an additional thermic effect, so you can potentially eat more calories and still lose weight.
  • Saying that calories don't matter is not accurate, but saying that they are the only thing that matters is also not accurate.

Where to Find More of Shawn's Content (00:28:19)

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