Could the answers to some of your health issues be a switch to an all-meat diet?
The Doctors meet sisters Ashley and Sarah, who were having a slew of health issues like inflammation, migraines, constipation (sometimes for up to 9 days), brain fog, fatigue, reoccurring pink eye, rashes, and they were also both diagnosed with undifferentiated connective tissue disease (UCTD). First, they went vegan and then ketogenic, but their symptoms persisted. They say since following a carnivore diet (which includes no grains, fiber, fruits or vegetables), their auto-immunes health issues have been resolved.
What the sisters' carnivore diet consists of: They only eat 2 meals a day consisting of muscle meat (any cut of steak), organs (liver or hearts) and animal fats like eggs or beef fat trimmings. Sarah says of the meat diet, "My mental health and my physical health are immensely improved. Ashely adds, "We've regained control of health." They also note they get their meats from a local farmer and do not eat processed meats. They acknowledge they both previously dealt with eating disorders, but now say that is not an issue now.
Is an all-meat diet healthy?
Functional medicine physician Dr. Paul Saladino claims vegetables contain toxins (like lectins and polyphenols) which can be triggering to some immune systems and damage some people's digestive systems. He claims an all-meat diet provides the body with its needed nutrients, minus the toxins. Also, Dr. Saladino claims that eating meat "at an interventional level" does not increase someone's risk for colon cancer. "There are no risks to eating the foods that we have been eating as humans for our entire existence," he claims.
Nutritionist Dr. Melina Jampolis says she takes issue with Dr. Saladino's claims and says there are numerous nutrients in vegetables that could be helping someone with an autoimmune disease. She also says the sisters' meat intake levels raise their risk for breast cancer, colon cancer. "If they continue this for the next 40 years, I can almost guarantee you they will have colon cancer, and I pray not breast cancer too." She also notes there have been extensive studies on the health benefits of polyphenols found in plants.
Cardiologist Dr. Joel Kahn feels a healthy diet should consist of vegetables, whole grains, fruits and healthy proteins, and he says organic meats are the best type of meat. "I say no to [the] carnivore [deit] until we have [more studies]." He notes it will take 10 to 20 years, and require extensive studies before we completely understand the risks or benefits of eating an all-meat diet.
ER physician Dr. Travis Stork adds, "There are thousands and thousands of studies that show the benefits of fruits and vegetables and nuts... we're not saying meat is bad for you... if all you eat for your whole life is just meat, that is not good."
Where do the meat sisters go from here?: They tell The Doctors they are open to adding plant-based foods back into their diets at some point. They do not think this diet needs to last an entire life and they reiterate that is can be done as a therapeutic option for someone dealing with an autoimmune disease to treat their symptoms.
Dr. Travis adds, "You need to find the diet that works for you, in general, extremes tend to not be the best approach, educate yourself."