It’s somewhat in the name of the website, Animal-Based Life. It’s what’s known as an “animal-based diet.”
But for me, it’s not simply a “diet.” A diet implies that you’re sacrificing to a large extent.
Sigh, I can’t eat M&Ms, so instead, I’d better eat a carrot.
You go through that nine hundred times and you’re bound to fail and end up eating those M&Ms. Not only eating them but putting them back in your daily routine.
What do you mean by an animal-based diet?
In short, it means my eating habits are based on the consumption of animal products. Both direct products, such as meat, and by-products, such as eggs.
Does it mean animal products are all that I eat?
It means that animal-based products are simply the foundation of my diet. My base, as it were.
I do surround these products with leafy green and cruciferous vegetables. I do not surround those products with sugars, starches, grains, or breads.
Do you ever “cheat”?
We’ve all fallen into this trap. OK, OK, I’ll have this piece of banana bread. I’ll try this slice of pizza.
No one wants to be ‘that guy’ at special events. We all want to go along with the program.
What’s important is that one indulgence doesn’t turn into a second, or a third, or a fourth. More than one day, a week, a month, a few months.
When finished it’s time for an important self-conversation.
Self: This is your one indulgence. Your only indulgence. Get back on the horse starting right now. Right. Now. Nothing else. No piece of pie on the way home, no donut, no sugary coffee, nothing.
What started this way of eating?
I knew I needed to get really serious back in June of 2018. I had a pain in my testicles that wouldn’t go away. For the first time since 2001, I stepped into a doctor’s office with myself as a patient. It was the local walk-in clinic, since I wanted to get this taken care of promptly and I didn’t have a primary care doctor of my own.
They took my blood pressure. 162 over 104. That’s not good.
The pain in my testicles was determined to be prostatitis, which is inflammation of the prostate. I was given prescription anti-biotics and an order to return only if the symptoms didn’t go away.
I was then 40 years old. I had a good long run of eating what I wanted to with little consequence other than looking portly.
Those days were over. I had taken Dr. Drew Pinsky’s saying, “There’s no free lunch with Mother Nature,” to heart. Mother Nature and Father Time were catching up.
Over time, the symptoms did go away for the most part. Over the next few months, I felt the pain a little bit in the mornings if I drank a lot of coffee.
I stumbled upon another YouTuber, George Bruno, whose videos on steaks and the carnivore diet got me into watching him on almost a daily basis. Also, check out Bruno’s valuable tips on living that animal-based life on a budget.
I was determined to give this a shot.
By January of 2019, I’d gone into a keto way of life, obsessively watching my carbs and aiming for a maximum of 20 grams per day.
As a listener to the Adam Carolla Show and the Adam and Dr. Drew Podcast, the name Vinnie Tortorich kept popping up. Adam and Dr. Drew are both in line with this Tortorich way of eating. It’s called “NSNG,” which stands for No Sugar, No Grains.
I’ll go over NSNG more in later posts, but long story short I’ve dropped 30 pounds in six months. My blood pressure went from dangerously high to normal-high on the diet alone. My heartburn, once a 3- or 4-night-per-week occurrence, faded completely.
(Full disclosure: I am on one blood pressure medication on a temporary basis, with the plan to get off for good now that I’ve dropped more weight.)
Notably, my prostatitis has disappeared completely and has not recurred.
There’s animal-based and then there’s carnivore. Carnivore is 100% animal products and by-products.
Oftentimes, but not always, the carnivore way of eating is big on “head-to-hoof” consumption of the animal. Not just the parts we all like to eat, but the organs and other things as well.
Honestly, I draw the line at eating organs. Having never liked chicken liver as a kid, my mother once tricked me by breading them and serving them to me as “chicken nuggets.” I’ve never forgotten that.
Animal-based eating, a vastly large percentage of animal products and by-products, with some low-carb veggies sprinkled in, is a fantastic compromise from the full carnivore route. Good to eat and good for you, too.