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By Justus Woods, The Rooted Lifestyle Podcast

Beefing Up your Budget: The Financial Impact of the Carnivore Diet


The carnivore diet or the “all-meat” diet is a nutritional regimen that exclusively consists of animal products such as beef, chicken, fish, and other meats, as well as animal-derived products like eggs and raw dairy. Extreme versions of the diet can also include animal organs such as beef liver and heart. The diet has gained popularity in recent years, largely due to the influence of social media personalities and public figures, like ‘Liver King’ and ‘CarnivoreMD’, who share their positive experiences and dramatic health transformations. This growing interest
is also driven by a desire for simplicity in dieting and a backlash against the complexities of modern nutrition advice.

This diet eliminates all plant-based foods, including vegetables, fruits, grains, and legumes (sorry mom). Advocates of the carnivore diet claim it can lead to numerous health benefits, including weight loss, improved mental clarity, and relief from various chronic conditions. The carnivore diet’s strict exclusion of all non-animal foods sets it apart from other popular diets (e.g., keto and paleo diet) and simplifies food choices.

However, not everyone is a fan.  Critics of the diet site risks related to cardiovascular health, nutrient deficiency, gastrointestinal health and more. While the arguments about the health benefits of the Carnivore diet continue to proliferate across social media, one thing isn't up for debate- it's cost.  The carnivore diet can be more expensive than other dietary programs due to the high price of quality meat and animal products. Unlike plant-based or mixed diets, which can incorporate affordable staples like rice, beans, and seasonal vegetables, a carnivore diet relies heavily on meat, which can strain the food budget. Translation- it will surely increase your food budget.

For example, a typical meal on a carnivore diet could consist of a ribeye steak, which is a popular choice among adherents due to its high fat content and flavor. Let’s break down the cost:

● Ribeye Steak (1.5 lbs): High-quality ribeye steaks can range from $15 to $25 per
pound, depending on factors like organic certification, grass-fed status, and where you
purchase it. For a 1.5-pound steak, this could cost between $22.50 and $37.50.
● Additional Items: If including items like butter (for cooking) or a couple of eggs, these could add a few more dollars to the meal. High-quality, grass-fed butter might cost around $1 per serving, and organic eggs could be $0.50 each.
A single meal consisting of a ribeye steak, butter, and a couple of eggs could easily cost around $25 to $40. Compared to a balanced meal from other dietary plans that might include grains, vegetables, and smaller portions of meat or plant-based proteins, a carnivore meal can be significantly more expensive.

While organic and / or grass-fed meats are ideal, there are several cost-effective strategies that students can use to follow a carnivore diet without breaking the bank:

● Buy in Bulk: Purchasing larger quantities of meat from wholesale stores or local farmers can significantly reduce the cost per pound. Look for deals on bulk packages of ground beef, chicken thighs, etc.

● Choose Less Expensive Cuts: Opt for cheaper cuts of meat like ground beef, chuck
roast, pork shoulder, and chicken legs or thighs. These cuts are often just as nutritious and flavorful as more expensive options like ribeye steaks.

● Shop Sales and Discounts: Keep an eye out for sales, discounts, and special offers at local grocery stores. Stock up on meats when they are on sale and freeze portions for later use.

● Buy Frozen Meat: Frozen meat is often cheaper than fresh and can be just as
nutritious. Look for frozen options to save money while still getting quality protein.

● Cook in Batches: Preparing large quantities of meat at once and storing portions for future meals can save both time and money. Batch cooking can help reduce waste and make meal planning easier.

Ultimately, while the carnivore diet offers a unique and straightforward approach to nutrition, individuals must carefully consider both the potential health benefits and the financial implications before making the commitment.


*Consult your doctor before engaging in a new diet plan.

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