This should not surprise those who know me, but I’m a huge fan of meat. All types of meat to various levels, but can I be happy with only meat.
For the last five to six years I have been playing with either Paleo or more recent Keto based nutritional plans. I really enjoyed the Paleo, but either it wasn’t meeting my needs or I wasn’t as disciplined as I should’ve been. Enter the Keto plan. I found more of the results I wanted, but it was consuming so much of my time it was becoming unsustainable. Why was I even worried about what I was eating. I had no illness, obesity or life danger that would call for changes to what I eat. I looked at eating as a means to an end and that means performance.
High Performance Machine
My performance is waning as I get older. There is only so much I can do and only so much time I have left. Before I was focused on my eating, I relied on an insane workout capacity to manage my body composition. It was not something that was sustainable and I know that now. It was fun though, not going to lie. My meal plan was an after thought and I looked at my engine more like wood chipper than a high performance machine.
Discovering My Needs
Along the way I discovered a couple of important needs. One need I have come to value these days is time. I do not want to spend so much time preparing and cooking my meals. I want to enjoy my meals without laboring to make them when I would rather spend my time doing other more enjoyable activities. Another concern was simplicity. If preparing meals was complicated or required so many ingredients it was a one and done thing. I tried a few prepared meal plans and while nice, they didn’t make my palate happy. Then there was the cost. I wanted something without the fear of paying out the nose.
The Proof Is In The Pudding
I had a decent background on diets, but they weren’t necessarily for my own interests. They were family based. My children suffered from severe food allergies early on so we had a strict diet of allowable foods. I discovered all those years ago there were other options. As with most family based diets, the whole family tends to be on the diet when members have certain needs. It is just easier in the end. With time we were able to introduce and observe the effects of various foods. While creating a baseline of what and how the foods affecting our family we could make better decisions. These effects were mostly immediate, within a few minutes to an hour and therefor easy to monitor.
Simple Is Good
This year I decided to eliminate all foods that were not animal based. I had difficulty on my trip to Las Vegas, but aside from that it has been virtually all meat for this whole year. My intention was to go 90 days and review. The wonderful thing about something as simple as an all meat diet aside from its simplicity is its sustainability. After 90 days I realized it was sustainable, that I could maintain this style of eating meat indefinitely. I currently opt for about a 95% all meat diet.
Always Against The Clock
Since time is always working against me it was a major consideration. What I learned is by only having to prepare one item or a few items, no sides, it was both easy and quick. My kitchen routine was no longer split between the main entree and all the sides. It was simply the main entree. I loved the simplicity of this approach, but was surprised on my time savings. Less food to cook, meant less time to prepare, cooked and a big one; clean up. The simplicity was double edged though. Not only was it simple, but at times it could be plane. My culinary creativity has jumped off the charts and I have embraced all sorts of spices, marinades and styles of cooking.
The Almighty Dollar
A major shocker was the cost. Honestly, there is not a real big difference. I split my grocery bill between meat and everything else then compared it to last year’s spending. So far, it is pretty even favoring all meat slightly. If you cut away all the other foods then the cost of meats is somewhat offset. I’m happy about the exclusion of many of these other foods. Most of them did not sit well with me and it took restricting their intake to become aware of their impact. I will say my biggest cravings are for crunchy; which means chips.
Food Is Fuel
One of my reluctance in the past to explore these new pathways was how it would affect my performance. To my surprise it hasn’t or there is no noticeable change. Last year I got hit by a double injury whammy; knee and shoulder. My activity level took a nose dive; which is what prompted a more serious exploration of my eating habits. You could say I was experimenting with an all meat diet then, but it was more by accident and uneducated. My workouts and energy levels have all shown positive and not negative effects. I’m certainly not going to see amazing performance at my age, but I do want to sustain and pursue other activities.
Time Will Tell
There was a lingering question about health concerns. I have researched and read many resources. My conclusion, no idea. While there are tons of support for this style of eating, there are plenty of naysayers. The truth of the matter is this type of eating lacks true scientific research, but has millions of anecdotal observations. As it grows in popularity, there are more and more resources available. What I observed is the greatest critics to this lifestyle have no real evidence of a negative outcome because it hasn’t been accurately studied and their biggest complaint is lack of scientific study. I’m good with that, I’m okay not knowing. They will either make it important enough to study or continue to criticize, but from what I can tell all they can say is the lack scientific evidence for or against.
While these 1,000 brain types argue amongst themselves I’ll be over hear enjoying the simple life.