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Kelly improved her kidney disease, and digestion on a carnivore diet

I am a 54 year old female. I have been doing the carnivore diet for 3.75 years.
 
I had to have a liver transplant due to autoimmune disease in 2013 and then lost my colon to ulcerative colitis in 2015.  I wish I had known about the carnivore diet back when it may have been possible to save my colon, but that’s water under the bridge.
 
I have to take an anti-rejection medication every day for the rest of my life, and that med is nephrotoxic. When my UC was at it’s worst, I suffered an acute kidney injury from dehydration, and adding a daily dose of nephrotoxicity didn’t help. The end result of all of that was a eGFR as low as 20 and a creatinine of 2.54 back in March of 2015.
 
Fast forward to April of 2016. I had been eating low-carb paleo for a year, with the modification of no leafy greens. But I was still eating root vegetables and some of the other veggies they recommend. But even though I had gotten rid of the inflamed, non-functioning colon that was said to be the cause of my problems, most importantly of which was anemia, I was still anemic. I never could tolerate oral iron supps and the I.V. infusions I had in the past never had a lasting effect.
 
In April of 2016 I dropped all plant matter from my diet. This was quite a scary leap of faith for me because, while I knew that meat wasn’t bad for me, I had read that people with chronic kidney disease should greatly limit their protein to help slow the progression of the disease.  Was I about to hasten my route to dialysis and a kidney transplant? 
 
Turns out that “too much” protein does not kill your kidneys and some vegetables can block your absorption of iron (among other things).
 
3 months after dropping all plant matter from my diet, all my iron markers came into normal range and have stayed there. My last eGFR in September of 2019 was 49 and my creatinine was normal at 1.16.   And while 49 is still below normal for eGFR, I have been as high as 52 over the last few years eating carnivore, and was as low as 20 before carnivore.  And this has all happened while eating 2 1/2 to 3 pounds of meat a day for almost 4 years now.
 
The immunosuppresant I take every day also tends to cause high blood pressure, high blood sugar and anemia, among many other things. But I have not had any of these issues and though I cannot prove it because I don’t have a clone of myself to use as a control, I feel that my diet has a lot to do with my “resistance” to those effects.
 
One more benefit of this diet I’d like to mention— my digestion is smooth and quiet, and never gives me any trouble. And if you’ve ever had an IBD flare, you know how huge this benefit is!  
 
My GI tract has been sliced, diced and re-plumbed significantly and doesn’t look anything like what most people have.  I have had a Roux-en-Y Choledochojejunostomy and an open proctocolectomy with APR. I don’t expect anyone to care about those details, but suffice it say that fiber is my enemy because of how altered my plumbing is. 
 
I have no plans to change the way I eat. Meat is easy to digest and is packed with all the nutrients we need in a highly bioavailable package. That bioavailability is key, especially for people like me.
 
Kelly
 
 
 

8 thoughts on “Kelly improved her kidney disease, and digestion on a carnivore diet

  1. As someone who has recently been diagnosed with IBD this is so encouraging. The only thing I’m taking for my IBD is Phosphatidylcholine and magnesium supplements. I suspect I’m not absorbing nutrients as well as I should and I am getting B12 injections. Sounds like I need to be careful to drink plenty of water too.

  2. This is amazing, thank you so much for sharing. I’m only just getting started, and I don’t want to make promises I can’t keep. But so far so good. I have Celiac and a genetic predisposition for IBD which is connected to the Celiac like a time bomb (even treated Celiac). I’m very afraid that this is why I didn’t fully recover with just the gluten free diet.

    When my health was already waning, I tried so many diets and was a vegan for a long time thinking that’s the right thing to do. It wasn’t and it injured me to think that. I won’t make that dogmatic mistake twice. I’m going to lead with how it makes me feel and whether I’m getting healthier or not.

    Grass fed beef comes in little tiny packages, so it feels weird to buy 8 of them at once and marinate 4 at a time. And it’s not fully true that you can just forget about meal planning, the rest of the family probably won’t keep carnivore with you. But so far, the way I feel is stronger and many of the fatigue feelings I have are based on strength. The effect on hunger is amazing too (it’s gone). I generally have more energy and motivation without having to chant mantras to keep doing my tasks through pain. That in itself is extremely nice.

  3. I’m so happy for you Kelly and your face just glows with health! Thank you so much for sharing your carnivore success with the rest of us. Those of us with health issues who are newbies to carnivore really appreciate reading stories like yours. Improved kidney function, just wow!! 🙂

  4. Thank you, Kelly! You’ve given me the courage to try carnivore for my CKD! Carnivore and lots of water (8 to 10 glasses).

  5. What did you do to cope with oxalate dumping?

  6. Hi Kelly~amazing results. I know people who have hashimotos as well as other autoimmune diseases do your story is intriguing. I just started carnivore a s am so excited about how I feel and how the scale is going down. Do you live in TC? Noticed your t-shirt. I live here too and would love to talk sometime if possible.

  7. Thank you! Thank you! So much for sharing this story, exactly the info I needed to hear to know I am on the right path. I have tried everything to alleviate the symptoms of SIBO, for years chronic pain exhaustion, etc. My doctor and my husband are concerned about my kidneys and other organs as I embark on a carnivore diet. I’m 27 days into this lifestyle, not perfect, had some slip ups in the beginning but am feeling better than I have in years.

  8. Thank you. I want to do carnivore. I have type 2 diabetes with stage 2 or 3 ckd. Your story has given me the courage to do the carnivore. I have done me to buy my blood sugar are not where they need to be and I have lost 25 pounds. I am obese and my life quality and length is not good Thank you for Sharing.

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