As many Americans cancelled meat from their diets this January in what became known as Veganuary, Joe Rogan went all in, going on the Carnivore Diet.
For a full 30 days, he ate only meat. Grass-fed beef, elk, eggs, repeat.
“When you have no carbohydrates, one of the things that’s amazing is that there’s no crashing,” Rogan said in an interview with Tom Papa. “My energy levels were amazing.” Some proponents believe that the Carnivore Diet can reduce certain health issues that plants might aggravate in a small number of people (get insight on the whole debate here).
But about two weeks in, the picture wasn’t so rosy. He’d lost weight—after 30 days, he dropped about seven pounds, he says—but the side effect of having all meat, all the time was what he called on Instagram “explosive uber diarrhea.”
Or, well, worse than explosive uber diarrhea. And he clarifies in the Papa interview that “It needs to have a new name. Diarrhea isn’t strong enough for what I was experiencing; it’s like someone was tapping into, like, an oil well.” We’ll leave it to you to get many, many more details on that from the video, but suffice it to say that they’re there, and you’re probably going to want to know them before you attempt this diet, if you dare.
All told, Rogan says he dropped about 12 pounds during the month. (The diarrhea cleared up after about two weeks, he says.)
Here’s what a day on the plan looked like:
A typical breakfast: 6 eggs, or steak.
A typical lunch: “I don’t eat lunch, just usually two meals a day.”
A typical dinner: Steak or elk.
He supplemented that with bacon—you need fat, he says, since meats like elk are very lean—plus “lots of vitamins and supplements,” including amino acids and fish oil, to make up for the nutrients he was missing from eating a variety of foods during the month.
“What is it like if you extend that to 90 days, or 365 days?…Is it going to start breaking your body down? I don’t know.” He also admits “I don’t know that it’s a way to eat all the time.”
What he does know, he says, is that there’s value to going all in sometimes. Ideally, he says, any restrictive plan is probably best done 6 days on, one day off. But for the Carnivore Diet in January, it was all-in, and there’s value to that, he says. “We need a certain amount of rigidity occasionally, that’s how you get shit done.”
Marty Munson, currently the health director of Men’s Health, previously served as deputy editor at Dr Oz The Good Life and director of digital content at Shape.