Can You Eat Avocados on a Carnivore Diet? Why & Why Not?
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A carnivore diet consists of solely eating animal-based products. Avocados come from the plant kingdom so they are disqualified from the carnivore diet.
Research indicates there are health reasons, environmental reasons, economic reasons, and literal criminal reasons in which you should consider dropping avocados from your diet!
I know they taste so darn good! It’s even hard for me to write this article as I am a recovering guacamole addict.
Avocados Aren’t Carnivore
If you are really wanting to try out the carnivore diet you should stick to the simple rules of eating meat-based products, adding extra salt, maybe include some dairy or milk, and always drink water.
Carnivore Improves Health?
The reason the carnivore diet is so appealing to people is that it makes them feel a lot better compared to when they were eating plants, processed foods, vegetable oils, and anything coming from a food chemist.
According to Dr. Shawn Baker’s book, “The Carnivore Diet”, and anecdotal stories/testimonials at MeatRX, there are numerous stories of people improving chronic illness, autoimmune disorders, insulin issues, thyroid problems, arthritis, brain fog, and even erectile dysfunction.
Do fewer plant foods equal less inflammation which in turns leads to less disease? A great question to ask.
Avocados & Plants Are Naturally Toxic…The OGs of Pesticides
Actually if you think about it, all plants are toxic. Plants are no different than us in that they want to live.
They are unable to run from vegans and animals that want to eat them so they have evolved to make there own internal and external forms of pesticides. (These pesticides also help ward off fungi.)
The idea that plants are healthy for us is based on faith and less on nutritional science. In fact most of the nutritional science is rubbish as it’s usually based on epidemiology…studies that can’t prove causation.
However what we do know is that plants have plenty of potentially unhealthy chemicals. Perhaps you have heard of a few of these?
- Cyanogenic Glcosides
- Phytic Acid
- Protease Inhibitors
If you want a quick crash course on these toxic plant chemicals you can check out these two articles when you’re done with this one.
Different plants have different amounts of the above-mentioned chemicals. Even the beloved avocado has a few.
Flavonoids? Avocados Have a Few
Dr. Paul Saladino goes really deep on the chemistry of plants and their harmful toxins in his highly regarded book, “The Carnivore Code”.
In it he discusses the potential dangers of flavonoids.
Flavonoids are in the anti-oxidant category but perhaps we should call them anti-health. Here’s why.
They can act like endocrine disruptors which can mess with hormones and it appears mainly estrogen.
- Plant flavonoids have estrogenic activity
- Estrogenic and antiestrogenic activities of flavonoid phytochemicals
In the second study the researchers say, “the endocrine-disrupting effects of flavonoids are seen in examples of sheep grazing on flavonoid-rich clover, and cheetahs fed soy-rich diets have presented with infertility, reproductive abnormalities, and tumor.”
Those studies point to some major hormone disruption. Us humans need a proper balance of estrogen and testosterone and when it gets disrupted we could have some bedroom style issue!
Flavonoids not only potentially mess with our hormones but apparently they screw with our digestion making it hard to absorb nutrients.
Dr. Saladino says, “they can act as digestive inhibitors, impairing the absorption of vitamin C and resulting in a significant decrease in net protein utilization.”
The Counter: Maybe Some Good in Flavonoids?
There are some studies showing good things from flavonoids and even Dr. Shawn Baker had this to say, “(they’re) potentially beneficial at low levels, but in higher doses, they’ve been noted to cause genetic mutations, oxidation that leads to free radical production and inhibition of hormones.”
Avocados definitely have salicylates as they are part of their defensive chemical arsenal.
According to Dr. Baker and Dr. Saladino this compound is able to trigger reactions in sensitive people like asthma, inflammation, diarrhea, headaches, rashes, and even ringing in the ears.
These molecules are only found in plants so if you go carnivore you may find relief from the above mention symptoms.
You can look at this study too which shows the reduction of aspirin, a compound containing salicylate, improved respiratory symptoms.
- A novel treatment adjunct for aspirin exacerbated respiratory disease: the low-salicylate diet: a multicenter randomized control crossover trial.
Histamine Reactions! Allergic to Avocados?
Some people have negative reactions to avocados due to histamine!
Dietician, Tamara Duker Freuman, wrote a great article on the matter and in it says, “In some cases, they may experience an inflammatory reaction within the digestive system that produces symptoms very similar to IBS and GERD: chest tightening, heartburn, bloating and/or sudden onset diarrhea.”
I’ve heard some people even have anxiety issues as a result of histamine!
If you suspect histamine is hampering your health you should also be aware that meat also may have it. However it’s usually found in older meat and dairy products.
Dr. Saladino says, “eating only fresh, non-processed animal food is the most effective intervention for preventing symptoms related to histamine sensitivity, but DOA supplementation may also be helpful for some people.”
We dedicated a whole article to the histamine issue with meat called:
Externally Caused Consequences of Avocados
Let’s examine the non-dietary consequences of avocados. Some of these will be surprising I’m sure!
Human Made Fertilizers, Herbicides and Pesticides
The consumption and high demand for avocados keeps the chemicals coming. Farmers in the USA, Mexico, and South America use fertilizers, herbicides, and pesticides.
The fertilizers are bad for the ground and have been known to contaminate human water sources.
Herbicides and pesticides are toxic to the environment and humans.
In fact, Monsanto, (now known as Bayer) lost a 2 billion dollar lawsuit for its involvement and production of glysophate which has been shown to cause cancer.
Exporting to the World
Non local foods pose an environmental threat. Basically all the avocados from Mexico and South America create a carbon footprint.
As one of the most popular imported foods, avocados have environmental damage on their hands.
Avocados also account for packaging and marketing material waste.
Think about the added energy costs for refrigeration too.
Avocado farmers use tremendous amounts of water.
According to the Water Footprint Network, “two thousand liters of water are needed to produce just one kilo of avocados. Four times the amount needed to produce a kilo of oranges.”
Avocados suck up so much water that surrounding towns are running out of usable water. In fact, some farms in Peru are diverting water from the towns to the farms and the locals are not happy.
Cartels Steal the “Green Gold”
The avocado business has gotten so out of hand that Mexican cartels have started to infiltrate the business.
They use extortion, intimidation, kidnapping, and even plain old fashioned stealing of businesses and land.
According to the Wall Street Journal, one cartel reportedly earned $152 million from extortion tactics.
Violence is also a new byproduct of avocados as they intimidate farmers with it but also as they battle each other as reported in a New York Times Magazine article.
Avocados don’t have a place in the strict carnivore diet. Sorry, the carnivore diet is meat only.
However if I was forced to pick one fruit or vegetable to eat it would be an avocado. The reason being they are loaded with fat and some more bioavailable vitamins.
To me it seems they are potentially the least damaging foods from the plant kingdom.
The real eye-opener was the environmental impact and the cartel involvement. Unfortunately avocados aren’t innocent little green balls of fatty good taste.
For these reasons it gives us serious motivation to buy and support local regenerative farmers. Buying meat from regenerative farms can potentially save the world but that’s a whole other article!
If you are new to the carnivore community then I highly recommend checking out the World Carnivore Tribe on Facebook. Here you will find like-minded people happy to answer carnivore related questions!
Also if testimonials of people on the carnivore diet interest you check out MeatRX.
This website is packed with carnivore diet-related articles to help you learn, save time, and even money. Here are a few popular posts worth reading:
- What’s The Science, Facts & Myths Behind the Carnivore Diet?
- 16 Perfect Snacks for People on a Carnivore Diet & Meat Lovers
- Can You Drink Alcohol On The Carnivore Diet? (Why and Why not?)
Disclaimer: I’m not a doctor or dietician or nutritionist. Consult with and ask your doctor about any diet or medical-related questions. No information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, prevent or cure any disease or condition.