HELP! Severe Stomach Pain on Carnivore when any plant based food in TINY quantities are eaten

(Ryan Hoover) #1

I am looking for advice or people who have experienced similar issues. I have been Keto (under 20 grams total carbs) for four years. Great results. Highly active person. I decided to try Carnivore because I believed the science behind it and was curious about all the positive results from N=1 posts.

It’s been great. I’ve now been carnivore for 60 days. I have bowel movements about every three days and they continue to be very loose. My macros are carbs-0, Protein 150grams, Fat 130grams. Salt, potassium and magnesium are all being supplemented.

What I have noticed after I killed off all the gut bacteria that eats fiber/carbs/plant products etc is that now if eat even 1 Tablespoon of avocado, Peanut butter, lettuce, sugar etc I experience SEVERE abdominal pain that has actually taken me to the ER once. It takes about 45 minutes to hit me and last four 4-7 hours. I gather from this that the food has to totally pass through my system before I begin to feel ok. The pain is like nothing I’ve ever experienced, I get cold beyond belief and basically have to roll around on the ground to distract myself from the pain and force myself to throw up to release gas. It does seem to partially be a gas issue created from the food but the intense pain seems to be only partially related. The pain goes away all at once and I can immediately eat large quantities of beef without consequence. It’s strange how quickly I feel better once it passes.

I was tested via stool sample for bacterial, viral and parasite irregularities, a CT scan was done to rule out abdominal cancer or any organ failure and complete bloodwork was done to check levels. Everything checked out fine.

I am now taking a high potency ProBiotic as well as digestive enzymes (although my pancreas is fine). I also just ate one tablespoon of fermented Kim Chi to see that the effect will be. So far so good.

Is anyone else out there having symptoms like this? I love Carnivore but want to be able to have other foods if I choose. I’ve never been food sensitive and don’t have any allergies. Any comments and/or advice is greatly appreciated as this is interfering dramatically with my life.



No experience with this! Sounds horrible, though. Have you tried to contact Dr. Berry? He has an online presence and he does carnivore.


I wonder if @amber could help on this?


I have been unable to reintroduce veg too.
Nowhere near the extreme reaction you have had! Just uneasy guts and unpleasant bowel consequences.

I don’t actually want to return to veg eating, because I am happy with carnivore, but I would prefer to have the option of eating a few taste sensations on high days and holidays.

At the moment, a quarter avocado would have knock on consequences for a week, at least.

(Ryan Hoover) #6

I have been extremely happy with the carnivore results as well. But the idea of being so sensitive makes me feel like I’ve created a different kind of imbalance in my gut. I don’t want to return to eating a bunch of fiber but I do love avocados. I started a high quality probiotic with digestive enzymes and Kim Chi. It seems to be helping. I just ate 1.5 oz of avocado and am waiting (in fear) to see what happens. So far so good. Sorry to hear you have similar issues but it’s nice to know someone else is having that experience.

(Cathrine Helle) #7

As we’re approaching Christmas, this is something that slightly concerns me too :o I have no desire to go back to plants on a daily basis, but there are some things I would like to taste to get the full Christmas experience. My gut is steadily improving, and I would hate to reset everything to scratch for sentimental reasons. If I decide to go off plan it will most definitely be on stuff that’s as benign for the gut as possible. Hopefully my gut will be fine with small amounts, but I really have no idea :confused:

(mole person) #8

I do a sort of leaning heavily carnivore sort of diet and it doesn’t lead to this issue in spite of giving me respite from all sorts of distress that a more carb/fibre rich diet inflicts. First I continue to use vegetables for meat flavouring. A bit of chopped onions, garlic, a bit of diced tomato or tomato paste, even a celery stalk and /or carrot in a stock or pot roast. I also have a small serving of a vegetable that I know causes no distress once or twice a week, usually a half avocado or something from the cabbage family. Most days I have 1-2 olives as well. I doubt I average even 5 g of carbs/day. In spite of leaving in these incidental vegetables I feel much better than I did before. It’s also left me feeling well enough that I can see instantly now what is REALLY causing my biggest issues whereas before it was impossible since I was always in some sort of distress and nothing could stand out.

(Sondra Rose) #9

Google FODMAPS intolerance. I can do very, very small amounts of low FODMAPS plants, but avocados and other high FODMAPS fruit cause very painful gas and bloating in extremely small quantities, so I avoid!

(Ryan Hoover) #10

What is so strange, and kind of the point of this post, is that I didn’t have these food sensitivities before I went Carnivore. I’m trying to find someone with a similar story but it’s been impossible. Thanks for the feedback.

(Sondra Rose) #11

I think my tolerance was certainly higher pre-Carnivore, but I did have similar, but less intense symptoms and just thought they were “normal” and that I had simply eaten too much.

(Bunny) #12

When you eat meat only your going to have more Bacteroidetes than Firmicutes which will make it more difficult to digest dietary plant based fibers as you can see here in Jeff Leach’s desert experiment.


Carnivore is good to heal a leaky gut especially with bone broth for food allergies like histamine intolerances and auto-immunity problems with foods but I would not stick with it permanently because those intolerances can be cured by reintroducing those foods you were allergic too back into the diet, most peeps don’t understand how this is possible and the reason is because the leaky gut allows foods that you eat to go directly into the blood stream rather than being digested properly by stomach acid, digestive enzymes (some foods may make it past this process), and then to the gut flora biome in the duodenum, small and large intestines!

BTW: with a leaky gut the immune system attacks itself; the food in your blood stream including taking with it your body parts in the process e.g. arthritis: immune system attacks the cartilage or anti-bodies eats the cartilage away and to compensate for the loss of cartilage the bones (joints) try to fuse together…

Carnivore is very therapeutic but not a permanent solution! I know I am going to catch hell for saying this but people need to know the TRUTH!

(Ryan Hoover) #13

It seems obvious that I have disrupted my gut biome by eating carnivore for 60 plus days but man I’m having problems getting it back in line. Even a tiny amount of fiber, carb or sugar will have me bent over in pain for up to six hours. I’m taking probiotics, digestive enzymes and eating small amounts of fermented foods but in reality…it hasn’t helped at all. I was NEVER this sensitive before.


My logic is piping up and saying well maybe it is that you have simply become more sensitive to issues you had before but that were not so apparent because you were simply used to a low level chronic discomfort? It reminds me of doing an elimination diet to weed out potential issues with different foods.

I’m going to see if I can get Amber O’Hearn to weigh in on this.

People like Amber who feel well only when eating carnivore and have been doing so for a long time (and plan to do so permanently) would disagree. I take issue with anyone saying that their opinion is TRUTH. We know by now that there is never one truth to any situation. I am not saying your argument is not valid for x no of people but it is not a blanket truth that applies to everyone.

(Chris) #15

Well said, Daisy.

(Betsy) #16

Ryan, can you drink coffee?

Do you ever get headaches or insomnia?

(John) #17

Have you tried an animal-based carb in a small quantity? I am thinking something like Fage Total 5% yogurt. Has all of the good active cultures, is primarily protein and fat, but still has a small amount of carb (3g carbs in a 100g serving) from the naturally occurring lactose. I am talking like trying 1 Tbsp like you have been doing with the kimchi.


If you had lurking intolerances prior to carnivore, your body was probably just trundling along dealing with those foods.

Once you stopped them, the coping mechanism was down graded. So re-introducing them will kick off bigger symptoms than before.

2 choices. Cut them out again and decide that you are intolerant and should continue to avoid the foods. Or reintroduce them slowly, to rebuild your coping mechanism.

Interestingly, my problem with veering off carnivore foods doesn’t seem to be food intolerances (which was a surprise) it seems to be fibre. As in ANY veg fibre causes unpleasant rucktions for several days. So I can eat v low fibre non-carni stuff with virtually no problem (except that it affects blood glucose) but any fibre… no thanks. Just not worth it. I’m rather wary of trying to re-build my fibre tolerance, because… well… Disaster Pants!

(Ryan Hoover) #19

I tolerate coffee just fine. I don’t have insomnia, actually get great sleep and fall right to sleep. Great energy with workouts as well. Oddly I can tolerate hot sauces as well. But something like chili powder could send me over the edge. It’s really hard to see patterns.

(Ryan Hoover) #20

I haven’t tried that but I will. I eat beef liver which has trace carbs and am fine with it. On days that I eat beef liver and eggs I may get as much as 10grams of carbs. Doesn’t bother me at all.

(Ryan Hoover) #21

this makes a lot of sense to me. I really enjoy the benefits I get from Carnivore and part of me just wants to make it permanent. I’ve always had low level issues with fibrous veggies but never with nuts, seeds, PB or even a burrito say on a cheat day. Of course it’s hard to tell if there was an issue and I was coping without even knowing it. I’ve actually stopped my probiotics and am leaning more towards staying carnivore and avoiding the foods. But damn I’ll miss avocado and PB!!!