Published on November 2, 2023, 11:00 am
Elimination diets have gained popularity as a way to identify foods that may be causing symptoms of common conditions like IBS or leaky gut syndrome. These diets require individuals to eliminate specific foods from their diet in order to determine if any particular food is contributing to their symptoms. One such diet, called the Lion Diet, takes a similar approach by advocating for a meat-only diet while eliminating potential triggers for gastrointestinal distress.
The Lion Diet consists solely of ruminant animal meat, water, and salt. This minimalistic approach aims to allow the gut lining to heal by providing essential nutrients that can be easily absorbed in the small intestine without causing gastrointestinal issues. By eliminating plants, which often contain pesticides known as lectins, proponents of the Lion Diet believe that the body’s immune system and gut can heal naturally.
As with any dietary change, there may be side effects during the adaptation period. In the case of the Lion Diet, individuals may experience symptoms similar to those associated with the keto flu. Since this diet primarily consists of fat and protein, the body transitions into a state of ketosis where it relies on ketones produced from fat breakdown for energy instead of carbohydrates. These symptoms typically subside as the body adjusts.
Like other elimination diets, reintroduction phase plays a crucial role in identifying trigger foods. After at least three months on the strict Lion Diet, individuals can slowly reintroduce foods to determine which ones may cause symptoms and which are considered “safe” foods.
The Lion Diet was created by Mikhaila Peterson, who struggled with chronic health issues since childhood. After being diagnosed with conditions like rheumatoid arthritis and serious depression, she searched for a wholesome diet that wouldn’t exacerbate her inflammation. Peterson claims she was able to improve her health through changes made in accordance with the Lion Diet.
While similar to the carnivore diet which focuses on consuming meat products primarily but allows some variation like eggs and dairy products, the Lion Diet is even more restrictive. It strictly limits the diet to ruminant animal meat, salt, and water, excluding non-ruminant meats, poultry, fish, seafood, and even spices and seasonings that some people may be sensitive to.
A typical Lion Diet meal plan consists of a ruminant animal (such as beef or bison), salt, and water. Due to the elimination of food groups like vegetables, fruits, starches, seeds, grains, and legumes, dining out or attending social functions can become challenging for those on this diet.
Individuals following the Lion Diet claim various health improvements such as acne reduction, eczema relief, and alleviation of autoimmune conditions. However, it’s important to note that there haven’t been extensive long-term studies examining the benefits or limitations of this specific diet.
Red meat and salt have been associated with exacerbating conditions like rheumatoid arthritis in some studies. Before attempting the Lion Diet or any other dietary changes, it’s advisable to consult with a healthcare professional who can guide you through an elimination diet if appropriate for your circumstances.
In conclusion, while the Lion Diet may offer potential benefits for certain individuals with specific health concerns and sensitivities to certain foods or ingredients found in plants, it is essential to prioritize personalized advice from healthcare professionals until further research supports its efficacy. Remember that there are less restrictive evidence-based diet plans available that can be personalized according to your individual needs and preferences.