Four Years Eating Raw Meat

| 111 Comments

I’m writing about eating raw meat because there aren’t a whole lot of people out there who’ve got much experience with it and some people want to know what it’s like. I’m not writing this post to try to convert the world to a raw meat diet.

How I Got Started Eating Raw Meat

I had quite a few health problems growing up. After years of doctors visits and a plethora of prescription drugs taken and enormous loads of money spent, I had no choice but to look to diet to help me. While the diet changes I made helped, feeling great was still elusive. So I went on searching for solutions to some of my more persistent symptoms.

During one lazy summer in 2007, I read Shogun. I’ve always been in awe of how beautiful and young looking Japanese people are. I had some Japanese friends in college and they were simply perfect. Being the brainwashed American that I was I thought it was luck or genetics. Until I read, in 1152 pages, how those people eat. “They actually live on raw fish, fish broths, rice, and a little fermented veggies?” I thought. How simple! How wonderful! I was in utter awe. I studied this idea and then decided to try it on myself.

At first, I wasn’t prepared to add rice because that was practically against my Paleo religion but the idea of including raw animal food was really starting to make sense to me. I had read about others who ate raw meat. Weston Price had mentioned them and so had Aajonus Vanderplanitz. And it was always in the context of healing and optimal nutrition.

What I Eat and How I Ate It

I started eating raw meat in 2007.

I started out drinking raw milk. I was actually really surprised that it didn’t kill me. Then I ate jerky dried at 100 degrees – bacteria still in tact but looked cooked. Then I made some cured salmon by leaving it out on the counter for a few days with salt and honey (really really good stuff by the way). For the most part only good bacteria can survive in super salty and sugary environments so I knew I would be safe there. Then I had some sushi grade raw tuna (which just means previously frozen). Then I had raw eggs. Then I tried some raw grassfed ground beef that had been frozen for 14 days. Then I tried other raw seafood that had been previously frozen.

Then I quit eating cooked meat entirely.

I ate some raw liver and kidney that I got directly from a farm and I ate it without previously freezing it. If the Inuits could tear into a freshly killed animal and eat its liver then maybe so could I, I reasoned.

It had been months and I was doing fine. I had never gotten sick.

I started getting more and more confident that raw meat doesn’t make people sick and so I started caring less and less about where it came from and whether it had been previously frozen. I digested raw meat so well and my digestion had changed so much I was just in heaven.

Freezing meat kills a lot of pathogens but it kills a lot of beneficial bacteria as well. So I definitely like to eat some of my meat unfrozen. Bacteria from raw meat may help populate a healthy bowel.

However, my bowel sure was a lot healthier since eating raw meat. So I took the notion to the next level and experimented with eating rotten meat – that’s what Aajonus Vanderplanitz is known for.

This involves putting meat into little jars in the fridge or cupboard and waiting until it gets super duper disgusting before you eat it. It’s really really disgusting. It’s freaking repulsive actually. But it doesn’t hurt you to eat it. No stomach aches or puking or anything. In fact, it’s rather energizing. My neice and nephew and myself all used to do this. We don’t do it anymore because it’s gross. Aajonus did it because he learned that it could cure his cancer. I don’t have cancer so I’ll save the rotten meat for when I’m dying. Bleh.

If you want to see what it looks like to eat rotten meat, check out this video of Aajonus Vonderplanitz on Ripley’s Believe It Or Not.

Why Doesn’t Raw Meat Kill Me?

Because my stomach acid is strong. Because my bowel transit time is good. Because I don’t eat industrial foods. Because I eat only natural, whole foods. Because I am fit. Because I have a very strong immune system and my body can take care of pathogens. Pathogens don’t always mean death. Sometimes they mean diarrhea for a couple of days, vomiting, or other important built-in detox methods. I wrote more about about parasites here.

Eventually I stopped eating raw land animals and narrowed it down to raw seafood (along with rice and raw juices). I did that for two years. It was lovely but I don’t feel the need to eat just raw meats anymore. I do fine eating cooked meat now.

I’ve been eating raw meat and seafood for over four years and can’t see any reason why I would ever stop. It works for me.

Why Don’t I Just Eat Like a Normal Person?

A lot of people have never bothered to go to the measures I have with diet either because they don’t have a whole lot of problems to worry about, they really like eating processed foods, or because they still don’t believe that diet can transform a body and mind so profoundly. Or they’ve tried some version of the Paleo diet and it didn’t provide totally amazing results. They didn’t bother to keep on tinkering with it.

For me, it was important to feel spectacular. I devoted a few years to learning and experimenting. There were some symptoms I just couldn’t bare to live with.

Some people can happily settle for poor or mediocre health, especially if great health means eating weird food or giving up comfort foods, but I just couldn’t. That is just me. If that’s you too, keep searching. It may take a couple of years to narrow down your own sweet spot, but what is a few years in 70 or 80? Nothing. Striving for good health is worth it.

Author: Peggy the Primal Parent

The blog owner!

111 Comments

  1. I have been thinking about trying a week or two of just meat, but I would probably still cook it. I don’t mind raw fish, but I suppose it’s just a psychological thing for me with other raw meats.

    At the same time the idea that most raw meat grosses me out kind of makes me want to take it up as a challenge.

    • Interestingly enough, digesting most meats is a problem for me. Cooked or not my body doesn’t do well with red meat and I’m allergic to most seafood. I am hoping that the 7 year allergy thing is true because I really would like to eat more seafood. I do it anyway sometimes and I suffer greatly. The stomach pangs, the rolling over, the bloating and the gas isn’t fun. I can’t say I have ever tried raw meat but I am afraid of it because the reactions my body has when I have it cooked.

      Any Paleo people had similar reaction to red meat before they went Paleo? It sounds like a great concept in theory but I am terrified of putting it into practice. I haven’t met a cow that doesn’t give me a tummy ache.

      • Melissa, it couldn’t hurt (for too long) to try it. As much as I love cooked beef it always makes me bloated and kind of lethargic. Sometimes it makes my digestion too slow and sometimes it makes it too fast. But raw, it doesn’t do this. It’s really nice actually.

      • Try it! Seafood probaly too much mercury for you… I have tried for two days. No stomach problems and my hunger has dropped aaalot by eating fruit, cocobutter, raw eggs and meat and lota of raw honey (very good for digestion). It is not very appealing yet but I’m sure after a bit of time it will be :)

    • I ate a whole 10 oz sirloin steak today, totally raw. I seasoned it really good and then dipped the pieces in mustard or BBQ sauce. The meat itself still tasted like rare steak, only you could still detect the faint remnants of blood. A coppery sort of taste. I must admit, since its the first raw meat I have ever eaten, I gagged my way through it. the taste wasn’t horrible, but rather it was the texture that got me. I am very sensitive to textures and even bananas will make me gag as they pass over the back of my tongue. Raw meat is so tender its almost squishy, so that was a challenge for me. However, I refused to be beaten and forced it all down. I would totally do this again, but I would go for meat with more fat, and probably I would want to try raw salmon as they have a better, more healthful fat than grain fed beef. Raw fat is actually very healthy for you and full of essential oils if its fish (omega 3). The key is RAW. Once meat and fat is cooked you lose almost all of the good benefits and it becomes dead and unhealthy for you. The Inuits are the healthiest people in the world if they eat the traditional diet: raw whale, seal and fish meat, including lots of healthy raw fat. They also ate the organs raw too, which are full of nutrients and even vitamin C, which is why they never got scurvy. Once you cook the meat then the Vitamin C and other enzymes are destroyed, because they are very heat sensitive. You actually need raw fat to digest your meat, as too much lean meat can actually send your liver into distress because of an overdose of protein. People who got that often waste away and die so I’ve read, because the liver just can’t handle the protein load anymore. There is such a thing as too much protein.

      If all you ever ate was cooked meat, then you would probably be quite unhealthy indeed, as most of the nutrients are dead by that point.

      Sadly, the health of a lot of Inuit peoples have dramatically decreased since the arrival of American junk food. Candy, hamburgers, deep frying…etc. Its so sad.

  2. I tried raw ground beef for the first time a few weeks ago and thought of you. It was surprisingly tasty actually. I could see myself eating regularly it without a problem. On the rotten meat, I don’t think I could stand it. I wonder if taking probiotics would have a similar effect though?

    From June to October, I also tried just eating all meat and fat. At first it was ok, but I progressively felt worse and worse. I felt totally exhausted and didn’t want to believe it was the diet. I hardly lost weight either.

    I kept thinking if I just stuck with it, it’d work out. Finally though, it started affecting my work so I decided it wasn’t worth it. So, I integrated green vegetables in and immediately felt much better.

    Now I feel energetic and the weight loss started again. I wonder though, if I had had the meat raw instead of cooked, if the experience would have been different.

    I’ll have to try it some day.

  3. Hey, Peggy! This is a great subject. I actually had Ajonous over to my house to do a lecture in my garage years back when I first learned about eating animal foods raw. I used to eat my meat and fish raw and everything else, too. I’ve always (and still do) ordered my steaks blood-dripping rare when dining out and enjoy steak tartar on occasion. Steak tartar is a delicacy for many cultures across the world, so it’s not that strange eating raw meat. Sushi (raw fish) not so strange either.
    After reading this blog post, I’m leaning towards going all raw again. I never did try the rotten meat; maybe some day. The only way I could get myself to eat chicken raw was by soaking it in freshly squeezed lemon juice and seasoned it with fresh herbs. I know this somehow cooks the meat, but does it degrade the beneficial bacteria, enzymes and nutrients like when you cook with fire? I can’t remember what Ajonous said about this in his book I have. I’ll have to dig it out and reread it.
    I think I went back to eating my meat and fish cooked, because I needed my food to be warm, especially going into the winter months.
    Thanks again for the inspiring knowledge that you share. Have a great day!

    • Eva, sounds like me. I did all raw for a long time and then I guess I just wanted my food warm too. And everyone around me was eating their food warm. And at first I always tolerate it ok but in time, I seem to get less and less efficient with it. So back to raw I go. I’m not quite there again this round. I’m still eating cooked fish but that’s it. I’ve not been eating cooked meat for a while now.

      That’s so cool that you had Aajonus over. I’ve always wondered what he’s like. He has a peaceful, experienced looking face.

      • He is definitely peaceful and oh so knowledgeable. But you know how you had mentioned in another blog how you become unemotional when you eat all raw meat. Well, that is exactly how Aajonus is. No emotion whatsoever, just a calm, steady aura about him.

  4. I don’t really suffer from anything major. I would like to have more energy figure out why my sinus hurt some days, and have better digestion. I really want to figure out what’s best for me. I have a few road blocks with doing this right now.
    1. I have two kids 2 and under and I don’t get enough sleep usually. Even though I nap when they do, I still find myself tired. With that being said, what if it’s due to my diet? I eat paleo and am starting to add more fermented foods in order to help digestion.
    2. I’m nursing both of my kids so I can’t really ever skimp on food or fast or try something dramatic because, well, I’m not willing to sacrifice milk production of quality of milk.

    I wanna know how you start testing what’s good for you. is there a way I could go about this?

    • Did you read my post on self-experimentation? I don’t remember if I went into detail about the process or not but I start with a base of just meat and then slowly build from there. Things that wreck my digestion are precisely the things that most people say are supposed to help, like vegetables and fermented foods. It might be really difficult to figure out what’s going on if your body doesn’t approve of the usual suggestions.

      • I will take a look at it. I just remember you lived off of raw milk. I guess I was also wondering if i could be doing all the right things but may not be able to pin point anything due to lack of sleep? Thank you!!

        • Cassie,
          I found when I first started to move into the paleo lifestyle my energy levels were extremely low, too. I never took naps, but I had to every day. Then I read on one of the paleo blogs that it is very important to increase healthy fats to replace the carbs that you are no longer eating. I consume raw grass-fed butter by the tablespoonful(between 5-8) on a daily basis and EVOO (1-3 tbsp), because it has increased my energy to the point where I don’t have to nap anymore. Plus everything tastes better with butter!

        • You may not be truly lacking sleep at all. I have had times of extreme fatigue and it has been because of something off in my diet (or a head injury…), either a food allergy, or something that I was not digesting properly. Once I solve the food problem, my energy will increase almost immediately. Either something is keeping you unnecessarily awake, your sleep quality is poor, or you’re not going to bed in time. You are breastfeeding and all!

  5. As a kid I used to steal raw ground burger when my mom was preparing dinner. I always got in trouble. But I loved it! To this day I love cappacio, sashimi. I always make my burger patty or steak rare or I cannot digest it. If meat is cooked to medium it feels like it sits in my stomach for 24 hours and does not move. Because of you, I am going to try some steak tartar with a raw pastured egg yolk (I always order a raw quail egg at sushi and it never made me sick). Do you add sea salt to your raw meat? Do you add any seasonings? Like with Sashimi I usually use lemon juice or ponzu sauce. Thanks for this blog!

    • You’re welcome Heather!

      I don’t like lemon juice on my sashimi because I don’t like the way it “cooks” it. With sashimi I usually indulge in wheat free tamari. With oysters I use just lemon juice. With raw beef I use sea salt and a sprinkle of herbs and sometimes a tiny bit of lime juice. Eggs I just gulp down. :P

  6. Love this post! It is great to get a look at how you found out the best ways that your body responds to food. It seems simple, but most people don’t even think that way!

  7. Fascinating stuff, truly.

    I’m sure you’re familiar with the work of V. Steffanson (but if you’re not: http://www.biblelife.org/stefansson1.htm … no idea why it’s hosted on “biblelife” but the document has no religious tones) he also eventually ended up eating rotten fish with the Eskimos.

    I don’t really have anything else to add, but I do enjoy your blog a great deal.

    • I have read that over and over and linked to it many times on my site here! I always thought that was funny it was on biblelife too.

      He was another one of the key figures that changed the way I look at food. He made a big impression on me. As well as Pottenger. Whoof. Powerful stuff.

  8. Fascinating blog, thanks for sharing. I try to eat red meat as rare as any restaurant will let me, but don’t buy much meat for home consumption, mainly getting my protein at home from eggs. Sushi feels like my powerfood, though, and after years of reading about raw meat in Nourishing Traditions and now reading this, I REALLY want to try to get more into it. Thanks!

  9. raw eggs make me feel sick. I’ve read that my reaction could be to the grains and soy in the chicken’s diet that get preserved in the egg. Eating eggs on a frequent basis makes me ill too. I’ve noticed that I feel best when eating beef and fish everyday and not chicken but I can’t afford that right now. Do you have any thoughts? I have some meatballs in the freezer, I’ll try defrosting a few and eating them raw. Since you posted about poop I’ve made sure to eat a lot of fat and to eat beef or chicken every day, along with probiotics. I think my digestion has sped up and of course I am feeling a lot better. But I want to continue to improve. I used to eat frozen coconut milk smoothies for breakfast and now that it is cold I’m stuck on what to make, since eggs would have seemed like the logical choice. I’ll keep at it. Thank you for this blog, it is the primal blog that has made the biggest difference for me, I appreciate it so much!

    • Hi, ak! When I used to eat Trader Joe’s organic omega-3 cage-free vegetarian fed eggs, I developed an allergy to them–itchy, watery eyes with sinus congestion. I would eat 3-4 a day. So I do believe it is a result of what they are feeding the chickens, soy, corn, etc; because ever since switching to 100% pasture raised Amish eggs, I have not had any allergies at all. I eat three a day no problem and have for the past 10 months.

    • I have read that about eggs as well but then pastured eggs should be fine right? Have you tried those? Sometimes I wonder about the theory. I have issues with eggs sometimes and I have never found that it matters where they come from.

      I should have added this to the post, but forgot; anyway, I eat much less food in general when I eat raw and that saves a lot of money. ;) There’s something about cooked food that makes me want to eat larger quantities. I think this is pretty common.

      • For the record, though, I do not have an egg allergy and don’t have the symptoms that Eva mentioned. Sometimes I have felt that eggs are problematic when combined with other things for me. I never did figure out what those other things are though… Maybe it’s cooked meat. haha!

      • Peggy, wanting to eat larger quantities of food–could it be because when we cook food it diminishes the quantity and quality of nutrients in it, therefore the body has to eat more of it in order to get more. Since raw food has all of that intact, I would assume we wouldn’t have to eat as much to get the amount our body needs. Just a theory on my part–or is it?

      • I guess I just have to keep experimenting! I haven’t tried different eggs consistently enough to know if changing the kind made a difference. There was a sale on omega 3 eggs today so I bought a whole bunch. Here we go!

  10. I love steak tartare..It is on the menu at all of the french bistros here…Is there a safe and preferred way to approach poultry raw? Fantastic article as usual Peggy..Thank you for the enlightenment

    • Thanks Donna!

      It isn’t as easy to find truly pastured poultry as it is to find grassfed meat. But as long as they are living in good conditions, not penned up, get to peck and scratch a bit, and not fed antibiotics, the meat will probably be fine.

      I don’t find raw poultry all that appetizing and so don’t eat it raw these days but I used to. When I started this I ate everything. I would marinate it in lemon juice. It kind of cooks it – think ceviche.

      I don’t eat raw poultry these days but I also do not bother to carefully wash the things that touch it. I usually just rinse my hands. I don’t think it is unsafe. I don’t think raw meat is unsafe in general.

  11. Hi Peggy! Once again you have written an excellent article! You are a dear to share your experience, so that all can benefit from your experience. If I can ever be of any assistance to you, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

    Sincerely,
    Michael Parastino

  12. Hi Peggy, I am interested in incorporating some raw meat into my diet. How would you recommend transitioning into this? To me, cutting a steak into small pieces and freezing them in a zip-lock bag for 2 weeks before eating seems favorable. Would you agree? As for egg yolks, I don’t see any reason why i shouldn’t be able to eat those immediately.

    • Hi Pete. What you suggest is actually what I do with organs since I don’t eat large quantities at once. Thin slices of steak, kind of like sashimi, is nice. Minced steak like in steak tartar is also nice. You can buy sashimi grade seafood at Whole Foods or at a Japanese market. They will have been previously frozen.

      Do whatever makes you feel comfortable.

  13. Peggy: What about meat (beef) seared on the outside but extremely rare on the inside? Would that work to get the benefits of raw but the flavor and warmth of cooked?

  14. I think grocery stores (like Whole Foods, you mention) actually get their meat frozen and then thaw it. Or, at least that’s what I’ve heard.
    I am very much into raw seafood, and I like rare steaks and burgers (and I have to admit pork and turkey too), but I just have a hard time convincing myself that I would be ok if I ate the red meat completely raw. It’s probably years and years of being conditioned to fear it, but it’s a scary thing to venture into for me. And, my husband wound up with a very serious case of poisoning after just touching a dead crab on a beach once. But, again, we have both eaten raw crab so I don’t know what the difference was.
    One of these days I might get brave and just not cook that steak or something. I don’t find the idea disgusting, just scary! Thanks for posting this, it definitely gets my mind working.

    • Casey,

      I always ask questions at the grocery store. Some of the meat is previously frozen and then thawed, pretty much all seafood is, but at least the couple of times I’ve asked about their grassfed ground beef, it was fresh. It probably varies, so I’d say just ask.

  15. Aside from sushi, my first raw meat experience was 4 months ago when, inspired by you, I ate raw GF beef liver (previously frozen). I never even ate cooked liver before this. It took a huge mental leap to do it. Now, I usually have it for breakfast as it helps the bowel. It’s especially nice after a morning workout. It makes me feel strong and my body just knows what to do with it. I feel great when I eat it without anything cooked. Although, I don’t eat completely raw, as I can handle cook meats just fine.
    Since then, I order raw oysters at restaurants, eat raw sardines, and request med-rare steak from the grill. My husband thinks it’s a phase. It’s not. It’s really the only way I feel good. Luckily he is very supportive and cooks the meat to 145 deg, no questions asked. Guess he likes the resulting good moods and physical changes in me, too 
    One glitch, just happened today:
    I decided to cleanse, eat only raw meat. For breakfast I had 1/2 raw GF beef liver, and 1 raw oyster. Then around lunch time, I started to get really worried that I didn’t have enough raw food for the day, and I obsessed about when and how I was going to portion each bit of raw meat. I passed by the cafe on my way out for lunch, my mistake. I completely overindulged on beef brisket, trout, nuts, and sweetened mango kefir.
    I know it came from the brain induced fear of not having enough food. Is this a will power thing? Should it be done on a “rest” day (i.e. no bike riding or other high intensity workout)? Any supplements for anxiousness, or other suggestions?
    Thank you so much for every post! It’s inspiring & life changing.

    • Sara, that is so awesome that you’re feeling good! That’s how I am with raw meat. It makes me feel light and happy.

      Next time you know you don’t have enough food for the day, just tell yourself you’ll be fasting. Then it is easy to deal with psychologically. I’ve done what you describe before too.

  16. Hey, Peggy!
    Just wanted to let you know that I ate raw chicken liver for the first time in my life yesterday after dinner. I had some leftover, so I ate it this morning for breakfast with a heaping tablespoon of raw butter. I don’t mind the taste at all. I, actually, liked the creamy, smooth texture of it, too.
    You’ve inspired me to going back to eating my meat raw, too. For dinner tonight, I ate a 1/2 pound of rib eye thinly sliced with some mixed lettuce greens, a heaping tablespoon of butter and a tablespoon of EVOO. I felt so much lighter and content afterward.

  17. Great post, Peggy! I’ve been lurking here for a while and loving it all. I’m sort of easing my way into the raw meat dealio – I get grassfed hamburger made from old dairy cows in their entirety (i.e. not just the trash cuts) and started having a small bowlful of that with olive or coconut oil and sometimes balsamic vinegar. I absolutely adored it, but then the boyf moved in and started gagging anytime he saw me doing it, so it’s gone underground. He says he’d be more ok with raw steak, though, just hates the visual texture of the hamburger, so maybe that will win him over!

    • Thanks for commenting Nelly! That’s pretty funny. My boyfriend is Colombian so he’s pretty tough about gross foods – they eat all the gristle and cartilage over there. That stuff makes me gag. But the first time he saw me eating raw meat, he thought it was pretty cool. I was like, nice, this guy’s a keeper. :)

      Honestly though, I can sympathize with your boyfriend. It does look kind of weird.

  18. peggy, thanks for the great insights and encouragements i’mgoing to give raw grassfed ground beef a try for the first time tonight, i’ve got some in the fridge and was previously undecided on what to do with it tonight, but now i’ve got it all figured out
    thanks again,
    keep up the great article writing!

  19. Thanks for the inspiration to include more raw meat in my diet! I grew up on a farm and drank only raw dairy (unfortunately “illegal” here in the dairy state), and I eat most of my steak and hamburger patties rare. I, too, used to sneak the raw and undercooked hamburger meat from my mother’s cooking.

    I had some raw oysters sprinkled with lime juice yesterday. Yum! How many do you eat at a time? I had 3, which was a good amount to start.

    I do want to try rare liver.

  20. Tried raw chicken gizzards and raw beef heart for the first time in the last couple of days. Not bad at all. Also, I used to marinate raw chicken in lime to pre-cook it and make it more palatable; but I had straight raw chicken for dinner tonight, and it was actually tasty. I’ve been eating my steak raw again, too. I think I’m well on my way to eating mostly raw. What I have noticed when I do eat something cooked now, I get a bit of an upset stomach. But when I eat the meats raw, I feel great!

  21. Ok awesome post, I d been wondering about this. I m game to try most things…. I found shrimp & oysters to be to slimey… Ground gf beef not bad, steak good and liver really gross… I dont mind it cooked though. Salmon, hmmm not great but edible. Do you really like this way? Or just because the better digestion? Or are some things more of and aquired taste? Anyways thanks for posting, does seem hard to train out years of thats not safe.

    • There are some raw meats I really like, like sashimi and beef carpaccio, and there are others that I just eat because I’d rather not eat them cooked. I have found my body to be so much happier with raw meats and I like a happy body! Lots of my favorites probably are an acquired taste. I love raw squid, something I used to find totally disgusting.

      • I am sixteen soon to be seventeen kid that is not in “bad” shape but needs improvement. I have been trying many things to be in better health but nothing worked. Then I came along to this type of diet. I want to try it but I do not know where to start. Do you think I should ease into it or go full guns ablazing? I dont care about taste really but I NEED to know what im getting myself into. PLZ Peggy tell my the best way to handle it.

        PS. my parents will prob not approve due to bacteria and what not. How can I explain it to them tht makes it seem like a good thing? I mean is it really tht much different then telling them that I was a vegetarian? (sorry for second post)

        • I definitely can’t advise you about how to deal with your parents. My mom still cringes when she sees my daughter and I eat raw meat and I’m all grown up. :)

          I would suggest reading Aajonus’ book for more info on how to get started. Personally, I went in full guns a blazing, but that’s how I go about everything. I drank fermented vegetable juice back then so I trusted that to save me if everything else failed. I would have a hard time recommending an exact diet or approach because what I did worked for me but that’s my body and my very specific diet.

          I’d say read as much as you can from the links I provided and get comfortable with the basic ideas before you proceed.

  22. Hey! I just discovered your site and really love it! I have a lot of similar digestive issues as you…carbs make me bloat. I can do well on raw greens but can only handle small amount of cooked “healthy” carbs (like, butternut squash is AWEFUL FOR ME…too much broccoli, etc.).

    I have about 20 lbs I want to lose for modeling, and would love to be able to eat, be healthy, fix my digestive system, etc. I just started eating raw grass fed ground beef and LOVE it!!!!

    I REALly love and crave raw meat. my question is…as an already thin person by “Normal” standards what would you suggest for a skinny-fiying diet? I know I need my protien and raw beef seems to be wonderful for me.

    Its not really about actual weight, but more about losing inches. I tend to gain muscle but not lose my body fat, which is sooo annoying. Even if I power walk too much my thighs seem to get huge.

    Sorry to go on and on, but I love that you are skinny but eat beef :)

    Also, I do tend to crave fruit and nuts. I try not to eat that much, but could those be the biggest problems?

    Also, how much raw beef/meat do you eat per day? Do you count the calories in those foods?

    Thanks a lot for your help!

  23. I am sixteen soon to be seventeen kid that is not in “bad” shape but needs improvement. I have been trying many things to be in better health but nothing worked. Then I came along to this type of diet. I want to try it but I do not know where to start. Do you think I should ease into it or go full guns ablazing? I dont care about taste really but I NEED to know what im getting myself into. PLZ Peggy tell my the best way to handle it.

    PS. my parents will prob not approve due to bacteria and what not. How can I explain it to them tht makes it seem like a good thing? I mean is it really tht much different then telling them that I was a vegetarian?

  24. Wow, I’m really amazed after coming across your posts! I guess I’ve grown up in a standard American household and somehow never realized that meat doesn’t HAVE to be cooked. I just never thought about it. Outside of sushi, the idea still goes against all my basic food safety beliefs, but I’m intrigued. I’m 21 and studying in China, but I’m definitely preparing myself to try things raw when I get home. I could never do it here, China’s food safety is zero. I’m determined to find the right diet for me to fight depression and fatigue naturally. If regulating my digestive system is a plus, I won’t be mad :)

    Thanks for this wonderful eye opener!
    Sasha

  25. I started to eat raw meat from 2006, that’s 5 and half years ago. And I share the same feeling and opinions with you, can’t help nodding and smiling on reading your post.
    love your way of “cured salmon”, I should try it later.
    Same to you, sometime I still find cooked meat attractive. now my diet includes both raw and cooked. usually I slightly fry beef mince with mashed garlic, egg white, salt and pepper, take them out when the beef mince is 20% cooked, and mix with the egg yolk. that tastes great. I also make fermented drink like kefir and kombucha.
    In 2009 my wife joined me in the raw meat diet. We had our beautiful and strong baby born in 2010 who is a nice surprise to us and all of our relatives :)
    Let’s keep on raw and enjoy!

  26. Hi Peggy,

    Did you eat raw meat during pregnancy? I’m hoping to eat raw liver (as frozen bits that I can swallow) but you know, traditional medicine advises against it. I’m already drinking raw milk and haven’t died, so I’m thinking of trying it.

    Thanks!

    • I didn’t eat raw meat with Evelyn because I wasn’t into raw meat back then. In this pregnancy I have eaten raw fish and raw eggs plenty and some raw liver too. If the liver has been frozen (and is grassfed) there isn’t any way that it could hurt you anyway. It’s already not likely to harbor any bad bugs but freezing it for 14 days will ensure it. Definitely make sure it comes from clean sources though. You wouldn’t want to eat a toxic liver!

  27. I’ve long been a fan of thüringer mett, which is freshly ground raw pork seasoned with salt and pepper and served with chopped onions. It is a regional specialty here in Germany. I have also gotten quite addicted to smoked salmon here. And I love ceviche! I can’t quite wrap my mind around raw liver. I’ve been quickly searing chicken livers. Do you know where to find nutrient info for raw pork? I’d like to know what the differences are compared with cooked.

    I have progressive ms and have totally changed my diet–no grains, legumes or dairy and veggies, meats/fish for intensive nutrition to repair the cells. I know some people make liver jerky. Would that be a good stepping stone to get to real raw? What about heart? I always loved anticuchos, thinly sliced marinaded beef heart threaded onto wooden skewers and grilled. I was thinking about very lightly grilling them, so that they are warm. What do you think? I’ve got to go get some mett now, just writing this has me totally craving it!

  28. I have been interested in implementing more raw animal products into my diet, but so far i have only had luck with raw eggs, and even they do not sit well in my stomach. Could this be only because my body is not used to it? Did you ever experience a similar feeling?
    Also, Do you typically serve your meat slightly “warmed,” cold, or at room temperature?

    I would love to see an example list of what you eat in a day.

    • Kate,

      I prefer raw animal foods cold. You may have low stomach acid. It may be something that you are eating in conjunction with the raw foods. You may be sensitive to eggs. I don’t know for sure. Personally, switching to raw meats relieved me of digestive distress. I find raw ground beef a lot easier to digest than a thick raw steak. My favorite raw animal foods are sea foods. That is what I eat most of. Maybe you could give that a shot.

  29. About the white rice you were eating- did you worry whether it was organic, gluten free, ect. at all? Or was it just the cheap instant stuff you can find anywhere?

  30. I eat between 3/4 and 1 lb of raw ground lamb, goat or beef (grass fed of course) per day garnished with lacto fermented sauerkraut and organic mustard -YUM YUM. Raw liver goes in my breakfast smoothie every few weeks (say 1 – 1 1/2 lb per month)

  31. So glad to have found this site of other raw meat eaters!

    Can anyone make suggestions as to where I may be able to find raw grass fed organ meats? Here in Colorado, I can go to Rocky Plains Meats and get bison and beef liver and maybe a few others.

    I have read that organ meats are so good nutritionally, especially for re-growing caried teeth. However, I cannot abide the taste of liver and feel a bit of squeamishness about organ meats in general, going back to childhood. I eat raw muscle meats easily enough.

    Any suggestions for me in overcoming this revulsion? Are there any recipes for a raw liver smoothie that tastes good?

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  34. Peggy,

    I enjoyed your article.

    When I eat red meat I like to marinate the meat with non-high fructose corn syrup marinades, primarily Mr. Stubbs because of the ingredients list. I’ve been brought up to know what near raw pork tenderloins, lamb, fish, and red meats do to the body (all good things), and in my opinion cooked pork tenderloins, lamb, fish, and red meats are a sin.

    Marinating meat for about two days I regularly eat almost half of it raw and only recently (past 6 months) have I wondered if consuming all my meat raw would do harm. Sure on the internet you can find people saying this and that about the harms of it all, but to come across your article is reinforcing. I will be eating much more marinated/raw meats.

    I didn’t grow up eating chicken and turkey, so I don’t consume it, and if I did, it would be cooked thoroughly.

    Thank you!

  35. I used to like my meat and fish undercooked and now don’t cook it at all. Living in Australia, I am able to purchase kangaroo mince for less than $9 per kilo, and now eat it straight out of the packet. I often eat raw fish or raw chicken. I also have raw free range eggs, a delicious easy snack, simply punching a hole in each end of the egg and sucking the delicious contents into my mouth. I particularly enjoy these foods after doing heavy manual labour, or after a heavy gym workout. I recover more quickly by eating these foods. I also eat raw vegetables. I love the wide variety of enjoyable combinations of flavours and taste sensations with delicious colourful fresh crisp crunchy juicy vegetables and herbs or ginger etc. I feel very much alone in my enjoyment as the people who I know seem to be so entrenched in the popular belief that uncooked food is unsafe etc. So I usually eat alone. I have learned that people dislike the smell of raw broccoli or raw cabbage on my breath, so I confine myself to more socially acceptable foods at times. Last night I went out with friends to a restaurant, and enjoyed smoked salmon salad. No dressing. Just two pieces of lemon. And some of my friends liked the look of that when the waiter brought it to the table. It was the first time in years that I actually really enjoyed the food served at a restaurant! I was happy to leave a tip for the waiter, and to thank the restaurant staff for a delicious meal.

    • Hi Peter, I don’t get dressing at restaurants either (or at home for that matter). It’s kind of funny how people think they need to add these crazy flavor sensations to vegetables in order to get them down. Veggies are so delicious all by themselves!

      I do really love some olive oil on my salad though. Oily lettuce is yummy! And the oil helps to absorb the nutrients from veggies.

      • I usually have some virgin olive oil with kangaroo meat. It is a game meat and has almost no fat. The oil seems to enhance the flavour and texture. I sometimes have a small amount of virgin olive oil with my vegetables. I will now do that more often as you suggest it has benefits. I guess it may also make my skin less dry. I believe that people need the flavourings because they have not learned the joys of enjoying the raw food taste sensations in a majority of the foods they eat. I think most people are still addicted to sugar and nearly all dressings that I have seen have sugar in them.

        • I don’t know if you saw this I posted on 4th of July (I don’t think anybody was reading blogs that day). It’s about the best way to cook meat. If you are cooking really lean meat like kangaroo be sure to cook it either in water or in fat. It will taste better and be better for you. http://theprimalparent.com/2012/07/04/dont-overcook-meat/

          • Thanks for telling me about that post. I used to love having my meat prepared as you suggest there. Game meat becomes so dry and flavourless if it is what I call overcooked. However most people think I don’t cook meat enough. Personally I am more interested in my health and also the flavour of the food than I am in the need for the internal temperature of the meat to be so many degrees. I believe lard or butter are healthier and tastier than olive oil for cooking. Presently I prefer kangaroo meat raw though it often takes a while to chew. I like the taste. Adding a little olive oil seems to improve the flavour and texture. I think the oil also makes it easier to chew.

  36. I am so happy I read this, I’m 18 and its so strange but i’ve been eating raw meat since I was maybe 7 or 8?- my mom has been freaking out about it- she’ll actually yell at me if she ever sees me go for raw meat in my fridge or counter ESPECIALLY if my friends are over, i guess up to now i thought it was abnormal lol.
    My grandpa was the first person to give me raw meat it was liver (he said it would help my anemia- no idea if it does but id just take it since it was the only raw meat id be given) my dad now is the one who usually drenches pieces for me in vinegar and salt (very cautious to this day) regardless… I die for the taste, its amazing!
    I LOVE LOVE LOVE sushi for the reason its raw fish! and I guess it’s the only raw food thats acceptable when I go out (lol).
    Ive never actually had raw fish at home though, I was told the grade had to be really high and sushi places dont get their fish from the grocery store. I was wondering what that even means?? i really want to get salmon and red tuna but no idea which kind/grade/where to get it from is acceptable

  37. Hi Peggy. I am trying to jump on the raw wagon. I tried vegiteriannism for a couple of years. And through research I knew I would have to quit it, but I had been telling my friends if I start eating meet it’ll be raw only. And that time has arrived. Last couple of weeks I intruduced meet mostly fried in coconut oil. Now I am trasitioning to raw. Today I bought sheep hearts, I just soaked them in boiling water intending to kill any unwanted creatures on the surface. Even with that short cooking it was almost cooked. Thanks for this platform you provide us. Also I believe in not eating frequently. About a month and a half ago I started IF. I started with a 6am to 2pm eating window. It progressed into eating between 12pm and 2 pm only one meal. I think that is also very important, the daily detox I think is a sort of insurance..I also follow the wheat belly blog and facebook group and investigating ketogenic diet along paleo. I think everything should form a complete circle eventually if I wanna live the way nature intended me to live…

  38. wow its great to read this post. i also started eating raw meat when all other foods and combinations failed me. its been about 5 years and my health and the quality of my life seem to increase daily, thanks for sharing your story!

  39. If i can ask you? What would you suggest someone starting on a raw food diet to try first?

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  41. I bought some grassfed beef from Whole Foods and froze it for 14 days as you recommended, but I have eaten some of it, but I am afraid of getting tapeworms.

    • You can set your mind at ease. You can’t get tapeworm from eating raw meat. You get it from eating something that has come in contact with the feces of an animal that is infected with tapeworm… or by eating fleas because tapeworm eggs are commonly dormant in the stomachs of fleas, which is how your pets get tapeworm.

      I eat raw steak constantly. Usually I just get mine from Target’s grocery section, although admittedly, if you can get it from an all natural source, it’s better. :) I find I actually crave it now.

  42. Just checked the blog and haven’t the time to read the replies so apologies if this has been asked but will you make a blog on how to prepare raw or putrid meat?

  43. Historically, I’ve always been a medium rare to rare kind of guy. After I had read your website and did a bit of research I decide I’d give raw meat a shot. I didn’t let it sit for 14 days in the freezer but I was particular in choosing the proper meat. I mixed it with parley, organic soya sauce, montreal steak spice and franks red hot sauce – it tasted incredible! Do you have any suggestions for other ways to prepare?

  44. i lift and have a pretty serious strength scheduel that includes in addition max speed, repetion effort, endurance etc. and I constantly think of how horrible my diet is and weather i’m doing too much tear down on my body with what I’m eating. some more experienced guys turn to vegan protien sources and say it makes them feel better but for me I want to go more paleo and include raw meats instead of depending on protein bars and shakes. my daily protein goal is 204-214grams and the way i eat now it seems no matter how much i eat i don’t the nutritional values i want (part of this is beacause i have a high BMR, about 4,000). where’s a good place to look so i can start this thing.

  45. Excellent post, Peggy. There is also plenty of info on eating raw meat/fish and high meat at http://www.rawpaleodietforum.com. I’ve been eating most of my animal foods raw for over 4 years with nothing but benefits to report.

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  47. It was great to read your eating raw meat. I do too. I eat raw grassfed beef, grassfed organ meats, wild fish, and pastured grainfree eggs. I’ve had bloating and constipation all my life as a vegetarian/vegan, and for the first time they are all gone since I started eating raw meat. I feel great! I can’t imagine going back to eating cooked meat. Now that I’ve been eating raw meat for a couple months now cooked meat actually does not appeal to me anymore. My tummy knows what happiness feels like and my waistline has shrunk too giving me a lean flat belly. I love it! Thanks for letting us know we are not alone by posting your website.

  48. I have nothing against raw, but people should reconsider raw pork and raw ground beef. Trichinosis is a very serious parasite in pork, and ground beef is inherently unsafe since you’re mixing potential bacteria in (steak is a different matter). It should not be this way and you haven’t had a problem because I’m assuming you get it from reputable sources with spot-on handling practices. But for any Tom, Dick and Harry who thinks they can go to the regular store and buy a tray of ground beef and be A-OK… well, good luck!

      • I have worked as a head chef and I take a lot of personal responsibility when choosing what meat to eat raw in my home.

        Organic, grassfed, grain free, pastured, certified mad-cow disease free countries, humane, processing, and preparing techniques all play a part in eating raw meats.

        Personally I would never eat pork raw. I stick to beef steak, beef organ meat, select raw seafood, and eggs.

        One should educate themselves as much as possible. For example, a sushi chef is confident in the foods they make to be safe because they are educated on proper handling.

        Its not hard to be educated and by doing this you can eat raw meats with confidence.

    • I’m not advising anyone what to do, I can understand your concern, and I used to avoid eating ground meats and pork raw myself, yet I had such good experience with raw meats that I also eventually gave these foods a try and enjoyed them. Reading about traditional dishes like steak tartare and Mett (a German dish of raw minced pork and onion) increased my curiosity about raw minced and ground meats, though these traditional dishes of course are not made from CAFO meats. I’ve been eating raw grass-finished ground beef and occasionally raw pork (even ground raw pork several times, which is quite yummy) from good local sources for a few years now without a problem (and other raw animal foods before that). I’ve only ever gotten sick from cooked meat and I think part of the reason is that I find it much easier to tell that raw meat has gone bad with the first bite into it or even whiff than cooked, because I find that cooking masks much of the bad flavor and odor that at least some pathogenic bacteria produce, plus my senses of taste and smell seem to have improved and my gut has become more cast-iron-like since I started eating mostly raw (for example, citrus used to cause nasty, burning discomfort in my stomach, whereas now I can drink straight lemon juice mixed with horseradish and herbal bitters).

      I know, the most ardent cooking advocates would argue that I’ll pay down the road, yet while I have been waiting years for the first theoretical problem from raw animal foods to occur I have gotten ill twice from cooked meat/fish. I’m starting to wonder if I should eat any of my meat cooked, because that’s where the problems have been for me.

      • I too have not had any problems eating raw meat. Yet so many people are extremely fearful about bacteria and parasites in raw meat. A few weeks ago I was enjoying eating delicious raw kangaroo mince out of its resealable plastic bag. Somebody asked me if it was refrigerated. I said no. He then said “You will get sick because the bacteria will breed in it. Unfortunately I replied “It has been my experience that I can digest kangaroo mince much better if it has been left unrefrigerated for a while, and I believe that the bacteria is essential for digestion.” He was disgusted and filed an enturbulation report. I learned that may reply was too steep a gradient for somebody who is fearful of bacteria!

        as I e

        • I don’t recommend storing meat in plastic in warm temperatures. Pathogenic bacteria generally love environments that are low-oxygen, warm and moist–all typical of plastic wrap/bags left out of the fridge. After buying meat/fish from a market or thawing some that was frozen in a plastic bag, I try to get it out of the plastic and into glass or paper or cool, open air (such as hanging or on a drying rack in the fridge) as quickly as possible, if I’m not going to eat it that day.

          What is an enturbulation report?

          • Thanks. I will always put the salmon unwrapped in my lunch box in future. It tastes better that way. The kangaroo mince is not frozen. I think freezing damages it. It is in a cryovac bag, not soft polyethylene and seems as good as a jar. There is plenty of air in it after I open it. The report was to inform senior staff members that I had upset him.

            • If eaten same-day fresh, it probably doesn’t matter either way. You could also put it in a small glass container with plastic lid or you could even use a traditional Japanese bento box and chop sticks. Then if someone asks you what you’re eating, you could say sashimi, though they might think that’s odd too. ;-)

  49. ive craved raw meat from the time i was a child. used to get in trouble for it, glad to see im not alone in eating it! i wish more people were open minded about it!

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  51. interesting for sure! what kind of fish do you usually have??

  52. Hey, I’m still living with my parents at the moment because college is a bit expensive. I was going to join the military and after boot camp go on to a primal diet. Could you help guide me to a raw diet please?

  53. I tried a little bit of raw grassfed steak for the first time today. Actually,I grew up vegetarian and it’s probably the third time I’ve had steak at all! It was delicious.

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