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How the Carnivore Diet Can Improve Sex Drive

By Liam McAuliffe Updated on

A dramatically improved sex drive is one of the most commonly mentioned benefits of a carnivore diet. 

In this article, we’ll explore the science-backed mechanisms by which a carnivore diet can improve your sex drive. We’ll examine the sex-boosting effects of greater fat consumption, meat-specific nutrients, hormone rebalancing, and relief of underlying conditions. 

Table of Contents

What is the Carnivore diet? 

Simply put, the carnivore diet means eating only animal products

That said, there are variations on the carnivore diet, beginning with the most restrictive elimination lion diet. This approach, popularized by psychologist Jordan Peterson, calls for only red meat, salt, and water, 

Dr. Kiltz’s BEBBIIS plan is designed for the long haul. It centers on fatty steak, and includes a variety of nourishing animal products like duck liver, blue cheese, and homemade ice cream

You can explore more carnivore diet menus, meal plans, and shopping lists here. 

This way of eating sounds extreme when compared to the high-carb standard American diet based on grains and vegetable oils. But carnivore diet proponents point to robust evidence that humans evolved as hyper-carnivorous apex predators for nearly 2 million years

Going carnivore re-aligns your physiology with the ancestral foods your body is designed to thrive on. Your sex drive will thank you. Now let’s look at the reasons why. 

Carnivore Diet and Sex Drive According to Reddit

By no means scientific, these testimonials from the Reddit carnivore community provide first-hand accounts of the possible effects of the carnivore diet on sex drive. They’re also pretty entertaining. 

Through the roof for me! Anyone who asks me about the diet, I tell them there were 3 noticeable changes for me, 1. Better digestion, 2. Better Sleep, 3. I had a penthouse apartment in downtown Boner City.

-Rehicknah

I didn’t notice any changes at all in such a short period of time. After a few months, my bowels no longer ached, my skin became clear, my bp fell, and I would find myself with half a chubby most of the day. I was a bit concerned about it for a bit, thinking it was a sign of something wrong, but it turns out that a carnivore diet turned me into a 16-year-old again. My wife blushes whenever I’m asked what improvements I’ve gotten from the diet in her company.

-CircleofSorrow

Big change, but not over 3 days. It’s because the carnivore diet improves testosterone. Mine went from around 250 (too low) to over 900 (near max) in the units that they use.

-Filet_o_math

When I went carnivore – been carnivore for about a year now – I was HORNY AS HELL – like, shaking I was so horny and animalistic – for about 3 months. It was crazy. It’ll subside, but not completely. Not for me, anyway.

-mikemchenry

Now let’s look at the possible science-backed mechanisms for these reported boosts to sex drive. 

More Fat, More Sex Hormones, More Drive

Carnivore or keto diet concept. Raw ingredients for zero carb or low carb diet - rib eye, salmon steak, pork, egg on gray stone background. Top view or flat lay.

A carnivore diet is, by default a high-fat, low-carb diet. That’s because your body can only survive on around 35% of your calories from protein. 

Since animal products are almost exclusively comprised of fat and protein, you’ll have to boost your animal fat.  More fat boosts sex hormones, and more sex hormones boost sex drive in both men and women.

A systematic review of numerous studies found that for men low-fat diets are associated with lower levels of testosterone compared to higher fat diets.

Likewise, a classic study found that women on a low-fat diet (20% of calories) had significant reductions in estrogen levels. Though this was a desirable outcome for patients with breast cancer, low estrogen levels lead to low sex drive, dryness in the vagina, poor sleep, and mood swings.

In a study on men, researchers split 43 participants aged 19-56  into two groups. The first group got 41% of their calories from fat, mostly saturated. The second group got only 19% of their calories from fat–mostly Partially Unsaturated Fatty Acids (PUFA) from vegetable oils. 

Total calories and total protein remained the same between both groups. After ten weeks the higher fat group had 13% higher testosterone levels.5  These results mirrored an early study on men in Finland. 9

It’s worth noting that getting 41% of your calories from fat is not even close to the 70-80% that you get on a carnivore diet. It’s likely that your T increase would be substantially higher. 

For example, a 2020 study looking at the effects of a ketogenic diet combined with resistance training on college-aged men found that after 11 weeks testosterone increased significantly (+118 ng·dl). While a second group consuming a Western diet saw their testosterone decline (-36 ng·dl)6

Increases Sex Boosting Nutrients

A carnivore diet is loaded with sex drive-boosting nutrients like zinc, b vitamins, and vitamin D. 

Zinc

In women, zinc plays an important role in the creation of numerous sex hormones, including estrogen and progesterone. 

Studies show that in women, zinc supplementation increases arousal and sexual function.

In men, zinc has been shown to increase testosterone levels and improve sperm quality naturally.

Zinc is found in abundance and in its most bioavailable forms in animal products, including carnivore diet superstars, oysters, ribeye steak, lobster, lamb shoulder, pork ribs, and ground beef. 

B 12 

Low levels of B12 have been associated with sexual dysfunction and premature ejaculation in men.

While in both men and women, low B12 contributes to fatigue and low mood, both of which negatively impact sex drive. 

Fortunately, on a carnivore diet, getting more than enough B vitamins is effortless. A single serving of ribeye steak has well over 200% of your RDV of vitamin B 12. 

If you’re looking for a mega-dose, look no further than clams. A single 100-gram serving of clams provides 4125% of your RDV. 

Vitamin D

Studies show that for men, vitamin D deficiency is linked to erectile function, lower orgasmic function, and lower sexual desire.

Similarly, for women, studies show that low vitamin D levels are associated with abnormal sexual functioning. And the lower the vitamin D, the more severe the dysfunction.

On a carnivore diet, you get vitamin D from pasture-raised pork, full-fat dairy, and seafood like oysters and fatty fish

image of ribeye steak with nutrients

Reverses Underlying Conditions Affecting Sex Drive

Nearly all modern diseases and disorders are linked to chronic inflammation. Chronic inflammation is a condition that is caused and can be reversed, by diet and lifestyle.

Studies have found that levels of inflammation in women predict sexual arousal and sensitivity–in other words, the more inflamed you are, the lower your sex drive and pleasure will likely be.6

A 2019 study found that In women, chronic inflammation is negatively linked via direct neural pathways and indirectly via hormonal, vascular, and behavioral pathways with reduced sex drive and pleasure.6

A carnivore diet can reduce inflammation by eliminating highly inflammatory foods, including vegetable oils, sugar, grains, irritating fiber, and plant toxins and antinutrients. 

Other studies show that metabolic syndrome is associated with decreased libido, hypogonadism, and erectile dysfunction. 5

A 2011 study on men with metabolic syndrome found that after just twelve weeks on a low-carb high-fat diet all participants no longer had metabolic syndrome.

Some research has looked at the benefits of a keto diet in people with chronic health conditions. 

A  2018 study on obese women found that after 4 months on a low-carb, high-fat diet, all participants reported improved sexual function and increased libido.  

This improvement was likely associated with overall improvements in quality of life, including better sleep and lower food and alcohol cravings.

Another study from 2021 found that adults with type 2 diabetes and obesity who went on a low-carb, high-fat diet had better sexual function, among other lifestyle improvements like increased exercise and reduced food cravings.

Carnivore Diet and Sex Drive: The Bottom Line

“Carnivore diet sex drive” is a phenomenon of increased libido and sexual performance that people attribute to the all-meat carnivore diet.

To date there haven’t been any studies looking directly at the links between the carnivore diet and sex drive. 

However, personal reports, along with research into broadly defined low-fat high-carb diets, suggest that the carnivore diet may have powerful beneficial effects on sex drive for both men and women. 

The sex drive-boosting benefits of a carnivore diet are likely attributable to the following factors: 

  • Increasing fat intake–raises levels of sex hormones in men and women
  • Increasing concentrations of vitamins crucial to sexual desire and function
  • Eliminating inflammatory foods like sugar, grains, vegetable oils, fiber, and plant toxins

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