Before we get to the carnivore macro recommendations, you should note that these are pure suggestions and can serve as a place to test for yourself.
What your body actually needs is highly dependent on your personal health and goals.
A strict carnivore diet is nearly zero carbs. If you are using raw dairy, that changes things.
If you are doing a flexible carnivore, that also changes things. I’ll do my best to offer some guidance for each in general terms, but for the sake of this piece, I will focus on strict carnivore for the macro suggestions.
STRICT CARNIVORE MACROS
- Low range: 15%
- Medium range: 25%
- Upper range: 35%
15% is lower than I’d recommend and higher than 35% is higher than I’d recommend.
I think it’s safe to say that a solid goal for most people is 25% of calories from protein. If you are trying to build muscle, you could experiment with 35% or more of your calories from protein. Just make sure you pay close attention to what your body is telling you.
Since this is a strict carnivore, your fat intake represents the remainder of your calories after reaching your protein intake.
So this will be between 85% to 65% of calories if following the ranges above.
Personally, I’m aiming for 35% of calories from protein and the rest fat. (Since I’m flexible carnivore, I sprinkle in a few carbs here and there, maybe 2-5% on average.)
That’s basically it as far as macros on a carnivore diet go. The key is optimizing your protein. Then you just fill in the gaps with healthy fat.
Let’s do a quick example from my life.
I’m a 5’9” and 155lb male. I live an active lifestyle.
I’m guesstimating that my maintenance level is around 2200 calories a day.
This is what my diet should look like at three different macro mixes:
- 25% protein = 550cal / 137g protein
- 75% fat = 1,650cal / 183g fat
- 30% protein = 660cal / 165g protein
- 70% fat = 1,540cal / 171g fat
- 35% protein = 770cal / 192g protein
- 65% fat = 1,430cal / 158g fat
After doing this math I think I’m closer to the 25% mark for protein intake most days. I want to get this up to about 30% at least. I also think I’m probably somewhere around 2000 calories a day rather tahn 2200 (I will know for sure this next week since Im going to track it).
I personally believe my sweet spot for year-round lean body composition is around the 30% mark. I also think trying a 35% protein experiment would be worth it to see if I can get some more fat loss benefits as well as satiety and hunger control effects.
For the typical person, 1 gram of protein per pound of body weight is a good target. Anything under 0.5 grams per pound of bodyweight would be lower than I’d suggest anyone do.
I know some in keto may disagree, but I think many people hit weight loss stalls on keto because of a fear of protein.
Just remember these ranges are starting points that you can use to find the optimal ratio for your body.