Jordan Peterson Carnivore Diet (5 Amazing Health Benefits)

Timothy Woods
Published by Timothy Woods
Last Updated On: February 15, 2024

Jordan Peterson, an influential Canadian psychologist, swears by his meat-only diet that includes no vegetables, fresh fruit, grain, or dairy.

I recently came across the surprising benefits and transformation he and his daughter Mikhaila experienced months into the carnivore diet. And as a fan of the carnivore diet, I was compelled to look deeper into Jordan Peterson's diet.

Through my research, I discovered a lot about Peterson's diet, including its benefits and limitations.

Read on to find out.

Quick Summary

  • The Jordan Peterson diet is a carnivorous diet consisting solely of meat, salt, and water, inspired by his daughter Mikhaila's health transformation.
  • Peterson experienced benefits such as weight loss, improved sleep, reduced anxiety, increased strength, and healed gum disease on this diet.
  • According to a study from the National Institute of Health in 2022, the recommended daily intake of potassium is between 2,600 to 3,400 mg. Jordan and Mikhaila were able to meet this recommended intake solely through a beef diet [1].

What is The Jordan Peterson Diet?

A close up image of raw meat and salt

The Jordan Peterson diet is a routine consisting of meat, salt, and water only [2].

The Jordan Peterson diet is a two-stage strategy to the meat-only diet that requires one to consume animal foods solely.

The diet excludes all cereals, fruit, and vegetables.

Here’s what it looks like:

First Stage: Elimination Phase

The diet starts with an elimination phase requiring at least two months of eliminating all other foods except meat, water, and salt.

Second Stage: Reintroducing Vegetables

After two months, Peterson added vegetables to his elimination diet to devise what he dubbed a modified carnivore diet.

He focused on the second stage when he ate beef and greens for about a year before discontinuing the veggies again.

Also Read: How to Start Eating Meat Again?

How Did Jordan Peterson Come Up with His Diet?

An image of Jordan Peterson and her daughter having a carnivore diet

Jordan Peterson came up with his diet thanks to his daughter Mikhaila Peterson, whose health changed for the better months into the meat-only diet.

The now 30-year-old grew up battling health issues that she claims lowered her body’s immune system and adversely impacted her quality of life.

Mikhaila said on her website that she was diagnosed with juvenile rheumatoid arthritis when she was seven and with depression when she was twelve [3].

She began experiencing chronic weariness at the age of 14, and at the age of 17, she underwent hip and ankle replacements due to arthritis.

Mikhaila tried self-healing by changing her diet. She started by eliminating gluten, then went on an "elimination diet," which eliminates typical allergen-prone foods before reintroducing them cautiously.

If someone told me a cell number, say seven digits, I couldn't repeat it back to them. I can do it right now. I recall a whole lot now.
- Mikhalla Peterson

The premise behind an elimination diet is to remove items that may produce unpleasant symptoms and gradually re-introduce them, ruling out meals that she didn't tolerate well.

Mikhaila underwent self-experimentation before settling on a zero-carb diet consisting of just vegetables and meat. She stopped eating fruits, and then removed the plant-based foods. Then all of the meat, except beef.

She claimed her arthritic joint pain had disappeared after two weeks of starting the all-beef diet, and her brain fog, extreme fatigue, and knee discomfort went away too.

After a month and a half, she noticed her anxiety had subsided, and her short-term memory had improved.

Due to the incredible results, Mikhaila's father started the same restrictive eating routine.

Jordan Peterson Jumps on The Carnivore Diet Train

A close up image of sliced steak with salt and other garnishes

Once Jordan noticed Mikhaila's issues disappearing without medications, he was intrigued to try it out.

Jordan was surprised that his daughter drowned in many prescription drugs, including metatrax aid (a drug used to treat cancer) and heavy antidepressant doses, and completely healed eight months into the meat and water diet.

Jordan Peterson recounted how Mikhaila's experience had led him to eliminate everything from his diet except meat and leafy greens and that he had gone full meat and eliminated vegetables in the next two months.

His outstretched list of ailments started vanishing weeks into his all-meat diet.

During his tours, Jordan mentioned that he makes his own beef jerky. Which is pretty much all he eats when he can't get his hands on a fatty restaurant steak. He has a dehydrator, so he salts the beef and throws it in.

In his strict carnivore diet, Jordan Peterson only drinks water, no wine or other bubbly drinks like soda. But he indicated that he'd cautiously try to introduce mushrooms into his diet next.

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The Importance of Fat on The Jordan Peterson Diet

Jordan eats enough fatty meat so he can't get hungry unnecessarily.

He pointed out that the satiating fatty meats helped him curb his bread pudding, peanut butter sandwich, and ice cream junk cravings. All of which were not good for him.

The fatty cuts of steak are more filling, and his carbohydrate cravings went away.

He pointed out that his daughter buys fat from the butcher and they dice and fry those steaks till crispy and snack on them.

If you want to start a diet like this, you should eat just meat with enough fat so you're not hungry. You're not eating enough if you're hungry, and if you're hungry, you're going to cheat and break the dietary rules.
- Jordan Peterson

With his appetite declining by 75% because of the fatty meats, he now eats way fewer things, and he's not that hungry compared to his previous carb lifestyle.

Advantages of The Jordan Peterson Carnivore Diet

An image of a person slicing a steak on a wooden board

Jordan Peterson experienced the following health benefits after religiously eating only beef, water, and salt.

1. Weight Loss

Within the first month, he cut seven pounds and continued to do so consecutively for the next seven months on the zero-sugar, all-meat diet.

He weighed 212 pounds when he started on the beef diet; months into the diet, he shredded down to 162 pounds.

Jordan also shared that her already-fit wife transitioned into the diet and lost a whopping 12 pounds in the first month.

2. Better Sleep

Jordan stopped snoring in the first week of the lion diet, and he could sleep all through the night. He shared that his mornings have changed for the better; he's fully awake in the morning and clear-headed, something he'd never done before.

3. Zero Anxiety

Once he cut off greens (lettuce and broccoli) for a month, Jordan said his morning anxiety dropped by 25% in the first month and 75% during the next two weeks.

He added that his mental health has also generally improved because the diet helped him snap out of a near-depression state.

I have been better every single day, and I'm better now than I've ever been in my life, with no antidepressants for almost a year, he said.

4. More Strength

Peterson’s body was undergoing a radical change in terms of physical appearance. He gained musculature with only a few exercises.

He's more energetic all day, even on his tours. And his once numb thighs and weak legs are strong enough that he can stand for longer without any aches.

Healthy fats are your body's best source of energy, and they keep your metabolism and fat-burning mechanisms running as they should.
- Mark Hyman, Medical Doctor

5. Healed Gum Disease

In the Joe Rogan Experience podcast, Jordan shared that he's suffered from severe gum disease linked to heart disease and had minor surgical interventions to scrape off the decay.

Halfway through his meat diet, he checked in with his dentist, and the gum problem disappeared completely.

Even though Jordan is not directly giving dietary advice to anyone, he stated that many of his followers approach him with positive feedback about trying the diet.

Many say they've lost more pounds in less time on the meat-only diet.

Side Effects of the Jordan Peterson Diet 

An image of a man who is about to eat a meat on a fork

When Jordan and his daughter restricted their diet, they also experienced some side effects that were inevitable.

1. Slight Cramping

Jordan highlighted getting some toe cramping from time to time, and he thinks it's possibly due to the lack of potassium or magnesium in his diet [4].

2. Social Side Effects

Besides these health side effects, Jordan thinks that following a strict meat-only diet has made him a social pariah. He jokingly remarked that people might not invite him out because he doesn't eat anything apart from meat.


Does Jordan Peterson Eat Vegetables?

Jordan Peterson doesn’t eat vegetables. While he ate them initially, he later cut all veggies out and went full into the meat and water diet.

Does Jordan Peterson Eat Grains On His Carnivore Diet?

No, Jordan Peterson does not eat grains on his carnivore diet. His diet only includes beef, salt, and water.


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About the author

Timothy Woods
CEO / Co-Founder
Timothy Woods holds a Kinesiology and Exercise Science degree from Jacksonville University and is CCC & GMU Certified. He's also the main man behind Carnivore Style. This food aficionado combines science and experience to spread the word about the carnivore lifestyle.
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