Carnivore Diet – You Need to be Getting Calcium EVERY DAY!
We have hundreds of grams of calcium stored in the bones, you don’t want to have to be pulling the calcium out of the bones in order to maintain the serum levels of calcium, you want to be getting calcium every day.
If we look at animals, which are not always the best proxy for humans, but in this case the physiology is equivalent or extremely congruent, we probably should be balancing calcium and phosphorus everyday in our diet, and meat is very high in phosphorus – if you eat a pound of meat, it’s going to have around 1,000 mg of phosphorus, well where are you going to get a 1,000 mg of calcium from in your diet, if you’re not eating an eggshell or bone meal?
Some people do dairy but there’s mixed feelings about dairy. So we have to think about where are we getting the calcium from to balance that phosphorus?
If we look at other carnivore animals like lions in the zoo, we know they get osteodystrophy if they’re not fed calcium, if that calcium / phosphorus ratio is off.
Humans probably need a 1 to 1 or even a 1.5 to 1 ratio of calcium to phosphorus in the diet.
There’s not a lot of calcium in a steak, there’s a small amount, but a very small amount and there’s a little bit of calcium in egg yolks. 1 egg yolk has 10-15 mg of calcium and a pound of steak has 25 mg of calcium, and so we’re looking at minuscule amounts of calcium. Even if you triple those, you’re still going to fall very far short of a 1 to 1 ratio of calcium to phosphorus.
Just test it! Test your N-Telopeptide, which is a measure of bone absorption and test your PTH which is parathyroid hormone.
The N-Telopeptide should be very low and your parathyroid hormone should be on the bottom quartile, the bottom fourth of normal.
If someone has a PTH (which is the hormone in the small glands that are embedded in the thyroid that modulates calcium for humans) if the PTH is above maybe 20 or 25 you’re body is working to pull calcium out of the bones, not good. And check the N-Telopeptide to make sure you’re getting enough calcium. And serum calcium is not a good measure of calcium intake.
Look at how much phosphorus your getting in your diet, a pound of meat is about a gram of phosphorus and for every pound of meat you want to have a about a gram of calcium in your diet
On the flip side of this discussion – is that people get worried because there was a series of studies from the 1990’s and the early 2000’s that showed that women, potentially men as well, taking calcium supplements had increased levels cornory artery atherosclerosis. However, that’s an indication of systemic vitamin K2 deficiency and it argues that, you don’t need to worry about taking calcium as long as you’re getting your fat soluble vitamins, which is even more of an argument to eat things like liver for Vitamin A, getting out in the sun to get enough Vitamin D.
Vitamin K2 is abundant on a carnivore diet especially if you’re eating animals that are grass fed. Muscle meat has a decent amount of K2, liver has K2, egg yolks have K2. We’re going to get enough of the fat soluble vitamins that we need to move calcium around the body in the right way. You don’t need to do calcium supplementation when you have the fat soluble vitamins.
On a SAD diet, yes, probably not a good idea to be mega-dosing with vitamin D and calcium because everyone is K2 deficient. So that’s the idea with calcium.
Source: Saladino, Paul, guest. “Paul Saladino – Higher Fat Carnivore, Food Poisoning, Electrolytes, and SIBO” Carnivore Cast, 21 June 2019. https://www.carnivorecast.com/podcast/saladino2