on the benefits of protein

Three months ago, I changed my diet from vegetarian, generally low fat, with lots of salads to meat-heavy omnivore, high fat, with lots of salads. It was a pretty significant shift.

I have heard variants of “hey, you look great” and “wow, your skin looks really healthy right now” and “wait, are you wearing makeup?!” (no) for the past month or so.

My nails, previously the bendiest, wobbliest, weakest finger coverings out there are now solid and strong. So solid I have cut myself with them twice because I’m used to them just giving way to faint pressure.

I figured I might gain a heap of weight, as meat is heftier calorically than what I’d previously been eating, but it hasn’t happened. If anything, I look more toned because my muscles are building faster.

I am a cold person. I am cold all the time. Always. I have not worn my jacket since May. I haven’t taken a shower to warm up since upping my protein levels. I overheat on the walk to work occasionally, or work the whole day without my sweater. My hands are warm. Hilly Quirky City is an excellent spot to test this kind of thing because we don’t really have seasons. It’s a little bit warmer than January, but not by much, and this time last year I was frozen, wrapped in scarf and jacket on the walk home.

I think there might be something to this meat eating thing.

It’s not all good news. Red meat has seriously upset my stomach twice (though the burger last night was fine). I still hate a lot of different meats, including all shellfish and fish excluding tuna. I’m SO sick of greek yogurt**. My hair fell out like crazy post-miscarriage/progesterone withdrawal, and it remains drier and more brittle than before (might just be hormones, but diet and hair are pretty closely tied for me).

Because I’ve been in the middle of a FET or on birth control for the upcoming IVF this whole time, I have no idea if this diet is helping my reproductive cycle as much as it seems to be for my sister (who has ovulated thrice now! amazing!). My test will come when we fertilize some eggs and see if their quality has improved at all. It’s a big test.

I’m not sure what this will mean for me moving forward post-IVF. I think I may revert to more vegetarian eating, but with a much closer eye on my protein intake, and occasional meat. An occasional meat eater is an easier space to live in than a vegetarian, socially, and there are some meats I find I genuinely enjoy.

All this to say, I think it is not for nothing that I have made all these changes, but the head juror is still out.

** actually, this may explain my strengthened nails more than eating meat, as I was previously getting 0.5-1 servings of dairy, and now I’m getting 1-2 a day

2 thoughts on “on the benefits of protein

  1. Haisla

    This is really interesting. I, too, am always cold (esp. hands and feet) but had never considered that my non-meat eating might be a contributing factor..! Anyway, I hope your new diet will have the desired effect on your eggies!! xx


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