Whole Foods renegade vows to eat raw meat daily until he “dies from bacteria”

The Raw Meat Experiment has gathered quite the following.

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Raw meat on table with steak knives
Photo: Mustafa Ciftci / Anadolu Agency (Getty Images)

You sit down for a first date. The dude’s reasonably good-looking, funny, smart. All goes well—until he hoists up a raw chicken breast with both hands and takes a wet, viscera-filled bite. That’s the Raw Meat Experiment experience. On Instagram, one carnivore who goes by “John” has dedicated himself to eating raw meat every day “until I die from bacteria.” As of today, he’s more than two months into the protocol, which he calls the Raw Meat Experiment.

John’s first post dates back to November 22, 2021; now, he posts pictures of himself gnawing on half-pound ribeyes, slurping up raw ground beef, and hacking off fish heads nearly every day. According to my calculations, he’s been doing this for 83 days, regularly stopping into Whole Foods to chow down on a raw, meaty meal.

That part’s important—John eats much of his meat at his local Whole Foods, writing in an Instagram story highlight that he thinks “it’s funny to do it in front of people.” He also notes that he gets some of his meat from Amish suppliers and local farms, and refuses to eat factory-farmed animals raw.

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John writes on Instagram that the experiment started for health reasons, citing chronic fatigue, cystic acne, dizziness, and fatigue. “When I started eating steak and eggs for breakfast, instead of bagels and smoothies, I felt full for most of the day, and stable, instead of getting dizzy from a carb crash, my pain started to go away,” he writes, claiming that the health benefits of his raw meat habit have only increased since beginning the experiment.

Health goals aside, it’s worth nothing that John’s Instagram is full of memes and quippy posts—like this one in which his mother asks if he’s eating the meat for health or clout. The dude is certainly gaining clout; he’s got nearly 90,000 followers on Instagram, an underwear sponsorship deal, and multiple appearances on popular podcasts like Mark Bell’s Power Project. Whether it’s the memes, the shock value, or the purported health benefits, something about John’s experiment resonates with people.

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I’ll say this: I’ve seen worse. Last year, I reported on consumers of “high meat,” or rotten meat that produces a psychedelic high because IT IS SO ROTTEN. Given the choice between rotten raw meat and fresh raw meat, I’ll take the fresh raw meat. There’s also this woman who eats raw meat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, forgoing most other nutrient sources. John’s approach seems a bit more holistic, and I appreciate his commitment to eating ethically sourced meat. That could be part of the reason that he’s avoided severe food poisoning. But if he dies, at least he’ll go out doing what he loves: devouring slabs of meat for the internet.