Ray Hicks – who eats 12 eggs per day on average: Within 10 weeks, his body was transformed

Tran Hanh
-
June 10, 2024

Some people may believe that eating an egg a day keeps the doctor away, but what happens when you consume more than 10 times that amount? Newsweek spoke to Ray Hicks who eats 12 eggs per day on average.

“I could eat eggs in any way and never get tired of them,” Hicks told Newsweek.

Eggs are a nutrient-rich food, providing a good source of protein at about six grams per large egg and only 78 calories. The American Heart Association reports they also offer essential nutrients such as vitamin D, which supports bone health and the immune system, and choline, which benefits metabolism and liver function.

However, too much of a good thing can be bad, according to two doctors who spoke to Newsweek about 26-year-old Hicks’ diet.

Eggs
Ray Hicks eats “anywhere from 6 to 18 eggs per day,” but it’s usually around 12. TIKTOK/@CARNIVORERAY

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Registered dietitian, Melanie Betz told Newsweek: “The thing that is most alarming about this diet is the amount of cholesterol it contains. Twelve large eggs contain 2,484 mg of cholesterol.”

The Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommended that cholesterol intake be limited to no more than 300 milligrams per day.

“The guidelines still suggest keeping cholesterol as low as possible without compromising the nutritional quality of the diet,” told Betz, the founder and CEO of The Kidney Dietitian in Chicago.

She added: “Over a long period of time, eating that many eggs provides an astronomical amount of cholesterol, which is concerning. A study published in JAMA in 2019 found that eating more than 300 mg of cholesterol per day was associated with cardiovascular disease and mortality.”

Praveen Guntipalli MD FACP

A headshot of Praveen Guntipalli. PROVIDED BY PRAVEEN GUNTIPALLI

“Eggs are a budget-friendly powerhouse of protein and nutrients, but like all good things, they’re best enjoyed in balance,” said Dr. Praveen Guntipalli, a board-certified physician specializing in Internal Medicine and Obesity Medicine.

Guntipalli told Newsweek that consuming 12 eggs daily far exceeds typical dietary recommendations and can lead to high cholesterol and saturated fat intake, increasing the risk of cardiovascular problems, especially for individuals with heart conditions or genetic predispositions.

He said: “It’s crucial to consider the overall dietary context, combining eggs with high-fat foods may intensify risks.”

How Eating 12 Eggs Per Day Changed Hicks’ Body

Weight loss
Left, Ray Hicks weighed almost 295 pounds. Right, Hicks now weighs 205 pounds. TIKTOK/@CARNIVORERAY

At the start of August 2023, Hicks, who lives in Nashville, Tennessee, weighed 295 pounds, then he discovered the carnivore diet. Since then, he has consumed only animal products such as meat, eggs and dairy.

Within 10 weeks, his body was transformed and now he maintains a 205-pound frame. He no longer suffers from joint pain and says even his dental hygiene has improved.

“Of all the benefits I’ve experienced, the mental health side has to be my favorite,” he told Newsweek. “As someone who has battled depression from a very early age, and has successfully used antidepressants, nothing comes close to what this diet has done for me mentally.

“Meat and eggs are like happy pills.”

I tried the carnivore diet, it had unexpected health benefits

In 2020, a team of researchers at Harvard University conducted a social media study on the carnivore diet, surveying over 2,000 people who follow the diet. Their findings were published in November 2021 in Current Developments in Nutrition.

Participants had been on the diet for six or more months and were mostly motivated by health reasons. Contrary to common expectations, adults consuming a carnivore diet experienced few adverse effects and instead reported health benefits and high satisfaction. Cardiovascular disease risk factors were variably affected. The generalizability of these findings and the long-term effects of this dietary pattern require further study, according to the research.

Hicks told Newsweek: “I am yet to talk with any healthcare professionals for advice or guidance on the carnivore diet. I am by no means an expert in nutrition considering I have zero credentials to back me. However, I have ample experience within health and fitness

“Though an abundance of eggs has been beneficial for me and countless others—that doesn’t mean that everyone would like it or even thrive on it.”

According to Statista, there has been increasing demand for eggs in the United States over recent years. In 2023, it was estimated that each person in the U.S. consumed an average of 281.3 eggs per year, which is less than one per day. This number is expected to rise to 284.4 eggs per person in 2024.

Before/after
Left, Ray Hicks praises the diet for improving his physical health and mental health. Right, Hicks has dropped 90 pounds since August, 2023. TIKTOK/@CARNIVORERAY

In February, Hicks shared a video on TikTok explaining that he had consumed over 2,000 eggs in six months. Racking up 706,800 views, the footage shows Hicks tucking into a plate of eggs and a few slabs of butter.

He says: “Believe it or not, each time I eat them, I think it tastes better than the last time.”

In 2023, a dozen eggs cost $2.51 in the United States, according to Statista. Hicks states that they are “cost effective.”

At the time of writing, the video has over 24,000 likes, which isn’t unusual for footage posted by Hicks, who uses the handle @carnivoreray.

On May, 7, he shared a video showing what he eats in a day. Unsurprisingly, it started with a dozen pasteurized eggs accompanied by a side of grass- fed beef liver, followed by a bowl of ground beef for lunch and a high-fat meal replacement bar.

The video had over 271,000 views and 15,300 likes at the time of writing.

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