My Journey: From Farm Boy, to Spy, to Carnivore Diet Coach

I grew up in a rural farming and ranching community, attending my early schooling in a one-room schoolhouse, a common sight in rural areas during the 1950s and early 1960s. I was born in 1951, which puts me right in that time frame. As you can see already my biography is going to be a little different!

Itzik Bar-Lev Certified carnivore coachCollege, Military Service, and Vietnam War

After graduating high school in a small village, I pursued nearly two years of college with a major in law enforcement. This was during the Vietnam War, and being the All-American Boy farm boy I was, I volunteered for the Army. My induction examinations went exceptionally well and I was initially set to become a pilot. However, before leaving the induction Center, two plain-clothed men recruited me into the military branch of the National Security Agency or NSA.

Intelligence Training and Undercover Missions

My intelligence school training was intense, and I came out top of my class, which included Special Forces Green Berets and regular Army intelligence. I spent a lot of time with them, both professionally and socially. I volunteered for Vietnam and spent about eight months in undercover combat intelligence gathering before being summoned by the Joint Chiefs of Staff in Saigon. During the time I was in Vietnam, there was a bounty for capture alive and interrogation placed on all the men in my small unit. This is why we were placed undercover. Surprisingly, I was appointed as the daily briefing analyst to the Joint Chiefs of Staff, my role being to summarize the day’s intelligence and present it to them every morning.

Post-Vietnam Assignments and University Education

Post-Vietnam, I was assigned to a tactical forward intelligence operation in Europe under the 7th Army command. My responsibilities included intelligence gathering, training new recruits, and leading the development of Europe’s first all-source intelligence analysis center. On my military discharge, I was offered a civilian position with the NSA, but I declined and chose to complete my University degree, majoring in pre-medicine and business.

Career Transitions and Family Life

Over the next 50 years, I held various positions in law enforcement and the medical field and even transitioned to high-tech roles later in my career, working in software quality control and as an enterprise project manager for architecture and infrastructure. Alongside my professional journey, I shared 37 wonderful years with my wife before she passed, raising two daughters who blessed me with 11 grandchildren. Three years after my wife’s death, I remarried, gaining a stepson and daughter through my second marriage.

Health Biography – Struggles and the Road to Recovery

My adult life after the military was marked with weight fluctuations, and I later suffered an autoimmune disease, likely triggered by exposure to Agent Orange in Vietnam. This disease severely damaged my nerves, leading to significant weight gain due to the side effects of the medication. Following the death of my first wife, I was 384 lb at 6 ft 4 in tall, barely mobile, and facing the certainty of being confined to a wheelchair.

biography Itzik Bar Lev Carnivore diet CoachingDiscovering the Carnivore Diet and Becoming a Health Coach

In August of 2018, I determined to lose weight.  I started a keto diet and later transitioned to a carnivore diet. As I shed weight and regained health, I was able to gradually stop most of my medication, begin to walk without aid, and even start training at a gym. My recovery was so remarkable that I was sought after to provide guidance, leading me to begin coaching in the carnivore diet. My doctors one of which is vegan were dumbfounded and to this day over 5 years later follow my progress with incredulity.

Oct 22 2017
Oct 22 2017
Aug 2019
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Feb 2020
Feb 2021

Continual Learning and Coaching

As demand for my expertise grew, I enrolled in Dr Sean Baker MD’s carnivore coach program and continued to delve into research and lectures on the subject of the carnivore diet.  I have studied hundreds of hours of presentations by Medical Doctors and researchers before medical conferences and read dozens of research reports.  I continue to review and adsorb more daily.

I was also a participant in the Harvard University Study:  

Behavioral Characteristics and Self-Reported Health Status among 2029 Adults Consuming a “Carnivore Diet

Some of the Doctors and other persons I follow for expertise in this field are:

Dr. Shawn Baker M.D. Orthopedic surgeon, Advocate of the carnivore diet

Dr. Ken Berry M.D. Family physician, Bestselling author of “Lies My Doctor Told Me”

Robert Cywes M.D. Bariatric surgeon, Specialist in pediatric and adult obesity

Dr. Ben Bikman Ph.D. Insulin Researcher – Professor of Pathophysiology and Biomedical Sciences

Dr. Georgia Eades M.D. Psychiatrist

Dr. Michael Eades, MD Low Carb Diet Advocate

Paul Mason M.D. Sports Medicine

Dave Feldman an independent cholesterol researcher

Kelly W. Hogan a 13+ year carnivore

Dr. Jason Fung M.D., Nephrologist (Kidney Disease) An Intermittent Fasting Advocate 


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