How to survive on $100 a month in Southern California…Cheap Keto

Just this past month, Steak Club was hit with yet another company crisis. It’s during crises like these that I have to remind myself that things could always be worse. How much worse? Imagine moving to California for 6 months with little to no money

That’s exactly what happened to me October 2021. Instead of being homeless and starving, I learned to survive and thrive on a cheap keto diet while getting back to optimal health. Here’s the story of how I went to Southern California, broke, and managed to survive on $100 per month

At the beginning of October last year, I had thoroughly had enough of Polish winters.

So I bought a one-way ticket to California. The plan was to stay there for 6 months, finish a course in regenerative agriculture, and make new friends.

Call it bad luck or poor planning – things did not go well, right from the start.

Returning from the countryside, I arrived back to Warsaw to sort out my affairs, and pack my belongings. I stopped by the courier’s warehouse to check on things.

Immediately after arriving, I was informed the courier company had been bought by Allegro (Poland’s largest e-commerce platform) – I had less than a week to move my fulfilment operations.

Problem was, I was going to California before then.

Quick thinking, I called a fellow entrepreneur, and was recommended a new courier service.

While operations were being moved, I got on the plane and took a trip half way across the world.

There was no way I could’ve prepared myself for what was to come.

Landing in Los Angeles, I was witnessing the end of a civilization.

95%+ of the people I saw were obese, crumbling infrastructure was everywhere, industry pumping out smog and the cost of living dramatically decreasing everyone’s quality of life

My understanding was that I would be staying with my friend.

Instead, I found out I was renting a room in the house my friend is staying for a “great price.

$1350 for a single bedroom + and en-suite bathroom.

Welcome to Los Angeles, one of the most expensive cities in the world!

On top of this, it was 09.2021 & inflation (price gouging) was already skyrocketing.

In 2 weeks, I saw the price of bacon go from $8-$12. Leaving the supermarket on average would cost a minimum of $100

With no passive income (Steak Club was still in dire straights), I had to do something, and quick.

The solution?
It was time to move out to the countryside.

Luckily before coming to California, an old friend from University in North Carolina, ,had introduced me to a non-profit organization.

They were renting half of a farm in San Diego county, complete with a tiny house. It was time to move.

The place was perfect: a tiny house all to myself, solar panels so I could work on my laptop, & on a farm where I could get physical work in. 

Ironically, I was right next to Camp Pendleton military base, where I was born.

The problem was, with no money and no car (a necessity in the U.S.), I was totally stranded. There was no hot water, no heating, nor even a toilet.

The next two months were cold showers, digging toilet holes, listening to live ammunition fired daily (military exercises next door), and coyotes howling at night.

Luckily, whoever kitted out the tiny house was a Europhile, with a duvet available.

I thus slept snuggly under the covers each night (healthy).

What about food?

Luckily, I was able to go into town once a week, to join Juan (the only local farmer), to help setup at the farmer’s market.

So what how did I manage my diet plan?

Having lived with a holistic doctor the previous winter, I knew exactly what to buy in order to stay healthy.

The first trick was shopping at the Mexican Supermarket.

With 40% lower prices, and an excellent beef butcher, I was amazed at the selection of beef, from nose-to-tail.

So what did my diet plan look like? Put simply, I put myself on a cheap keto diet (see here to read more on the Carnivore diet)

In addition, I’ve long practiced intermittent fasting, eating once a day, and keeping my main mealtime between 10:00- 14:00.

The minimum amount of protein required for the average person is roughly 0.8g of protein per kg standing body weight. Also keep in mind, you want 50/50 protein to fat + beef organs for your vitamins.

Here are the numbers:

Total Body Weight: 125lb or 53kg
Required Protein: 53g/day ->1590g/month -> (0.8g minimum, I upped intake)
Required Fat: 1590g/month

To convert below it’s is 453.6 grams per pound.

Monthly Food Costs with Cheap Keto in Southern California:
Beef liver – $1.89/lb x2 = $7.56 -> 907.2 grams | vitamins
Eggs 12 Pack – $2.19 x 4 = $8.76 -> | vitamins + fat + protein
Flank Steak – $6.99/lb x4  – 454.59grams = $27.96 -> 1814 grams | protein
Butter (Fat) – $3.75/8oz = $31.73 -> 1808 grams | fat

Monthly total Spend-> $76.04

From November to December on the farm, I was doing mostly computer work – keeping minimum energy expenditure outside in the hot California sun (except to get vitamin D).

With little to no money, I was on a strict keto/carnivore diet. Within the first month (mid-Nov), I ran out of money for essentials.

Thus no coffee or stimulants.

Just water, protein, fat, and beef organs.

Camping with a two burner stove, iron cast skillet, with eggs, flank steak and mocha pot.

The effects were amazing!

Within 2 weeks, I had a six-pack of abs & I was gaining muscle mass.

Even more amazing, my brain fog was gone, increasing mental clarity & my energy levels.

That, coupled with the cold showers, clean food, fresh air & sunlight everyday, I had achieved optimal health in a very short period of time.

In under 1 week (practicing keto diet for years, I am fat adapted) I was feeling the best I had felt in years on a keto diet.

What was the difference this time? The no.1 super food beef liver.

This was the first time in my life I had introduced beef liver into my diet on a  regular basis. I was slicing it up into pill sized chunks, freezing them, and taking some every morning & evening.

I normally track the hours I work (time is an entrepreneur’s absolute number 1 limited resource), and my work performance went from 6-7 hours a day on the computer, to 12 hours – without a real break. 

View from a farm during the winter of 2022.

Thanks to the boost in energy & mental clarity, I was finally able to fix the crisis with Steak Club in time for Xmas.

I remembered to use my network. Got in contact with the owner of Lokalny Rolnik, who allowed me to move into their fulfilment operation.

In under 2 months, by mid-December, I had:
– Grown an e-mail list at the farmer’s market to 250 people,
– Put together a Regenerative Solutions Affiliate Program,
Fixed Steak Club courier crisis (moved fulfilment operations to Lokalny Rolnik)
– Helped the non-profit select and purchase an 80ha property in

Unfortunately, since them I’ve been ghosted by the owners, but hopefully I will one day get in contact to set up a Regenerative Agriculture School.

However, all good things must come to an end …

On December 15th – my birthday & the same day I got my driver’s license – I got kicked off of the farm by the owner of the leased farm.


For visiting the chickens coop (also animals love me, having a positive temperament helps)

Talk about egos. 

I could now understand why the non-profit was moving.

However, coming close to the holidays, I would nearly be homeless for Xmas – this was the start of the process of getting kicked off 3 farms in 6 weeks.

This adventure was just getting started.

During this time, if it was not the Mexican people & culture, my budget keto diet would never have worked.

As soon as I came back to Europe, I made it my mission to get beef organs (offal) added to our products, & created the budget keto diet product category so Steak Club customers, like me could regain their health, with keto diet & beef organs.

 16.99 24.99 available on subscription
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If you’ve not already subscribed to the newsletter, consider subscribing to get promos, discounts and further instalments in a series tracking my adventures from Adam Grows EDEN, as I use my passions of food, people & music to try and reform agriculture. 

Next up …”Getting kicked off of 3 farms in 6 weeks.” – with a hostage situation in between.

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