A Bit of Banter on Banting

Since food is what got me down, might as well start back up with it.

On December 27 2016 I arrive in South Africa to see family. My Aunt tells me about the banting diet she follows. She speaks very highly of it, and provides a great deal of information on how it works. I’m curious. Why not give it a shot?

The banting diet is a low-carb high fat diet. It’s not like the Atkins diet where protein intake is increased, and no, high fat doesn’t equate to large quantities of junk food. Fat means eating the fat on meat instead of leaving it, and enjoying other rich foods such as avocado, coconut, nuts, cheese, seafood etc.

Bacon and eggs for breakfast everyday, salads for lunch, meat and veggies for dinner. Fat from each meal keeps the body well fueled. Diet doesn’t mean hunger. At each meal my aunt tells me what I should and should not eat, as not everyone at the table follows the same diet. I’m full and feel good at the end of each meal.

Sugar cravings are the only speed bump on this diet road I experience. Foods that are banting A-okay aren’t high in sugars. All fruit juices are a no no, and only very small amounts of fruit are okay to have each day.

About one week after I begin to ‘bant’, I notice: an increase in energy, I can concentrate for hours more at a time, zero bloating after meals, no more intense hunger waves, better muscle tone, improved mood and best of all, is improved sleep. Zzz all the way through the night! More often than before at least. I feel like I sound like one of those diet advertisements here, but this is actually how I feel after this change in diet.

It’s good to note at this time too, that while one diet may work for me, everyone’s body and metabolism is different and may have different needs. Banting is worth a shot if you are interested in it’s potential benefits, but another diet may suit your lifestyle and body too. I say it’s always worth looking into other options.

When I ask friends and family in South Africa what they think about banting, I receive all positive feedback. It’s a well recognized diet in SA. At local grocery stores, foods are even labeled specific for the banting diet.

Back here in the USA, I’ve yet to meet someone who has heard of the banting diet. It’s not a new fad either. Pay a visit to William Banting back in 1862, he’ll tell you all about it. Why hasn’t it become popular over here? Unfortunately I can’t tell you that, but hey, now you’ve heard of it!

Very very very important when taking on the banting diet is to not cheat. On very low carbs, the body burns fat for energy. When both fat and carbs are ingested, the carbs are burned and the fat stored. Not good.

There’s lots of neat science behind this diet. I highly recommend The Real Meal Revolution as a read on banting. The book explains all the fact and fiction behind fat, carbs, dieting etc. in a clear and comprehensive style. Apparently it’s the fastest selling cookbook in South Africa, so for those of you who have doubts as I often do, maybe that’s something to go by?

Now, this isn’t really a tech. post or obviously futuristic, so why banter about banting on my blog for the future? The difference this diet makes to how I long I can sit and focus is remarkable.  Brain fog or whatever you want to call it, is looking at a sunny forecast now. What we put in our bodies affects what comes out of it… in terms of innovation, or ability to innovate. Did I get you there?

Banting should be a common term here in the USA. Even if it doesn’t interest you, talk about it. By the way, for those of you who are celiac like I am, note that this change in diet is not at all more restrictive, an easy change over if anything. So no excuses.

Only two nights ago when I had a food fight, a.k.a. food poisoning, I broke banting for the first time. After a little trip to urgent care to get an IV for severe dehydration and shots for nausea and cramping, the doc. recommends a three day diet of popsicles (since “insert barf emoji” every time I have water), then apple sauce, rice, bananas and tea.

Six popsicles to stay somewhat hydrated on day one is more popsicles than I’ve had in years. Plus rice today, and now bananas, I feel like shit and can’t wait to go back to banting. Now you know why I’ve been away, and can banter about banting:)

Happy banting!

Photo credit: @ a Canadian basement in winter, tomato plant grow-op, for fresh veggies, by C.M.

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