Before I begin this post I just want to put a disclaimer in – I’m writing about this as an unprofessional – I can only record what happened to me and I can’t say if this will be good or healthy for everybody, consult a doctor, surf the web and make your own informed choice.
Call it what you want but to follow this diet is to throw all conventional thinking about eating out of the window and to start with a new mindset and a whole new shopping list.
So what is this diet about – firstly it has really been around since the 1800 – it got the name Banting when a mortuary owner by the name of Banting went to the dr because he was getting deaf, well it turned out that he wasn’t getting deaf he was just so fat that the fat was pressing against the nerves in his ears and it was making him deaf. The dr put him on a diet with limited carbohydrates and more fat and protein. Banting lost a lot of weight and has put the diet into a book – thus the first dieting book.
Fast forward a few decades and here comes Tim Noakes – the godfather of long distance running in South Africa – the man that has committed a whole chapter in his book “The Lore of Running” to carbo-loading. He was getting fatter, pre-diabetic and his running times were getting slower and slower. And then he had his Eureka moment and decided that his body is the perfect labrotorium to test the low carb, high fat diet. And lo and behold, he lost weight, he is more energetic, he is running faster and he is not pre-diabetic anymore to name a few positives.
And now to the normal Joe or Jane Soaps. I’m not really fat, but since Zoe’s birth I’ve had this little tube around my lower belly. No amount of planks or low fat food and salads could get rid of it. In desperation I decided to run Comrades in the hope of dropping a few kg’s. ha ha haha – was I in for a rude surprise – I actually gained 4kg’s in the run up to my first Comrades and I’ve had those extra kg’s since, even after running another 3 Comrades’ and cutting out more and more from my diet. BUT I carbo-loaded before every big race which is about 6 times in 3 months. Hubby is not fat but also had the little tube around his stomach – it is actually called a runners pouch in the running community.
We’ve been listening and reading and talking about the Tim Noakes thing since about June last year and we have just slowly but surely started to cut our carbs. Leaving the toast when eating breakfast, eating less rice and potatoes etc BUT the big mistake we made was to confuse the Banting diet with the Atkins diet. So in December I’ve started to research and read more about and I realised then that our fat intake is too low and our protein intake too high
So now we drench everything in butter, cream, cheese, chicken skins (Hubby not me), wonderfully rich curries and everything is cooked in Macadamia nut or coconut or olive oil. But we eat it all without rice, pap, any type of pasta, any type of potatoes or bread or any sugar.
So what do we eat? I’ll post a few recipes and ideas as I go along on this blog but in short:
Breakfast: Eggs scrambled with butter and cream cheese with ham / salami / fine biltong in. Or over weekends a fry-up with haloumi, bacon, eggs and coffee. Or full cream yogurt with a handful of nuts, seeds and a drizzle of honey.
Lunch: A salad made with dark green vegetables and lots of cream cheese / mayo with some tuna, chicken or cheese. Or left overs
Dinner: Some kind of meat in a rich creamy sauce flavoured with Dijon mustard / curry / lemon juice etc and dark green vegetables – especially raw baby spinach that we use instead of a carb.
So that is our diet and the result from January to now? I’ve lost 4kg’s and my runners pouch is completely gone – I’ve lost 7cm’s around my stomach. My skin is smoother, I don’t need as much hand cream on my hands and my cholesterol has been stable. I’m actually wearing a dress today that I’ve bought in 1997 and it fits me perfectly!
Hubby has lost close to 10kg’s, his running has improved, he sleeps better and his cholesterol is also stable. He is now down to a size 32 pants.
And do we cheat – yes we do – I’ll still have my favourite Flings and a chocolate about 4 times a week and Hubby will still drink a beer but we try and save the carbs for stuff that we really love instead of eating a carb to feel fuller.
So that is the LCHF story from my point of view.