Banting… Does it really work and is it worth it?

Banting... does it really work and is it worth it?

I am sure that many of you have heard of the Banting Diet or eating plan and I am just as sure that everyone has an opinion on the subject too. There are some that say that the high fat is awful for your body and some say that it is the best diet yet.

I have been on the banting diet for just over two weeks and I must admit that I am feeling great. I have more energy and I have no craving for sugars or starchy foods or anything of the sorts. I have also lost a lovely six kgs in the fortnight. Having my mom eat the same types of foods as I do makes it easier to do as well. She has also seen a lovely result.

The Low Carb High Fat diet has had a lot of backlash though. Yes a lot of fat is bad for your cholesterol and body but what people also don’t realise is that you aren’t eating more fat than you originally were. If you think of how much saturated fats are in muffins and burgers and fast foods, is there really much of a difference other than the fact that we keep the fat on our bacon when we have breakfast or that we cook our eggs in a teaspoon of butter instead?

Banting is brilliant. In South Africa, the tradition is a braai or barbeque and that includes doing steaks and chicken or any meat on a fire and having a hearty roast dish of veggies or a side salad, accompanied by a traditional potato salad. Now with the banting, “its high fats medium protein and low to no carbs”. So in a scenario like this, mom and I will have the meat done without the basting and the veggie or salad dish.

Once you have done the diet for a few days, your body learns to regulate the amount of calories it needs per sitting so if we take tonight for an example, mom made Banting Lasagne which is lasagne without pasta. We just substitute the pasta with baby marrow instead. (Because green veggies are 100 percent allowed.)

We each got served a standard portion but could not finish it as the high ‘fat’ content in the cheese and beef mince filled us up easily and left no desire for snacking later on.

I have seen amazing results so far. I no longer snack on rubbish and I have no desire to have more than my teaspoon of Xylitol, sugar substitute, in my coffee each morning.

I have also started walking more, especially with a five month old puppy with unending supplies of energy at home with me all day. We take a nice 30 minute walk each day, taking my arthritic Border Collie with and I make sure to head up hills. Not only has the weight loss made me feel more confident, it has provided me with enough energy to get back to slow but steady exercise every day.

This eating plan has all my favourite foods in it. I have always considered myself a carnivore and have been over-joyed with the choice of meat every evening. I do understand, however, that all must be eaten in moderation. I do not include higher fats every day although these fats are the things that keep you fuller and satisfied for much lengthier periods of time. I still use olive oil instead of vegetable oils that they recommend cooking with.

The only fats I allow myself are the fat on my crispy bacon and the butter for my eggs.

I am so much more confident in how I look albeit not a dramatic change but just knowing that I am closer to my goal has given me so much more self-esteem and that is an amazing feeling.

Banting also only works if you are strict and follow the guidelines to the T. Cheating is a no-no, especially on this eating plan, because if you eat the high fats and carbs at the same time, you will end up going in the wrong direction.

It also only works for certain types of bodies and does not work for people who are insulin intolerant, as far as I have been informed. I have tried many eating plans and this seems to be the only one that is getting me closer and closer to my goal.

I have never been a materialistic or superficial person but I cant help but smile as my clothes are becoming looser and the scale is becoming friendlier. The thought that has been running through my mind is “I told you so.” to all the people that have mocked me and degraded me based on my outward appearance. I feel good knowing that I am proving them wrong and proving that I am succeeding.

Is that wrong?

As with any eating plan, exercise plays a key role. I think the fact that I am walking daily and pushing myself further and further has also helped keep the weight off. I have always been proud of myself, especially more so in the last seven years, but knowing that I am that much closer to finding the confidence I lost a while ago, has filled me with a different kind of emotion.

I am happy. I am happier than yesterday and the day before and the day before that because with each minute I stay determined and motivated, I see results. Those results aren’t necessarily the weight loss, its my confidence and self-esteem and overall happiness.

That is the greatest discovery and gift out of the process thus far.



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