Saturday 15 May 2021
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Is Banting a good dietary plan?

Learning to eat right in order to reach your desired weight and most importantly stay healthy would at time appear out of reach for most of us. Striking that delicate balance between maintaining a healthy weight, remaining energetic seems impossible for those who have tried a buffet of dietary plans which just do not seem to work out.

Weight loss can be quite challenging because it requires one to constantly keep tab of the amount of calories they take in on a daily basis. In order to make sure that weight doesn’t  creep up on you when least expected, this is an area where one must stay woke.

Weight loss works as differently for everyone as people differ. However with banting this dietary plan is said to be designed to accommodate the individual’s needs.

Banting is a low-carbohydrate, high-fat (LCHF) diet named after William Banting, a British undertaker who was the first person to have ever used the dietary plan.

He considered himself very obese and desperately wanted to lose weight. In the year 1862 after several bouts of fasts, diets and exercise regimes, he paid a visit to his doctor William Harvey. Harvey proposed a radical eating plan high in fat, no sugar and no starch but which included very few carbohydrates.

By following this dietary plan, Banting experienced such remarkable weight loss that he wrote an open letter to the public, the ‘Letter on Opulence’, which became widely dispersed and so began Banting.

The idea behind Banting is that it allows one’s body to switch from burning carbs for energy to burning fat. It requires one to increase the intake of fat and reduce the intake of carbs while at the same time taking in a balanced amount of protein.

A diet of animal fats of no more than 80grams (g) and avoiding anything with a carb content of more than 5g per 100 such as sugary food, and weight loss is sure to be your gain.

The type of meals that can be consumed for Banting are divided into a three coloured list namely green, orange and red list.

The green list contains food that has a content of 5 percent of carbs per serving it includes food such as avocado, cabbage, broccoli, cucumber, garlic, mushrooms, okra, radishes, spinach, celery, cauliflower, bean sprouts and asparagus.

The orange list contains food that has a content of 25g of carbs per serving – it includes food such as raw nuts, cottage cheese, cream, coconut, beet root, carrots, cassava, papaya, peas, plantain, sweet potatoes, apples, apricots, bananas and kiwi fruit.

The red list contains a list of food items that should not be consumed at all in order for the dietary plan to work – this list is known as the no go area. It contains food items such as fast food, artificial sweeteners, jam, sugar, canola oil, butter spreads, wheat, condensed milk, energy drinks and soft drinks.

Dietitian Samantha Du Toit, Owner of Eat Clean Namibia in an interview with The Lounge noted that Banting works however it is not endorsed by dietitians.

“In terms of weight loss it does work for some people based on the type of genes they have and for others it does not”.

She further explained that fat makes people gain weight but with the concept of Banting it puts people in a state called Ketosis. Ketosis is a state which causes the body to produce Kenotes which is energy that helps with the burning of fat quicker.

“It’s however not placed under the healthy guide book as this is not a long term dietary plan and can only be followed for a short period of time because it is not beneficial for one’s health”.

In addition Du Toit stressed that Banting comes with various flaws such as it causes constipation due to low dietary fibre intake and it also has an effect of the kidneys.

“It forces the kidneys to have to work much harder to get rid of all the waste that comes from proteins and for those that suffer from kidney failure, Banting should not be a dietary plan to follow”.

While Banting as a diet plan seems to be in vogue, it should be noted that for a dietary plan to be considerd good it should not put your life at risk.

Good dietary plans should be recommended by dieticians and should be recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

If a dietary plan seems too good to be true it probably is, before embarking on a weight loss journey make sure to read up and collect as much information as you can about a certain weight loss program.

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