Atkins diet

Dieting is a Crock of Shit!

Listen, I have to tell you that I think dieting is a crock of shit. The very word DIET sends me into paroxysms of loathing. I think of how much money I have spent on dieting aids, books by the score, internet purchases and much more. I don’t want to continue like that for one more day and I will not.


My interest in nutrition and weight loss started when I went vegetarian for seven years in England in the 70s. Being part of the hippie culture I learned about whole foods: sprouts, rice, and vegetables usually grown organically in the back yard of the commune or picked up at the local market. Good times. Tasty food. Lots of carbohydrates.


Another side of my eating was the stress of wondering when and from whence the next gig would come, and if I was going to be “thin enough” for stage. Being emotional to start with, eating has always been my go-to activity when stress appeared. But not only then. Stressed, sad, happy, delighted, confused, successful – you name the emotion – they all result in eating.


Of course, events along the way helped to pile on the pounds. Motorbike accident, stopped cigarettes, hysterectomy, and a back operation: they all contributed. The sad thing is that I started dieting at a weight I could only dream of achieving now. Being over 60 and having spent years battling weight gain I do not expect to become a lissom wand, ever!


And if truth be told, food is one of my greatest passions.


I have spent the last month or more rebelling against Banting and all other diets. However, I have now managed to slow the runaway train and am a tad more thoughtful about food choices once more. It has resulted in rummaging deep within me to find some answers. My own answers and my own choices.


So what are they?


The upshot of it all is that I have decided to eat from all the Banting lists. From all food sources, all categories, nothing to be left out. Even sugar. Gasp!


And how do I intend to lose weight? Do I want to lose weight? How healthy am I? All these questions have been roaring around my addled brain, seeking the true answers that reside in my inner being. Profound, I know…


Eating less will do for starters. One helping and not two. How do intend to achieve that? By eating slowly, putting my fork or spoon down between mouthfuls, basically – eating mindfully. Big words, but achievable.


What will I be eating? Mostly everything that is natural and not processed by man. I did say mostly. There is nothing on my AVOID list because such a list does not exist for me anymore. The Amarula Crème Brûlée I had after lunch yesterday was a true delight and I refuse to go out and deny myself something so delicious, sugar and all. Sure, I will make my own at home with xylitol, but really? To go out and have a ‘normal’ meal is a huge pleasure.


Through all the years of dieting, (Low carb, keto, Banting, GAPS, Protein Power, Carbohydrate Addicts Diet, Schwarzbein) – they have all contributed to a store of good knowledge about foods and nutrition in general. I know what to eat and I am sure we all know basically what to eat. I don’t touch MSG as a rule, but there are Doritos and Lays days in my life. Mostly they were eaten with great guilt in the past, but no longer. Once in a while is fine by me.


I eat bread. Gasp again! These days I have access to stone ground non-GMO organic flour and have great fun trying out different recipes. In the past I would probably have eaten the whole loaf in a fit of secrecy and shame, but no more of that. Delicious with grass fed butter (it always sounds strange – butter doesn’t eat grass! Yes, I know, I know…) and local organic cheeses, very yum.


Every one of us has things we mean to do but never get round to. Things we know are beneficial but somehow manage to elude us in our daily routines. So I am making a list of those I am endeavouring to execute, out of which I plan to make a habit.


Habit Challenge List


Borax in filtered water daily for arthritis in my broken bones. (Google it…)


Krill oil capsules occasionally to replace the fish I very seldom eat due to mercury scares.


Lemon juice or apple cider vinegar in the mornings with coconut oil and salt. (This habit is already in place.)


Eat within an eight to ten hour window. This is intermittent fasting which I practice at least four days a week and sometimes more.


Sprout organic seeds and enjoy the abundance of nutrition, and one day make a sprouted seed bread, just for fun.


Soak oats and nuts overnight as an occasional breakfast. (Soaking breaks down the enzyme inhibitors, making the food more easily digestible. And – I like it!)


Eat vegetables, preferably raw but also cooked any other way. Raw blended green juices are the one thing with which I struggle, but now that I am eating off all the lists, I shall use apples and bananas to make them more palatable, together with seeds and nuts for protein.


Make kimchi and other fermented foods and eat regularly. The thing is to find organic cabbage. A red cabbage is growing in a pot and I am sowing more seed after the next new moon. Carrots abound in my garden and I have loads of kale, so no excuse.


Make yogurt more often.


Deep breathing daily. (I often do three mindful breaths throughout the day and also at night before I sleep.)


One last but most important thing of all – Love my body, fat or thin!


There you have it. My own lifestyle, tailored just for me.  I will let you know how it goes…




Banting – it’s working!!!…



I found the answer for my body. Keep the carbs under 20 and the fat percentage anywhere between 70 and 80%.

A few days ago I made fish cakes with coconut flour and that was a mistake. My weight went up instantly – about 800g. I was not pleased. So I cut carbs down to below 20 and voilà! A whole kilo gone in 4 days. Must have been water weight, but it taught me something.

The other trick is to eat a l-i-t-t-l-e supper. I had 2 boiled eggs and some mayo and that was more than enough.

Breakfast this morning was at 10:15 (I eat between 10 and noon) and I made sure it was high fat. Here it is…

This is a very South African dish – called Skilpadjies which means tortoises – with not a tortoise in sight! It comprises lamb liver minced and flavoured and made into a pattie and wrapped in caul fat and this was fried in coconut oil. The avo is full of lipase and helps to break down fat while the eggs are…well we all know eggs! Great protein and good stuff.

That will keep me satisfied for a l-o-n-g time.

Until later…



Banting Battles!…


Whoa! Did I get a rocket today from a Facebook Banting chap! All about enzymes. He drilled me as to why I was suggesting avocado instead of cooked vegetables for lipase content. So – just in case anyone is wondering why I suggested that, and in case you haven’t read my blog post on enzymes, I shall repeat. All enzymes are destroyed through cooking and heating. This is a fact I discovered when researching. It seems as if that is not so important to the chappie (who shall remain nameless) as he went on to give me links to enzymes. I shall repeat, picky person with harsh words…Raw Raw Raw! That is what I was trying to get through! Cooked vegetables do not contain working enzymes. And I believe in enzymes to help with our digestive process. I am not a doctor, nor a nutritionist, but I do believe in the power of raw, enzyme rich, nutrient dense foods.


An enzyme stays an effective enzyme if it’s raw – and the harsh person? May he be blessed with happy thoughts!


On with the Revolution!


A Happy Sunday Breakfast Dish!


It was Yummy. Savoury Mince with Eggs and Avo (and a tomato:)


I was not hungry for hours after, and eventually had a creamy coffee and 6 almonds. So far tonight I have eaten one hard boiled egg with a tablespoon of mayo. I might just have the last one in a moment…good thing I love eggs!




Love and peace…and happy Banting







Banting Snacks…


Banting snacks seem to be a hard one for some, so I am going to start posting mine as and when they come. Here was today’s one:

Salami and Avocado Bites


Pinterest is a wonderful place to go and look around. I made a couple of lists and am going to see what I can come up with to make some even more yummy ones! Watch this space…


Banting – Finding My Own Way…


This has been an interesting week.


Now I do not subscribe totally to anyone’s particular idea of Banting. I use however much I need, wherever it resonates with me and suits my needs, wants and desires. Yep, all those things. Needless to say, my desire is to be healthy above all. Slim is good. Health is my main priority – physically, mentally and emotionally.


Physically means getting good nutrients into this bod, organic where possible and more than that, out of my garden! Being fit and active is important – so that I can get around the streets of Edinburgh and Pittenweem when I visit my sis – and to be able to walk in my little forest with the dogs and to dance with my horses. As I get lighter, all this becomes easier to do. Being healthy and fit enough to live a full active life is my sincere want, need and desire.


Mentally? Hmmmm… Keeping my brain busy is not too difficult. It wants to explore all the time! Discovering and using knowledge is ongoing, continually. Discovering what works best for me as far as food and health is concerned takes up a fair bit of my time as well. Nutrition has long been my interest. Ideas come, get used, get discarded at times and then the chosen principles get added to my lifestyle. All in all I am a healthy fat girl. Now I am on my way to being a healthy slim girl!


Emotional well-being is important so I ask myself what can I do to keep my sometimes rampant emotions happy? What do I like to do? Meditation and Qi Gong for starters. And then, I love to cook. Tastes turn me on. I love to develop recipes out of whatever I have at the time, and sometimes I plan. I certainly think simple is best, but there are times when a bit of luxury and food decadence suits the moment! We are not robots and we like variety. Well I certainly do. To eat the same things every day is not how I like to live. It would be like painting the same picture every day, and now and then get let out for good behaviour to paint something new. Ugh! I am a rainbow being, as are we all. I just like to let all the colours shine! Not just pink!!!

See! That’s the emotional side :)


The last week has been one of those emotional ones and food, of course, has come into play. Rebellion and resistance is part of my nature and sometimes it roars to the forefront of my emotional day. I know I am not alone. There are many of us emotional peeps out there and many of us rely on food to comfort us or to assist in the rebellion of the moment. I am not saying it is right, it just is like this at times. Just is.


We move on.


So what do I do on a regular basis? What I like to do. Drink my lemon water, coconut oil and salt in the morning – I happen to love it – and then I wait until I am hungry. My natural bent, my desire, is to do intermittent fasting, which means I eat anywhere between 10 am and noon, and I eat supper anywhere between 6 and 8 pm. And supper is always small. That feels good to me, and I am the one who knows what works for me. The principles behind intermittent fasting ring very true and my body likes it. I have written about it in previous posts, so do go and have a read. LCHF/Banting/Low Carb is how I choose my food. Sometimes I deviate, but not too often. I like banting. It’s good food.


Recently I relinquished all my outside responsibilities and resigned from committees etc. This is because I have an art exhibition coming up in July, so I have gone into my painting cave for the next four months. However, I am also writing my little Banting Recipe Book to release at our Silver Mist Holistic and Health Fair on 11 and 12 July 2015 here in Haenertsburg. Go to the facebook page to check out what’s coming.


Recent Banting Food Photos


Shirataki Noodles with Basil & Moringa Pesto

Shirataki Noodles with Bacon & Cream Sauce

Banting Snack: Celery with Whipped Cream & Blue Cheese


Until the next post – keep smiling and do the healthy thing…


Rockin’ on – Following the Real Meal Revolution










Two Banting Meals…



Dogs and horses wake me up early and these days I have been eating breakfast a little earlier than my norm (which is anywhere between 10 and noon). The day started with lemon juice, salt and coconut oil in hot water, sipped on the stoep gazing at all the green around me and flowers burgeoning everywhere. Even the bees were up early and already collecting their gatherings for the hive. The dew was cool beneath my bare feet, such a refreshing feeling.


About three hours later I thought about eating. This was around 8 am. So this is what I concocted…



Turmeric-Spiced Egg Scramble with Coconut Kissed Thai-flavoured Chicken

This was a different take on breakfast. Well, it is the most important meal of the day and who said we had to have bacon with our eggs every day? There was left over cooked chicken in the fridge and I had run out of bacon, so creativity was necessary. The Thai green curry paste was an awesome addition with the coconut cream. I stir-fried two spring onions with the chicken and then added the paste and coconut cream. Truly good tasting!

Pork Medallions in a Creamy Mustard Sauce with Cabbage and Avocado Salad

Dressed with Olive Oil and Verjuice

This was a late lunch dish with a friend. The look on his face was so rewarding :) And there was not a starch in sight! Shows you that even non-Banters like Banting food! Two more non-Banters are coming for dinner tomorrow night, so I am already planning and scheming…

Keeping up with the Revolution…

(The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Sally-Ann Creed, Jonno Proudfoot and David Grier)






And from Scotland…


Sister’s day was a little different to mine!


Banting day 3 from Scotland


I fear that I am on rebellion 101!! I don’t like green tea, I miss my Ceylon tea with low fat milk.

I don’t like my bacon done in the microwave and I cannot use my kitchen.

I am so indoctrinated into eating low fat high fibre that I find fat off-putting.


I, believe or not, am laughing through all of this because I have a sense of humour and I realise that I have probably chosen the worst week in my life to start Banting….a member of the household is very ill, I have no kitchen as the AGA is in but the cupboards and shelves and plumbed goods are only going in today and they will be finished tomorrow (I hope).


My microwave is in the laundry/scullery which has been called the galley kitchen, but I am too fat to slide past my lovely svelte partner in the galley!!


The knives and forks are in the passage, the butter and meat etc is in the fridge in the kitchen on the other side of the house….so actually it is very much a case of laugh while you can. If I can survive this I can survive Banting! And all this without a glass of wine…the only whining I am doing is at the top of the page!!


The up side is I already feel lighter and smaller, and of course I am peeing like a well hydrated horse!!


Breakfast this morning was bacon cooked in the microwave (don’t you hate the idea of all those little nuclear molecules dancing around creating some kind of fission to cook your food???)

Egg with organic coconut oil. Organic! What’s the point if you are going to nuke it anyway…please see lightness and laughter, no criticism in this!

Spinach added, served with loads of cracked black pepper.

2 eggs, 3 rashers of bacon and a handful of spinach.

The breakfast was very tasty, and I am sure that I will only have a late lunch or supper now.


I got a note later to say that my sis had lamb and broccoli soup tonight. I think that’s pretty cool, and I am proud of her for hanging in there in the middle of what must be pretty nightmarish!


Tuna salad was my supper and it was more than adequate. I dressed it with some olive oil and verjuice and sprinkled a little Tabasco over it. Yumness.


Marching on with The Revolution!…

(The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes, Sally-Ann Creed, Jonno Proudfoot and David Grier)



Banting and Spike Day…


As I wrote recently, I use my slow cooker to cook my favourite Bone Broth. To some it sounds revolting and some think marrow bones are disgusting, but do I care? NO! Cos bone broth is probably one of the best foods you can eat. If you read Charles Lubbe’s writings on his group The Big Breakfast Banting Debate, he says bone broth has loads of glutamine and can help to reduce gout, so one more good reason to have bone broth!


Another good reason to make bone broth is that when you cool it, the fat rises to the top and you can scoop it off and use it for cooking. There’s a good budget beating tip. What a saving. No need to buy bottles of processed oils. Leave some fat in the bone broth, it’s good food. Just think of how cheaply we can eat if we eat clean food. If we downsize our portions of protein to around a gram per kilo of body weight, and if you are lucky enough to grow your own green vegetables as I do, this Banting way of life can be a very affordable way to live. Of course, if you start baking and buying expensive nut flours it will cost you plenty. I have a bag of coconut flour and I use it only once every week or two for pancakes or flapjacks with homemade berry jam made with xylitol.


That’s what I had on my Spike Day. This is a concept encouraged by Charles Lubbe who hosts the Big Banting Breakfast Debate Facebook page. It is not unlike the Reward Meal concept in the Carbohydrate Addicts Diet. The difference is in the timing of the Reward Meal which is eaten within one hour, and on the other side, Spike Day is eat whatever you please, followed by a semi-fast day, very low carb. I see that as a Fat Fast day.


I thought I might abuse Spike Day, you know, ice-cream, chocolate, red wine…that sort of thing. Good sense and some Banting wisdom kicked in, fortunately. I found myself making coconut flour flapjacks and fresh raspberry jam made with xylitol, served with thick cream. One block of 85% cocoa chocolate made its way to my mouth in the early evening and dinner was creamed broccoli soup with venison and beef mince to keep up the protein and keep the insulin calm.


I don’t normally snack too much in the afternoon, well not since I have been eating a sizeable breakfast, making sure that I eat to satiety, (thank you Charles for that lesson) but on Spike Day I eased up on the rules and had a whole avo for breakfast and nothing else. Later I had Greek yogurt with about 9 frozen strawberries. Later still I had 3 tablespoons of yogurt and about 3 teaspoons of my fresh low carb raspberry jam. Two helpings of the soup filled me up but it was Spike Day after all, so I made those flapjacks and had three, followed by a filter coffee. I choose foods from the Green and Orange lists for Spike Day as I am too nervous to eat from the Red list in case I get carried away! (The lists are from The Real Meal Revolution by Tim Noakes et al.)


The binge I had over New Year resulted in a weight gain of two kilos, but 12 days later I am down those two kilos and feeling good. Back on the road to healthy and gorgeous!


Banting keeps on ROCKING!!!


PS My cholesterol is coming down. Was 8.8 before Christmas and was 6.6 this morning :)



Banting, Budget and Bone Broth…


Hello fellow Banters!


Today I am going to sing the praises of the humble bone broth. Cheapest way to fill your tum. This morning I bought some meaty venison bones from the local store. Venison has to be organic, right? I was so excited I bought 5 packets, they were R17 each. Bit by bit I browned two packets of bones in coconut oil in a heavy bottomed pot until they were smelling really good. I then added filtered water to cover, an onion studded with 3 cloves, a stick of celery and a carrot cut up in chunks, two bay leaves and about a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar. After bringing it to the boil I turned it down and left it to simmer for about 3 hours or more.


For lunch I had the marrow from four bones and a soup cup of bone broth. It was so delicious I went back for another cup! Of course it is up to you as to what herbs or spices you add but it was the simplest combination and it was so flavoursome. I removed no fat and drank it the way it came out the pot.


Afterwards I poured the remaining stock and bones into the slow cooker and added more water to cover and another squirt of ACV (it helps to draw out the minerals from the bones) to cook overnight so that that the flavours really intensify and it becomes a rich, nutritious broth.


I truly believe that bone broth can make the Banting diet more accessible to those who are on a really tight budget and they will be getting great nutrition from it. I for one will be using this as a standard beverage/food on my Banting Journey. It is filling and tasty and that is what counts for me, and it has no carbs as I strain out all the vegetables and drink only the broth. The meat and gelatine on the bones is tasty and good for you, so indulge! I do :)


In fact I had the meat that fell off the bone this morning for breakfast around 10.30. The slow cooker ROCKS!














Banting success…


14 kilos gone today. It is a milestone for me and I am going to celebrate by doing 15 minutes of weights so that I can have a higher carb meal afterwards! I am going to make some flapjacks with coconut flour and make a quick jam from raspberries and xylitol. I promise to post the photos on my blog later and on my Banting Babes and Boys Facebook page and also on Instagram.


I have to confess that I am not always a purist Banter. For instance, my breakfast this morning is 3 free range eggs (good) with 2 Woolies pork sausages (not pure and 6 grams a sausage and I am NOT going to do it again as it has GMO – OMG! :) I am going to learn how to make my own pork sausages with my organic herbs and organic pork from Wegraakbosch Dairy here as they have organic everything! I also eat from the orange list on days when I feel it is needed. This morning I had 3 litchis which is 5 carbs. So that means my carbs are standing at 14 right now. I put everything into the nutrition tracker on my SparkPeople page and it tots up everything. Calories 356 for breakfast. I go between 1200 to 1800 calories on most days. I found that when I was doing the Fat Fast to shift a stubborn stall, even with all the fat I did not exceed 1100 calories. Interesting, eh? One just doesn’t get hungry with fat.


There are no photos of me to post yet because I still have a lot to lose and quite frankly, although my hubby and friends can see the progress, it is not that noticeable for me yet, except for the fact that I can lean over in the bath to take the plug out, whereas that was a trifle difficult 3 months ago! I am aiming to have a lap one day, for children and cats :)


There has been some talk lately about people ditching the scales but I beg to differ. When I read The Carbohydrate Addicts Diet, Dr Heller recommends getting a digital scale and noting how one’s weight goes up and down on different days. He suggests writing it down every day to note how the body reacts to different foods and also to different times of the month. I have been doing just that and sometimes my weight has gone up or down by at least a kilo in one day. At the end of the week you take the average. Of late my average has been between .4 and .6 kg in a week. That’s good enough for me. Also, on days when I see it has gone up a bit, I work harder the next day to stay within my strictest limits and eat more fat, less protein and nil carbs.


This is a journey of discipline and determination. One cannot relax even for a nano second. I had a sip of hubby’s orange juice the other day and that was it. Even though there was more it did not tempt me again. I remember reading a book some years ago on natural remedies for arthritis and the good doctor suggested we look at forbidden foods and imagined worms crawling out of them! Yuk! It works though :)


There is the idea that you don’t need to count calories, but I think differently again and I certainly count them. It has taught me a lot about foods in general. I also use Carb Cycling as a tool when I am stalled and eat my higher carb meal within an hour as the good doctors Heller suggested in The Carbohydrate Addicts Diet. I have over 20 low carb diet books that I have been studying in order to get the best out of my own personal diet. The Real Meal Revolution (about Banting) is my best book. I use other suggestions from different books to tweak my diet when needed. I see them all as tools to create an optimum lifestyle for myself.


The wonderful thing is that my hubby loves the meals I cook. They are so simple and he loves his protein. We do a main big protein and fat meal first one of the day and find that we nibble on nuts (not so many for me) and biltong (which I weigh out religiously) as a snack mid afternoon and by the evening we are fine with a salad and a little protein. He, lucky chap, has lost 9 kilos in about 7 weeks without trying!


Have a great Banting weekend everyone…



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