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5 Reasons Why Banting Is Not Better Than A Normal Balanced Diet

5 Reasons Why Banting Is Bad For You

Banting is a form of LCHF diet that helps you lose weight and detox from sugar and carb addiction. It is Especially helpful for those struggling with obesity and other medical condition that stem from being overweight.

A scientific study conducted by researchers  found that there is no difference between weight loss in people who follow low carbohydrate diets when compared to those that follow balanced diets.

Here are 5 reasons you should quit banting and go into a balanced diet;

  1. Banting diets are impractical and unsustainable

    Professor Volmink says they don’t agree with the Tim Noakes approach because of the uncertainty about the long term effects and safety of the Banting diet. This diet is also inaccessible and the foods that are recommended on low carb diets are too expensive for most of the world. Dr. Naude adds that besides cereals and grains, dairy, nuts, fruits, vegetables, and most whole foods also contain carbohydrates and advice to drastically reduce carbohydrates means also restricting intake of these nutrient-rich foods. This results in a dietary pattern that is not aligned with the pattern known to reduce long term risk of lifestyle diseases. She rather recommends a balanced diet with a more moderate intake of a variety of good quality foods to meet nutrient needs, including healthy carbs, fats and protein and adequate vitamins and minerals. An example of a balanced diet looks like the graph below – actual proportions will vary from person to person, but maintaining energy balance (not eating more calories than you need) is critical for everyone for a healthy weight and to prevent weight gain.

2.  Energy in vs. energy out

Dr. Naude explains that this study set out to determine how the effect of a low carb diet compares to the effect of a balanced diet when it comes to weight loss. The study pooled results observed in over 3,000 overweight and obese people for up to two years, and found that the people on the low carb diet didn’t lose any more weight than the people on the balanced diet. All participants were given the same amount of energy (calories). Dr. Naude says this is important because it allowed them to evaluate whether the actual mix of carbohydrates, fat and protein in a diet influence weight loss, independent of the calorie intake. Results show that weight loss is the result of reduced energy (calorie) intake regardless of the proportions of carbohydrate, fat and protein that make up the total energy content of the diet.

3. Inflammation

Being high in meat, a low-carbohydrate diet is a perfect recipe for systemic inflammation, a term used to describe redness, heat, and swelling experienced in different areas throughout the body due to cell damage. Research has identified systemic inflammation as an underlying cause of chronic illnesses including cancer, diabetes, heart disease, and autoimmune diseases like lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and type1 diabetes. Heme iron, the form of iron from meat sources is a major culprit and red meat has the highest known concentration. Unfortunately, the body cannot shed excess heme iron like it does iron from plant sources. When meat is at the center of a diet, heme iron may easily buildup to toxic levels, causing what is known as oxidative stress. This is when the body has more harmful radicals than it is able to neutralize. Oxidative stress causes tremendous damage to body cells, resulting in systemic inflammation.

 4. Your diet should be easy to follow and consist of nutrient-rich, good quality food choices

The South African food based dietary guidelines have been developed specifically for our population, Dr. Naude and Prof. Volmink believe that this is the best route to go for achieving a balanced, nutrient-rich diet, with emphasis on preventing excess calorie intake to maintain a healthy weight.

5.Poor digestion

Low-carbohydrate diets are simply not compatible with the human digestive system. They cause tremendous harm to digestive health due to excessive meat and insufficient fiber. Constipation, heart burn, and bloating are some of the problems people are likely to experience and overtime, more serious problems are likely to emerge. Such conditions include piles and cancers affecting the digestive tract like stomach, throat, and colon cancer. Fiber, which can only be obtained from unprocessed plant foods including starchy foods, is essential for cutting the risk of colon cancer. Different studies show that eating foods rich in fiber is an important habit for reducing colon cancer risk. On the other hand, people who follow low-carbohydrate diets, which are severely deficient in fiber, are at a greater risk of developing colon cancer.

Low-carbohydrate diets also impair digestion by destroying healthy gut bacteria. Unprocessed plant foods including starchy foods are needed for nurturing healthy bacteria. Lacking in fiber and high in meat, low-carbohydrate diets create a very hostile environment for healthy gut bacteria. Having insufficient gut bacteria increases the risk of a wide variety of health problems like diabetes, mental disorders, allergies, and colon cancer.

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