Banting: The Start of a New Diet

I need to be honest– I’m overweight. I generally feel confident in my own skin. I love my curves and love how big my boobs are. But, that doesn’t change the fact that I wear a dress size 22 US/ 26 UK. Nor does it change the fact that I’m not as healthy as I could and should be. Thankfully my cholesterol and other stats are healthy, but I don’t want to worry about those becoming an issue down the road. I need to think about my future. I want to have children and don’t want the be the size I am while pregnant. I want to be a healthy mom. I also want to sprint up a flight of stairs without feeling winded when I reach the top. It’s been years since I’ve been able to do that.

I’m not overweight because I eat unhealthily. My problem stems from a few things: I love food, I don’t have any idea what an appropriate portion size is and I’m addicted to sweets. I rarely eat out or eat premade meals (or as they say in the UK, ready meals). However, it doesn’t matter if I’m over indulging on a healthy quinoa based meal or a greasy fast food meal– an excess of calories leads to weight gain. Furthermore, my addiction to sweets doesn’t help matters. Before I started Banting three weeks ago, I would wake up craving something sweet and would spend my entire day being crabby if I didn’t indulge my craving. And, once I would finally give in, I would binge. This isn’t a healthy way for anyone to live their life.

In the past when I’ve tried dieting, I’ve always ended up hungry and feeling deprived or annoyed at the calorie counting. I’m not a nice person to be around when I’m hungry. I become incredibly crabby, irritable and, quite frankly, bitchy. In order for a diet to work for me, I needed to find something where I wouldn’t be in a perpetual state of hunger and deprivation.

When I started talking with my boyfriend ‘J’ about how I want to lose weight, he suggested we try Banting. Someone he works with is on the Banting Diet and has had great success with it.

So, what is Banting and why hadn’t I heard about it? The Banting Diet is named after an overweight British undertaker, who in 1862 approached his doctor about losing weight. His doctor prescribed a high fat low carb diet. Having had success on the diet, Banting wrote an open letting entitled “Letter on Corpulence.” It became widely read, and eventually the diet became known as the Banting Diet. Currently the Banting diet is making a comeback, but mainly in South Africa.

When I first researched The Banting Diet, it sounded suspiciously like The Atkins Diet to me. In many ways they are similar. They’re both low carb diets. The main differences between the two diets is on Atkins, everything is controlled and monitored. You need to count your carb intake, and increase it slowly as you progress through the stages of the diet. Banting is a lot more straightforward. There are three lists of foods: a green list, a yellow list and a red list. You can eat as much as you want from the green list, eat in moderation from the yellow list and never (or once in a great while ie on treat days) from the red list.

Once I read through the Banting food lists, I realised how simple the diet is. To sum up Banting, you can eat any unprocessed meat, eggs, vegetable that grows above the ground (except butternut squash) and full fat dairy. In moderation, you can have some fruit and nuts. For a comprehensive food list, please visit the official Banting website http://realmealrevolution.com/real-food-lists#green .

‘J’ and I started Banting three weeks ago and we love it. After the first week, I noticed huge changes in myself. For starters, I don’t constantly crave sweets anymore. Also, I don’t get hungry every few hours. Now that I’m on Banting, I usually can make it to my meals without needing a snack. And, perhaps most important to me is I’ve noticed an overall decrease in my appetite. I’ve had to start serving myself less at mealtime, because I get full on less. I never thought I would be happy or content on less food.

Besides a decrease in appetite, I’ve also experienced a decrease in my waistline. After three weeks, I’ve already lost half an inch from my waist and hips and a quarter inch in my thighs and arms. I find the results impressive, especially since I haven’t been exercising.

I’m encouraged by my results so far with Banting and plan on continuing to eat this way and plan on adding an exercise routine. Honestly, I can see myself eating this way indefinitely, so long as I give myself treat days now and then.

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2 comments

    • Thanks! These last few weeks have had their challenges. Every time I go to the grocery store, I find myself longingly looking at the ice cream and chocolate bars *sigh*. Not to mention, the couple days I haven’t felt like cooking have been a struggle. What’s really helped me is that my partner is doing the diet with me, and we have very supportive friends and family.

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