For soundbites only

This is a really rubbish column. (No, not this one, the one I’m about to link to.)
(Jeez. Don’t be so rude.)

Anyway, as I was about to say, THIS is a rubbish column. The warning signs are all there. It’s got scare quotes in the title. It’s unscientific, it’s biased, it’s pants. It uses only carefully selected facts from pieces of research that suit its narrative. It’s so bad that you could quite understand sad-faced LCHF cult members holding it up as an example of some of the stuff that their sinister movement has to put up with, while conveniently ignoring the fact that they themselves use exactly the same M.O..

It does the anti-Banting brigade no favours, save for this wonderful analogy of Noakes’ bizarre disciples:

Here’s how I’d describe Noakes’s trusting fans: told by Noakes that they’re flying, they yell: “Look at me” and “So far, so good” as they plummet past a 10th storey window and plunge towards the ground below.

Because yes, when you haven’t yet hit the ground, all does seem to be going to plan. The weight has fallen, you’re full of energy, and you’ve never felt better (maybe because you haven’t thought of the long term consequences). But then that’s probably because no-one really knows what they are.

Even pseudoscientific websites like the medically-challenged dietdoctor and the falsely authoritative authoritynutrition which claim to have “scientific validation” of the long-term safety of the diet, can’t actually provide us with anything more than studies done over 2 years, when you look more closely. That’s certainly long-term if you’re a hamster, and positively eternal if you’re a mayfly, but for humans, that doesn’t really even enter into “medium-term”.

Look, hey. My body is my body. Yours is yours. You’re more than welcome to fill your body with whatever you want as far as I’m concerned. And I even have the manners not to (outwardly) judge you for it. Unlike most of Tim’s weird flock.

Banting And Chips

Firstly, I’d better explain to overseas readers what the Banting diet is (because contrary to the alleged “Much Bigger Than That Oscar Trial” billing of the recent HPCSA hearing in Rondebosch, virtually no-one outside SA has actually heard of it) – it’s a Low Carbohydrate, High Fat eating plan.
And it’s currently all the rage amongst several very vocal and very affluent people in South Africa.

Banting And Chips. That’s going to be the name of my new cookbook. I’m told that other people have done Banting cookbooks, and apparently they’ve been mildly successful, but having looked at the Banting diet, I noted one omission that, if remedied, could make just about every dish therein better: Chips.

Allow me to demonstrate:

Cauliflower tabouleh salad with beef bangers – meh
Cauliflower tabouleh salad with beef bangers and Chips – YES PLEASE!

Open chicken burgers, served with a delicious tzatziki – ok
Open chicken burgers, served with a delicious tzatziki and Chips – SOUNDS FANTASTIC!

Banting Chocolate and coconut fudge – eww
Banting Chocolate and coconut fudge and Chips – NOW WE’RE TALKING!

It’s like the best bits of the Banting diet, fully supported by their cherry-picked stats and lack of peer-reviewed papers, together with the added The Joy Of Chips™. Best of both worlds. Quite why no-one has thought of this before is beyond me.
Sales are going to be through the roof. Everyone will be doing it soon. Dodgy reporters with foreign sounding names will be paid to advertise it report on it on second or third rate news sites. I will be loved. More.
All that said, I’ll probably stop short of using social media to advise mothers to feed their young children on it. Because even though I’m an accomplished scientist, I have no qualification in paediatric nutrition. So I don’t really know about that sort of thing. Would be silly to do that. So I won’t.

If you’re doing the Banting diet, that’s lovely. I’m happy for you. You can even tell me about it if you like. Oh yes, you already had. I do recall now. But…

Don’t expect me to do it, just because you do it.
Don’t tell me that because it “works” for you, it “works” for everyone.
Don’t tell me about “all the scientific evidence for it”, because there really ain’t much china, and
Don’t tell me that at least some people on the Banting diet aren’t a little bit like people in a cult, raising certain individuals to near-Deity status:

Fullscreen capture 2015-12-01 090015 AM.bmpu wot m8? 

If you’re in SA (or even if you’re not), you’ll almost certainly be aware of what Mandela did for this country. And sure, yes, he has his detractors, but I think you’d have to argue that his 67 years of selfless struggle, his calls for forgiveness and unity when SA was on the brink of civil war, and his spectacular ambassadorial role around the world, even into old age were something very special.
HERO TIM DID MORE THOUGH! And in such a short time too.

The L key is never closer to the N key than when you’re talking about Prof Tim’s cult following.
Because wait, there’s more:

Fullscreen capture 2015-12-01 090011 AM.bmp



Yeah, I’m equally lost, but I can only think that “@lowcarbJC” (I never trust anyone with a football team name in the twitter handle to be a reasonable individual, let alone a frikkin’ diet tip) is referring to anyone that thinks it’s OK to eat carbs as a “Genocide group”. Frankly, it’s incredible that the human race has survived this long without Tim advocating bombing Syria. Or something. Perhaps that’s why “we” (whoever “we” are) are unable to fight ISIS. Perhaps it’s merely because Tim hasn’t given us the go-ahead. But then, why bother? Unless ISIS are all on LCHF (which they’re surely not), presumably they’re going to be dead soon anyway. That would save a lot of bother.

I wonder, has anyone told Mr Putin?

The only advantage of the Banting diet as far as I can see is that once those cult members people doing it succumb to premature cardiovascular disease, we can have their oily remains melted down to make candles to sell for charity.

Hmm. I appear to have strayed somewhat from my original cookbook promotional plan.
I’ll let you (and lowcarbJC) know when I’ve shamelessly stolen some egg white and cauliflower-based recipes, added fries to them and written it all down.

Watch this space.

Oh, mate…

Today, in the world of “well-respected” South African Sports “Scientists” (and cookbook co-authors), this:

Tim Noakes on Twitter Did Atlantis really exist Free book httpt.codRpSkFQcFy - Google Chrome 2015-08-31 113555 AM.bmp

Has he finally gone full potato?
Never go #fullpotato. (Too many carbs, see?)

Next week, on the anniversary of 9/11, expect a link to “what really happened that day (and it’s not what the mainstream media want you to believe)”, or some such.

Thanks, you-know-who

Giant Heysteks takes on Trouser Tim

Not enough time to do this justice, but I have to share it as being both an hilarious and perhaps salient comment on Tim Noakes’ cookbook and associated money-printing machine – it’s Magnus Heystek’s potentially inflammatory Moneyweb piece, delicately titled:

Is Tim Noakes running a Ponzi scheme?

There’s a brief history of local Ponzi schemes, followed by this absolute gem of a paragraph:

Collective delusions are typified as the spontaneous, rapid spread of false or exaggerated beliefs within a population at large, temporarily affecting a particular region, culture or country.
With money people want to become rich overnight, with religion people want a guarantee of heaven and with diets people want to lose weight effortlessly and without sacrificing too much.
The world is full of examples of Ponzi schemes, religious fanaticism as well.

We are now, once again, witness to another example of collective delusion: the Banting diet popularized, once again, by Dr Tim Noakes and his fellow LCHF-priests.

Oh, go on Magnus – tell us what you really think.

Many of us in SA believe that Tim is getting too big for his boots – and that his trousers are getting too big for him.


As a scientist, the manner in which he relies so heavily on anecdotal “evidence” and cherry-picks suitable papers to support his ever-so-popular book sickens me. As do his trousers.

Magnus is bang on with his analysis and questions.

Sugar, Sugar…

[De de der dum dum dum]
Ah, Honey Honey
You are my Candy Girl DEATH SENTENCE!
And you got me wanting you.

So sang The Archies back in 1969, and here’s the proof:

I’m not sure just how socially acceptable it is to call anyone “Sugar” nowadays. You’d probably be pounced on by all sorts of PC types for all sorts of things. But they may have a point. While “Sugar” used to be entirely reasonable to use as a term of endearment or a even as a compliment, suggesting femininity and sweetness, these days, SUGAR IS EVIL.

I know this because Rogue “Scientist” Timothy Noakes says so:

“Once you tip over the precipice, you’re gone,” exercise science professor Noakes told Men’s Health magazine.
“You are going to die of diabetes. And if you want that, keep eating sugars and carbohydrates, and get fat. That’s where you are going.”

And if you don’t want that, surprisingly, you can buy his book.
Even allowing for the hyperbole and pisspoor journalism which characterises popular health magazines, “You are going to die of diabetes” is a pretty bold statement. Even for a scientist who famously and bravely admitted, “I’ve made a mistake” on carbohydrates.

Actually Tim, your academic record suggests that you repeatedly “made mistakes” from 1976 until 2012; “mistakes” which were peer-reviewed and published. But now you’ve seen the light and we should believe everything you say, because… you… say so. Who’s to say that in 35 years (assuming we’re not all dead from diabetes or heart disease or cancer or alien invasion), you have another book to sell and suddenly realise that you’ve “made a mistake”?
And before you go telling me about all the positive scientific evidence for LCHF, I’d just like to say that there’s a wealth of other scientific papers out there telling us quite the opposite, many of them with Tim’s name at the top.
I’m not saying that he can’t change his mind – of course he can change his mind – I’m just saying that I’m not sure I would trust anyone who had been repeatedly incorrect for 35 years before changing his mind.

Anyway, all this preamble is really just so I can pop this here:


…which I thought was super amusing and is clear evidence that – given the huge number of slang terms and nicknames for illicit drugs – you can demonise any household food product. Why, only the other day, I was tempted by some… [lowers voice, looks around furtively] …”cheese”.

It turns out that that was actually cheese though.
Which should at least make Tim happy.