Pictured here is Professor Tim Noakes. Noakes is on trial for having applied too much common sense. More on Professor Noakes in a moment. First off, a couple of excerpts from the recent article Low-fat lie one big diet cover-up, by Dr Joe Kosterich:
“You might expect that major recommendations about health and diet (like the low fat diet) would be rigorously tested and assessed before being promoted to the public.
Sadly you would be wrong.”
“An absolutely damning review published in the British Medical Journal found that the introduction of low fat dietary recommendations had absolutely NO basis.
Let me repeat this. There was never any scientific basis to recommend a low fat diet.”
To quote the researchers: “Dietary recommendations were introduced … in the absence of supporting evidence from randomised control trials.”
Read more here.
Tim Noakes vs Association for Dietetics in South Africa
Now to the trial of Tim Noakes, Professor in the Division of Exercise Science and Sports Medicine at the University of Capetown. Noakes has committed the “crime” of recommending a sensible, health-giving diet. He is a proponent of a low carb, high fat lifestyle. In other words, he advises the eating of real, unprocessed food.
The following piece about the trial was written by dietitian, Caryn Zinn
TIM NOAKES vs. ADSA – re-adjourns February 8-17th (sigh)
What a privilege it was to be included as an expert witness in Prof Noakes’ hearing this week in Cape Town. I use the word “included”, because I didn’t actually get close to the stand, in fact neither did Prof Noakes himself. It certainly was an interesting insight into the legal system (or lack of it). Let’s summarise the series of events:
Dietitian (“Complainant”) puts in a formal complaint to the HPCSA (Health Professionals Council) in February 2014 about one of Prof Noakes’ tweats to a member of the public, about weaning a baby onto LCHF food (aka. whole food).
Take 1: The hearing commenced in June 2015 – but stopped immediately due to the HPCSA committee not being properly constituted – this should have been a sign of things to come.
Take 2: November 23-30th – 7 days (assigned two days longer than the usual 5 day hearing – just to make sure it was going to start and end). Well start it did, but end it certainly didn’t, not even close! Six days (yes, six!) were taken up by The Complainant’s team, leaving zero time for Team Noakes. There were countless (intentional???) delays, including not having read CVs sent to them in May, adding extra readings that had not been include in the “bundle” – legal speak for reading list, and other events that were somewhat farcical. The week concluded with a surprise witness being called at the last minute – the Chair of the HPCSA committee likened the scene to one from the “Ally McBeal” TV series. Not only did this breach legal processes, but also left NO time for Team Noakes to present at all. Deliberate delay???? Perhaps, and those who attended have made up their own minds.
Take 3: The hearing re-adjourns in February 8-17th – two years after the complaint was laid and countless funds spent in the process.
Here are my top 3 musings from the last 7 days at the hearing:
1. Team Noakes is solid. The lawyers (who are acting pro bono) are the smartest and most efficient individuals I have ever met. In fact one of them happened to be a medical practitioner before he became a lawyer and was well-versed in physiology and biochemistry. Watching them cross-examine witnesses was like poetry in motion, a real privilege to see and be a part of.
2. Team Complainant (one dietitian- chief complainant, two professors of nutrition and one paediatric specialist). I fear I just have to bite my tongue here, but I will say this:
a. Team Complainant had little understanding of the difference between nutritional ketosis and ketoacidosis, and refused to believe that nutritional ketosis is a safe and normal physiological state that humans have evolved with. Physiological facts: i. Babies take only 2 hours to get into ketosis. ii. Breastmilk itself is ketogenic. iii. Babies are in ketosis when they’re born. iv. Ketones are used to fuel the development of the brain. v. Ketones are important!
b. Team Complainant had little understanding of what LCHF actually is; they believe that LCHF eating and ketogenic eating are the same and that LCHF eating will send infants into ketosis. No! (not there is anything wrong with being in ketosis, but LCHF eating is not about getting into ketosis; it’s about eating whole, unprocessed food – YOU know this!).
c. Team Complainant believes that LCHF eating will send infants into ketoacidosis and therefore deem the introduction of complementary LCHF foods to be dangerous and “life-threatening” – No!
This is staggering stuff, Team Complainant’s experts were unaware of basic physiology and the role of ketones in general. It’s gets better: Coming in at number 3 musing is this:
3. The SA paediatric guidelines have recently been revamped (in 2013) and say the following:
“From six months of age, give your baby meat, chicken, fish or egg every day, or as often as possible. Give your baby dark-green leafy vegetables and orange coloured vegetables and fruit every day”. There is no mention of baby cereals at all – perhaps this was an oversight? Because the way I see it is that these guidelines are actually…wait for it……LCHF-friendly. So it can be argued based on the points listed in the guidelines, that Noakes advice is actually “conventional”. Either that, or that the paediatric guidelines are “unconventional” – go with whichever you want. When this salient point was put to the witness who was involved in the development of these guidelines, you could hear a pin drop.
Anyway, this and a whole lot more was fascinating. Thanks to Marika Sboros (a dedicated Noakes advocate and journalist) for her minute-by-minute twitter updates over the 6 days, plus this fabulous summary – http://www.biznews.com/…/tim-noakes-and-legal-dream-team-h…/ She’s the one to follow if you want to be entertained in February!
Despite the gross incompetencies, (deliberate) delays and breaching of the rules by Team Complainant, Team Noakes remains strong, and is getting more and more followers each day. This includes the lay public, dietitians in South Africa (stealth dietitians, as speaking out is NOT encouraged), medical professionals, and community workers. They are seeing the weight loss, the reduction in medicines, the improved wellbeing, and the reduced inflammatory conditions that you get with “Banting” or the LCHF lifestyle.
Life-threatening? Perhaps, but only to Big Food and Big Pharma!
Go Team Noakes….until February 2016.
What a wonderful insight into the proceedings from Caryn Zinn. It’s actually one of the most amusing things I’ve read in a while. And it seems that, unfortunately, the uninformed complainants that Caryn has mentioned are far from being the only uninformed so-called health professionals around. I was also amused to read this article from 2014, entitled On Tim Noakes and Bullsh*t,in which the author mentions that he was told by an uninformed dietitian, “What? No! I’m a registered dietitian, so don’t talk to me about Tim Noakes” she retorted. “Why not?” I worried asked, “I’ve lost 6 kilos since I cut out the carbs”. “Yes, of course you’ll lose weight”, she replied irritatedly, “Your body goes into ketoacidosis! ”
(NO, love, it’s ketosis. Not.the.same.thing.)
So, let’s see what happens with the trial in the new year. Interesting times ahead.
What a wonderful opportunity the trial is for Professor Tim Noakes to get the truth out there about the benefits that a rubbish-free diet can bestow.
Enough of the low-fat diet lies that we’ve been fed for years. Enough. Those lies have lead to an epidemic of Type 2 diabetes. Those lies are killing people.