‘I FINALLY REALISED HOW ADDICTIVE AND TOXIC SUGAR AND CARBS ARE’
and became a Banting Buddies coach so that I can help others feel as good as I do!’
Anne Leary Smith has lost 30kg since going low carb
Anne Leary Smith was overweight and always exhausted. When she reached almost 100kg, the light went on. Now her low-carb lifestyle has helped relieve her daughter’s epilepsy, too.
‘Istruggled with my weight all my life. As a teenager I was so self-conscious. I tried so many diets. I tried the soup diet, replacement meals, diet shakes, the cabbage diet, the grape diet… the list goes on. Losing weight was not the problem. Keeping it off was! I’d lose weight then usually put it all back on, and more.
I’d also tried low-carb, highprotein programmes with some success. Then I went on the HCG diet [an extreme diet that involves injections of the hormone human chorionic gonadotropin], which follows low-carb principles. HCG was just not sustainable but I’d joined some HCG Facebook groups and that’s where I came across Banting. The more I read,
the more it made sense. It also seemed doable. I was tired of starving myself, feeling hungry and always having cravings.
I started my low-carb journey about two years ago. I liked that Banting was a lifestyle, not a diet. Being able to enjoy good food that was healthy was what appealed to me. Enjoying food and not feeling deprived or hungry was a totally new experience – and I was losing weight at the same time! I was overjoyed.
It can be difficult to follow this lifestyle, though. I made some changes but I didn’t really understand it fully. I wasn’t totally compliant. Old habits die hard. Until I was finally fat adapted I continued to have cravings and I didn’t really see noticeable changes. Before that I cheated and every time I cheated and went off track I went back to square one. During the first three to seven days after going back to eating low carb I felt exhausted and experienced bad headaches. I finally realised just how addictive and toxic sugar and carbs are.
About a year ago I decided to get serious. That’s when I started to get consistent results, which was encouraging. It is rare for me to experience cravings now. In the beginning I did but I made a decision that I really needed to do this for my health. It took having a goal and having self-control for the cravings to be reduced properly. When you get to the point of feeling good, not craving food and hardly feeling hungry, it becomes so easy to stay there.
Being overweight was acompanied by the challenges of fatigue and brain fog. I also suffered from gallstones and kidney stones but I didn’t really associate all these problems with obesity until I made the changes and experienced the difference. After about two to three months I noticed that I had a lot more energy and was able to concentrate better and think more clearly.
I’ve cut back on alcohol but my main ‘cheat’ is wine. I’ve decided that this is a lifestyle, not a death sentence, and I will enjoy the journey. My diet is 95% Banting and I stick to dry wine. I enjoy a glass or two with my husband and when out with friends on occasion – just not every day.
If I fall off the bantwagon I no longer beat myself up. I often don’t feel great if I’ve had too much wine or eaten the food I know I shouldn’t and that’s enough to make me want to get back to eating the food that makes me feel fantastic.
I love the way I feel now and love the way I look. I don’t ever want to go back. Low-carb eating is enjoyable and sustainable; it’s hard to explain how good it feels unless you have felt it for yourself. I no longer think that it takes willpower because I enjoy good food, feel satisfied and no longer experience cravings. I have lost 30kg. I started at 98kg and remember freaking out that I was almost in triple digits as I never wanted to be over 100kg. I am now 68kg and am still slowly losing both weight and centimetres.
When I started to feel so much better and fully understood the health benefits I gradually changed my family’s diet and now we all eat low carb. I knew that I wanted my family to feel as good as I did and to be healthy and I found my children were happy to eat the same food as I do. I’d also read that a ketogenic diet was originally developed to control seizures in people with epilepsy. My three children all experience seizures and I’ve always struggled with the idea of giving them medication. My twin boys experienced the side effects of anti-convulsant medication so I decided not to medicate my daughter but to try a fairly strict Banting diet instead. She’s been seizure free for the last six months!’
ANNE LEARY SMITH, NOW HAPPY AND HEALTHY, MARRIED JULIAN ROGERS IN DECEMBER LAST YEAR.
ANNE BEFORE: 98KG