Noakes bringing in 'world-class experts' to plead his case

2016-05-11 10:38
Professor Tim Noakes (Tammy Petersen, News24)

Professor Tim Noakes (Tammy Petersen, News24)

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Banting for babies? A doctor weighs in

2016-02-29 13:25

Doctor, nutritionist and author Maya Adam expresses concern over Professor Tim Noakes' banting diet, especially in relation to children. WATCH

Cape Town - New "world class experts" will be called when the hearing into Professor Tim Noakes's conduct by the Health Professions Council of SA continues in October, he has confirmed.

But the banting advocate is mum on who the "high powered" scientists will be.

"I can’t wait [for proceedings to resume]," he told News24 at the Cape Town Science Centre on Tuesday night. 

"I feel we have made our case already, but we decided we will just strengthen it."

Noakes insisted he had been “vindicated” during the hearing, which was launched after he was accused of giving unconventional and unscientific advice and of unprofessional conduct for dispensing the advice via social media.

Noakes  – whose book The Real Meal Revolution promotes a low-carbohydrate, high-fat (LCHF) diet – was called before the council after a complaint was lodged by the former president of the Association for Dietetics in South Africa, Claire Julsing-Strydom.

The complaint was prompted by a tweet Noakes sent to a Pippa Leenstra after she asked him for advice on feeding babies and on breastfeeding.

Her tweet read: "@ProfTimNoakes @SalCreed is LCHF eating ok for breastfeeding mums? Worried about all the dairy + cauliflower = wind for babies?? [sic]"

Noakes advised her to wean her child onto LCHF foods, which he described as "real" foods.

His tweet read: "Baby doesn't eat the dairy and cauliflower. Just very healthy high fat breast milk. Key is to ween [sic] baby onto LCHF."

Noakes during the hearing argued that his advice was anything but unconventional, quoting research from as far back as the 1800s before the boom in obesity rates.

Sugar needed to be removed from diets, he argued, as the body had no biological need for it.

Babies, Noakes testified, needed fat in breastmilk for brain development, and the need for it was so enormous that should this not be realised, generations of children would be developed who may be brain compromised.

Too little fat in a child’s diet caused obesity, he insisted.

Noakes said he had personally not made a cent from his banting books and that his sole intention was to educate people to be more healthy.

He and his legal team pointed out there were no studies proving that LCHF diets were harmful, and he had also never told the mother not to breastfeed.

Noakes, listed as the 38th most followed scientist on Twitter at the time and the 30th most important tweeter on obesity, during the hearing said the future of medicine lies on the internet and social media and this is where people will get their information – "in the wisdom of the crowds".

The hearing resumes on October 17.

Read more on:    tim noakes  |  cape town  |  health

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