Tim Noakes left frustrated on first day of HPCSA appeal

2018-02-21 18:32
Professor Tim Noakes (Nasief Manie, Netwerk24)

Professor Tim Noakes (Nasief Manie, Netwerk24)

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WATCH: Tim Noakes elated with not guilty verdict

2017-04-21 13:33

Professor Tim Noakes has been found not guilty of misconduct, a professional conduct committee found.WATCH

Pretoria – Professor Tim Noakes was left frustrated on the first day of the Health Professions Council of South Africa's (HPCSA) appeal against a not guilty verdict in favour of Noakes, as the HPSCA reiterated several times that he was unqualified and without the expertise to give advice on child nutrition.

In April last year, the HPCSA's professional conduct committee found that Noakes was not guilty of misconduct after the HPCSA received a complaint about Noakes giving advice relating to his low-carbohydrate, high-fat (LCHF) diet to a mother on Twitter. 

The mother's 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."

Advocate Ajay Bhoopchand for the pro-forma complainant told the appeal committee on Tuesday that the judgment made in favour of Noakes was an error and that some of the findings were nonsensical.

He said that Noakes did not have the expertise or the experience to give neonatal or infant-related advice. 

'Child nutrition is the same as adult nutrition'

"As a health practitioner, he doesn't have the knowledge or the experience to give advice on this topic. If you want to give advice to neonates and infants, you need to have the experience and knowledge," Bhoopchand told the appeal committee. 

Bhoopchand also said that the advice Noakes gave on a social media platform could potentially be dangerous to the public as it was his assertion that Noakes' medical advice was incorrect. 

Speaking to News24, Noakes said the advice he gave was entirely compatible with the country's dietary guidelines. 

"You can't get away from that, the guidelines say you wean your children onto fish, meat, eggs, diary and vegetables which is the low-carbohydrate, high-fat diet," said Noakes.

"What frustrates me is the statement that I know nothing about nutrition for children, but child nutrition is the same as adult nutrition and I have been practising adult nutrition all my life," said Noakes.

"There were plenty of personal attacks today and I get frustrated because I would like to get up and respond because a lot of it is untrue."

The appeal hearing stood down for the day and will continue on Thursday.

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