Banting for the family. October 16 2015


We have three children. They are delighted that my husband and I have engaged with this new lifestyle but they are not hugely interested in participating themselves. They are also very slim so following our plan would not be entirely suitable to them. We eat less than 25gms of carbs a day. They could not possibly do that. So we have found ways to make their lifestyle a little less like it was before and a little more Banting friendly.

We barbecue all our meat. It tastes so much better and so much more decadent on a cold October to smell the summer in our kitchen when Paddy brings the meat in. It is also much easier to get the girls to eat some of the fat in the meat that way – it loses its yellow look and the singed flavour is very tasty. As a result they get more calories from their meat than heretofore which means we can give them less carb on their plates. We also roast their potatoes and alternate between giving them normal potatoes and sweet potatoes. Originally they were less than keen on the sweet potatoes, but after a few tries, and cooked in coconut oil in the air fryer, they now take them quite happily as an alternative. We also give them the spinach and broccoli creamed and buttered dish which again fills them so that less carb is needed on the plate. For them it’s about reducing the carbs as best we can without removing them completely.

We give them the yoghurt treat every day for lunch and that beast that used to travel home in the car every evening with me has disappeared. Now the children can survive until dinner time without having to fill the gap beforehand. They often have extra meat for lunch to lessen the carb intake. I still give them bread for lunch, but sometimes they have rice or pasta, and although that is carb they eat far less than they did in the past. Because two of them aren’t allowed to bring nuts to school they can’t substitute these for the carbs yet. But at home they reach for nuts before the bread now.

The most interesting change for me is in their taste for sweet stuff. Because Paddy and I gave it all up eight weeks ago we just stopped offering it to them. They still get the occasional treat from relatives but for the most part sugar is gone from their diets, or is at least drastically reduced. They recently had icecreams when we had visitors and the youngest told me she wasn’t that keen to have one again because it felt “too sweet”. Two of them have taken happily to 85% chocolate – the Lindt bar is beautiful – and the other is training her tastebuds! It’s okay to have 20 gms of the chocolate without taking in too much carb – and that feels substantial and satisfying.


There are plenty of foods on the green list I never mentioned the last day – amazing seafood for example –


aubergines that can be prepared in an eggy Parmesan mix and fried, artichokes – and pâté –  a new one I discovered today. I bought some to put on my crackers as an alternative to butter or Philadelphia. You can have cured meats but in Ireland most of them seem to have either wheat products or sugar in so check the labels. One of our favourite meals which I forgot to mention in the last post is loin lamb chops with buttery spinach – delicious and so filling.


There is very little on the orange list, just cashews and chestnuts, and most of the fruits. You can have them all but not in abundance if you are trying to lose weight as they can spike your sugar cravings and stop your progress. Carrots are also on the list and it’s okay to include them every once in a while. They are quite sweet so don’t overdo it. Each one contains 5gms of carb – which will cause cravings for other sugar if you eat too many of them.

Okay. If you haven’t already checked out the website – – do. You will get all the proper scientific stuff there with which I won’t bore you – but it’s worth a look.

I’m spending a night away this weekend so I have lunch, dinner and breakfast to eat. Unlike other trips I’m not scared I’ll go off course. I’ll be telling the hotel that I’m gluten intolerant and I’ll pack my macadamias for when the munchies hit with the champagne – that’s okay too on this plan – just as well!

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