Low-Carb and Keto Snacks in Singapore: The BenBanter Story

Low-Carb and Keto Snacks in Singapore: The BenBanter Story
May 2, 2019 gnuworld
low-carb

BenBanter is the very first brand dedicated to providing low-carb products and keto snacks in Singapore.

Low-carb has become known as “keto”, from the word ketogenic. Our aim as a brand is to provide healthy, great-tasting keto snacks that help people succeed with a low-carb lifestyle.

What we believe in: the power of diet to transform health

Our mission is personal. The founders of BenBanter transformed their own health through a low-carb diet. We truly believe in what we’re doing, and in the exciting potential of a low-carb, or keto, diet to improve health.

It’s remarkable to see how many people have reversed serious illness purely through diet. We’re not talking about small problems, or a few pounds here and there. We’re talking about diabetes and cancer and heart disease, serious autoimmune conditions and debilitating mental illness.

And we’re talking about people losing significant amounts of weight – from 50 to 100 kgs – and successfully maintaining their weight loss.

Keto diet

Caption: Singaporean Rizzy Fox lost 120 kg on a keto diet. He is almost unrecognisable.

The mainstream medical profession tends to be somewhat dismissive of the role diet can play in treating illness, preferring to dispense medicine. But the potential of a low-carb diet to prevent and remedy modern, chronic diseases is breathtaking. As examples, consider some recent scientific studies and their results.

See our own story of a young Singaporean who reversed diabetes, cholesterol problems and high blood pressure, and lost 14k g in only 11 weeks, to the surprise of his own doctor.

Why keto snacks in Singapore?

BenBanter started in Singapore and operates there.

The prevalence of diabetes is alarmingly high in Singapore, with as many as one in nine people suffering from the disease.

The incidence of obesity continues to climb. According to the World Health Organization, Singapore has the second-highest overweight prevalence in the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) – at a whopping 32.8 per cent.

In Singapore, about one in 10 children are overweight by the age of 5.

obesity

Image credit: The New Paper

Along with gaining weight, more Singaporeans are suffering from high blood pressure, fatty liver disease, cardiovascular disease and other chronic illnesses. It’s estimated that healthcare spending associated with these diseases in Singapore is as high as US$1 billion per year.

The BenBanter founders believe that the Asian low-carb market is under-served and will begin to grow, particularly against the backdrop of the Singapore Government’s War On Diabetes and determination to curb chronic disease.

The time is right to embrace a healthier, low-carb approach to diet, in Singapore and elsewhere in Southeast Asia.

Personal experience: how we got started

Co-founder of BenBanter, Mark Myerson says, “In 2014, I found myself overweight, out of shape and out of sorts. I struggled to lose weight and thought this was just the way it was – as you get older, you put on weight and your metabolism slows down.”

After encountering Dr. Robert Lustig’s book, Fat Chance : The Hidden Truth About Sugar, Obesity and Disease, Mark started teaching himself about diet, nutrition and health, eventually taking two years off to do research. Based on what he learned, he adopted a low-carb diet himself and has become a knowledgeable advocate, speaker and coach.

“The results were phenomenal”, Mark says. “I lost 17.5% of my body weight and feel 20 years younger. All my health issues have been resolved.”

Where we got our name

BenBanter is named in honour of Englishman William Banting, the first person to document his success with a low-carb approach. He wrote about the benefits of restricting carbohydrates as early as the 1860s.

Another reason for our name – in some countries, the keto diet is known as “banting”.

Why we focus on low-carb/keto snacks

It’s difficult to find suitable, healthy snacks when following a low-carb lifestyle. Almost all snacks have refined carbs, added or hidden sugars, seed oils, preservatives and additives – all the things low-carb people avoid like the plague.

Low-carb vs. keto: what’s the difference?

A ketogenic, or keto, diet is a low-carb diet that puts your body in a state of ketosis. Effectively, this occurs at about 40g of carbs per day or less, for most people.

What is ketosis?

Ketosis simply means that ketones are produced by your liver. Ketones are fat-derived molecules of energy. They’re a sign that you’re using more fat, rather than more carbs. Ketones are super-healthy for your brain and provide anti-inflammatory signalling for your cells.

Keto and low-carb diet macros

Generally, someone on a keto diet gets roughly 60 to 75% of calories from fat; 15 to 30% of calories from protein; and 5 to 10% of calories from carbohydrates. But anything lower than 120g of carbs per day is regarded as low carb.

BenBanter’s low-carb snacks are ideal for a keto diet or a less strict, carb-restricted diet.

The traditional food pyramid vs. low-carb

The low-carb approach stands in clear opposition to official dietary guidelines and the idea that “healthy” whole grains, lots of fruit and vegetables, and low fat products are the basis of a healthy diet.

We now know that the evidence supporting such guidelines, and let’s be diplomatic here, is underwhelming. In truth, such guidelines are unscientific, distorted by commercial interests, and plainly wrong.

The United States jumped the gun in the 1980s, and nearly every country followed. We all believed in the food pyramid. We all believed saturated fat caused heart disease and too many eggs were bad.

As hard as this is for many people to grasp, the actual evidence for a carb-centric, low-fat diet was never there. Brown rice or white? It makes little difference. All carbs are effectively turned into sugars, making you fat, then sick. Robert Atkins was right.

Incredibly positive news: diet really can improve health

In short, a set of dietary changes may be enough to head off life-threatening diseases. Numerous scientific studies now support this incredibly positive news.

Just restricting carbohydrates (including sugar, of course) and avoiding seed oils can:

  • help prevent suffering
  • improve “healthspan” (the number of years spent in a healthy state)
  • add longevity for millions of people.

Combined with intermittent fasting, the results are even more powerful. It turns out that six small meals a day is about the worst advice possible.

BenBanter’s scientific approach to diet

At BenBanter, we believe strongly in using scientific evidence to guide food choices.

Diet is not religion. Diet is about science and an understanding of how the body works.

We keep ourselves informed of existing and new research findings. We also offer carefully curated information and links on our website, YouTube channel and Instagram page (@benbanterlc).

We try to simplify stuff and to make sense of the enormous amount of conflicting, confusing information out there.

Faster weight loss with a keto/low-carb diet

Like a hybrid engine that can burn electricity or petrol, your body can use fat or glucose for energy. Most of us use predominantly glucose because our diets are so carb heavy.

However, humans evolved in an environment where frequent food shortages and the absence of processed food meant that our bodies burned much more fat than we do as modern humans.

All of us are good fat burners, given the chance. And it turns out that fat is a cleaner energy source, basically meaning less oxidative stress and fewer free radicals. You could correctly say that the keto diet is an anti-aging diet.

In ketosis, the body metabolises fat at a much higher rate. This makes weight loss easier to achieve.

It’s important to note that fat burning and weight loss can occur without ketosis. Being “keto” is quite strict, and not necessary for most people. Simply reducing carbs and avoiding seed oils will give most people a lot of benefit.

What BenBanter offers: low-carb and keto snacks in Singapore

BenBanter offers a growing range of low-carb snacks that are both healthy and delicious.

Our low-carb products are available in Singapore from our own online shop, from Sasha’s Fine Foods and Mahota Commune, and for members of The American Club. Redmart will be starting soon. Malaysia is the next country on our list.

BenBanter products comply with True Low Carb standard. This means they’re suitable for a strict low-carb diet. Our keto snacks don’t include any unhealthy ingredients, like vegetable oils or unnecessary sugar.