October 21, 2019
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[Music] obviously in the beginning none of us could believe that it was actually happening and I think we thought it would just kind of blow over but four years later there we were still sitting around the same boardroom he has a kind of like childlike wonder about him so I think he was really completely unprepared for the kind of abuse and politics really that he encountered I [Music] forget exactly that I think was February the 5th of 2014 I tweeted in response to a request about infant feeling and I finished up adding in a little bit and I said key is to wean baby onto the lchf and then I’d run out of characters it was 140 characters at that point so immediately the lady who was head of the association with dietitians of South Africa read it and was very angry and she reported me to the health professional council within nine hours the vested interest in defending the high carb low fat diet are you know they’re enormous and he was not I don’t think he understood what he was taking on really none of us have understood the power of that the establishment that we’ve taken on it was like we could hurry to pinch ourselves that this is even real and for me it was it was the point when I went on to the health profession South Africa’s websites and started to do some research into people who had had their medical licenses removed doctors in rural communities that haven’t declared a patient dead this incidence of molestation and abuse assaults on female patients those are the kinds of things that people have their medical licenses revoked for I was kind of imagining it should this go the wrong way there would be like Professor Tim Noakes for tweeting advice about breastfeeding and that was when I really started to think this is actually crazy and there’s so much more to this he’s perhaps the most eminent scientist in South Africa a one rated scientist that is one aspect of the you know the nonsense of all of this but then the other is that it’s on social media this was a tweet for goodness sake you know anybody who tweets knows you do not establish a doctor-patient relationship on Twitter so five days before I had given a lecture in Johannesburg at which she and five of her colleagues were present and they reported on their website that they had brought their cell phones to to record what I said now why would you report that the six of you had gone there to record what I said the problem for them was that I didn’t say anything that was contentious and they’d hoped to find something but it’s really interesting the very last question of the evening was something about breast milk and I never spoke about her infant feeding and breast milk and so on and it came out of completely out of nowhere and it was clear that someone was trying to set me up he’s used to this paradigm shift he’s been involved in that before so I think initially he thought this is another paradigm shift but the vested interests that were confronted when he took on this we’re just so much greater and I think he didn’t imagine or even know what they would then do Karen Thompson arranged a low carb high fat conference in South Africa Cape Town in February 2015 and I think she just slipped around on social media at the people who were saying the kind of things that Professor Noakes was saying and I happen to be one of them so a couple of people were invited from the UK me and I seen Malhotra and we rocked on down to Cape Town we didn’t know at the time what the Prophet had been going through over the previous year so the timing was quite perfect he had literally just been presented with this complaint for the first time or all charged with his complaint that was the first time I met him down in February 2015 so this conference has it been everything you hoped for you are more so I think the only problem is is gonna end and I’m gonna get very depressed because it’s been so fantastic and I do think it’s a turning point for Cape Town in South Africa I think we really convince a lot of people that there’s some science behind what we’re doing and there’s some clinical relevance and practical relevance so I’m excited to see what happens in the next few weeks to see the media and see whether there is a real groundswell change in the practice of medicine in Cape Town the science has been ignored and suppressed and here was an official body that would record and put on the record the state of a science of course the prosecution tried to prevent us presenting all the information and if it had been any corruption John Adams who was head of the committee that was was investigating the question if she’d been corrupt she could have prevented us presenting the evidence there’s nothing more threatening than the truth and that goes to particularly in the case of big business and science that are shrouded in layers of bureaucracy and embellishment of the truth the oddest thing in this case is that the HP CS a is prosecuting a case in the absence of a victim that victim you’d expect ordinarily to be patient because the HBC is a says this was a one-on-one discussion with miss lee instra and it was also disseminated widely but miss Lenstra was never professor Maxis patient I think there is an effort to silence and censor people who are talking about low-carb promoting low-carb and that the moment they become too prominent they become dangerous professor notes is not the only one but certainly he’s probably the most prominent it sends a cautionary note to anybody who might consider sticking their neck out the trial was probably the most exhilarating the most terrifying thing I’ve ever done in my whole life it’s an open courtroom so you’ve got the gallery at the back you’ve got the panel you’ve got the fabulous chair joan adams people moving in and out of the other gallery at the back terrifying and exhilarating I’ve never been under cross-examination before but once you realize that there’s nothing the cross-examiner can ask you that you haven’t already run through in your head at three o’clock in the morning it’s the most fantastic enjoyable being it’s like a boxing match like sparring match but you know he’s not even going to land a punch so I loved it there were a lot of funny moments in the trial there were the two sides of the room and there was this one side of the room that had this incredibly healthy lean articulate people on it and on the other side all the people were ill that day and they were all drinking coca-cola and three of them fell asleep and the one the person that actually laid the original claim left because she was ill and we never saw her again and that picture is just in my mind and then we had a lunch break and everyone woke up and there was all these carbs at the lunch and then we got back and there was some chocolate bar I can’t remember which brand it was on everyone’s tables and that it was like it’s sick the scene for the whole trial and it was just repeat after repeat doctor have come having looked at the South African based guidelines and looking at the evidence base for it was there any evidence for that the low carbohydrate high fat diet may be harmful or potentially dangerous I certainly saw none and the Pediatrics I was particularly impressed by I thought the detail given of the chicken fish meat eggs dairy produce on a regular basis I thought was excellent advice I knew that if we got to present the science we would win and so it was just a matter of getting the science before before the committee the only thing that motivates the prof is the truth and the evidence so when he wrote lore of running for example he was convinced that the best way to fuel to being an optimal athlete was to carb-load and he’s famously ripped that book up and said I was completely and utterly wrong so he’s driven by the truth he’s driven by the evidence and even if it contradicts something that he found last year he will say last year I was wrong this is what we know now when a doctor take make a response take affirmative action and the literature would say also affirmative actions would also be by firm could also be by email could also be by open open social media people were really really very strongly adopting lchf at one stage and then there was it kind of people what if the healthy you know what if they’re right and guidelines and all of those things and that was the first time that proffers acquitted obviously it gave people confidence back and then the hpc essay was like oh no what if we done it was almost like they were just sort of backtracking and flip-flopping on themselves trying to work out what to do next or something that watch out if you give medical advice online this might establish a doctor-patient relationship already there it is let’s go through the next one I remember Rocky one of the lawyers for Tim saying you should never ask a question to which you don’t know the answer that’s the fundamental principle of law and he did it all the time the other cross-examiner mr. Bhushan and there was one time where he asked such an open question said almost kind of you know so why are we talking about the Dietary Guidelines so I said well okay here’s how it goes you’ve got to establish the doctor-patient relationship and you can’t so then you’ve got to establish that the advice is unconventional and you can’t certainly not for Pediatrics so then we’re into all populations so now we’re exploring the dietary guidelines and hey guess what you’re not going to be able to win on that one either and the court room just started laughing but you know this guy’s obviously thinking I shouldn’t have given her an end and and he you know we sometimes wondered even if he was on ten side because some of the questions were just so lame and and so open [Music] [Music] he was pretty much pushed into early retirement in his faculty he was he had his lab that he had run for 25 years taken away from him and I think the most heartbreaking thing for him was to see his colleagues turned on him and you can see the impact that it has not only on Tim but on a couple and to see your loved one in court being demonized in this way attacked in this way when he is so esteemed he should be so esteemed it’s so wrong you feel wrongs and I think that’s what Marilyn has been feeling he’s found the gold in the mud and he’s used it to embed to human health and to really rectify errors that have been in existence for 50 years Tim the performer complainant is not proven on a balance of probabilities with respondent as a medical practitioner acted unprofessionally in a manner that is not in accordance with the standards and norms of the medical profession professor Noakes on a charge of unprofessional conduct the majority of this committee find you not guilty [Applause] [Music] [Music] this was meant to be a hearing in which the one party says what they think the other party says what they think and experts come along and say well actually they write on this but did they write wrong on that and it’s meant to be a hearing not a trial it was turned out to be a trial where there were two camps there was no discussion about where I was right to where I was wrong it was an art not legal trial which it shouldn’t have been it should have been a debate in a conversation and we still waiting for that conversation and for that invitation to really sit around a table a round table not a two-sided table and to have that conversation to find out what’s best and to really put together a taskforce that looks at this in a more informed way [Music] it’s almost like they were waiting to find something to go after him with because he’s having such an impact in South Africa and they can’t bear it he didn’t deserve to be put through these years of trauma in fact he needs to be thanked for the absolute generosity of spirits and knowledge but he’s offered to South Africa and the world and for the many hundreds of thousands of lives that he’s changed for the better in our country let’s get it over and put it beside us because we’ve all started from it and I mean even clearer you’re seeing straight in the lady lady lay the complaint if you go on the internet it’s Tim Noakes Tim next index it’s a story that’s it that’s her future she will always be pegged to this trial and people are not happy with what she did so she needs a bit of breathing space as well to move on I’m very glad that Professor notes has fought this because I think it shows that then we’re not just gonna roll over you know there’s Sciences on our side [Music] [Music] [Music]

Randall Smitham

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