Come on, you have at least one friend that seems to eat and drink anything they want and manage to stay super slim, right?!
I had that friend in high school. Her name was Jenell and she was one of my best friends. She was 5 foot 6 inches but only weighed 98 pounds and actually hated that she couldn’t put on weight. Ironically, she had really big boobs (I loved her but man, I hated her…lol)!
Of course I envied her because, to some degree, I had to watch what I ate because I would gain weight if I didn’t. Since we were best friends, we always ate and drank the same things. This was usually soda with lots of chips and french fries.
Now that I’ve spent 20+ years studying nutrition and the body, I realize that amongst healthy people, being able to eat whatever you want and still stay slim is a myth.
People often greatly under or over estimate how much they eat. And when I go back and think about my friend, Jenell, she was always one of those people that would pick at food but never finish and would open a soda but only take a few sips.
Human metabolisms don’t vary by more than just a few percentages for people that are the same age, sex and height. Now, there are medical conditions that make it difficult for some people to either lose or gain weight but those are so rare that you most likely don’t know too many, if any, people like that.
Most likely you are seeing your skinny friend occasionally eat huge meals and you assume that they’re consistently that way. But what we don’t consider is that they were likely to skip breakfast, they probably don’t snack a whole lot and they actually drink lots of water instead of sugary drinks.
On the opposite end of the spectrum, our obese friend who always orders the salad when we go out, maybe snacks constantly at home, eats at least three meals a day and guzzles down lots of soda, diet soda and juice.
I read a few studies that shows that people who stay slim are just more active throughout the day as well. This doesn’t mean that they exercise a ton but more so that they are on their feet a lot throughout the day and are very fidgety.
But if you’re absolutely sure that your slim friend eats the same as you do it could possibly be their thyroid gland that plays a role in this. Hyperthyroidism and hypothyroidism are dysfunctions of your thyroid gland. Basically speaking, your thyroid controls your energy usage and sensitivity to hormones. An overly active thyroid (hyper) will increase your BMR (basal metabolic rate) while an under active thyroid (hypo) will lower your BMR, which can mean weight gain.
So the next time you see a slim person eating a ginormous cheeseburger, consider that it could just be their first meal of the day and a rare occasion. And besides that, even slim people battle disease if their diets are poor. Food can either create or prevent disease and no matter what size you are…eating healthy most of the time is just plain smart!!!
My name is Melissa McAllister. I just turned 44! I have a son and daughter and my husband and I are new empty nesters! My husband is the reason I eat, drink, and sleep health and fitness. He has 2 speeds, GO and GO Faster. We have been together for over 28 years and married for 23 (yes, he had me at “hello!”). Don’t get me wrong though…I was a Doritos and Coca Cola eating Hoover when I was in school! Fitness has been an essential part of my life for over 19 years. I have the 3 best jobs in the world—being a stay-at-home Mom, business owner, and group exercise instructor for several large fitness chains. I have been teaching everything from yoga to kickboxing for over 17 years. I have also had the great opportunity to train, inspire, and motivate other instructors for the past 11 years. You might even see me in a few fitness videos out there! 😉 Reaching out to others who are struggling to be healthy and happy is my passion. I couldn’t tell you next Fall’s latest fashion must have or what flowers to plant this season, but I can help you achieve your health and fitness goals. With your determination and my motivation, we can find and keep the best YOU! I will inspire by holding myself and those around me accountable!