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I’ve been watching The Secret Lives of Slim People (Channel 4 – 7,30pm Wednesdays) and noticed that for all 4 people studied so far, the one fact given and the one thing they all have in common is they have naturally matched the amount of calories they consume with the amount they use.

Apparently 25% of slim people develop insulin resistance leading to type 2 diabetes, which means good health is more important than size

All four people had different diets, varied in their exercise habits, ate whatever they felt like, which ranged from one proper meal after work each day with plenty of vegetables through to pizza and chips in front of the TV until bed.

There were some commonalities between everyone mentioned so far, which would each help regulate our metabolic system, although plenty of people – slim or otherwise – may find one or more of these require being gradually worked into their lifestyle:

  • Plenty of vegetables – many vegetables are good for digestion and removing toxins.
  • 8 hours sleep a night
  • Regular eating times – therefore our bodies know when to expect food.
  • Eating when hungry and stopping when full.
  • Eating slowly.
  • The old adage of “little and often” was certainly at play here.

Sabrina Grant speaks to one of the Channel 4 documentary’s volunteers about her lifestyle

The problem today is when you mention wanting to lose or manage our weight, a friend or family member will trot off the usual bit of propaganda: “eat less and exercise more” without providing any evidence or thinking if it is true or has even worked in their own lives.

Many people who constantly feel the need watch their weight find that no diet, amount of time at the gym or course medication work long-term. A meme has appeared on Facebook saying that when someone was slim they felt fat and now they feel slim they are fat.

Bloating, inflammation, food intolerance and other causes can make us feel fat, while we haven’t actually put on weight and a healthy diet can relieve all of those symptoms while we don’t seem to get in shape very quickly.

How do we measure ourselves to find our own healthy weight?

All the people I know who are slim are always eating whatever they want, when they want without worry. Everyone I know who worries about their weight is constantly trying to lose weight in ways that seem to be logical (fewer calories, less fat) but are in no way based in science.

One thing that is evident is that we gradually get heavier as we get older. There is also a “healthy” weight and body mass index that perhaps our doctor could tell us if current charts are scientifically proven to be correct.

How could we know this? Perhaps it is known through the measurement of people such as those who agreed to be studied for the Channel 4 program; The Secret Lives of Slim People.

Therefore, is it worth experimenting on ourselves by trying to send a week eating when we’re hungry and stopping when we’re full to see what happens? This could be accompanied by the items bullet pointed further above or not, or perhaps one week with and one without.

This Daily Mail article claims that 1 in 4 skinny people are also unhealthy.

Too many articles provide misinformation or statements not backed up with evidence (am beginning to forget what this) on the whole diet and nutrition conversation and any talk of food intolerance is met with a groan, eye rolling and being treated like a fussy eater.

Few places to eat out regard good nutrition leaving customers feeling good after eating as important as flavour while eating and restaurants responding to queries on their allergy statements about healthy menu options with a ‘safe option” such as a salad being the only gluten, sugar, soy and dairy free “choice”.

The average meal is 500 calories. If you can eat natural, nutritionally dense food, your body can get its vitamins and slow real ease carbs, fats and proteins for fewer calories. Small portions, six times a day keeps the body metabolism high and doesn’t trigger survival storage through emulated starvation.  – Quora

Why are we lied to about nutrition? Why are we fed a line about diets, calories and weight loss? Why can’t we challenge this position with demands for real information about nutrition from our wonderful free healthy service in the UK and, instead of waiting until we are ill to seek advice from a health professional, find out for ourselves how many calories we need for our lifestyles each day and learn to feed ourselves accordingly?

Which food type you choose may not effect your weight if you don’t have too much, but the choice may effect your health

A friend of mine has celiac disease (avoids gluten and dairy) and told me the doctor would require she ate gluten for one month to be tested for celiac disease. He said within one hour she would be ill. Why would the NHS consider such a process?

Here is an article, which seems to make sense. I certainly feel that I have experienced the feeling of deprivation if I don’t finish what is on my plate despite feeling ill. However, my family and I have always been preoccupied with diet. Recently I ate a roast with friends and one of them – the slim one – took much longer than me to finish his plate even though sometimes he can finish everyone else’s plates once he has finished his own. Enjoying eating is certainly a good idea, however having a healthy relationship with food and what it is for seems to be the most important thing. As Bradie Foster wrote in September 2013 on her blog:

Research reveals that thin people actually think about food in a different way. They have a relaxed relationship with food, unlike overweight people who tend to be preoccupied by it. Naturally slim people don’t focus about how much and how often they eat and they don’t attach labels to certain foods, like good or bad. By copying them, you can rewire your brain and become naturally slim.

A deeply ingrained human instinct is to not waste food, which may lead to over-eating.

Once I actually suggested to a slim friend of mine that I could literally copy everything she wrote (down to the half eaten cup cake) for a week and not only was she not willing to try nor did she believe me it might be a thing, but she was very offended that I suggested she was slim because of her relationship to food and not because of her superior body. Even slim people who feel fat will be treated as somehow inferior, which starts the damaging process of running away from the reality instead of embracing the situation and changing our attitudes to food for the better.

I will be trying this approach and will report back in a later blog.

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