Weight Loss Support - Do you learn from skinny friends, or no?

04-28-2012, 05:05 PM
I am constantly fascinated by watching my close friends who have a healthy relationship with food.

I feel like sometimes it teaches me how to balance myself, but at other times I get angry and jealous that they can keep a box of Wheat Thins in the cabinet and it will still be there 2 weeks later, while mine would be gone 1 day later.

Anyone want to share how you've gone from jealous to accepting that you are different?

04-28-2012, 05:10 PM
None of my skinny friends have healthy diets. I'm not sure how they do it, but I guess it's just genetic.

04-28-2012, 05:34 PM
I have a skinny friend who does not have a healthy diet at all. She does not drink water, only coke, and she eats candy and desserts on most days. The meals she cooks at home are not all terrible, but many of the meals are fatty meat and processed foods. She also smokes, and never exercises. But I watch her eat. She eats like 2 or three bites and then walks away from it. If she gets a fast food meal of sliders and fries she will eat maybe 2 sliders and give the mostly full box of fries and the last slider away. She will eat half a salad or half a sandwich. It is all still about the amount of food consumed overall, so when she says "I just have a fast metabolism,that's how I eat whatever I want," I call her out on it and say that anyone can eat whatever they want if they only eat one bite of it. I'm just not one of those people. There is one person I know who eats like she has a tapeworm, and she is now starting to gain weight, and she knows it. It is kindof a bummer to her because she has always eaten like that, and always remained thin, but she is getting older, and it is catching up to her.

04-28-2012, 05:57 PM
I have some skinny friends. Some of them seem to eat a lot and not gain but most have to work hard at watching their portions and workout. Still, I don't think they have such a deep rooted addiction to food as I do so it's easier for them to turn down food. Also, if they indulge in something less than healthy, they don't seem to have such incredible feelings of guilt as I do....but of course it's hard to really get into someone's head. I'm trying to be more relaxed about indulgences and trying to not take eating so seriously, but I don't know if I"ll ever learn to be "normal" about food.

04-28-2012, 06:05 PM
I do actually. I have a friend who is a runner. We had a discussion about food once. She said, she never thinks about food, and she has to make herself stop and eat a meal or she will forget.

I think about food pretty much all the time. It's not the first time I've heard that healthy weight people just don't think about food all that much.


04-28-2012, 06:37 PM
None of my skinny friends have what I'd call particularly healthy diets or even exercise practices except one that's really into hiking and camping. The rest of them ate the same types of food as me but probably just less. I recall being irritated at the suggestion of shared desserts, so I think it's just our portion sizes that were different.

04-28-2012, 06:38 PM
I have few skinny friends who are healthy, so I don't pay much attention. I don't get to spend much time at all with friends these days anyway. But I know what you mean, when I was younger I was always in awe of those who seemed satisfied only a quarter way through their meal.

04-28-2012, 06:40 PM
I actually do notice and (I guess) learn from my boyfriend, in a way. He's not really "skinny" but he's definitely not overweight and I would say has a normal relationship with food. Like others who have posted about their friends, a lot of what he eats is pure crap. But it's all about the portions. He essentially stops eating when he's not hungry and doesn't pick up more food until he gets hungry again. He has bags of chips and candy sitting right at his desk in his bedroom, but he doesn't just mindlessly eat it. I always look around at all the food in his room and think of how, if it was me, none of that would still be there.

Noticing his habits hasn't really helped me very much, it just makes me wish I was naturally like that. :/

04-28-2012, 07:02 PM
My sister was the skinny one, I was always the chubby one. Even as a baby, they had to force my sister to eat. Skinny people eat to live; those of us with weight issues live to eat. If my sister receives a box of Godiva chocolate at Christmas, at Easter it is still there. She eats very small portions, but not necessarily healthy food. For example, she will eat a potato chip sandwich.:dizzy: If she is full she will not force herself to eat another bite more. Even if it is a piece of her own birthday cake.

So, if you want to be skinny, think and eat like a skinny person, only healthier.:D

04-28-2012, 07:08 PM
My fiance is skinny and I've learned a lot from him even though his diet is less than ideal :lol: He only eats when he's hungry, even if you place his favorite food in the world in front of him.

My little brother is technically obese, but it's really just because of his build (doctor said he's fine). He's never had a weight problem and is another one who just eats when he's hungry and won't clean his plate for the **** of it.

04-28-2012, 08:51 PM
Kinda...Most of my skinny friends are from Thailand, Chile, Romania, France and they have naturally different eating habits. The few skinny friends I have here, eat horribly xD...lots of alcohol, tons of eating out at fast foods places, and just junk food in general...

04-28-2012, 10:53 PM
I consider their habits, some have diets that are restricted to certain food groups (like vegan, but they don't eat all vegan sweets or something). Some just balance their cals, without counting them because if they eat a lot one day, they don't eat a lot the next. Their idea of a lot isn't "a lot" to me personally either. Some of those techniques work for me, and some don't. I'm not really jealous though. We all have our strengths and weaknesses.

04-28-2012, 11:24 PM
I don't have any skinny friends. Also, the people I know who are on the thinner side do have food issues. They battle them just the same as I do. My husband has always been thin and muscular but over the last 11 years I've realized he a serious sugar addict. He just isn't fat. He's very active and that helps I am sure.

04-28-2012, 11:27 PM
I have a skinny friend who used to eat very big portion during breakfast, lunch n dinner. The only secret she maintain skinny is she doesn't take any other food such as dessert.. soft drinks.. etc. She only take normal meals. I guess that's how she maintain her weight perfectly

04-28-2012, 11:45 PM
Considering my work friends, most of them are heavy and one of them is thin. The thin one eats very healthy, and doesn't take many desserts, snacks or treats even if they are right in front of her. She used to be heavy and trained herself to eat better. The heavy ones have big lunches, dessert and will snack. They don't exercise. When I'm around the heavy ones, I tend to eat like the heavy ones. When I'm around the thin one, I tend to eat like her. It's like in one situation, I'm given permission to eat whatever I want, and in another situation I'm trying to be better about what I eat.

I have thin friends who are a lot like the ones described, the ones who either eat really low fat and/or healthy, or the ones who pay little attention to the quality of food, but you never see them stuff themselves or over eat. I'm always in awe. Then there's the ones who eat everything they want and do fine. My husband must have pure sugar in his blood, the way he drinks Dr. Pepper all day, eats Pop Tarts for lunch, potato chips or whatever he wants. Water? How boring. If he want's to lose weight, he skips a meal and walks around the block twice. It's so infuriating!

I like the saying about eating to live, not living to eat. I wish I didn't have to work so hard to live that way!

04-29-2012, 06:56 AM
ha, no way. Most of my thin friends eat rubbish constantly.. and large portions too. Not sure if that'll last forever! I like the idea of not eating something because I know it's there but for me that's impossible. At least for now.

05-01-2012, 06:46 AM
Yes and no; it really depends on the person. Some of my 'naturally thin' friends eat crap all the time, and I'd surely gain weight if I were to do the same; and some eat in healthy ways, so it's probably no surprise that they remain thin.

From what I could observe, though, it's also a matter of not eating that much—no "clean plate club" here: if they're not hungry anymore, they stop eating, even if it means leaving half the food on their plate. So in the past years, I sort of conditioned myself to do the same, and not bother about having to finish at all cost. I try to pick smaller portions to start with, thinking "if I'm still hungry after that, I can get a second serving" (in the end, I never do); at the restaurant, I ask for doggy-bags (or bring my own Tupperware, yes I know it's not very polite, but the **** with that! I paid for that food, I can well do whatever I want with it, right!). All in all, now, not cleaning my plate doesn't bother me much anymore, and it helps.

05-01-2012, 08:58 AM
I used to compare what they ate with what I ate and could not for the life of me understand why I gained weight whereas they didn't.

I realize it's because I don't know what they do 24 hours of the day. Overall, they are probably eating maintenance calories but I see them on one occasion where they eat a bit more.

Nowadays, I notice I eat a lot healthier than they do with a more plant based diet but I also know when to indulge. If anything, it annoys me when I'm being scrutinized for what I'm eating because everyone thinks I'm on a healthy kick. I emphasize moderation not deprivation :)

05-01-2012, 09:23 AM
Skinny friends? I have never heard of this phenomena, please tell me more.

No, I have one skinny friend who is the pickiest eater I have ever seen and not in a good way. She is the type of eater I would never want to learn from.

05-01-2012, 09:40 AM
The thing I'm reminded of is to stop eating when full and that it's OK to leave food.

05-01-2012, 10:39 AM
Almost all my female friends are thin, and about half of them weren't always that way - so we are ever vigilant of what we eat. I don't have any female friends who can just put away tons of food every day without consequence - most of them, I feel, eat fairly intuitively and exercise (at least walking).

05-01-2012, 11:54 AM
I could see some doing it, but I never did. It never really occurred to me to do it.

05-01-2012, 06:37 PM
Of the genetically thin friends I have, they haven't taught me any decent eating habits. Their diets are rather horrible at work and home and there is a high reliance on convenience and no moderation.

Of the thin friends who fluctuate in size and some have a history of reaching obese weights - they all have taught me more about portion reality, long term maintenance, and healthful mindsets. There's solidarity among the throng, essentially.

05-01-2012, 07:31 PM
I do get inspired by my younger cousin to just eat healthier. Plus, I really admire the relationship she has with food: she only eats when she's hungry and just enough to feel satisfied. She has never eaten anything just for comfort and I've never heard her saying she's craving anything. Pointless to say she looks amazing and her skin is just glowing all the time.

05-01-2012, 09:02 PM
Trying to copy the eating habits of the thin members of my family is what got me into trouble in the first place.

In my family, I'm the only one to have ever had a weight problem as a child (it may have something to do with genetics, as I was adopted). My younger brother ate at least as much as I did (once he hit puberty, he began to eat twice as much as I did) and yet he was underweight and my parents were always pressuring him to eat, and me to not eat (he also was adopted from another bio-family and he was the only person in the family to be underweight as a child).

I've learned that if I want to succeed, I can't envy, resent, or copy the habits of anyone else. I have to find what works for me, and learn not to compare my results to anyone else's. I will have to work harder than many people, but likewise many people will have to work harder than I will. For all of us, it is what it is.

When I pay attention to other people's eating habits, I'm always struck by the diversity (even within my own family). There are very thin, even underweight individuals who are extremely sedentary and yet they eat as if they had a hollow leg. Then there are the very fat who don't eat much if any more than average, and there are endless variations in-between. The fat person who is very active, but eats constantly (this was me during my teen and college years), There is the thin person who eats constantly but is constantly moving (this was one of my college room-mates. Even when she was sitting on a couch "vegging" she was constantly in motion, like a hummingbird.

The thing I've learned from watching fat and thin folks is that weight is compicated, but weight loss doesn't have to be. If you're only worried about the number (which is a stupid thing to worry about, I've decided) then you only have to eat less than you burn. However, if you want to be healthy, what you eat, and how much you move your body matters as much or more than the number.

I wish I'd learned that sooner, because when I was younger only the number mattered, so I was willing to do really super-stupid things to lose weight.

The thin people with poor eating and exercise habits may not look sick, but they're putting their health in jeopardy just as much as the overweight person - so they are not the people to emulate. The overweight person who is eating a healthy diet (even if too much of it) and who is active and working at being more and more active, may very well be healthier than the skinny Dorito-snarfing couch potato.

What we eat and how we move is at least as important as what we weigh, and we can't always judge a person's health by their body size, so finding what works best for us is always trial and error. Getting healthier is partially about maintaining a healthy weight, but it's also about eating habits, sleep and rest habits, stress level, diet (both what it includes and what it excludes), and social relationships. We tend to make it all about the numbers, and the number may be the least important part.