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I don't think "naturally thin" people exist

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Old 02-21-2011, 04:56 PM   #1
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Default I don't think "naturally thin" people exist

So I know there is this term "naturally thin" but really, I don't think those people exist. Maybe in men, because let's face it, guys are just a phenomenon in that department; but if you really think about the women you know that are "naturally thin" why are they thin? I'll bet you that 99% of them do things that somehow create a delibrit (sorry I can't spell right now) caloric equilibrium, but since that's all they've know it's their lifestyle. Here's my two favorites broken down, please add on since I don't have time to list them all.

The she eat's nothing but junk and doesn't gain weight - Yes, but did you know that she doesn't eat breakfast and only eats 1-2 meals a day that only add up to 1800-2000 cals, which for the average never been obese person is maintenance cals.

The she eat's all.the.time but doesn't gain weight - Sure, but she's eating small healthy meals all day, oh yeah and she exercises regularly.

My point is, that with the exception of a very small number there is no such thing as "naturally thin", everyone has to work at, just some people don't know they're doing work Us formally obese people, well I think we all know it's work and that's what makes it hard.
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:36 PM   #2
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Idk. I was skinny until right after high school and while I definitely was doing things (eating once or twice a day, we weren't allowed to snack, I was involved in dance) I never did any of these things with my weight in mind. I can honestly say I never thought about my weight til I was 21. It just never crossed my mind. And I had gained quite a bit at that point but wasn't aware of it. I didn't even own a scale until after I started trying to lose weight.

I guess my point is that when I think of "naturally thin" I think of people who are not DELIBERATELY trying to stay that way. They're doing what comes natural to them and maintaining a low weight.
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:54 PM   #3
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I agree!
I used to know a girl who was super skinny and everytime we went out she would eat a lot. I mean this girl could eat way more that any guy in our group. So, in my mind I though she was "naturally thin" WRONG!! Come to find out she works out with a personal trainer 6 days a week a the very least an hour and a half each session, eats nothing all day and then for dinner she eats grilled chicken and steamed veggies, never eats anything with flour or sugar. Her husband spilled the beans to us one night when he was tipsy.
Then my sister in-law is another one who is very thin and eats well but come to find out she has an over active thyroid and can't gain weight.
So there you have it.
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Old 02-21-2011, 05:55 PM   #4
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I believe there are people who eat to live rather than live to eat. They do not seem to get the same satisfaction from food as most people do. They can walk right by a table full of sweets if they are not hungry, but if they are hungry, they will take one thing.
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:11 PM   #5
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My sister is waif thin, always was and most probably always will be. She had two babies and shrunk back to size..she is now pushing fifty and weighs what she did in high school. She eats normally....whatever she wants , when she wants. Food is simply not an issue. So yes, I consider her naturally thin. She is built like all the women on my father's side that had that small frame and just never put on weight.
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:14 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ncuneo View Post
So I know there is this term "naturally thin" but really, I don't think those people exist. Maybe in men, because let's face it, guys are just a phenomenon in that department; but if you really think about the women you know that are "naturally thin" why are they thin? I'll bet you that 99% of them do things that somehow create a delibrit (sorry I can't spell right now) caloric equilibrium, but since that's all they've know it's their lifestyle. Here's my two favorites broken down, please add on since I don't have time to list them all.

The she eat's nothing but junk and doesn't gain weight - Yes, but did you know that she doesn't eat breakfast and only eats 1-2 meals a day that only add up to 1800-2000 cals, which for the average never been obese person is maintenance cals.

The she eat's all.the.time but doesn't gain weight - Sure, but she's eating small healthy meals all day, oh yeah and she exercises regularly.

My point is, that with the exception of a very small number there is no such thing as "naturally thin", everyone has to work at, just some people don't know they're doing work Us formally obese people, well I think we all know it's work and that's what makes it hard.
I'm with you. I've never met anyone who I first thought of as naturally thin who wasn't doing something, either consciously or unconsciously, to keep from gaining weight.
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Old 02-21-2011, 06:19 PM   #7
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I can see where you are coming from with this, but really I think some people just are born needing less work to stay thin. My sister was very very skinny all her life and through high school. I was always chubby. We both played equal sports and ate the same food since we lived together, neither of us ate healthy and we both ate pretty decent portions. But, she stayed really skinny and I didn't. Now I have actively been working on getting thin for 2 years now and even started trying to be healthy back in high school, probably 7 years ago. My sister never had to try and I always told her it would catch up to her and it did. She went into her senior year and stopped playing sports so that diet of crap she had grown up on finally hit her and in the past 2 years while I lost 30 pounds she gained 30 pounds.

So yes, her stopping sports could have helped her gain weight BUT it could only be genetics that had me grow up bigger and her grow up smaller because we lived the same way, ate the same way and were equally active. But I do have to say I have seen very skinny people who aren't very active and really do eat whatever they want and eat regular meals like everyone else, but I do think for most of them at some point it catches up to them (It caught up to my mom around 35, but before that she was very thin, but ate normal and bad food and wasn't active at all).

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Old 02-21-2011, 07:19 PM   #8
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I think there are people who eat normally (and yes, I think there is such a thing) and are normal weight. I live with one of them. She tends to eat slowly, and she doesn't get obsessed with foods. She eats as much as she wants, which is not as much as I want, and then she stops.

I don't know whether you'd call her naturally thin or not. When she was a teenager, she weighed around 102. Many years later, she weighs 130. She does not diet, has never dieted. It wasn't part of a girl's life when she was growing up.

I have seen her open a single-serving bag of corn chips, eat part of the bag, and then put the rest aside for later. It's not that she "doesn't think she should eat them all," or that she "can't afford the calories," it's that she's just done with them. That partly eaten bag of chips may sit for days. I know it's there, of course. She has forgotten about it.

She doesn't snack constantly. When she likes something, she eats a lot of it, but she doesn't eat ALL there is. She likes Taco Bell, and every couple of months she might get something there. But she doesn't avoid any food because she is "watching her weight."

She is as close as I've seen to an inuitive eater.

I asked her once about whether she could just eat anything and not gain. She said, "Well, no, I can't just eat everything in whatever quantities are available." But mostly she doesn't think about it. And she doesn't have to.

Jay
ETA: Oh, and I should mention that she does virtually no exercise other than occasionally going for a half-hour walk.
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Old 02-21-2011, 07:29 PM   #9
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I agree, completely.

I think there are people whose desire to eat is more controlled than it is for others. But that's like saying there are naturally friendly people... it may be easier for them to remember to do things that are seen as friendly, like smile and talk to people, but we can all do those things.

I was "naturally thin" in high school, like a lot of teenagers, and ate ANYTHING I wanted at whatever quantities I wanted. Didn't think about it at all. But if I remember now, I skipped breakfast daily, lunch at least three times a week, worked out 2 hrs three times a week, and "SO MUCH PIZZA" for me meant two slices -- so even when I pigged out, it was 800 calories once a week or so.

So when I ate "a lot" (2000 calories a day), it was fine, because I was a varsity athlete. I didn't develop intense hunger for crap food until age 19, which is when most women develop it -- as our bodies prepare our child-bearing hips .

I thought one of my roommates is 'naturally thin' -- she's about 4'10", 85 lbs, and although she's underweight by BMI standards is actually very curvy and toned because of her TINY frame -- but it turns out she just doesn't like to eat in the quantities other people do. She'll fill a huge tray with a ton of things and end up eating maybe 250 calories of nibbles. Her body is just better at telling her when it's done, or she's just good at being conscious of it without letting us catch on.
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Old 02-21-2011, 07:45 PM   #10
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Yes, they do exist, and there's quite a lot of science and research that proves it. I've studied weight loss most of my life, including the psychological and physiological research, and naturally thin people of both genders do indeed exist. There's actually quite a lot of research support for biological tendencies for both under and overweight (some of the genes have even been identifies). There's a lot of research showing that it's just as hard for many underweight folks to gain weight as it is for overweight folks to lose it.


The research on weight loss, weight gain, the issues of underweight and overweight, diet, and exercise is very interesting, and to me shows that there truly is an incredible amount of variance in "natural" tendencies.

But knowing that naturally thin people exist, doesn't really help me. I can't become one. There's a good deal of evidence that the underlying biology may be different (yes, genetics, and no I'm not blaming genetics), but it does mean that I can't learn to become a naturally thin person just by imitating one (if I could find a nautrally thin person willing to have me follow them around for months). There's also evidence that getting on the weight loss rollercoaster changes your physiology. There are actually physiological differences between the brains and bodies of thin people and formerly fat people.

Most of my family was naturally thin until mid-adulthood. I'm the only person in my entire extended family who was overweight before the age of 25 (and I was obese at age 5 - I'm also adopted, don't think it's a coincidence).

My father was the epitome of the "naturally thin" person, he ate like a person three times his size. He ate two to three large meals, snacks all day (he worked as a bread delivery man, and the grocers, restaurant owners, school lunch ladies.... who delivered from him also constantly gave him free meals and snacks). His idea of an evening snack was an entire sleeve of orea cookies and a pint of icecream.

It caught up with him only after retirement (where he started to look 7 - 8 months pregnant). He struggled for about a year with losing it, but now his weight is under control again, only about 15 lbs heavier than his lowest adult weight. Still well within a healthy weight for a man his age. It's scary how much that man can eat (even now with his lower metabolism) and not gain weight.

My brother wasn't just naturally thin, he was naturally underweight, despite eating non-stop. A stranger in a grocery store once accused my mother of intentionally starving my brother and over feeding me. I was about 5 or 6 and my brother was about 3 or 4. I started crying, because to me it felt like the reverse. I was always prevented from eating, while my brother was always allowed and encouraged to eat as much as he could to try to gain weight.

My brother was hyperactive as a child, so I think that did play a role. He was like the human versio of a hummingbird (which must eat 5x their bodyweight daily to survive). But if you fed him more, he just moved more (kind of the reverse of our fat cat. The less you feed her, the fewer hours she is conscious).

When he does gain weight, it's usually muscle (he also only gained a tiny bit of fat after retiring from the navy).

I had a college room-mate who ate so much and was so thin, that other housemates and I suspected she was bulimic. We were concerned enough to listen at the bathroom door to hear if she was purging (nope, she just an insanely high metabolism).

I can think of a few more friends and aquaintences, but it really doesn't matter. You've got the metabolism you've got, and to some degree you're stuck with it. You can speed it up a little, you can slow it down a lot, so taking care of your metabolism is important, but you can only change it a little bit. So you work with what you've got.
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:23 PM   #11
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I do think they exist also. I was one of them.....As a teenager I generally weighed less than 100 pounds and ate ALOT every day. My family always joked about how much I could "put away".

When I got married, I ate way more than my 6'4" husband. I ate fast food almost daily. A normal day could be a footlong subway cold cut sub with a bag of chips. Then maybe later I'd have a big mac meal with large fries. I ate a full block of sharp cheddar (8 ounces!!) alot of nights with crackers. If I made spaghetti I had HUGE bowls of it with garlic bread, and usually some leftovers later too...I'm surprised I'm still alive with all of the crap I ate, really LOL I have no doubt that I was eating 2500-3000 calories a day, if not more. And never exercised! Being a stay at home Mom, I got bored and hungry alot and ate anytime I felt the urge. I gained in my 20's but still always stayed around 145 which was fine.

Once I hit my 30's I had my fifth child and started gaining slowly. Eat my highest weight I was 172, which is why I started calorie counting. I think age plays a big part for the naturally thin people.
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:28 PM   #12
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Kaplods, you always have such a nice way of say no, you're wrong with such compelling evidence (man spelling is horrific today, I'm so tired).

This did strike me about your examples though.

Quote:
(he worked as a bread delivery man, and the grocers, restaurant owners, school lunch ladies.... who delivered from him also constantly gave him free meals and snacks).
He was a delievery man so his job was a lot of exercise, hence why he could eat how he did and why he gained when he retired.

I guess my point was best summarized by this:

Quote:
I've never met anyone who I first thought of as naturally thin who wasn't doing something, either consciously or unconsciously, to keep from gaining weight.
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Old 02-21-2011, 08:46 PM   #13
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Is this about females only? I know a lot of men who eat upwards of 3000-4000 calories a day, don't exercise, and manage to maintain pitifully scrawny figures. And I hate them all.

I think "naturally thin" women generally have smaller appetites. My mom weighed 100 lbs at 5'6 through her twenties, and she just ate when she was hungry and played tennis recreationally.
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Old 02-21-2011, 09:43 PM   #14
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Quote:
I've never met anyone who I first thought of as naturally thin who wasn't doing something, either consciously or unconsciously, to keep from gaining weight.
OK, this may be a dumb question... maybe I'm just not getting something here? But if someone who is thin is doing something unconsciously to keep from gaining weight... Doesn't that make them naturally thin?

What is the meaning of "naturally"?

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Old 02-21-2011, 09:44 PM   #15
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I think that's true to some extent. I'm sure that there are a couple people who are naturally thin (freakishly high metabolism or whatever).

You know, one thing I thought about today was that if I lived back in hunter/gatherer times where other things were trying to eat me and I lived mostly off bugs and leaves, I'd be awesome at surviving because my body holds onto fat and stores a lot of what I eat. As one of my professors said, "Evolutionarily speaking, the fat ones would be dancing on the graves of the thin ones." Lol! It's not so useful to be a "fat one" today, though.
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