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Publication: Diet Buddy
Secrets of the Slim!

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         Diet Buddy - Monday, April 30, 2007

Secrets of the Slim!

Hi There Buddies...

We all know some of them...we may even live with a few of 
them...work with them...and maybe at one time or another 
we were one of them...

Yes, we all see them on TV, in magazines, have friends, 
family members and co-workers that somehow can keep eating 
and snacking until the cows come home and are still as thin 
as a rail.  Do they know something we don't?  

You wonder what kind of super metabolism do these people 
have and why isn't yours at that speed?  It's enough to 
make you seriously want to put a "fat curse" on a few, but 
hey, remember some are our friends and family and we're 
really not that envious, are we?

Turns out, research shows that thin people simply don't 
think about food the same way as - well the rest of us.  
"Thin people have a relaxed relationship with food," 
explains David L. Katz, MD, an associate professor adjunct 
in public health at Yale University.  "Those who are 
overweight, however, tend to be preoccupied by it.  They 
focus on how much or how often they eat, or attach labels 
like "good" and "bad" to certain foods.  As a result, 
mealtime is always on the brain."

With compliments from Prevention Magazine we'll have some 
weight loss experts explore the mysterious minds of the 
"naturally" slim.  Let's see if we can somehow learn what 
they do - and don't - and play the same part.


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They Choose Satisfied Over Stuffed

On a fullness scale of 1 to 10, the slim stop eating at a 
level of 6 or 7, says Jill Fleming, RD.  The rest of us 
may keep going to an 8 or 10.  Why?  It may be because you 
mistakenly equate the sensation of fullness with 
satisfaction and feel deprived if you stop short, says 
Fleming.  Or you may just be used to finishing what's in 
front of you, regardless of whether you really need it.

Copy Them!

About halfway through your next meal, put your fork down 
and, using the 1 to 10 scale, rate your level of fullness.  
Do it again when you have about five bites left.  The goal 
is to increase your awareness of how satisfied you feel 
during a meal. (Bonus: It also slows down your eating, 
which allows the sensation of fullness to settle in.) 

They Realize Hunger Isn't An Emergency

Most of us who struggle with extra pounds tend to view 
hunger as a condition that needs to be cured - and fast, 
says Judith S. Beck, PhD.  "If you fear hunger, you might 
routinely over-eat to avoid it," she says.  Thin people 
tolerate it because they know hunger pangs always come and 
go, buying them some time.

Copy Them!

Pick a busy day to purposely delay lunch by an hour or two. 
Or try skipping an afternoon snack one day.  You'll see 
that you can still function just fine.  Then next time you 
feel those grumbles, you'll hold off before making a bee-
line for the fridge.

They Don't Use Food To Cure The Blues

It's not that thin women are immune to emotional eating, 
says Kara Gallagher, PhD, a weight loss expert based in 
Louisville.  But they tend to recognize when they're doing 
it and stop.

Copy Them!

Add the word HALT to your vocabulary, says Gallagher.  
More than just a command (as in stop eating that entire 
sleeve of cookies), it's an acronym that stands for Hungry, 
Angry, Lonely, or Tired - the four most common triggers 
for emotional eating.  If you're truly hungry, choose a 
balanced snack, such as a handful of nuts, to tide you over 
until your next meal.  But if you're angry, lonely, or 
tired, seek an alternative calorie-free solution to your 
emotional need.  Blow off steam by going for a run or just 
jumping around - the heartbeat boost will help dissipate 
your anger.  Lonely? Call a friend, e-mail your kid, or 
walk to the park or mall.  Being around others will make 
you feel more connected to your community (even if you 
don't bump into anyone you know).  If you're tired, for 
heaven's sake, sleep! 


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They Eat More Fruit

Lean people, on average, have one more serving of fruit and 
eat more fiber and less fat per day than overweight people, 
reports a 2006 study published in the Journal of the 
American Dietetic Association.

Copy Them!

Start tinkering.  Examine your diet for ways to add whole 
fruits (not juices) to your meals and snacks.  Aim for 
two or three servings per day.  Sprinkle berries in your 
cereal or on your yogurt.  Add sliced pears to your turkey 
sandwich, or bake an apple for dessert.  Keep a bowl of 
fruit on your kitchen table or desk to motivate you to 
think fruit first, vending machine never.

They're Creatures Of Habit

Any dietitian will tell you that a varied diet is good - 
but too much variety can backfire, says Katz, author.  
Studies have shown that too many tastes and textures 
encourage you to overeat, he explains.  "Thin people have 
what I call a food groove - the majority of their meals 
consist of well-planned staples," says Beck.  "There are 
a few surprises thrown in, but for the most part, their 
diets are fairly predictable."

Copy Them!

Try to be as consistent as possible with your major meals - 
have cereal for breakfast, a salad at lunch, and so forth.  
It's okay to add grilled chicken to the salad one day and 
tuna the next, but by sticking to a loosely prescribed meal 
schedule, you limit opportunities to overindulge.

They Have A Self-Control Gene

Researchers at Tufts University found that the biggest 
predictor of weight gain among women in their 50's and 
60's was their level of disinhibition, or unrestrained 
behavior.  Women with low disinhibition (in other words, 
a finely tuned sense of restraint) had the lowest body 
mass index.  High disinhibition (i.e., low restraint) 
was linked to an adult weight gain of as much as 33 pounds. 

Copy Them!

Prepare for moments when your disinhibition is likely to 
be higher - such as when you're in a festive atmosphere 
with a large group of friends.  If you're at a party, tell 
yourself you'll take one of every fourth passed hors 
d'oeuvre.  If you're out at dinner, order an appetizer 
portion and share dessert.  Or if you're stressed - another 
low-restraint moment - make sure you have a source of 
crunchy snacks (like fruit or carrot sticks) at the ready. 

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They're Movers And Shakers

On average, slim people are on their feet an extra 2 1/2 
hours per day - which can help burn off 33 pounds a year, 
according to a study from the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. 

Copy Them!

Try a reality check.  Studies have shown that people often 
overestimate how active they really are, says Gallagher.  
Most people actually spend 16 to 20 hours a day just 
sitting. Wear a pedometer on an average day, and see how 
close you get to the recommended 10,000 steps.  Your day 
should combine 30 minutes of structured exercise with a 
variety of healthy habits, such as taking the stairs 
instead of the elevator or mopping the floor with extra 

They Sleep Well

They snooze 2 more hours per week, compared with overweight 
people, says a study from Eastern Virginia Medical School.  
Researchers theorize that a lack of shut-eye is linked to 
lower levels of appetite-suppressing hormones like leptin 
and higher levels of the appetite-boosting hormone ghrelin.

Copy Them!

Break it down: Two extra hours of sleep a week is only 17 
more minutes a day - a lot more manageable, even for the 
most packed of schedules.  Start there and slowly work 
toward 8 hours of snooze time a night - the right amount 
for most adults.


We should all give these skinny tips a try, which I'm sure 
some of us already do.  Having these reminders around will 
keep us on our toes and will give us the same edge that our 
skinny friends have.

Did You Know ???

78% of successful dieters do it every day, according to the 
National Weight Control Registry.  A database of more than 
5,000 people who've lost more than 30 pounds and kept the 
weight off for at least a year...EAT BREAKFAST!

Are you having concerns about your exercise or diet plan?
Stop by our Diet Buddy forum and share at...
Diet Buddy Forum

Have a great week everyone !!!

Disclaimer: Since I am not a medical professional any 
statements in this column are strictly based on research I 
have done and should not be misconstrued as medical advice.   

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