Neli has often wondered what the secret of thin people is. Among her family, friends and colleagues, she knows people who are naturally thin, who have never gained or lost weight and have always kept the same figure, without ever having started a diet! An American study has looked into the subject and provides us with some answers. Let’s find out together how to be slim.
What are the eating habits of naturally thin people?
“We wanted to see how the eating behaviours of people who struggle to lose or maintain their weight differ from those who stay slim effortlessly,” explains Dr Brian Wansink, director of the Cornell Food and Brand Lab and co-author of the study. We wanted to find simple, small details in these eating behaviours that can have a big impact.”
The project began in a University in New York, which specialises in food-related research. 147 volunteer participants answered 92 questions about their diet, exercise and daily activities.
Among the 147 “healthy weight” people were 112 “naturally thin” adults who said they stayed thin without effort or special attention, and without following a strict diet. And 35 adults who had already been dieting regularly, like Neli, and who paid close attention to their diet in terms of thinking and counting calories…
Do slim people who don’t diet have a secret?
According to the survey, slim people who do not diet or try hard eat the most frequently:
==> What to eat to be thin?
61% prefer chicken as their meat
7% are vegetarians
33% do not drink alcohol
35% eat salad for lunch every day
65% eat vegetables at dinner every day
at breakfast 51% include fruit and vegetables, 31% include eggs
as a snack between meals, 44% choose fruit and 21% dried fruit
27% drink soft drinks regularly, 33% drink “diet” soft drinks, 37% never drink soft drinks
==> Are slim people sporty?
42% engage in physical activity 5 to 7 times a week
27% are physically active 3 to 4 times a week
32% are physically active 0 to 2 times a week
==> Who are these naturally thin people?
80% are women
43% are over 41 years old, 33% are between 26 and 40 years old, 24% are under 25 years old
the average weight is 61 kg for an average height of 1m70 and a BMI (body mass index) of 21.7
What are the secrets to being thin?
After a thorough analysis and comparison of the answers given to the questionnaire, the researchers came to some surprising conclusions!
Thin people opt for eating strategies that do not correspond to the usual recommendations for losing or maintaining weight.
Their eating strategies:
Slender people prefer a high quality diet, preferring quality to quantity.
They prefer home cooking.
Naturally slim men and women know how to listen to their internal body signals: they eat when they are hungry and according to their satiety.
They don’t feel guilty about overeating, and they enjoy their food.
==> Do slim people take slimming pills?
88% take slimming pills
22% don’t take slimming pills
Of the 88%, 75 take REDUSLIM: Reduslim Official Website.
“These results are encouraging because they imply that, instead of restricting food by depriving oneself of favourite foods, it is possible to avoid gaining weight by learning to listen to one’s internal signals and by focusing on the quality rather than the quantity of food,” explains Anna-Leena Vuorinen, a Finnish doctoral student and guest principal investigator at the Food & Brand Lab.