What naturally slim people do differently

Do you know any naturally slim people who manage to eat whatever they want, whenever they want, and never have to worry about their weight? Have you, after years of dieting, ever felt a twinge of jealousy and wondered how they do it?

The answer is….naturally slim people simply think about food differently.

This is great news! It means that with a bit of help, you can start thinking differently about food as well. So if you’ve always wanted to be a naturally slim version of yourself, I can teach you the mindset and food choices required to get you there.

You were born knowing when, what and how much to eat. But many people have experienced parents or social groups who encouraged them to ignore their body’s signals and instead, “clean their plate” or “wait until dinner.” Over time, this creates a shift in mindset and food choices start being based around external factors, like the time it is, what other people are eating and which foods are quickly and easily accessible. This can lead to weight problems.

If you want to become a naturally slim version of yourself, you need to start differentiating between “physical hunger” and “wanting to eat.”

Physical hunger

Physical hunger is a sensation you feel somewhere in your body. Maybe your stomach is grumbling or feeling empty or maybe you have a bit of a headache, but there is definitely a physical element to this type of hunger. Physical hunger usually comes on gradually and gets stronger and stronger. While you may have a preference for certain foods, true physical hunger is open to a wide variety of food choices.

Wanting to eat

Wanting to eat (also called emotional hunger) is completely different from physical hunger. It is dictated entirely by your brain and/or your mouth. So for example, if you see a food and instantly want to eat it (in spite of not being hungry 5 minutes ago), emotional hunger is definitely at play. If you ever just fancied having something sweet or salty or crunchy in your mouth, this is also emotional hunger. The clue, is that emotional hunger comes on suddenly and usually wants a very specific food (eg. chocolate). You may also find it incredibly difficult to stop eating it once you start.

Once I point out the differences between physical hunger and wanting to eat, most people who struggle with their weight soon realise that most of their food choices are dictated by “wanting to eat” and very few are based on true, physical hunger. If that is the case for you, the goal then is to do a bit of digging as to why you are eating so often when you aren’t actually hungry. Put another way, if your body isn’t asking for food, and doesn’t want food, then why are you eating? Sometimes just being aware of this is enough to motivate a change in behaviour. Other times, people need the help of a dietitian or other professional to help uncover what is driving that behaviour.

The activity above is just the first step in developing a healthy relationship with food and becoming a naturally slim version of yourself.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author. All articles published on Nutritionist Resource are reviewed by our editorial team.

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