Whenever I do a Q&A, I get asked how some people can eat whatever they want and never gain weight. So, let’s explore that.
The answer is quite simple: they are not in a caloric surplus. But there are different ways that might be the case, so let’s dig in a little further.
The first way is that they’re just not eating a ton. Sure, they might get McDonald’s 5 days per week and snack on Oreos throughout the day, but their overall calories might actually be pretty low. While their diet might not be the “healthiest”, they’re not over-consuming. Even though it looks like they’re eating a ton, they’re actually not from a caloric standpoint.
The second way is that their diet is actually well-rounded, but you’re just seeing the “junk”. If your coworker is always snacking on cookies and donuts in the office, you might think their diet is garbage. But when they go home, they might actually eat very well. Take it from someone who follows flexible dieting- just because you see someone eating less than optimal food, it doesn’t mean their whole diet looks like that.
The other ways this might be the case revolve around energy expenditure. Someone might simply have a higher BMR, meaning they require more calories throughout the day. Yes, genetics do play a role to some extent, and someone might naturally have a higher metabolism. But things like age, muscle mass, and even hormones, all play a role in our individual calorie requirements.
Lastly, someone might simply be a very active person. That kid you grew up with that could eat everything in sight was likely also extremely active. I’ve talked about NEAT before: a nurse might eat a lot more than a telemarketer, since they are on the feet all day and therefore burning more calories throughout the day.
At the end of the day, it all comes back to a caloric balance. You can also eat “whatever they want” and not gain weight if your calories are in check!