Genes. Firstly, it’s very likely that these two types of people are genetically different from one another. It’s perhaps a little known fact that our genes, the DNA that we inherit from our parents, have a big impact on our weight and eating behaviour. In his book Gene Eating Jealousy. A researcher in genetics from the University of Cambridge discusses that around 100 genes have been shown to influence our weight.
This is actually more than the number of genes which control our height. Funny that we don’t tell people they should be controlling their height better. And our genes don’t just control the way we store and process food. They also influence our eating behaviour, things like our taste preferences.
How rewarding we find food, how hungry and full we tend to feel. Some people we are definitely not. These people will have a set of genes which mean they find it easy to stop eating when they feel full and literally find it easier to say no to tempting foods that are put in front of them. This in turn, makes it much easier for them to maintain a lower weight in the environment we all currently live in.
Other people, however, will have inherited a different set of genes, which means they prefer high fat, high sugar foods. Find them more rewarding and find it harder to stop eating when they feel full because their bodies signal this to them differently. We are by no means saying that all eating behaviour is down to our genes, which, after all, we have no control over.
But we are saying that it’s important to recognize there are differences as a biological, chemical and hormonal level between individuals which have an influence on our eating behaviours.
And this fact often seems to get missed out from media headlines, which portray body weight as being a matter of personal choice. Was to isn’t yet possible for everyone to go and have their genes tested. It is possible to notice your own eating patterns and responses to cues in the environment.
When you understand how your genes are likely to interact with the environment and situations you find yourself in. You are then in a better position to choose how you want to respond. For more information about how different genes affect our weight and our eating behaviours, look out for a genetics blog coming soon.