Nutrition & Dieting/digestion?
I have asked a couple other professionals this, but the best answer I got was 'genetics'. That seems like a cop-out-maybe you can do better?
I understand the concept of metabolism, and how some people can burn off food fast while on people like me it gets stored as fat. (BTW I have improved mine by cutting out saturatedfat-I must store it quicker than others)
This being XMAS, I always notice in my house, with our guests, that some og my inlaws can eat copious ampunts of food and drink, with no ill effects, while I have to really watch it or I get stuffed on a third of what they eat. For example my on my wifes side they are small , thin folks with huge appetites and no bellies, while my son and I have to start weqaring the stretchy pants after brunch. Do they also have more efficient digestion as well as metabolism?
Thanks for any insights!
Here is the thing, every last person is different in the way their body responds to any stimulus be it food, drink or whatever.
Genetics are part of it to a degree. However I think some people (even doctors) hold on to that too tight and blame it for everything.
You are who you are genetically and there is no changing that. However you can change how your body responds to different stimulus.
Example, prior to 2005 I spent most of my life out of shape eating terribly. But after I started working out and improving the way I ate I lost weight. It took a lot of trial and error. Now though that I maintain clean eating 99% of the time, when I do get out of order it is actually easier for me to lose weight once I get back on track.
Gaining weight from over eating or eating bad foods happens a few ways. Weight loss/gain is a simple case of energy balance. Putting in more or less energy (food) will result in either the usage of that fuel or the storage of it. You have to find the foods that you are sensitive to. Some people have a low tolerance for starch, so even if they eat complex carbs they still gain weight. They might have to forego a lot of the starch in their diets and replace it with vegetables.
In the case of your wife's family they seem to have a high metabolism. They probably also have excellent carb tolerance. Its not that their digestion is better than yours, its just that their body for whatever reason does not store the excess calories. This can be a drawback though as people like this usually have poor diets. They can get away with all the good tasting junk food in large quantities and indulge. while their metabolism burns like an inferno they are still susceptible to all the ill effects of poor eating, minus weight gain. Furthermore their bodies are used to the excess and poor foods. They are less likely to react from them.
The simple answer is some of us just have to work harder at maintaining a healthy weight and carefully picking what we eat. I'm in the same boat as you. We have to make up for that lower metabolism by A) training it, and B)increasing it through exercise.
It is genetics to a degree but it is also food tolerance and activity level.
Finally this question comes to mind. Genetics are inherited traits from your parents. They decide eye and hair color, etc. But I don't unnecessarily believe they play that big a role in the body's ability to process food. Perfect example, neither my wife or I have great metabolisms, we are both small in stature but not lean. Yet our son does not put on weight. He can eat whatever and is still lean. At the same time his younger brother is nothing like that.
I don't know if any of this was what you were looking for. I can get all scientific with you and explain digestion and calorie assimilation but what it comes down to is just the individual and how their body responds. A response that can in fact be altered through food selection and exercise.