Big Boned?

CT scout filmsThe difference between these two individuals is not from their bones…

I was recently talking to a group of people, giving them my usual weight loss rants, when I was hit with a question I hear way too often.  I was going through my usual discussion of the body mass index (If you don’t know enough about the BMI, click here) when a well meaning but not well informed audience member asked the following question:

Her:  Does the BMI account for your bones?

Me:  What do you mean, exactly?

Her:  I mean, does it account for the fact that some people are big boned and others aren’t?

Me:  I have held a human skeleton in  my hands.  I had a box of bones I had to carry around my first semester of med school.  Bones aren’t that heavy.

She looked a bit aghast.  As if I had just destroyed her explanation for why she was overweight.  If it’s not the bones, what could it be!?!  I told her it was probably her lifestyle.  She seemed disappointed.

English: diagram of a human female skeleton, b...
Diagram of a human female skeleton, back view. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The moral of the story is that the idea that differences in bone size or composition can account for variances in weight between people is nonsense.  In other words, there is no such thing as big boned.  It is true that people can have different body types and carry weight differently based on a host of genetic factors, but the bones don’t have a lot to do with that.Now that I have relieved you of this myth, you are one step closer to attacking the real challenges in weight loss – your diet and your exercise.  This blog and the book that inspire dis designed as a source of the information you need to be successful in creating a healthy lifestyle.  The biggest obstacle to success in this arena is ignorance (as evidenced by the big boned myth).

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9 thoughts on “Big Boned?

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  1. I am working in an office where I have to work 8 to 10 hours and my weight is increasing day by day. I am much worried about my increasing weight and fitness. I am following an effectively designed diet plan and hope to regain my fitness and health by losing my weight and bringing it to normal.

    1. I would consider a high intensity fitness video that can be done at home in not a lot of time. Consider Jillian Michaels 30 day shred or the new program from Shaun T called T25. Both of these are less that 30 minutes and can be done at home. You should also consider a good calorie counting app or book. These usually account for sedentary jobs.

      If you make changes in your lifestyle and are patient, you’ll succeed.

      Good luck!


  2. As always, I really enjoyed reading your post. I think that other obstacles worth mentioning include addiction, lack of support (including self-support), and eliminating learned behaviors. Your #1 fan – Shmuel Pack

    1. Low fat foods generally compensate for the decreased fat by adding sugar. See my post from June 15, 2012 (How They Manipulate You) for more info.

      Thanks for the comment!


  3. Five months ago I switched over to a whole food diet aka Paleo and a lot of people say, “Oh I need have to have my carbs”. I triy to tell them that there are plenty of carbs in fruits and vegetables but they look at me like I have a third eye. But they are all overweight and I’m not. Hmmmm.

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