One Mom’s Journey from Fat to Skinny to Confident


YOU Can Make You Thin

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Did anyone see the new show “I Can Make You Thin”? on TLC?  I didn’t watch it but I saw the preview and read this article.

A good friend of mine (who also lost a significant amount of weight) caught it last night and said the host, Paul McKenna actually had some interesting insights. His 4 Golden Rules of Weight Loss are…

  1. Eat whenever you are hungry
  2. Eat only what you want, never what you think you ‘should’
  3. Eat consciously and enjoy every mouthful
  4. Stop when you even think your body is full 

I agree with him to a point, but #2 bugs me a bit. I mean if we all knew what we SHOULD be eating most of us wouldn’t need to lose weight in the first place. Right? Now 1, 3 and 4 are ok in my book. You shouldn’t be starving yourself, you should enjoy what you eat and you need to stop eating when you’re full.  Got it. But how does HE make ME thin? I mean the title REALLY bugs me.  Maybe I’m getting bitter in my old age, but it seems like a big marketing ploy to get you to watch. Kind of like “Lose 10 pounds in 10 days”, “Drop 2 dress sizes this week” or my personal favorite, “Eat what ever you want and still lose weight” campaigns.  

So I really can’t give my opinion on the show as I haven’t seen it but I would love to hear your reviews. I’m going to try and catch it next week.

Off to watch Medium!

Update:xamcx posted her thoughts on the WeightWatchen Boards and I thought it was a good idea to get some good conversations going with those that have seen the show. Please feel free to join in the conversation.

Food Points
green eggs and ham (Mommy and Me Omelet made with broccoli, green peppers and spinach with a side of canadian bacon) 4
pear 1
1oz cheese and All-Bran Crackers Multi-Grain 4
Yelatin 2
orange 1
Butternut Carrot Chicken Soup (made a batch this weekend) 3
raw carrots & grape tomatoes 1
apple 1
2 slices of pizza 12
soy crisps 3
Total 32
Nada but I think I need to rest after my crazy workout yesterday

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There are 27 comments so far.


    March 17, 2008

    I watched it! It was a bit strange…almost as if I was watching an infomercial.

    I believe this is a five episode series. There has got to be more to this than what I saw last night.

    My problem is that I can’t ALWAYS eat consciously. I’ve got kids screaming, a TV blaring and the doorbell ringing. I have a hard time listening to my body because I can’t even HEAR my body! In my stage of life (stay at home mom with two little ones) I need to weigh and measure my food for the best results.

    I also don’t agree with #2. He said “only eat the stuff you like”…hmmm…I only like nachos and coke. How is that going to work? I’m interested to see more next week.

    Having said all that, I did try and chew more and savor the food in every mouthful today. It can’t hurt!


    March 17, 2008

    I haven’t seen it yet. I can’t agree when people say just “eat what you think you should.” I personally am craving cheesecake right now- but because I think it through and match it against my personal guidelines, I make the decision to say no. Now, when do eventually have that cheesecake, I will savor every bite. I think that his #2 is simply too idealistic for our chaotic lifestyles.

    Your workout yesterday is crazy! I had a similar experience this weekend with a crazy workout. It feels good here and there!


    March 17, 2008

    It’s so strange you asked this, cause I actually thought of you as I watched it last night.

    I agree with Angela when she said it was bizarre – I totally felt like I was watching an infomercial.

    Having said that, I 75% agree with this guy. I think the biggest problem with WW is that they don’t stress the stop eating when you are no longer hungry, and only eating when you really, truly are hungry. I think that’s why SO many WW folks gain the weight back.

    If I’m feeling emotional and I know I have points left, then I eat. Of course it might be a 100 cal pack or fruit, but I still feed those emotions. There will come a time when those choices won’t be available/desired, and that spells disaster if you don’t have control of that #1 he talked about. And if you eat the bad foods in as large of quantities as you do the low cal stuff that you’re used to on WW, you’re gonna gain.

    Like if I know that the dinner I planned is 8 points, I eat the whole thing cause I have planned to use those 8 points that night. But you know, I would probably be just as happy leaving a little behind and just eating 7 points. With WW I always feel like I’m constantly trying to figure out how I can eat more – what can I cut/substitute lower the points value so I can eat more. I sometimes feel like that’s the wrong focus to have.

    Don’t get me wrong, I love WW, but I feel like they don’t teach you how to lose the weight/keep it off by actually trusting and listening to your body.

    My husband lost 85 pounds 5 years ago, all off these same principles that this guy was teaching. He ate whatever he wanted when he was truly hungry, and stopped when he felt slightly full. Did he sometimes eat cake? Yes. Did he most of the time eat healthfully? Yes.

    Do I think you really should eat whatever you want? Obviously, that isn’t healthy. But the idea of this is all things in moderation. Skinny people do eat cake and fried chicken, they just don’t eat the whole thing.

    The point you have to notice is that he says eat when you’re hungry, not eat when you’re craving something. So if you’re craving cheesecake then the next time your body is truly physically hungry have a few bites. Just not the whole thing! Perhaps he should reword #1 to say “eat whenever your body is truly hungry.” Does that make more sense?

    I guess I’m saying I’m completely behind his principles, other than eat whatever you want. I’m interested to see the rest of the series.

    Phew! It kinda felt good to think that all through! 


    March 18, 2008

    I’m with you on this, Roni. I didn’t watch the show but I have seen the commercials for it and the title just pisses me off. It almost feels like it’s derogatory and degrading to all of us who have tried to lose weight before and haven’t succeeded. Well, if you’d just met ME before then I could have made you thin. I know they’re just trying to be provocative with the title, but it just really rubs me the wrong way.

    And I totally don’t agree with #2. Most of the time I want to eat ice cream and chocolate. So, yeah.

    I don’t think I’m going to watch it, so you’ll have to let me know how it is when you see it!


    March 18, 2008

    Absolutely agree with #2 being completely untrue, if I were to follow that logic I’d be stopping at McDonalds for lunch then hitting up TacoBell for din-din! Fast food has always been my biggest downfall. The only thing that keeps the scale going down for me is eating what I think I SHOULD. Now slowly but surely I am starting to enjoy my healthier choices, however, if I was someone trying to lose weight for the first time and was too follow his “rules”, I’d be sitting there with scarfing down a #2 combo meal wondering why Im not losing weight…


    March 18, 2008

    I did see the show and at first blush #2 doesn’t make sense. But in reality…it does.

    As dieters we spend all day planning what we can eat or should eat or will eat…but then when we are eating we’re usually distracted. We eat whatever we’ve planned regardless of hunger or taste because we’re preoccuppied. Now I know for me the second I said ok eat whatever you want… I couldn’t figure out what that was. I mean if nothing is off limits…well food is just food then. And when I do eat slowly without focusing on the TV or a book well I really notice the taste of my food… it makes my apple better, it makes my 1 square of chocolate plenty, it makes me realize the food I thought I was craving really not that tasty.

    He has a lot of other points to come and I don’t think this will work for everyone because no plan does, but I think it has merit.


    March 18, 2008

    Check out my blog post here about it.

    Let me know what you think. I understand what you’re saying about rule #2, but he did go into the fact that if you allow yourself to SLOWLY eat what you want, you’ll end up realizing that it really doesn’t taste as good and satisfy you as much as you thought.


    March 18, 2008

    I didnt see the show, but I completely agree with amanda. I am on a plan thru my work called naturally slim (

    It is about ONLY eating when you reach a high level of hunger, and eating really, really slowly, and stopping when you are full. She stresses making good food choices, and the dangers of sugar, but for the most part, it is eat what you want. But, if you have to think about food as a whole, then it is common sense to not eat mcdonalds for every meal. The weight is falling off, and I am not starving. I have made lifetime changes.

    I do agree with the title. It should be “I can teach you methods to help you become thin”.

    BTW – you rock, and are a huge inspiration.


    March 18, 2008

    I did watch, and I agree with his rule #2 up to a certain point. I think he was trying to make the point that people will try to eat “diet foods” that don’t taste good, because that’s what they think they need to do to lose weight. If you do that, you won’t be satisfied, you won’t be happy, and you won’t stick to it. Also, a lot of “diet foods” are not actually healthy. That part I do agree with.

    But, I think that you need to be conscious of eating healthfully. For myself, that means building my meal plans around healthy foods that I enjoy. However, he didn’t really discuss anything pertaining to how to make healthy choices.

    I thought there was a lot of common sense in what he said, though nothing really new. I’ll be interested to see what else he has to say though.


    March 18, 2008

    I watch these informercials just to laugh at them. They make so much money off these people that believe they work. It’s just a shame


    March 18, 2008

    The Marlatts wrote:

    “Like if I know that the dinner I planned is 8 points, I eat the whole thing cause I have planned to use those 8 points that night. But you know, I would probably be just as happy leaving a little behind and just eating 7 points. With WW I always feel like I’m constantly trying to figure out how I can eat more – what can I cut/substitute lower the points value so I can eat more. I sometimes feel like that’s the wrong focus to have.”

    This is so true! I think like that too. As we were eating dinner last night my husband and I were talking about how he spoke about eating blindfolded. He did a study that when you eat blindfolded you eat less because you aren’t seeing all the food on your plate and thinking you need to clean your plate but really listening to your bodies cues. Like TheMarlatts (sorry I don’t know your name), I tend to use whatever points I have left for dinner that night even if I am full. I want to use all of them.

    Really, I do think this is just the first show and it will get better the more we hear. We’ll see!


    March 18, 2008

    Hi Roni,

    I have been a lurker on your blog for some time now and never commented until now. I have lost 122 pounds over the last two years basically on my own by educating myself and making better food choices. So, needless to say, I think I know a little bit about this weight loss thing. :) I have to say, I sat down and watched Paul McKenna feeling that I would learn nothing new and with no expectation and I was pleasantly surprised. I immediately grabbed my notepad and began taking notes. While it’s true that no plan is perfect for everyone, this guy gave me some information that I personally had never heard before and I feel like I have a new understanding. One of the major things for me was realizing physical hunger vs. emotional hunger. While I always said I was an emotional eater, I never really understood how to tell the difference. Paul explained that actual physical hunger comes on slowly whereas emotional hunger comes on suddenly and really has nothing to do with being hungry at all. This was priceless information for me at this point and I am so looking forward to watching next week. I would say Roni, please try to watch it, even the first episode if you can and I promise, it is not as bad as you think. I really beleive he has some good points. Also, as far as I can tell, it is not an actual diet program that he is trying to sell. There was no mention of purchasing anything. He does have books that he has written, but I believe he is basically revealing the program to us for free over the next couple of weeks. Thanks Roni for all of your work on your site, you are so honest and truly an inspiration to us all. Give Paul a chance. :)


    March 18, 2008

    I’m not going to comment on the show because I’ve never seen it, but I AM going to comment on the fact that you had 2 slices of pizza and didn’t give yourself props for not eating more!! I know pizza is a trigger food for you, so you should be uber proud of yourself for eating 2 slices of pizza and being satisfied with that!!!

    You make a point of talking about devouring pizza in a previous post but don’t make a post about taking control over it now, and I think you should! Give yourself some props, Roni!!


    March 18, 2008

    I went to his site and register for free. I didn’t watch the show, so I was wondering what this was all about. With the 4 tips he gave on tv. He gave instructions on how too use these tips. He even has a video for each tip technic. He says, these technics won’t work over night,you must work on them until you are able to listen to your body.
    The tip I like was his hunger chart. That really hit home. If you look at the chart and how he breaks it down for you. I have been going above the number that is/was making me eat the wrong foods and making those bad choices. I need to eat when I first start to feel hungry and not wait pass that time. I tried it this morning and it worked.
    The other point I like is his eating what you want. I know when you first read it, you’re like what?? Noway!! But,what hes teaching is how to stop making food the enemy. Its just food. And when you limit the foods you like, is when you crave it more and more and more.
    He says, if you’re really hungry and its time to eat, and you want pizza for example. Have it, but eat it slow, taste it, savor the flavors. You’ll either find that you’re full after the first slice or you wont even finish it. And the difference between eating cause you’re hungry vs craving is totally different in your choices. When you crave something or eating cause emotions. Thats when the other tips come into play. I think visiting his site and seeing how its all layed out, is very helpful when you’re watching this show. It really helps you understand a bit more, what he is saying about this program. I hope this helped a bit.
    Roni, on a side note. You are making foods that we all like, but giving it a tweak. I think this is the key of not being afraid too eat something we thought we werent supposed to have. And what he is saying about this program. Teaching ourselves not too hate food. But find ways of enjoying it. I thank you for that!

    Laura N

    March 18, 2008

    I didn’t see this show either. Intuitive eating is NOT easy. Why is this guy is coming across like it’s the miracle cure for weight loss? I’m sure he’s trying to sell something.

    On your previous post–you can SO become a runner. I have never been an athlete either, and did nothing remotely athletic in school (20+ years ago). And now I can run 9 miles and am training for a half marathon in May. I started with the Couch to 5K program on It’s an easy build up to running, but if you’re ready for more, just try running and see how far/how long you go. Something to note: slow down if you feel like you’re running too hard, and you can run longer. It’s a new runner thing to run too fast too soon. I hope your trainer friend gets you going with running, and I hope you love it. It has become my passion.


    March 18, 2008

    I agree with Angela- it was strange- at first I thought maybe it was like a hypnosis show to lose weight. I taped it and will watch it this weekend- I did see a few things though- and I do not agree with #2. As soon as I heard eat what you like- my little brain was like YES now you can eat all the chips! TROUBLE! I am just stickin to WW – it works and I love it! By the way Roni I made the Mexican pie thingy you had posted in Feb. and the family LOVED it- even my kids ate it all! AMAZING! I am a vegetarian- so I skipped the cheese and turkey and I don;t like peppers- so I made a veggie one and the regular one- it was a hit! I love your site- keep up the good work!



    March 18, 2008


    This is just my opinion but I think I may know what he means by #2…..I find that I tend to eat sometimes either when I am not even hungry but think I “should” be because it is “lunch time” or “dinner time”. Or I have moments where I feel like a bowl of cereal would do me just fine at dinner but for some reason in my mind I think I “should” eat “dinner”….whatever that means….a whole meal, a warm meal, meat and veggies, etc. I don’t know why I play those games with myself….maybe just habit and the way I have grown up eating. I was raised in a home that was religious that you must eat 3 square meals and they must be of substance. Maybe he was just saying that we should listen to our bodies more than our eating traditions or what we have been taught constitutes certain meals.


    March 18, 2008

    Thanks guys! Great insights. I am really going to try and watch it.

    And Alle, thanks for noticing!! LOL however there were only 2 slices left, so it wasn’t THAT great of an accomplishment. LOL


    March 18, 2008

    I hope I don’t sound anal when I write this but his name is actually Paul McKenna not Brian. :)

    I have to say that I agree with everything he says, even #2 though I can definitely see your point. I think what he’s trying to stress is that diets and weight loss programs tend to say, “Don’t eat this…you can’t have that…this food is ‘bad'” which in turn only leaves you wanting more. In theory, if you eat whatever you want, but ONLY when you’re hungry and stop as soon as your stomach signals that you’ve had enough you really can eat what you want. Most people would probably only be able to eat chocolate and sweets (if that is truly what they wanted all the time) for a short period of time before feeling nauseous anyway. I DO think the hard part is stopping though.

    Just my 2 cents. :)


    March 18, 2008

    Hayley – thanks! I actually know a Brian McKenna which is why I typed it. LOL Boy do really need an editor!


    March 18, 2008

    I watched it and what I got out of it was that he was teaching common sense. All of his rules are a lot like the WW Core plan without the restrictions. He went into further detail with each thing stated and as for throwing out anything you think you should eat even though you don’t like it. Why wouldn’t you? Why set yourself up for the guilt.

    I am a very picky eater but I do like some fruits and veggies and find ways to incorporate them into my diet in a way that doesn’t make me feel like I am force-feeding myself.

    I do agree with you on the name. I am the only one who can change myself…but after counting points since 2005 and failing over and over again I am ready to give something else a try.


    March 19, 2008

    Roni – That is funny about knowing a Brian Mckenna and typing his name isntead…LOL…sounds like something I would do.

    Just wanted to say that I LOVE your blog – the posts, links, and pics are all great. :) Thanks for sharing it all with us!


    March 19, 2008

    I read this post yesterday and, for the first time in a really long time, I stopped at dinner when I knew my body had enough. I didn’t have that overly stuffed feeling that for some reason I think I NEED to have in order to be satisfied. It isn’t like I didn’t know this before, but actually practicing (practice makes perfect, right? Or at least better!) stopping at one serving was enough to feed my body without still feeling hungry. I’m gonna keep “practicing” that habit and I think the scale will reward me!


    March 19, 2008

    I think people often mistake “eat what you want” for “eat as much as you want of what you want.” There IS a difference.

    We all know the feeling of craving something, but eating everything OTHER than what we’re craving only causes us to eat more. For instance, if I’m craving pizza, Paul would say to eat 2 slices of pizza slowly & enjoy it. Otherwise, if I feel deprived and end up eating the low-fat [fill in the blank], plus FIVE pieces of pizza (instead of 2 to begin with).
    That’s not saying I eat the whole pizza.

    #2 definitely cannot stand on its own…it MUST go along with the other guidelines. But, as with everything, it’s boils down to behavior change and changing our behavior is one of the hardest things to do.


    March 20, 2008

    I have his book titled the same I can make you thin and it has worked for me. I have listened to his hypnosis cd regularly for the last 3 years and I have lost 13kg. It has taken quite a long time (3 years) but it has been fairly painless. It is only when I put too many rules and expectations on myself that I feel like a failure. The hypnosis cd gives you so much more self confidence and I can honestly say that I am so much happier in myself. I would encourage anyone to listen to the cd and read the book, it has truly changed my life and my outlook on life.


    March 23, 2008

    I caught it yesterday afternoon, and while I agree with you about the title (and it’s cheesy with all the “I will come through the TV and make you skinny” talk) I think the rules are pretty good. #2 actually makes sense when you think of it in terms of satisfaction — if you really want chocolate, it’s better to eat a little really good chocolate and to really savor it than to eat a million other “good for you” things that aren’t what you really want trying to fill that chocolate hole. OTOH, many people need to learn to like things, like vegetables in order to be basically healthy. I do think it’s important to really enjoy your food though — if you think you hate all veggies, experiment until you find some combination of vegetable and cooking method that you love.