Friends don’t let friends lose weight

Published: June 15, 2011

For a woman, the notion of indulging in a scrumptious meal comes with dire consequences - the weight scale.

“Oh my God! You have lost so much weight!”

A shrill voice fell sharply on my sensitive ear drums, confirming my worst fear. My always-perfect friend stood there in all her glory, scrutinising my once-fat friend, who was no longer fat but quite slim. To be honest, her flab used to provide me with a sort of satisfaction, as I was a pound or two over my ideal weight (okay maybe five pounds, but you get the drift.)

Eyeing my school friends who had now shed their gaucheness for a more refined look, with their flawless skin and designer outfits  (probably made by their tailor), they all seemed so grown up and chic and… thin.

How did that happen?

How did they shed those pounds which had been the flagship of our teenage days when life was not all about looking your best, smelling your best, and eating… little?

What about the samosa chaats, the Cornettos after school and the occasional pizza feasts?

I could have sworn every girl in that room was thinking the same or had at some point in her rather undulating life.

This is a page from every girl’s diary. At get-togethers, reunions, iftaris and family functions – it seems as if women are consumed by one dilemma:

“I don’t look fat, do I?”

Whether it’s your mother’s friends scrutinising you or your best friend, the “kitni moti ho gaye ho (have you gained weight?)” are the five dreaded words that give us all nightmares. Yet, we bravely endure it, by changing the topic to much safer grounds like global warming.

After careful analysis, I have reached the conclusion that the taxonomy of women has three clear divisions:

1. Kind-of-fat

2. Could-become-fat-any time

3. Not-fat-at-all-yet-always-worrying-about-becoming-fat

No matter which category you fall in, for a woman, the notion of indulging in a scrumptious meal comes with dire consequences – the weight scale.

But then every comrade has developed a system to deal with the threat/ dilemma/ worry.


The ones who are already not all that slim grow a thick skin (no pun intended) to ward off the spears thrown their way in jest or otherwise. Ignoring the tiny voice in their heads, they cheerfully order a Big Mac or a Paneer Tikkah and move on with life (after all life does have a deeper meaning to it than acquiring a Kate Hudson figure).

Could-become-fat-any time

The second category is the trickiest and most of us fall into that. They are hardly fat, but give in to a few temptations and they would leap into the Kind-of-fat group.

For the Could-become-fat-any time, life is a constant struggle between eyeing the cheese cakes and strategising how to make salads taste good (frankly I have never really understood how grass, tubers, leaves and raw veggies can be yummy, but then again that’s the carnivore in me speaking) .


Then there are the not-fat-at-all or the model-like-slim sort who saunter around like butterflies with a  knowing smirk (they deny the smirk but we all know it is there) with the occasional exclamations of “oh my, I have gained an ounce” expecting the rest to cry out “Oh! you have not!”.

Having said all that, there must be some way of reining these pounds in and it must be something besides reading self help books. After all, actions do speak louder than words (and that does not imply drinking sugarless tea after a chocolate sundae).

So, what is the magic recipe that would hasten the process of getting yourself into that tiny dress you could not resist buying?

Do you have to meditate near a tranquil pond for inner strength or perhaps a park with birds chirping in the background?

I do not have an answer to that, but a safe bet would be to not to contemplate inside Pizza Hut.

Nishaa Ishtiak

Nishaa Ishtiak

A sub editor on the city desk of The Express Tribune in Islamabad.

The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of The Express Tribune.

  • UmerSid

    WTH! Whats the point?Recommend

  • MP1

    Oh gosh could you stop being such a cliche and imbibing the stereotype that all women care about is their weight? There are loads of women out there that are comfortable with their weight and rather than writing about why insecure women try to make sure their friends dont lose weight so they can feel better about themselves, try to write about all the things women can be proud of! Seriously! Recommend

  • nafisa

    One word.

  • sam

    i fall in 3rd category lolzz i m not ever gona say again “oh!i lost an ounce”Recommend

  • Natasha Suleman

    Agree with MP1.

    Don’t belong to any mentioned category. Love the way I am.Recommend

  • Sid

    Err, people need to understand the underlying humor in this, instead of cribbing and flaring up as if its a personal attack on them.

    Today, not only women, but a majority of men are also conscious of their weight. And I think, there is nothing to be ashamed of here. I loved the humor in this. Beautifully portrayed.Recommend

  • Asma Ali

    I can’t get the logic of this article. It seems to me that author tries to pull a subject which is attention grabbing among the male counterparts and forces them to read it. the picture says whole story.Recommend

  • The Forbidden Fruit

    Ah! This is something I admire guys for a lot! They’re so comfortable in their skin.. and that really makes them look cool! Within safe/healthy limits, weight should never be an issue as every woman can look fabulous if she carries herself well. It’s precisely these petty “issues” that occupy our girly minds and we cannot get ourselves to improve other, more demanding, areas of our personalities.
    Nice read though :) I could relate to it!Recommend

  • Zeeshan M. Khan

    It was just a waste of time reading this article :pRecommend

  • Shazada abdullah haroon khan

    This is a great thought every thing exceeding from the limit is bad even a persons weight so to be concious for weight is a ideal thing to deal this problem better in my opinion this is a marvellous
    article based on a realistic topic the ones who dislike this article have some personal problem with the topicRecommend

  • http://Theexpresstribuneblogs Shazada abdullah haroon khan

    this is a realistic issue and dealing with actual mentality of women every thing exceeding from the limit is a problem so weight conciousness is common in women the person who denies it is suffering her self as well in my opinion its an outstanding article. Recommend

  • Khan

    i like the picRecommend

  • saba

    “kitni moti ho gaye ho!” is not translated in to “have you gained weight?”, its a statement “you have gained weight ! “.Recommend

  • waqas

    Love the humor in it . Besides womens, men are also weight conscious these days.I after doing 10 hr job in 50C in a field near sukkur, do 30 min jogging in the evening to keep the weight needle constant :P i love my athletic body after all :))Recommend

  • BP

    Ladies, get over the fear of getting obese, and I don’t mean unhealthy obese. We love you regardless. Besides, I think women look better a little fuller.Recommend

  • Hasan Abidi

    @ Saba


    US State Department and Pentagon are both looking for qualified translators.

    Get the hint……………….???????????

    I luv the bite in ur comment !Recommend

  • atts

    @ Nishaa….. hey no fair!, u dint write my friends names, now i cant tell them i masterminded this blog just for them :(….. pls complete the job….where is the juice, the spice?
    also how come there r no comments on the pic…… awww i miss my fellow ‘bra brouhaha’ commentators….. ;) pls criticize the pic PLZ PLZ PLZRecommend