Have you ever heard of the body type diet or the metabolic type diet?
Or maybe you've heard the terms 'ectomorphs', 'endomorphs', or 'mesomorphs' thrown around on social media or in your local gym.
If so, you may have some questions like one of our awesome podcast listeners did, such as: what's the actual science behind it? And is it a useful thing to know and rely on in a better health journey?
So the truth is, in the 40's a psychologist by the name of Doctor William Sheldon came up with the 3 main body types I listed above and he associated those body types with certain aesthetics and even personality types.
While the personality types didn't hold up to scrutiny, the aesthetics more or less did (though we have much more scientific ways of measuring them these days).
Ectomorphs lack body mass (both in fat and muscle) relative to their height. This body type is what we tend to think of as on the thinnest of the bunch. You can remember it like ectomorphs are 'eeeeety bity'.
Mesomorphs tend toward broader shoulders and are more muscular and compact. This body type is what we tend to think of as athletic. Just remember, mesomorphs have muscles.
Endomorphs tend to be rounder and have higher levels of body fat. Remember it by thinking endomorphs may have had to endure some bullying in school.
But here are the most important things to know when looking at these body types:
1. They are not rigid (people can fall in between the body types).
2. They are not a life sentence or entirely run by genetics (in fact, endomorphy is only linked to genetics by about 30% compared to the other 2 which are closer to 70%).
3. They shouldn't be the driving force behind your food choices unless you're a high-level athlete who needs every advantage you can get, or following more foundational habits (which we'll get to in a minute) hasn't worked for you.
That being said, I know you're wondering how to eat for your body type if that is something you're interested in exploring.
Here are the rules of thumb...
Endomorphs trying to lose weight:
35% clean protein
25% carbs, aiming for fewer starchy carbs and fruit
40% healthy fat
Ectomorphs trying to gain muscle or weight in general:
25% clean protein
55% complex carbs
20% healthy fat
Mesomorphs trying to maintain high muscle and a lean frame:
30% clean protein
40% carbs (faster digesting ones around workouts, otherwise moderate starchy carb intake)
But I want to reiterate, these guidelines are not for everyone and you should definitely not get hung up on being exact with the numbers.
Instead, get these foundational habits in place before you even think about eating for your metabolic type:
1. Prioritize the 3 P's consistently: portion, protein, and produce.
2. Minimize processed foods.
3. Get a minimum of 7 hours of sleep.
4. Move your body at least 30 minutes a day, working up a sweat 4 times per week.
5. Drink half your body weight in ounces of water.
Need help implementing and getting consistent with these habits? That's what I'm here for, click the link below to book a free call with me!
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