Eating for Body Type
what is good for the goose is not always good for the gander
“No matter what I do, I just can’t gain weight” – Nate
“Just eat what I eat, and I think you will have no problems” – Tommy
Now how simple is that?
The conversation could have easily been reversed.
“No matter what I try; I just can’t lose weight”.
“Well then just eat what I eat and you should have no problems!”
This exchange between friends still has me thinking to this day, what is good for the goose is not always good for the gander.
Let me introduce to you the concept of eating for your body type.
There are 3 basic body types: Endomorph, Mesomorph, and Ectomorph.
This is important to know because science has told us that body types do affect the way our hormones react to food intake: and HORMONES ARE IMPORTANT
The body’s ability to digest and burn different types of food can vary greatly depending on one’s body type and therefore the types and amounts of different foods recommended can be quite different from one person to the next.
Endomorphs ave a large bone structure and tons of mass. Think of linemen in football, powerlifters, and the “field” part of track and field.
This structure leads to a tendency of energy storage and propensity to store more muscle and fat mass.
This group of people tend to do best on a lower carb diet where the carbs are timed ideally.
Their carbs should be timed to be consumed in the post exercise window and perhaps after a fast (breakfast). An ideal ratio would be around 25% carbs, 35% protein, and 40% healthy fats.
Think of your typical 98lb weakling who just can’t gain weight and that would be an Ectomorph.
Ectomorphs typically have smaller bone structures associated with thinner limbs. This leads to a faster metabolism and a higher sensitivity to carbs. An easy way to determine if you are an ectomorph is by measuring your ankles and your wrists. If your ankles are smaller than your wrists then you are most likely an ectomorph.
An ideal diet for an ectomorph would look something like 55% carbs, 30% protein, and 15% fat.
Ectomorphs are those folks who can eat basically eat carbs whenever they want and not gain much if any fat.
Schwarzenegger, Stallone, Willis…..ok ok the whole cast of the “Indispensables”.
They have a medium sized bone structure and if active have considerable amounts of muscle mass.
A mesomorph does well on a balanced diet of carbs, proteins, and fats.
Something like 40% carbs, 30% protein, and 30% fats could work quite well. They should avoid carbs in the evening or before any time when they will be very physically IN-active.
Once you have identified your body type it is also important to consider that folks can change from one body type to the other with either allot of hard work (Check out our trainer Gabe’s before and after photos) or because of a huge lack of effort (The ex-high school athlete who gets a desk job and hits 1 too many happy hours).
Moral of the story?
Look in the mirror and identify your body type. Begin an exercise program. Eat appropriately to support your body type throughout the program.
The rules can change as you and your body changes so if you hitting a plateu you may need to change your macro nutrient ratios and carb timing.
Till next time,
Move Better. Look Better. Feel Better
Nathan “Nate” Stowe BS, NASM-CPT, NCSF-CPT, CES, PES, FNS
Owner/Lead Trainer/Wears all the hats
Stowe Training Systems