Defining your body type is a great place to start in your weight loss journey. I tried to lose weight for years, only to put more on every time I dieted or overexercised.
I was doing it all wrong and want to share with you how to lose weight safely, effectively and permanently without messing up your metabolism or throwing off your hormones.
In this article you'll learn:
- How to identify your body type
- Why body type eating is so important for weight loss and health
- Tools that will help you control cravings and hunger
Why Body Type Eating?
No two people necessarily gain weight in the same place. You might gain weight through your hips and thighs or maybe through your belly area, and a close friend or relative gains weight through their upper body, dealing with back or arm fat.
It's really no mystery. Hormones are responsible for delivering body fat to its respective location. And it's usually a pattern that persists unless you start eating right for your body type.
Unlike fad diets that may work for a few months, or even a year, body type eating is a sustainable, whole food lifestyle that helps to regulate hormones. Eating the right types of foods helps your hormones to send signals to manage hunger, cravings and fat storage
After I wrote The Belly Burn Plan, the number one question I got was, "What is my body type?" A lot of people couldn't quite identify exactly which body type they were, or felt that the landed somewhere in between two body types (which sometimes happens). The page is here to help breakdown the four body type descriptions for Apple, Pear, Athlete and Hourglass shapes.
I hope you find it helpful. If you have a question, go ahead and leave a comment.
What is Your Body Type?
This page gives you basic descriptions of the four body types addressed in the The Belly Burn Plan:
The guide below will help you determine your body type, which is a good first step in figuring out how you should eat to lose unneeded body fat. I really think all of us can rock the body we have, but what we don't need is harmful fat affecting our health. These descriptions are not intended to be a diet, rather a way for you to control the scale a little better by eating the foods that turn your metabolism on.
No two people gain weight in the exact same way. The same is true for weight loss. Hormones play a tremendous role in how our body stores fat. Food and hormones have a non-stop relationship with one-another. And this relationship is unique for each and every one of us.
A vast majority of people will fall into either the Pear or the Apple categories, with a smaller number of people falling into the Athlete and Babyface categories. Nonetheless, by eating right for your body type, you'll be able to shed weight, whether it's from your hips and thighs, stomach, shoulders, back, arms, or all over.
Your Body Type: Controlling Hunger & Cravings
When you eat right for your body type, you're telling your body that you're listening to it, and the many hormones (aka: chemical messengers) that are telling your body to burn fat, store fat, make you feel cold, increase happiness and feel sleepy, to name a few. After we get our hormones under control through diet, all the pieces start to fall into place, and hunger is much more manageable.
Of course, you may still be in the habit of wanting to eat late at night, or reaching for something sweet after you finish lunch. It's important to recognize that these are habits and not hunger. That said, many people follow The Belly Burn Plan feel that their habitual cravings all but go away. This is because you're eating the nutrients in foods that were otherwise missing.
When most people try to lose weight, they go into reaction mode by eating "diet" foods, counting calories, and sometimes overexercising. This is a formula for failure. It's ok to get a rough baseline of of the number of calories you're eating in a day, but beyond that, it does no good to count calories.
The Body Type Guide
If you're having a hard time determining your body type, don't worry! Just give some thought to where you think your "trouble zone" is. Generally speaking, that zone will be the first place you noticed you started putting on weight. In the Apple Type, for instance, the trouble zone is through the belly area. The Apple might have also gained a little weight in the arms and legs over time, but the area that has always been the greatest challenge remains the belly area.
The general rule of thumb is "first on the bus, last off." The hardest fat for your body to lose, whether it's after weeks or years of accumulation, will be the area that the fat went to first.
There are three different types of fat: visceral, subcutaneous and brown.
- Visceral fat: the most dangerous form of fat. This is found deep inside the abdominal region, packed tightly around internal organs. We all may have some degree of visceral fat, but the Apple Type has the greatest amount.
- Subcutaneous fat: this is the "pinchable" fat found around the hips and thighs, behind the arms, below the belly button and on the bra line. It's a stubborn fat that is difficult to lose, but responds well to the right diet.
- Brown fat: this is a healthy fat! It's found in very small amounts on the body, typically around the neck and spine areas. It helps to keep us warm and is activated in cold weather.
Let's figure out which body type you are! Read the descriptions below. Who do you identify with? Are you ready to get started? Remember, The Belly Burn Plan is always there as a guide to help you eat right for your body type.
The Inverted Pyramid Shape Body Type
- Triangular-shaped body, with a tendency to gain body fat through the chest, back & upper arms.
- This type may have a roll of skin over in the back area. Women may have "lunch lady arms."
- Foods the athlete craves usually include salty snacks and savory meals.
- Dinner should be the meal of the day for this type, with a smaller breakfast and lunch.
- Get the full 3 week Inverted Pyramid Shape Body Type Meal Plan here.
The Apple Shape Body Type
- This Apple gains weight through the midsection and usually has thinner legs and arms.
- Weight gain can occur elsewhere over time, but the primary trouble zone is the belly area.
- The Apple usually craves refined carbs and caffeine.
- This body type thrives on three squares a day.
- Get the full six-week Apple Shape Body Type Meal Plan here.
The Pear Body Shape Body Type
- The Pear shape is typically a smaller upper body and pronounced hips and thighs.
- While weight gain can occur in other parts of the body, such as the chest and stomach, this type will usually have a pronounced waist and face challenges shedding weight from the lower body.
- Pear shapes usually crave spicy foods, high fat dairy, but also keep eating well into the evening hours.
- This body type does much better with a small breakfast, moderate lunch and good-size dinner.
- Get the full six-week Pear Shape Body Type Meal Plan here.
The Hourglass Shape Body Type
- A rounder, softer shape with weight gain everywhere, but is often obviously noticed through the face first.
- Weight gain is almost always evenly distributed, including the knees, lower legs and arms.
- The Hourglass tends to crave foods high fat dairy and sugar.
- This body type should eat like a reverse pyramid, starting with a bigger breakfast working to a smaller dinner.
- Get the full six-week Hourglass Shape Body Type Meal Plan here.