Eating For Your Body Shape

By: Senayt Gaim

Everyone is unique but the media has led us to believe that a beautiful woman should have one type of body, the type we see on the covers of magazines.  Instead of wanting to change your body type – understand it and work with what you got!

Everyone is unique but the media has led us to believe that a beautiful woman should have one type of body, the type we see on the covers of magazines. This has caused obsession about body image causing women to make futile attempts to achieve an unreal ideal.  In a previous article, we mentioned five different body shapes.  The five shapes; pear, wedge, rectangle, apple and hourglass are all about the individual, unique, and different body proportions of a woman. Instead of wanting to change your body type – understand it and work with what you got!

This article is about understanding your body shape and how to eat for it.  A rectangle shape can never be an hourglass figure. The fat goes to different part of the body, no matter how much exercise or diet you use.  Your constitution is simply your own personalized background and general tendencies. This means that not everyone is going to lose or gain weight in the same manner. Your rectangular shaped friend can eat the same diet as you (a pear shape) but she loses weight and you gain it. Don’t be frustrated! The problem is simply that different bodies react differently to different foods.  As frustrating as that seems; by understanding how your individual body works, you can transform your relationship with your body and food. The most important principle in achieving your best self is not by comparing yourself to other bodies but by understanding your own.

The Pear Diet

Pears are proportionally smaller on top, packing weight onto their lower bodies. They usually have a frustrating time toning hips and thighs. Pears need to be especially careful about the foods they eat and daily level of activity. A diet rich in complex carbohydrates is important.  They should focus on whole-grain cereals, lentils and beans; lean protein, such as chicken or fish; and fruits and veggies to keep their metabolism up. Because there is more fat stored in the hips and thighs, pears tend to gain weight more easily. They need to lower their fat intake to lose inches.

A sample lunch for a pear body shape: 

A skinless, boneless chicken breast, grilled and topped with salsa, black beans and mixed salad with low fat cheese, light dressing and a wheat roll.

When Pears eat a meal that offers fat, protein and carbs, their body automatically burns away the carbs and protein and then stores the fat. Pears should limit fat intake and try to keep it focused on whole grain options, beans and lentils with lean protein. Pears will automatically see a difference.

The Apple Diet: 

Apple-shaped women tend to have thinner arms, legs, and hips, and tend to gain weight around their waistlines. The good news is it’s easier for apples to lose weight then pears. When apples do lose weight, it tends to go from their waistlines first. Apples need to eat complex carbs. They need carbs that are high in fiber and plenty of vegetables and fruit. All proteins eaten should be lean and very low in fat. Diet should consist of 2/5 carbs, 2/5 proteins, 1/5 healthy fats.

A sample lunch for an apple body shape: 

Sirloin steak, 1 small baked potato, with skin, light sour cream and chives; steamed broccoli with a teaspoon of olive oil.

Apples need monounsaturated fat, found in nuts, avocados, and olive oil. It will increase the body’s ability to burn fat and maintain a healthy diet.

The Rectangle Diet:

Rectangle shapes seem to have a slim body all around; shaped like a pencil. Women with this body shape usually have a high metabolism. Out of the five female body shapes, those with a rectangle shape are said to have the lowest risk of health issues. Rectangles tend to have a problem gaining weight, which makes a healthy diet and exercise essential to manage their weight. The rectangle diet plan is all about eating for health. Rectangle shapes do well on a diet that incorporates healthy fats, fish, olive oil, nuts, lean protein, and complex carbohydrates, such as fruits, veggies, and beans.

A sample lunch for a rectangle body shape: 

Grilled Salmon with cooked brown rice; mixed green salad with olive oil, pepper, chopped walnuts and Italian dressing.

Remember health is the most important thing in this diet. Foods which are rich in protein such as chicken, turkey, beef, tuna and beans are perfect for the rectangle shape to help add muscle and tone the body.

The Hourglass Diet –

The hourglass shape is known for being curvy up top and down below with a small waist proportionate to the number 8. For this shape, eating cooked, fresh food regularly is the key to keeping fat away around the middle as it keeps energy and hunger levels stable. The hourglass shape should stop eating out. Cooking at home will reduce the intake of salt, sugar and saturated fat which will keep your metabolism high, burning calories at a faster rate. When cooking, try steaming or poaching rather than frying or roasting food. Avoid full-fat or hard cheeses instead aiming for soft cheese such as brie or goat’s cheese. The hourglass shape should try to eat chicken without the skin and limit the red meat intake. Ideally you should aim to follow a diet strategy which includes five meals, three large and two small.

A sample lunch for an hourglass body shape: 

Chicken and brown rice; salad of chopped raw veg, such as cucumber, celery, red pepper and tomatoes.

Hourglasses should avoid foods like potatoes, bananas and anything made with white flour and sugar. These foods release sugar into the bloodstream making you feel hungry faster.

The Wedge Diet

The wedge body shape looks like the bottom half is smaller than the top half. They struggle to create curves around the waistline but might have long slim legs. The best diet for this shape is the Mediterranean Diet. The Mediterranean Diet maximizes an intake of vegetables, beans, fruits and wholegrain cereals but limits the red meat intake. The wedge should not add salt to its food but instead snack on fruit, dried fruit and unsalted nuts. Wedge shapes should drink plenty of water.

Example of the perfect lunch for a wedge body shape: 

Basil Shrimp Salad; shrimp mixed well with greens and blueberries with a light dressing and a wheat roll.

The Wedge person is similar to the Apple when it comes to where fat gets collected. Remember to drink plenty of water and stay active.

Senayt Gaim

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