Let’s be honest—not all diets are “one-size-fits-all”. Just because a particular eating plan worked for your best friend doesn’t mean it’s appropriate for you. Now, this doesn’t have to do with perseverance, will-power, or even exercise; it’s all about body shape.
Essentially, there are five types of body shapes: rectangle, apple, pear, inverted triangle, and hourglass. We know it can be a bit confusing to properly identify which category you fit into, so we created a handy guide for you to determine this.
Once you identify your body type, you can then start becoming acquainted with the foods that are the best—and worst! —for you in your weight loss journey…
Women with hourglass figures have bust lines and hips that measure out as being within a few inches of each other. This is paired with a waist line that appears to be rather small in comparison with the rest of the body.
How to eat: To ensure that you keep slim in potential trouble areas, focus on staying away from foods that are high in saturated fat. Instead, opt for snacks like sweet potatoes, leafy greens, skim milk, and reduced-fat yogurt.
On top of this, it’s best to limit yourself from eating too many foods that are high on the glycemic index. This can be a bit tricky as some of the most nutrient-rich options tend to be the least beneficial for the waistline. Foods like whole grain bread, starchy legumes, watermelon, and pineapple are ones to put into that “treat” category.
This body type is characterized by a small waist, with larger hips and thighs. This makes it so that most of your weight is held in your hips.
How to eat: Do your best to say goodbye to foods that are high in saturated fats, especially those found in whole-fat animal products, like milk and red meat. Because of this, it may behoove you to go on a well-rounded plant-based diet, if your goal is to lose weight fast.
Luckily, pear-shaped bodies tend to thrive when a 25% healthy fat diet is introduced. To properly implement this, break down your daily food intake, and make sure that about one-quarter of it includes foods that have ample omega-3 fatty acids, like peanut butter, avocado, fatty fish, and flax seeds.
If you often find yourself looking in the mirror and complaining that you have “no hips,” then you most likely fit into the “rectangle” category. The great thing about being a rectangle is that you don’t gain weight easily and, when you do, it appears to be evenly distributed.
How to eat: To fight any excess bulge that you may be carrying, focus on consuming ingredients that are high in iodine. It’s important to note that not ALL salts contain significant amounts of this mineral, so do your research—shaking some kosher salt on an egg won’t cut it!
In addition to the iodine, gravitate towards foods that are chock-full of healthy fats, like avocados, salmon, and almonds. Limit any saturated fats that may be found in red meat, and instead try to get your fat and protein from plant-based foods.
Apple-or-round-shaped bodies tend to be considered “top-heavy”, meaning that the bust, upper back, and waist are larger than the lower body. Having this body type can be particularly challenging for targeted weight loss as a good portion of the fat is held in the waist line.
How to eat: Nurture your apple shape by eating heart-healthy foods such as whole-grain breads, quinoa, and steel-cut oatmeal. In addition, be sure that the proteins that you are putting into your body are low in trans-fat. Some good choices are reduced-fat cheeses, soy-based products, beans, peas, and nuts.
As far as treats go, limit processed foods that are high in sodium or added sugar—let’s just say that your worst enemy is a can of soda! If you are an alcohol drinker, do your best to abstain while dieting. Once you’ve reached your goal, sub out sugary cocktails for low-calorie options.
Those who have broad shoulders and a narrow lower body are regarded as “inverted triangles”. This means that a good portion of the weight sits in the upper body, like the waist and arms.
How to eat: Inverted triangles are at their slimmest when they shun simple carbohydrates like white rices, breads, and pastas. If you get foggy without having carbs on your plate, opt for quinoa, whole grains, and oat-based snacks. On top of this, be sure to stay far away from foods that are difficult to digest, like salty cheeses and processed foods.
People with this body type do best when they focus on eating leafy greens, black beans, and foods that are high in magnesium. Magnesium is a mineral that does an excellent job of regulating blood sugar, a must for those who are trying to jump-start targeted weight loss.