Metabolic Body Types Explained

You know the way each one of us is born with a unique blood type, hair type, and skin color. What might not be so obvious to many people is the fact the human race is divided into three major body types, namely; ectomorphs, mesomorphs, and endomorphs. Your body type is defined by a number of traits, including muscles mass, structure, and shape. These three body types, which describe both male and female, dictate how we eat and grow, and our reactions to different foods and exercises. Knowing your body type is the best way to know how to combine protein, carbohydrates, and fats in ratios that will help you stay healthy. It’s worth noting that not everybody falls perfectly into one category. There are those who are a mix of the three, the ‘in-betweeners’. On the same note, good nutrition and the type and intensity of your workout can completely change how you look, physically. Let’s explore these body types so that you may know where you belong and what will work best for you in terms of fitness, diet, weight gain, weight loss, and overall health.


Ectomorphs can be the envy of many. They are those who can literary eat anything without putting on extra pounds due to their fast metabolic rate. They have a narrow frame with small joints and a light build. Their body fat is less than the other categories, as is their muscle and bone mass.
They have narrow waists and can easily lose weight.

Ectomorphs Traits:

  • Have long thin limbs
  • Are skinny
  • Have lean muscle
  • Narrow shoulders
  • Flat chested

Training Advice

Prioritize on high-intensity strength training over cardio. Focus on heavy compound exercises that involve minimal muscle isolation to boost the release of growth hormones. You need a high-calorie intake per day (at least 3,000) with plenty of starchy carbs. You can also take protein supplements to improve your muscle mass.

Food Intake

The fast metabolic rate means that you burn calories too efficiently, thus you can’t add on weight. You need to eat a high carb diet throughout the day (but more carbs after workouts compared to other times). Increase the frequency of your meals – spread six or more meals over the course of your day and never skip breakfast. Choose healthy fats and quality proteins. Also eat plenty of fruits, nuts, and vegetables. If you’re more into gaining weight without worrying about body fat, junk food is always an option, but focus more on proteins. Then again, you should also consider the health risks of junk and unhealthy foods.


Mesomorphs are the muscular type, sporting an athletic body. The ability to gain muscle easily makes them the best body type for a bodybuilder. They have a medium build with well-developed shoulders and a narrow waist. However, mesomorphs can easily gain weight and need to watch what they eat.

Mesomorphs Traits:

  • Athletic bodies
  • Broad shoulders
  • Easy to gain muscle
  • Strong build
  • Easy to gain weight

Training Advice

Since mesomorphs respond easily to exercise, any form of training can work in their favor. It will depend on what your fitness goals are. For the normal fit and toned body, combine a mix of cardio and strength training. If your aim is to grow big and strong, weight lifting will befit you.

Food Intake

A balanced diet will always work wonders for your body type. Be sure to include a quality source of protein with every meal to repair and grow those muscles. If your main goal is to lose weight, cut your carb intake and try a high-protein diet.

To maintain a strong muscular body, include plenty of green vegetables, low-fat proteins like kefir yogurt, eggs, and seafood. Likewise, you need a consistent supply of fresh low-sugar fruits and high fiber foods like beans. Take more of high starchy carbs for breakfast or during/after your workouts. Otherwise, your meals should consist of less sugary and starchy carbs.


Endomorphs have curvy bodies and wider waists, put on weight very easily, and have large bone structures. They have thick arms and legs and may find it difficult to lose weight. They are insulin dominant, which means they tend to store more energy, including both lean mass and fat mass.
Female endomorphs have soft and curvaceous bodies while male endomorphs have soft round bodies. A good indicator that you are an endomorph is if you struggle to lose weight despite putting in more effort.

Endomorphs Traits:

  • Soft and round physique
  • Shapely bodies
  • Short neck
  • Strong thighs and/or upper arms
  • Wide bone structure
  • Poor muscle definition
  • Strong bones
  • Excess body fat (in some cases, may be overweight)
  • Naturally chubby

Training Advice

If you train well, you can easily gain muscle and maintain it. Endomorphs have good endurance levels and to attain well-defined muscles, you’ll have to hit the gym more regularly compared to mesomorphs.

Endomorphs need a mix of both cardio and weights to get rid of the excess fat and at the same time build muscle. Free weight training is a great option for endomorphs because it boosts metabolism for up to two days after training.

The good news is that the more muscle you add, the faster your metabolic rate becomes. This means that your body will be less prone to storing fat cells, and you can, therefore, reverse your body’s natural tendency to gain and store fat.

What’s Your Body Type?

So, which body type do you belong to? This will help you attain your fitness goals more easily and know which foods you need to avoid.

All images by Pixabay


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