Women’s bodies exist in a range of shapes and sizes. Many people think that “body type” just describes the way someone looks, but it is not just a matter of external appearance. It is the skeletal structure, muscle mass and fat deposition incorporated inside a body that results in the totality of its shape. As common with most physical aspects, there is a wide range of patterns within female body shapes.
It isn’t a recent phenomenon that attention has been drawn to the female body shape. In most human societies, aesthetics, sexuality, and fertility have been associated with body shapes. It is interesting to note that now the differences in opinion regarding the ‘ideal’ or preferred body type is much more pronounced;both for attractiveness and for health reasons.
In fact, the body type can also provide information about how someone responds to food intake and about hormonal and sympathetic nervous system (SNS) characteristics. Physique characteristics can thus establish metabolic differences between individuals. Once someone establishes their body type, they can then adjust nutrient intake to maximize body composition and health-related goals.
Let us examine the four most common female body shapes.
1. Apple (triangle downward)
- The hips and shoulders have the same width; the waistline can have the same width or may be wider.
- Weight gain is mainly around the waist and is in proportion to the other parts of the body.
- Have slender lower legs and arms.
- The high hip is wider than the lower hip.
- The bust and/or midriff are larger than the hips.
- May be short-waisted.
- The thighs or hips are probably the narrowest part of the body
So, with an apple body shape, one tends to carry all or most of the weight through the belly area, but the legs and the arms stay comparatively slim. Typical cravings include starchy foods like bread and pasta as well as fizzy drinks and caffeine. They must be careful of their insulin levels. The key to losing weight for the women with Apple shaped body is getting her blood sugar levels under control. This body type is prone to diabetes, stroke, IBS and digestive problems, constipation and water retention. Therefore this body type often benefits from cutting wheat from their diet, as this mediates blood sugar levels and also lessens bloating. They are better suited to a high-protein diet with minimal carbohydrates and plenty of fiber.
Foods to eat– Clean protein, including chicken, fish and lean portions of red meats like beef and pork. They must have a higher intake of healthy fats like eggs, avocado, nuts, seeds, nut butter and full-fat cheese. Leafy greens like spinach, kale, and dill are also beneficial.
Foods to avoid– Starchy carbs, high sugar fruits, coffee and fizzy drinks.
Some celebrity APPLES are Catherine Zeta Jones and Angelina Jolie
2. Pear, Spoon, or Bell (triangle upward)
- The hips are wider than the shoulders.
- Have round and sloping shoulders.
- Have a well-defined waistline and amazingly gorgeous abs.
- The buttocks and thighs are full and round.
- Weight gain is more on their thighs.
It’s much healthier to be a Pear than an Apple because the fat deposits on the hips are less likely to travel around the body, thus reducing the risk of heart diseases and diabetes.
However, carrying extra weight on the hips can lead to osteoarthritis, and fat is more likely to appear as cellulite.
The typical Pear cravings include high-fat dairy like creamy cheese, lattes and rich desserts. They must be careful of their estrogen levels because if other hormones like progesterone are out of balance, it can lead to lower body weight gain.
Foods to eat – high fiber vegetables and fruit. Small amounts of protein like turkey breast and white fish such as cod and non-dairy fats like coconut oils and eggs.
Foods to avoid – heavy cheeses, cream, and sauces, caffeine and alcohol.
Some celebrity Pears are Kim Kardashian and Beyonce
3. Banana, or straight (rectangular)
The hips, waistline, and shoulders have about the same width.
- Weight gain is more even but may gain some more through the upper back or neck.
- Have more of straight shoulders.
- The buttocks are generally on the flatter side.
- Have an athletic build and a small bust line.
Straight body types will gain weight around the midsection. They may look like they have a little pudge, and this pudge is terrible for the heart. Someone with a straight shaped body may suffer from low thyroid hormone, and in turn, overall weight gain. One must avoid fast foods cravings especially containing rapeseed (used to make canola oil), refined flours like pastries or pasta or peanuts and peanut butter
Foods to eat – A diet rich in healthy fats, like avocados, is best for this body type. Fish, nuts, other forms of lean protein, fruits, and vegetables are also important. Eating a balanced diet of healthy, organic food is optimum for staying fit. Including foods that are good omega 3 sources (wild salmon, halibut, sardines, flaxseed oil, avocados, nuts, olive oil, coconut oil seaweed) as these help burn more of your body fat. For cooking as well, it is better to use only healthy cooking oils to avoid dangerous toxins that binds the body fat making losing weight much harder.
Foods to avoid: Avoid simple carbs (high starches like white rice and white wheat flour products, potatoes), carbonated drinks, and foods high in sugar.
Some celebrity banana-shapes are Anne Hathaway and Cameron Diaz
4. Hourglass Shape (triangles opposing, facing in)
- The hips and shoulders have about the same width.
- Have round and sloping shoulders.
- Have a well-defined waistline.
- Ample cleavage
- Have rounded buttocks.
- The lower hips are wider than the high hips.
- The thighs are full but narrower than the lower hips.
- Hourglass body shapes gain weight through the hips and above the waist
This body type tends to gain weight evenly throughout the body, most obviously around the face but also around knees and ankles giving a soft, rounded look. Their typical cravings include dairy products like ice-creams, refined sugar, carbs such as pastries and sweets. They must be careful of the master of hormones, the pituitary gland that affects both cortisol and insulin.
Foods to eat – whole grains cereals including oatmeal and quinoa, servings of lean protein like lean chicken or fish and plenty of spices like cumin and cinnamon.
Foods to avoid – dairy products, sweets and refined carbs, high-fat meat and caffeine must be avoided.
Some celebrity Hourglass bodies are that ofCarol Vorderman and Kelly Brooke.
No matter what shape your body is, keeping it fit makes all the difference. And now that you know how to do it, there’s no looking back. Flaunt that beautiful figure with confidence.