Introduction to the Three Body Types

Males and females have three different types of body- Ectomorph (lean and thin), Mesomorph (muscular) and Endomorph (round built). The type of a body goes beyond the looks of an individual and determines the ways by which the body responds to food consumption, and the characteristics of hormones as well as sympathetic nervous system (SNS). Such factors are associated with metabolic differences that take place between individuals and influence the ways by which a person responds to diet and training.

Thus, it’s very important for an individual to know his/her body type and chalk out the most appropriate nutrition and training routine. In order to maximize the combined effect of diet and exercises, one must get a thorough understanding of the body type and adjust their pattern of food consumption. Such extensive efforts are sure to give highly productive results in the short term.

Generally, most people have a combination of body types and specifically don’t fall into a distinct category. In various cases, people don’t have a proportional body structure. For example, while hands and legs are lean, the entire body structure is muscular. Irrespective of the type, composition and health condition of a body, an individual has greater ability to intake carbohydrates and starchy food while exercising and soon after exercises. Therefore, the best time to consume carbohydrate-rich food is around the time when the person is most physically active. Proper training and body-specific diet can change the look and appearance of a body. The carb tolerance of a person varies according to the body structure, which calls for a unique diet and exercise regime that helps to meet the body’s fitness requirements, in a short while.

Here the three major types of body along with their unique traits and attributes. Based on each body type, there are suitable recommendations about diet and physical training.


Ectomorphs are very lean and thin by structure. They are skinny, light built and have a small frame. Their general structure comprises of lean muscles, small joints, long thin limbs and narrow shoulders; all of which enables fast metabolism and resists their body from gaining weight.

People who are Ectomorph can consume excess food without gaining further weight. As a result, they have lesser fat in body and muscles and less mass in their bones. Such body type demand higher calories consumption for gaining sufficient weight. Thus, short and intense exercises targeting big muscle groups are the best fitness regimes for such individuals. Ectos must also consume whey protein especially before going to bed. This will prevent catabolism during the night Since Ectomorphs lose fat within an instant, thus, getting back to a thin muscle is never a difficult task.

Features and Attributes

  • They have a small delicate frame and bone structure.
  • They are typical hardgainer and find it difficult to gain weight.
  • Flat chest, small shoulders and lean muscle mass are general characteristics of Ectomorphs.
  • Such a body type has the fastest metabolism.

Recommended Diet

  • Being highly tolerant to high carb diet, such individuals must incorporate a greater proportion of carbohydrate-rich food within their regular diet.
  • For a perfect physique, they must take more carbohydrates and starchy food soon after workout and less of those foods during other times of day.
  • Each meal must include a 3:1 ratio of starchy, whole grain and/or unprocessed carbs and fruits or vegetables.
  • Given the lean body structure and muscles, they must strictly adhere to protein and healthy fats. Consuming burgers and pizzas, once a while will never make them fat.
  • Besides sugary food, Ectomorphs must also drink weight gainer shakes, which are high in calorie. In an alternate to shakes, they can opt for weight gain powders available in markets.
  • With an aim to get more calories, Ectos must eat very frequently, at least 6-8 meals a day.
  • They must never even think of skipping breakfast. It has to be the largest meal, comprising of complex carbohydrates and protein.


  • Strength training along with limited cardio is most recommended fitness routine for the Ecto body type.
  • Simple exercises including heavy compound movements and minimum separation exercises for the muscle groups works best for such people.
  • They can also use supersets and plan a shock technique day. However, this can be kept as an option.
  • Recovery time between two exercises should be between 2-3 minutes. 1 day rest between the last lifting day and the optional shock technique day is bound to increase the effectiveness of physical training.


Mesoporphs have a structure like that of an athlete. They have medium-sized bones and thin muscles. Such individuals have a dominant growth hormone which helps to pre-deposit muscle gain and maintain lower body fat. This makes them testosterone. Mesomorphs have the most appropriate structure for bodybuilding and give quick response to weight training programs. However, Mesomorphs tend to gain more fat easily than the Ecto group. Thus, people having a Mesomorph body structure should be very careful with their calorie consumption.

Features and Attributes

  • They have a typical athletic hard body with well-defined and stout muscles.
  • Body is rectangular in shape.
  • They are strong and gain muscles quickly.
  • Compared to the Ectomorphs, they gain fat quickly and easily.

Recommended Diet

  • Mixed balanced diet comprising of 40% carbohydrates, 30% protein and 30% fat works wonders for the Mesomorph category.
  • Mesos must go for low-fat proteins like eggs, poultry, seafood, Greek Yoghurt and Kefir to build strong muscles and witness high muscular growth.
  • For sufficient energy, complex carbohydrates are the best. Green vegetables, spinach, low-sugar fruits and whole grain foods will fulfil the energy requirements, especially after workouts.
  • In an effort to prevent sugary binges, Meso-people must focus on high-fibre content foods like beans. Such diet will also make them feel full.
  • Besides drinking adequate amount of water, Mesomorphs who are involved in performing high-intensity workouts, must also consume sports drinks as their body demands electrolyte replenishments.
  • Since they have a moderate tolerance to carb, therefore they must stay away from starchy and sugary foods, expect the exercise sessions. However, their breakfast must contain sufficient carbohydrates.
  • Meals other than breakfast should ideally include less dense carbohydrate food and more of fruits, vegetables, proteins, nuts and seeds.


  • A good combination of weekly resistance training sessions with the help of moderate to heavy weights is all that a Mesomorph should look up to. Limited recovery periods between each set of exercise are also recommended for a well-built and toned structure.
  • 2-3 sets of compound exercises for upper and lower body is also ideal for the Meso caregory. Repeating each set of exercise for 8-12 times with rest intervals of 80-90 seconds will maximise the effect of fitness programs.


Large bone structure with higher amount of body and fat mass defines an Endomorph. With a soft and solid body structure, Endomorphs are highly prone to gain weight. The worst part is their excess fat prevents their efforts to shape and tone their body. Usually, they are short build and have thick arms and legs. Muscles especially in the upper leg portion are extremely strong, which makes them comfortable to leg exercises like squatting. They have higher propensity to store energy and are dominant to insulin. This also means they have lower tolerance to carbohydrate.

A typical feeling among the endomorphs is that they are overweight or obese. However, with regular exercises and the right kind of diet, Endos can boost their metabolism and gradually control their weight.

Features and Attributes

  • Soft and round body with higher tendency to gain fat.
  • Short build with large stock of body and fat mass.
  • Endomorphs have a round structure, which makes it difficult for them to lose fat.
  • Although they are more muscular, however, their muscles aren’t in proper shape.
  • Their body have the slowest metabolism.

Recommended Diet

  • Balanced diet of 25% carbohydrate, 35% protein and 40% fat is strongly recommended.
  • Since Endos have lower tolerance towards carbohydrates; therefore, they must avoid consuming excess starchy and sugary food expect after the workout sessions.
  • Endos must only look up to fruits, vegetables, protein and fats for their meals.


  • In an attempt to reduce fats which automatically come into the body, Endos must get into intense cardio training along with weight lifts.
  • Those into bodybuilding must frequently work on their buttocks. However, in doing so, they must never over-train their body.
  • In a week, they can go for four days of weight training and take rest for 3 days. By this, the “afterburn” released from the four intense workout days will increase the body’s metabolic rate and optimize it when the body is at rest for 3 long days.
  • Each exercise session must have a cardio. Endos must highly focus on weight training and aim for gaining maximum muscle mass and not fat. With this, they can increase their basic metabolic rate and decrease the fat store in their body.

To conclude, each of the body types (Ecto, Meso, Endo) have distinct features and characteristics, which further determines the kind of food to be consumed and the nature of exercised to be performed on a daily basis. By figuring out the suitable type of body and then going by the suggestions, an individual can achieve the fitness goals and witness positive results in a short span of time.

Body Types: Eating Habits & Physical Training
Article Name
Body Types: Eating Habits & Physical Training
Males and females have three different types of body- Ectomorph (lean and thin), Mesomorph (muscular) and Endomorph (round built).
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Care Well Medical Centre
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Dr. Sandeep Bhasin

Dr. Sandeep Bhasin

Dr. Sandeep Bhasin, M.S. in the year 2000 and he is an award winning and renowned senior Laparoscopic and cosmetic surgeon in Delhi. Dr. Sandeep Bhasin is Known for his expertise in Cosmetic and reconstructive surgery and over the years he has distinguished himself among his peers with his outstanding surgical skills and innovation.

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