There are countless diet plans for weight loss. The sheer volume of options can make it hard to know which one to pick.
Should you go with a low-carb diet? A low-fat diet? Should you try paleo or go vegan? Should you sign up for a program or try it on your own? Do you also need to exercise?
Those are just some of the questions that may be running through your head.
Diet Plans For Weight Loss To Help You Reach Your Fitness Goals
In This Article:
- Body Types
- The Three Body Types
- Ectomorph Best Diets
- Mesomorphs Best Diets
- Endomorphs Best Diets
- Carbohydrate Tolerance
- Carbohydrate Considerations
- Personal Preferences
- Other Weight Loss Plans to Consider
- Previous Experiences
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Here’s the truth — there is no right or wrong answer. The best diet varies based on your body type.
Ultimately, you shouldn’t choose a one-size-fits-all diet. For best results, you need a diet plan that works with your body type, weight loss goals, and lifestyle.
The Three Body Types
For sustainable long-term weight loss, the best approach is to figure out your body type and choose your diet accordingly. There are three main body types.
- Ectomorphs — Featuring small bone structures, ectomorphs tend to be “naturally” thin with fast metabolisms. They also tend to have small chests and buttocks, with a straight, almost ruler-like shape. They may be hyperactive and sometimes have difficulty gaining weight or muscle mass. Think Calista Flockhart, Kate Moss, Audrey Hepburn, or Matthew McConaughey.
- Mesomorphs — Boasting a medium bone structure, mesomorphs tend to be athletic and lean. They also tend to have higher levels of testosterone and growth hormones, which allow them to develop muscle easily.
- Male mesomorphs tend to be wider at the shoulders than the hips, and women often have an hourglass shape. Famous people with mesomorphic qualities include Angela Bassett, Madonna, George Clooney, and Bruce Willis.
- Endomorphs — The total opposite of ectomorphs, endomorphs have a larger frame with a soft and curvy body. They tend to be pear-shaped, with wider hips than shoulders. Since they have sluggish metabolisms, they need to work hard to lose extra fat they gain. On the other hand, they boast some serious muscle when they get control of their physique. Some examples of celebrities with endomorph bodies are Roseanne Barr and Jonah Hill, but also curvy frames like Marilyn Monroe and J Lo, and last but not least – athletes such as most NFL linemen.
Keep in mind these body types may have some overlap, and they can be confused with each other. For instance, an endomorph who has spent a lot of time weightlifting and working out may look like a naturally muscular mesomorph.
Similarly, if an ectomorph has a very sedentary lifestyle, they can put on weight and end up looking like an endomorph. Often, you can tell the difference because ectomorphs tend to have relatively thin limbs, even if they have put weight on around the middle of their bodies.
Ectomorphs Best Diets
Due to their high metabolism, ectomorphs tend to have a high tolerance for carbohydrates. In fact, you need a lot of carbs to make up the calories you’re likely burning with your high activity levels.
The best diet for this body type is a low-fat diet featuring moderate levels of protein.
As a guideline, your calories should come 55% from carbs, 25% from protein, and 20% from fat. A sample meal that meets those proportions includes a portion of meat about the size of your palm, a fist-sized vegetable serving, two handfuls of dense carbs, and fat that’s about half your thumb.
For instance, a chicken breast, a small scoop of vegetables, a cup of rice, and a pat of butter meets these criteria. Note the exact portions vary based on your body weight and your weight loss goals.
Mesomorph Best Diet
Mesomorphs thrive with a balanced diet. Shoot for 45% carbs, 25% protein, and 30% fat.
On the plate, this ideal meal looks like a palm-sized serving of protein, a fist-sized scoop of vegetables, a cupped handful of carbs, and about a thumb worth of dense fats. That’s essentially the equivalent of a four-ounce piece of lean steak, a serving of your favorite vegetables, a half cup of quinoa, and a pat of butter.
Again, remember that the exact portions vary based on your body size.
Endomorph Best Diets
Endomorphs tend to be naturally less active, and they have a very limited tolerance for carbohydrates. If you’re an endomorph, you should focus on a low-carb diet with high levels of protein and fat.
Ideally, you should get about 25% of your calories from carbs, 25% from proteins, and 45% from fat, and you may benefit from something like carb cycling.
To get these foods in your diet, your meal should include a palm-sized serving of lean protein, a fist full of vegetables, just half a handful of carbs, and two thumb-size servings of fat. Imagine a moderate size chicken breast, an average size serving of corn, brown rice that’s about half the size of your vegetable serving, and about 20 fat-rich nuts on the side.
In addition to thinking about body type, you should think about your carb tolerance. Your body type tends to dictate your carbohydrate tolerance, but your ability to tolerate carbs is also directly connected to your activity levels. In other words, the more active you are, the more carbs your diet can tolerate.
- High Carb Tolerance — If your carb tolerance is high, you can eat carbs on a regular basis. To make sure your body has the fuel it needs, you may want to up your carb intake around workouts, but remember that when you increase carbs, you often lower fat and protein intake. If you’re trying to build muscle, you may need to increase your protein intake as well, especially if you have an ectomorphic body type.
- Moderate Carb Tolerance — This tolerance level is often associated with the mesomorph body type. You should only eat a lot of carbs around workouts, but otherwise, only eat a moderate amount of carbs and focus on lean protein, fruits, and vegetables.
- Low Carb Tolerance — If your carb tolerance is low, you should only have carbs if you’re working out and ideally near your workout times. If you’re trying to lose weight, you may want to cut out most carbs and embrace a low-carb diet with lots of fruits, vegetables, protein, and some fat.
The healthiest carbohydrates feature complex whole grains, and they include rice, quinoa, millet, corn, and barley. Many vegetables and even fruits are also carb-rich, such as yams, sweet potatoes, and bananas.
When creating a meal plan for yourself, try to focus on healthy carbs rather than refined sugar or white flour.
Also, remember that the sugars in fruit aren’t necessarily healthy and try to strike the right ratio between your fruits and vegetables. As a general rule of thumb, you may want to focus on the following fruit and vegetable ratios based on your body type and car tolerance:
- Ectomorph / High Carb Tolerance: Three vegetable servings to one fruit serving
- Mesomorphs / Moderate Carb Tolerance: Four vegetable servings to one fruit serving
- Endomorph / Low Carb Tolerance: Five vegetables to one fruit serving
When you’re looking at diet plans for weight loss, you also need to think about your personal preferences and your lifestyle. To explain, imagine that a high protein diet works best for your body type, but you’re a vegan.
In this situation, you can’t choose a paleo diet. Instead, you need a diet where the protein comes from plants.
Similarly, if you have a hard time denying yourself certain foods, you may need to avoid overly strict diets. Sometimes, when people cheat they feel like hope is lost, and they quit trying.
If you know this is a risk, you may want to pick a diet that focused on balance and doesn’t put any foods off limits. Then, if you need a small dessert or a snack once in a while, that’s fine.
It’s also easier to stick to a meal plan if it appeals to you. If your diet doesn’t contain foods that you like and enjoy, sticking with it can become overwhelming.
Note, however, you should be open to trying new things. Rather than focusing on what you can’t eat, get excited about the new foods you haven’t gotten to try yet.
Other Weight Loss Plans to Consider
As you choose a weight loss plan, other factors to consider include the following:
- Ethical or religious dietary restrictions
- Health conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, or other issues
- Allergies or intolerances to certain foods
- Your gender
- Your budget
- Weight loss goals
As you choose a diet plan, you may want to think about diets you’ve tried in the past. Think about how they made you feel and whether or not they helped you achieve long-term weight loss.
If a certain diet made you feel sluggish, it probably didn’t complement your body type. That’s a sign you need to try something else.
If you have a sweet tooth, you might have a bit of a harder time with certain diet plans for weight loss. Watch the video below to know what you can eat in place of sweets!
At V Shred, we know that it’s hard to achieve long-term weight loss. We believe that often happens because people try fad diets or one-size-fits-all approaches to weight loss.
We also believe that you need a customized diet with meal plans that are developed around your body type, activity levels, and personal preferences. To get a customized diet and training plan that works for you, contact us today.
What diet plans for weight loss do you think will work best for you? Share your ideas below!