There are a so many diets out there, but the body type diet is one that I personally find fascinating. Recently I have read countless weight loss books, but the books about eating and working out for your body type have really resonated with me. Even though most diet books are gimmicky, and I’m not saying the body type diet books aren’t the same way, these books are eerily accurate about describing me perfectly, and a lot of people feel the same way.
*Dr. Abravanel’s Body Type Diet*
This is the most popular of the body type diet books. I picked it up because I was having a lot problems from my low thyroid, and this book talks a lot about thyroid issues. Dr. Abravanel purports that there are 4 different body types that people fall into, and the book teaches you what to eat and not eat for your body type, and what type of exercises are best suited for you. It expands on the endomorph, mesomorph, or ectomorph body type classifications.
Determining your body type
The body type book has a quiz to find out if you’re genetically a Thyroid (Paris Hilton), Adrenal (Britney Spears), Gonad (Kim Kardashian), or Pituitary type. I’m a classic thyroid type. No body type is better or worse – they’re just different. The premise is that one of these glands is dominant for us, and we seek out foods to stimulate this gland, which is actually the worst thing we can do. So if you’ve ever wondered why you crave sugar and carbs (like me) while your best friend craves steak – well now you know! The theory is that once you are in balance, you will no longer crave the foods that aren’t good for you. The reason I am so fascinated with this book is because it’s like reading a horoscope – the author describes my personality to a tee, my favorite foods, my crashes after eating, my thyroid problems, my love of coffee, exactly where I put on weight, the fact that I used to be able to eat anything without gaining, and that now I can’t lose weight at all, etc.
After taking the quiz, I made my boyfriend, friends, and parents take it, and the results are scarily accurate for all of us! When I meet new people and we start talking about weight, I can predict their favorite foods now just by looking at them – it’s a fun party trick, as long as you don’t offend anyone! Not everyone falls perfectly into one body type, so this book may not be as revealing to you if don’t have as many obvious characteristics of your type. Here is a body type website where you can determine which body type you have (the book is a lot more detailed).
Once you’ve found your body type
Okay here comes the bad news – this book is extremely strict and limiting, and chances are it will tell you to never again eat your favorite foods. A 1200 calorie a day meal plan is provided, and as a thyroid type, it told me to eat everything I hate (lots of protein, meat and veggies, and highly limit carbs, sugar, and caffeine). I followed the plan the best that I could, and I was able to stick to the 1200 calories without being hungry, but after a month I didn’t lose any weight. I know that’s crazy, but I haven’t been able to lose a single pound in two years. But for most “normal” people, I’m sure they would lose weight. So while my plan resembles Atkins (with veggies), my boyfriend is an adrenal type, and the book tells him to give up steak, and to eat a more balanced array of foods, like the South Beach Diet.
For me, the take away is that I now have some new eating ideas – I have really cut back on bad carbs, sugar and coffee, and I eat more eggs and protein. Each diet book I read gives me a few great tips, which is why I read so many. Ironically I’ve read some books with quizzes that say I should eat the exact opposite of what this book says, but personally I tend to believe the body type book more because of its psychic ability to describe me so accurately.
Exercise for your body type
Aside from needing to eat certain foods for your body type, there are specific exercises that benefit your body type the most too. Dr. Abravanel encourages cardio, strength training and flexibility training, but emphasizes different workouts according to body types. Again he is psychic, because for my thyroid type he recommends I work on strength and endurance, my two biggest exercise weaknesses. For the adrenal type, for example, he encourages mostly cardio, even though a lot of adrenal types gravitate toward weight lifting in an attempt to lose weight.
Other body type books:
The Body Code by Jay Cooper is another great body type diet book. It’s very similar to Dr. Abravanel’s book, and obviously modeled after it. It also has a quiz to determine your body type, and the book recommends mostly the same things. Finally Escape Your Shape is about exercises to do to make your body look more balanced. If you are smaller on top, and bigger on bottom, it gives you specific workouts to do, and exercises to avoid. If you have a big butt, for example, the last thing you want to do is the stairmaster, because that will bulk you up more. Or if you are built straight up and down, you are given tips on how to create more curves. This book isn’t too exciting, but if you feel like your workouts are making your problem areas worse, then it’s definitely worth reading.
Honestly I’ve read so many diet books that it’s hard to know what diet/lifestyle plan is best to follow. For the most part I try to eat a healthy balanced diet, but I still highly recommend reading the body type diet books to most people. The fact that I didn’t lose any weight by following this plan is not exactly a testament to its success, but I haven’t lost any weight after following The South Beach Diet, Jillian Michaels’ Making The Cut, or using the GoWear Fit, etc. Nonetheless, I definitely feel healthier! Finally, I like to write about weight loss (on my skin care blog) because I spend so much time reading about it, and I know a lot of people struggle with their weight, as well as their skin!
Have you read any of the body type diet books? What’s your favorite weight loss book or weight loss plan?