It’s common belief that it’s better to consume protein in the evening hours if one wants to lose weight, but in reality is only true for some people, and we will explain why.

We are speaking of “chronomorphotherapy,” which identifies the two ways of being overweight: the pear (“gynoid,” accumulating fat on the bottom part of the body) or the apple (“android,” accumulating fat on the top part of the body). We know that most of our hormones, like GH and cortisol, have their own cyrcadian cycles, which the body regularly follows and which affects our accumulation of weight.

And so, if our hormones influence and are influenced by our diet — and what’s more influence our fat distribution — it’s evident that manipulating our proportions and our spreading-out of daily nutrients over the day can affect where we accumulate fat.

Protein or carbohydrates?

From a metabolic point of view, the “pear” or “hypolipolitical” body shape burns less fat and has a more parasympatic nervous system, which slows down the metabolism. Those with an “apple” or “hyperlipolitical” body shape constructs fat which produce more cortisol which thus raises the glycemic level and stimulates insulin, the main lypogenetic hormone.

And so how do we need to take care of ourselves and our diet with these two morphotypes?

A diet for each body type

Let’s have a look at how to distribute our nutrients over the day, according to each morphotype, for those of you looking to lose weight.

If you are hypolipolitical

BREAKFAST: mostly complex carbs overall, with a small amount of simple sugars, some protein and a small amount of fat.

LUNCH: moderate quantities of protein and carbs and low fat.

DINNER: mostly protein, moderate quantities of fat (polysaturated is best) and no carbs. Obviously the daily consumption of carbs will vary according to one’s weight and weight loss needs. A protein-based dinner favors the secretion of GH at night, promoting the increase in lipids.

If you are hyperlipogentical

Being a hypercortisolemic person, you will have a low tollerance for carbs, and so any carb consumption should happen after 5pm, when the body’s cortisol will notably decrease.

BREAKFAST: protein-based with little carbs (chosen from low on the glycemic index), which will help stimulate less insulin secretion.

LUNCH: higher protein and higher fat intake (monosaturated fat like olive oil, or polysaturated fat like sunflower oil), and fattier fish like salmon. Polysaturated fats increase the body’s sensitivity to insulin and therefore diminish secretion.

DINNER: carbs (which are low on the glycemic index), proteins which aid in anabolic construction overnight. If the subject has an anxious personality and/or involved in physical fitness activities, carbs low on the glycemic index should be consumed 1-2 hours before activity to avoid muscular disfunction.

If you have a mixed morphology

Limit carb intake to breakfast, when the peak in cortisol is particularly high, to avoid an insulin hyper-stimulation.
Food choices should be limited to 4 or 5 meals (breakfast, a mid-morning snack and perhaps one mid-afternoon, lunch and dinner). In this way, glucose is dealt with by the body in a positive manner, aiding weight loss and increasing energy.

California Sport & Fitness / june 2004