Diet Plan For Ectomorph


Diet Plan For Ectomorph -The term “ectomorph” is used to describe someone with a naturally lean, slender physique. Ectomorphs have more difficulty building muscle, primarily because their bodies tend to produce less testosterone (which has a huge influence on muscle building.)

Ectomorph Diet

illustration of an ectomorph body type with food around
Long and lean, ectomorphs’ bodies tend to be tolerant of carbohydrates.iStock (2)

If you’d categorize yourself as tall, thin, or lanky, you might be an ectomorph. It’s one of the three main body types (along with endomorph and mesomorph), which some experts say can provide the framework of your ideal diet and exercise plan.

Body Types In A Nutshell

A person’s body type, also known as somatotype, says a lot about the components of fat and lean muscles present in their body’s overall makeup. It reveals how the parts are related to each other and in what measure. Interestingly, over the years, medical professionals have come to understand the significant roles that a patient’s body type has with their health, which is why they refer to it as part of their evaluation process, just as they do with the Body Mass Index. Studying an individual’s body mass index and body type may not be the perfect technique to determine the needed results for a researcher, but then they are often used because of the ease of accessibility.

From the current research on different body types, a concise analysis of them is given below:

  1. An endomorph is characterized by fatness, which is measured by the total sum of measurements taken from the tricep, suprailiac, and the subscapular. The higher the total sum of these folds measurements, the greater the tendency of a person to be an endomorph.
  2. A mesomorph is rated based on fatness or leanness; a ratio of muscle mass and height. It is usually influenced by how wide the elbows and knees are, and the circumference of flexed muscles and calves.
  3. Ectomorphs are described by the absence of muscle mass and body fat, classified as a lack of body mass in relation to the height. The way that this is determined is through the weight and height of an individual. 

What Is an Ectomorph?

If you can handle a spaghetti or pizza dinner with no ill effects, you may be an ectomorph. That’s because these individuals tend to handle carbohydrates the best out of any body type, say proponents of the body type diet. “Ectomorphs naturally have a higher insulin sensitivity to process carbs,” says Phil Catudal, a personal trainer in Los Angeles and coauthor of Just Your Type: The Ultimate Guide to Eating and Training Right for Your Body Type.

But ectomorphs lack in muscle mass, so they need to amp up their protein intake and combine it with a strength training plan, argue proponents of this approach. Catudal says the ideal diet for an ectomorph is one that is higher in carbs (45 percent of calories) and protein (35 percent of calories) and lower in fat (20 percent of calories).

Ectomorph Body Type Diet

It is easier for an ectomorph to get tired of working out and continuously going to the gym than it is for one’s peers who possess one of the other body types. This may be because after the ectomorph works out and probably hits the gym more than their friends do, they lose motivation from not really noticing any positive change. In fact, such people may often find themselves staring in the mirror and seeing no visible difference from any previous time. A clue to this mystery has to do with the type of food such people consume, as it goes a long way to determine their overall wellbeing, including achieving a satisfactory physique.

Naturally, the pathway to weight gain is consuming foods with more calories than the body can burn off to fuel its daily activities. As simple as this may seem, it is quite tricky for ectomorphs. The fact that an individual in this category needs to ensure that they are consistently overloading the body with enough food does not, however, mean that they have the right to consume just anything. Eating right is essential to get the necessary result. 

Food List for an Ectomorph

Ectomorphs tend to respond well to carbohydrates, so you can eat those freely. You’ll just want to choose healthy sources, including fiber-rich fruits, veggies, and whole grains. To optimize your health, reach for plenty of protein, including from lean animal sources and plants like nuts and seeds. Prioritizing protein (along with strength training) will help with your muscle-building efforts.

Here are some of the foods you can eat on the ectomorph diet:

Meat and Fish

  • Chicken
  • Turkey
  • White fish (cod, mah-mahi)
  • Seafood (shrimp, scallops)
  • Eggs
  • Lean steak or beef


  • Fat-free or low-fat yogurt or milk (keep to 1 serving a day)

Fruits and Vegetables

  • Berries
  • Mango
  • Oranges
  • Apples
  • Pears
  • Banana
  • Cauliflower
  • Green beans
  • Broccoli
  • Asparagus
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Squash

Nuts and Seeds

  • Almonds
  • Pistachios
  • Peanuts
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Pumpkin seeds

Grains and Starchy Vegetables

  • Whole-wheat bread
  • Old-fashioned or steel-cut oats
  • Brown rice
  • Quinoa
  • Farro
  • Sweet potato

A 7-Day Sample Menu for the Ectomorph Body Type

Day 1

Breakfast Old-fashioned or steel-cut oatmeal topped with strawberries and walnuts

Snack Hard-boiled egg and soy milk latte

Lunch Mediterranean quinoa salad with chopped veggies and olive oil

Snack Apple and almonds

Dinner Turkey and mango tacos wrapped in lettuce leaves served with a side of black beans

Day 2

Breakfast Smoothie made with fruit, almond milk, and protein powder

Snack Trail mix made with nuts and dried fruit

Lunch Avocado toast topped with a fried egg, side salad

Snack Carrots and black bean dip

Dinner Sliced flank steak fajitas with onions and peppers wrapped in sprouted whole-grain tortillas

Day 3

Breakfast Sweet potato toast topped with a thin smear of nut butter and turkey bacon

Snack Pear with mixed nuts

Lunch Bean and veggie burger served on a whole-grain bun, side of steamed broccoli

Snack Protein bar

Dinner Grilled chicken, sautéed kale, tomato and cucumber salad, side of farro

Day 4

Breakfast Whole-grain toast with fat-free or low-fat Greek yogurt and a sliced pear

Snack Protein bar

Lunch Mixed greens salad with chopped vegetables, roasted turkey, and vinaigrette

Snack Apple and a slice of cheese

Dinner Chicken and mushroom stir-fry over brown rice

Day 5

Breakfast Slice of veggie frittata with roasted sweet potatoes

Snack Banana with almond butter

Lunch Tuna mashed with avocado on whole grain crackers, side salad

Snack Protein bar

Dinner Quinoa bake made with tomato sauce, mixed vegetables, and chicken

Day 6

Breakfast Fat-free or low-free Greek yogurt parfait with chopped apples, walnuts, whole-grain cereal, and cinnamon

Snack Small smoothie with protein powder

Lunch Turkey chili and a side salad with vinaigrette

Snack Sliced veggies dipped in homemade guacamole

Dinner Grilled shrimp and vegetables kabobs on a bed of quinoa

Day 7

Breakfast Overnight oats made with fat-free or low-fat yogurt, almond milk, and topped with raspberries

Snack Hard-boiled egg, piece of fruit

Lunch Turkey sandwich on whole-grain bread, mashed avocado, lettuce, tomato, onion, baby carrots on the side

Snack Broccoli dipped in hummus

Dinner Roasted cod, Brussels sprouts, baked sweet potato

Ectomorph Diet Plan Principles

Now that you know who are ectomorphs and whether or not you fall into this category, let’s move ahead to next section on this article – Ectomorph diet plan principles.

Eat Surplus Calories

It goes without saying that for ectomorphs to gain muscle and put on weight, they will have to start eating more calories than they usually do. Unlike the popular belief, tracking calories is as important for ectomorphs as those on a weight-loss diet. So, how will you do it?

To begin with, calculate the total number of calories you consume each day. You can use Myfitnesspal Calorie Chart for the same. Once you know your gross calorie intake, it’s time to calculate your daily calorie expenditure by using Calorie Calculator. If values of both intake calories and expenditure are equal, then you are going to see almost no gains.

The trick is to increase the intake calories by atleast 250-350 each day so that by the end of the week you are likely to have put on atleast half a pound of weight.

Eat High Calorie Dense Food


Taking a cue from the first principle, an ectomorph needs to eat enough food all day long. Having said that, it’s also important for ectomorphs to consider the calorie density of the food they are eating. Alright, let me make it easy for you.

Being an ectomorph, you may want to skip all the food items with low calorie density aka food items you need to consume in huge quantity to make considerable calorie gains. For instance, a small bowl of cooked oatmeal contains just about 100-120 calories but proves very effective in suppressing your hunger and making you feel full.

Hence, ectomorphs are suggested to avoid such foods and choose high calorie-dense foods like dried fruits, meat, fish and whey protein.

Eat Frequently

Well, if truth be told, eating three meals a day won’t work at all. Once you are on an ectomorph diet, you will have to eat atleast 6-8 meals each day and that too at frequent intervals. Out of these meals, have at least 3 major meals and 3 small meals or snacks.

I would advise to keep breakfast, lunch, and dinner as main meals and adding healthy snacks to the routine between each of these meals. This way, not only you will able to keep energy levels high throughout the day but also ease the process of weight gain which may be a difficult task to accomplish otherwise.

Use Protein Shakes 

Who said protein shakes are just for elite athletes and bodybuilders? An average skinny gym goer can also use protein shakes for his benefit in many ways. First and foremost, protein shakes especially the ones made with high-quality whey isolate are among the finest ways to increase the protein intake. On top of it, protein shakes can help ectomorphs to achieve their daily calorie target with ease. Along with whey protein, add ingredients like oats, peanut butter, fresh fruits, and yogurt to your protein shake.

Responding to a common query that I receive quite often regarding the use of mass gainers for weight gain for ectomorphs, I would advise you to avoid all sorts of gainers at all cost. Although weight gainers contain a lot of calories, they are fully loaded with sugars and artificial additives.

Relying completely upon weight gainers may prove to be fatal in the long run. Instead of using mass gainers, I would suggest you use a better source of complete protein like whey protein and casein protein.

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