The shape our body has is a combination of factors that are in our hands (what we eat and how much, how we train and with what intensity …) and others that no matter how much we want do not depend on us (age, sex, our constitution and metabolism …).

So if you have ever wondered why even if you kill abs, there is always a small portion of fat that laughs in your face of your attempts to make it disappear, these are some of the reasons.

The difference between men and women

One of the main differences is sexual : women have a higher proportion of fat than men , between 6 and 11% more fat than men.

In addition, both accumulate in different areas: while they have it mostly in the gluteofemoral area (buttocks, hips and thighs that form the feared cartridge belts), they carry it mostly in the abdominal area (and there that curved belly).

The funny thing is that from the point of view of energy balance, there is no explanation for this, since they usually consume fewer calories , and in fact burn more calories when they exercise. And yet, they accumulate more body fat, which suggests that their bodies are much more efficient when it comes to accumulating fat (that is, they do more with less). Why this happens.

The effect of hormones

The reason that women accumulate more fat and do it in those places is related to motherhood and sex hormones : women’s bodies spend much of their lives preparing for the time of pregnancy, fetal growth, childbirth and breastfeeding, which require a huge amount of energy.

As for the specific place where this fat is located, not all women are placed exactly in the same place, and the weather seems to be related : in warm countries fat accumulates mainly in the buttocks (in the African and African-American women), in the hips (in Mediterranean women) and in the abdominal area (in some Asian women), while in cold areas, women’s fat is distributed more evenly throughout the body.

This has to do with the thermoregulatory functionthat fat tissue fulfills: in cold countries it helps maintain body temperature , while in warm countries, it avoids forming a layer that gives too much heat to women. In any case, in any distribution, that fat always plays the same role: to ensure its survival and that of its species in times of scarcity.

The role of evolution

Because we do not forget that no matter how hard we try to change it, the shape of our body always has a motive oriented to make us survive and molded always after centuries of evolution .

Our bodies learned to accumulate fat when calories were not as abundant around us as they are today

Our bodies learned to accumulate fat when calories were not as abundant around us as they are today. When each meal had to be caught or harvested, the nutrients were a precious commodity and if one day you could eat more than necessary, your body would welcome the extra nutrients and store them carefully in the form of fat.

The problem is that today, there is no shortage of calories within our reach, but quite the opposite . If we let ourselves be guided by our impulses, we tend to eat more calories than necessary, something that is no longer crucial to save our lives because, in most cases, we know that we will be able to nourish ourselves without problems that same day and all the subsequent ones .

But evolution is slower than society and our body continues to accumulate more calories in anticipation of a dreaded shortage.

Your somatotype

Another thing that affects how you accumulate fat, how much and where is your somatotype . Somatotype was a concept coined by the psychologist William Herbert Sheldon in the 1940s with which he associated each type of character with each morphology. This theory is already outdated, but it does in many cases maintain its purely physical classification, which consists of three categories:

– Endomorphs: strong people with large bony structures, broad shoulders and hips. They are easy to gain muscle mass, but they also accumulate fat easily.

– Mesomorfos: have the body type that we usually associate with the ideal, broad shoulders, narrow waist, gain muscle mass without too much effort and do not tend to accumulate fat.

– Ectomorphs: they have a lighter and longer bone structure, they are tall people with long limbs that although they do not usually accumulate fat, they do not gain muscle easily either.

What can I do to change this?

The answer is that nothing … and everything.

I explain. There is probably never anything that makes you completely change the shape of your body and how it stores fat : your body is as it is, determined in large part by your genetics, and there you can do little. So learn to accept yourself as you are and enjoy all the fantastic things that your body allows you to do precisely for being as it is: enjoy your curves if you have them, your long limbs that make you run more efficiently or easily to lose fat if it is your case.

But on the other, your habits and daily routines have a great impact on your body (and your health) , and that you can control it. Make sure you eat healthy and if you tend to accumulate fat, knowing it can help you eat in a way that avoids excesses. In addition, training in one or another discipline can help you get the most out of the particular characteristics of your body: it is not the same to lift weight if you tend to gain muscle easily than if you do not have it so easy, and the same goes for Running, cycling or playing tennis.

Think that your body is unique and that you can take care of it and enjoy it so that it lasts a long time in good conditions. You do not have to change it, just understand it and take advantage of it.