Many people often wonder, Is body type genetic? As well as, Is having a fast metabolism genetic? and, Is obesity genetic? These are just some of many common questions people have about how their DNA impacts their physical bodies.
What’s important to understand is that although your genetics do influence your body type, body composition, metabolism, and your risk of obesity – so do your lifestyle habits.
For example, if it’s in your DNA to have a high risk of obesity, you can fight your genetics by being extra careful about maintaining a healthy diet and exercise routine. You’re not necessarily ‘destined’ to be obese; it’s just a genetic risk.
What’s even more important to understand is that your genetic body type isn’t something you should want to learn about for simply vanity purposes. Body composition plays a major role in your health. For example, check out these reasons why having too much excess belly fat is bad for your health.
Similar to how your genes can influence your body size in terms of risk of obesity or having a larger belly, your genes can also cause you to have trouble gaining weight in what’s known as ‘hereditary persistent thinness’.
You might be surprised to learn that 40 – 70 percent of your weight is determined by genetic factors.
Is Body Type Genetic? Here’s How Your Genetic Makeup Can Influence Your Body Type
Through DNA testing, you can learn about how your genetic makeup impacts your body type in various ways.
Your genes can influence physical body type and weight-related traits such as:
- How fast or slow your metabolism is (metabolic response)
- Your lean muscle mass
- Appetite control capabilities
- Imbalances in hunger hormones
- Your endurance capacity (for exercise purposes)
- Heritable persistent thinness
- Breast size
- Waist circumference
In other words, if you’ve been wondering, is body type genetic and what can I do about it? You’ll learn a lot of insightful information about your body through CircleDNA. A simple cheek swab from home is all it takes to learn a wealth of information about yourself, including success traits, personality traits, health risks, skin traits, body composition, and more.
Genetic Body Composition: Do You Have Higher or Lower Lean Body Mass?
Body composition is the percentage breakdown of the fat and non-fat components that make up your total body weight. Non-fat components are broken down further into muscle and bone mass. Since water is distributed in fat and muscle cells, body composition typically does not separate from water.
If you take a CircleDNA test and you find out you are likely to have ‘normal’ lean body mass, this means that your body will have a normal response to diet and exercise, when it comes to muscle formation and fat loss.
This means you will have to work hard to get results when you diet and exercise. On the other hand, someone who has genetically high lean body mass has a naturally higher metabolism, and can lose weight or maintain a healthy body weight much more easily.
Genetic Metabolic Response
Based on your DNA test results, you’ll find out if you are likely to have a normal metabolic response, or a lower metabolic response. If your results are ‘normal’ this means that at rest, your body burns calories at an average rate.
Remember that your metabolism is responsible for converting food into energy. When you’re active, your metabolic rate increases to keep up with the extra energy needed by your body. Your genetics and your muscle mass are just a couple of the factors that impact your metabolism. Your gender can impact your metabolism as well, since women generally have lower metabolisms than men.
So, if you’re wondering, is body type genetic and is metabolism genetic? The answer is yes and yes.
What Can I Do to Increase My Metabolism and Increase Lean Body Mass?
Increasing muscle mass helps increase your metabolism and helps you lose weight. This means that you should be lifting weights more often. Try adding at least 2 – 3 resistance training sessions into your exercise routine each week, where you lift weights. Get a personal trainer or kinesiologist to show you the proper form while lifting weights. Most gyms have certified trainers on staff who you can hire, and some gyms even have certified trainers on staff who will show you the proper way to lift weights for free.
In addition to lifting weights to gain lean muscle mass, you should also eat lean protein such as lean meats, or a vegan protein shake as a post-workout snack. More protein in your diet can help increase your metabolism, while a high-fat and high-carbohydrate diet can decrease your metabolism.
Genetic Risk of Obesity: Keeping Track of Your Body’s Fat Percentages
What’s important to note about body composition is that the percentage of fat that makes up your body’s total weight can be anywhere from 10% body fat all the way to 50% body fat. Some bodybuilders even have as little as 8% body fat, while the average is around 25 – 30% body fat.
Healthy body fat is around 21% – 32% body fat. Overweight individuals will have 33% – 39% body fat. You’re considered medically obese if you have over 39% body fat.
This is why it’s so important to track your body fat percentages, to stay healthy. Many modern scales on the market today don’t just tell you your weight, they also tell you your current body fat percentage.
Is Body Type Genetic When it Comes to Waist Size?
Your waist size or waist circumference is, in part, genetic. People can be genetically more likely to have smaller or larger waists. However, keep in mind that lifestyle choices and your environment can also impact your waist size.
To clarify, waist circumference is the measurement of your waist, which is usually the area around your belly button. The various sizes of people’s waist circumference decides what size they’ll have to buy when they shop for jeans, skirts, or pants.
However, waist circumference size is also an indicator of your physical health. The larger your waist circumference, the higher your belly fat, and the higher your risk becomes of developing heart disease, diabetes, or other health conditions associated with excess belly fat and obesity.
Hereditary Persistent Thinness Explained
Just like you can be genetically predisposed to obesity, you can also be genetically predisposed to persistent thinness.
There are people all over the world who struggle with their weight, and try to battle genetic obesity risks, having a hard time losing weight or achieving a healthy weight.
There are also people who struggle with what’s known as ‘persistent thinness’, and struggle to gain weight. Many of these individuals are not happy with their genetic body type. They’re not wanting to be this thin, and they want to gain weight.
There’s a reason why slim parents tend to have slim children.
Persistent thinness of this nature is not linked to any eating disorders. It’s just in their genes to be persistently thin, often no matter what they eat. Some people even have metabolisms that are naturally so high, they can eat double the calories as their friends, but they won’t gain weight the way their friends would if they ate that many calories.
Whether it’s in your DNA to be on the thinner side, or on the larger side, know that every body is a beautiful body. All you need to worry about is being aware of health risks that come with being too thin, or becoming obese. Talk to your doctor about your weight, your body composition, and what changes you need to make to have a healthier body.