The shape of your body can reveal what lifestyle choices you make. If you find yourself struggling to control your weight, it could be because you’re not living the right lifestyle for your body shape. Furthermore, if your ideal body shape is not within an optimal range, it could prevent you from feeling your best. If you have the best shape of all, you would be fit, strong, and healthy in so many ways. You would lead a balanced life with little or no health complications. This article talks about exploring what a shape is and how it predicts the way a person feels.
Your shape predicts your lifestyle
We first notice that a person’s body shape is how symmetrical or asymmetrical it is. Symmetry is an indicator of health and self-esteem. Symmetry, or balance, is a reflection of nature. Our bodies reflect this symmetry by having the same proportion of limbs, the same weight, and the same height.
Symmetry also indicates physical and mental well-being. Studies have shown that symmetrical bodies are less likely to suffer from depression, anxiety, and addiction.
An asymmetrical body may be a result of either nature or nurture. An asymmetrical body might be a result of obesity, illness, or an accident.
During adolescence, an asymmetrical body is still a sign of good health, but during adulthood, an asymmetrical body can be an indicator of the disease, injury, or mental illness.
The use of symmetry as a gauge of health is ancient. In ancient China, doctors believed they could predict a person’s health by noting the symmetry of their face. An asymmetrical face meant a person was susceptible to illness.
Hippocrates, the ancient Greek physician, also believed that symmetry was an indicator of health. He believed that asymmetrical bodies were a sign of unbalanced natures and so were more prone to illness.
In 1821, the English physician Thomas Young conducted experiments that proved that symmetry was an indicator of health. He discovered that symmetrical bodies absorbed more light, showing they were healthy. An unbalanced body absorbed less light.
Modern scientists continue to study the link between symmetry and health and how it affects our psychological and physical health.
Typical signs that indicate an unhealthy body shape
You might not feel like you’re in an ideal body shape, but there’s a good chance you’re overweight. The average woman in the U.S. is 155 pounds overweight.
If you’re overweight, you’re at an increased risk of developing health problems. Obesity contributes to 13 leading causes of death in the U.S., including heart disease, stroke, certain types of cancer, diabetes, and certain types of respiratory disease. Being overweight also increases your risk of premature death.
Being overweight can also affect how you feel about yourself. People who are overweight tend to report feeling less attractive and less self-confident than healthy people.
Being overweight affects your looks, too. Being overweight can make your skin look sallow, making people see you as less attractive than you are. It also contributes to a “muffin top” — an excess of fat around the midsection, which many women dislike.
Being overweight can also affect your health in other ways. Obese people tend to have elevated levels of triglycerides, blood pressure, and bad cholesterol. Obese people also have an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis — a degenerative condition of the joints that causes pain, swelling, and decreased mobility.
Some people have a more difficult time losing weight than others. Some people turn to fad diets, which can result in long-term health problems. For others, it’s a matter of self-control. If you’re someone who tends to eat comfort food when you’re stressed or upset, for example, banishing comfort foods from your pantry and fridge can make it easier to eat healthily.
How each shape could feel their life could be better
Do you feel some part of you is left out? Maybe you feel too tall, too thin, or too tall. Or maybe you feel too “round” or “skinny.”
A new study from Dr. Bruce D. Hood, professor of psychology at Bristol University in England, shows that these body shape perceptions are just that: perceptions. The 2010 study used a series of questionnaires to measure people’s perceptions of their body shape, as well as how they perceived their lives overall.
The study used more than 3,000 subjects, with 68 percent reporting that they “felt dissatisfied with their body shape.”
“We found that people’s perceptions of their own body are unrealistic,” Hood said.
On top of this, those perceptions impacted how people perceived their lives overall. People with a pear-shaped body, for example, were 73 percent more likely than people with a “normal” body to feel dissatisfied with their lives.
“We wanted to see if people’s body perceptions had any impact on how their life was going,” Hood said.
Hood and his team found that perceptions do matter. They were also able to predict people’s satisfaction with their lives based on their body shape.
“It’s not just that people with unrealistic body perceptions are less happy; it’s also that they perceive their lives to be less satisfying and less satisfying predicts unhappiness,” Hood said.
In fact, according to the study, a “typical” pear-shaped woman would be 73 percent more likely to feel dissatisfied with her life than a typical woman.
“Overall, then, people’s perceptions of their body shape affect not only how they feel about their own lives, but how they perceive others’ lives
Ideal body shapes and how to best nurture them
At first glance, it could be expected that the body shape that is assumed by society to be most ideal would be the healthiest and happiest, yet empirical research does not confirm this.
The body shape that is most correlated with happiness and health is the triangle.
That is because the triangle shape, with its base of stability, provides the optimum balance between strength and flexibility.
The bottom part, the waist, should be 20-22 inches, and the top, the hip, should be 34-36 inches.
The triangle shape is optimal for movement because the pelvis and the legs are in balance.
When a person is healthy, the triangle shape of her body will be in harmony with her posture, and she will be free, relaxed, and full of energy.
A triangle body shape is the result of the balance between strength, flexibility, and stability.
A healthy person will have both strength and flexibility.
Strength comes from leg muscles, while flexibility comes from the pelvis, strength from the lower part of your spine and the muscles of your face, neck, and chest.
Stability is an attribute of your whole body and comes from your pelvis, the sides of your spine, and your back muscles.
A strong, flexible, and stable pelvis, shoulders, and neck will form the basis of a triangle body shape.
The spine, pelvis, and legs form a triangular construction, with the legs’ tendons and ligaments in the pelvis.
This triangle construction is the foundation of your physical strength.
The more balanced the triangle, the stronger the pelvis, shoulders, and legs.
The pelvis is also the foundation of your balance and is the source of your movement.
Whether you’re male or female, happy or unhappy, healthy or unhealthy, your body shape says a lot about you. If you want to change some aspects of your life – be it eating habits for fitness or activity or becoming an overall happier person – knowing your body shape will help guide you on what you need to do to achieve this. Understanding both your ideal and current body shape will help a lot as there’s a big difference between the two. Know your body type to improve your health and happiness. Let your body shape encourage good health and wellness habits.