Why Are Indians Skinny-Fat?

Akash Sehrawat

3 min read | Dec 30, 2018

The time is long gone when if you had a paunch, people would do this.


‘Khate peete ghar ka hai.’ (He is from a rich family with enough food to provide 🙂


That belly which was a status symbol a decade back is now believed to have serious health concerns.


A Skinny-Fat person is thin but has belly fat. His BMI will be in the normal category. There is some truth to the statement that being ‘Skinny-Fat is more prominent’ in India than in other nations.


Here Are Some Of The Facts


-The thin-fat phenotype has been increasing over the past two decades and is especially prevalent in India, points out this study.


-According to this study, Indian babies are amongst the smallest in the world. This is because people in the Indian subcontinent have faced undernutrition for many generations. That means low bone density and lower muscle mass. 1https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/14704320


For a given BMI, Indians have a higher percentage of body fat and more visceral fat than members of other populations. This thin-fat phenotype is present at birth. So definitely, genetics do play a part.


It’s common knowledge that the Indian Diet is predominantly carbohydrate-based, up to 70–80% of total caloric intake.


In the past few decades, there is one more problem with this fact:


-Most of these carbs have started to become more refined.


-There is a huge difference between complex carbs and refined carbs and how they get digested in your body.


Without sounding too science-y, refined carbs are higher on the glycemic index. They have the ability to digest pretty quickly as they are stripped of fiber content. This causes excess release of insulin. This leads to more fat storage. 2https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25477716/


Related Article: What Is Glycemic Index | Food List With Glycemic Index


Since refined carbs are digested pretty quickly, you feel hungry pretty fast and want another serving leading to overeating which obviously leads to more fat storage.


Refined carbs like white bread, donuts, biscuits, etc., have some more problems.


They contain high-fructose corn syrup and other addictive that can destroy your liver and its ability to metabolize fat.


These unnatural substances clog up your metabolism and make it sluggish. You must have heard people saying that you eat very less. Still, they gain fat. This is the very reason.


Indian Diets Have Way Less Protein


This is pretty common knowledge that being an Indian vegetarian can be challenging, especially if you weight train. More muscle growth needs the building blocks—protein. A typical Indian meal only contains less than 20g of protein, and total protein intake usually is less than 50g.


However, carefully planning your meals and manipulating the serving size of your foods can cure this issue.


Some Tips


-Always have a bigger serving of Daal, Rajma, and Chhole. Although they have carbs in them, their protein content is higher than chapati or rice. Subsequently, reduce the servings of the latter. A big bowl of these foods should give you around 20g.


-Include dairy products. Paneer, lassi, milk etc, are high in protein. Make sure you get around 30g from them


-If you can eat eggs, make sure to include them. Eat 2–3 whole eggs, including a few egg whites if you want. This will give you 15g.


-15g you will get from your carb sources like rice, roti, bread, vegetables etc.


So far: 20g + 30g + 15g + 15g = 80g.


Do this to get another 20g to make the total 100g (which is more than enough for any individual between body weight of 70–80kg for any goal.


Include a lot of peas (mutter), 5g


Include a large serving of sprouts 7g


Add almonds and nuts 10g


Add whey protein if you can, as it makes life easier.


On paper, the above looks good, and you can, in fact, get 100g from a vegetarian diet, but life is messy, and sometimes you are short on time and so forth. So protein supplements are just for convenience as it gives you 20-30g per scoop with great taste.


Related Article: The Ultimate Guide To Consume Up To 100g Of Protein If You Are A Vegetarian (Or A Vegan)


Lastly, Join a gym. Start weight training. It’s the best way to add muscle mass to your frame.


My course LEAN-The Ultimate Guide to Skinny-Fat Solution helps Skinny-Fat people to intelligently lose body fat by 5-10% and gain 10-15 lbs of lean muscle at the same time within a span of 4 months.


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About Akash Sehrawat

Akash is a creator of 25+ programs and certificate courses in which more than 200,000 students have enrolled both on Udemy and Fabulous Body's native platform. Akash is also an author of three books that can be found on Amazon. His answers on Quora have gathered more than 12 million views in less than a year.


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