With beautiful celebrities like Jennifer Lopez, Beyonce and Kim Kardashian flaunting their rear ends everywhere they go, it's no wonder a bigger derriere has become a hot commodity. Implants and injections, although controversial, have become sought-after quick routes to a big butt. For many women, the glutes are a prime location for fat storage, and many have no problem putting on weight there. However, some women have body compositions that make a defined and prominent butt more difficult to achieve. You may be chronically underweight or thick all over. The location your body prefers to store fat is genetically and hormonally driven. You can, however, move the needle in favor of the look you want through rigorous and consistent exercise. Diet and food choices remain only "assists" to these efforts.
Genes and Hormones Matter More
How your body deposits and stores fat and builds muscles is determined in part by what you eat. However, your genes and sex hormones matter more. Estrogen and other female hormones park fat around your pelvis, butt and thighs, many say, as support for pregnancy and childbearing, according to the research paper "Human Hips, Breasts and Buttocks: Is Fat Deceptive?" by Bobbi S. Lowe, et al. Dr. Mehmet Oz says people with more fat in their butt and thighs have less blood flow in the area, making the butt an ideal long-term fat-storage center. A dean from the University of Florida College of Health and Human Performance publishing in "Scientific American" says women have another butt "advantage." They have a genetic tendency toward lower overall fat-burning, meaning those with already bodacious butts require more effort to work off their bums. In other words, a big rear end is more natural than created.
You can tweak your butt to make it look better on you with modifications to your diet. The key word is tweak, meaning small adjustments. Add more protein to your diet. Look for proteins that have a complete set of essential amino acids, like meat, poultry, fish, milk, eggs, and cheese. These whole proteins help build muscle, which, besides fat, makes up a great portion of your butt. Protein in your diet synergizes with muscle-building exercises that target your glutes.
Eat the right fats. Fats in your diet promote energy storage in your body. But you don't want to increase your risk of heart disease in pursuit of a larger derriere. You simply want to encourage some fat to remain while also working out to build butt muscle. Increase your intake of monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats like olive and canola oils, nuts, seeds, avocados and fish.
A Word on Carbs
Slimming down your belly makes your rear end more prominent. You should, therefore, modify your diet to avoid gut-busting food. In other words: Stay away from simple carbohydrates. Refined and processed carbs, like white bread, french fries, refined-grain pasta and sugary drinks are a recipe for pudge, says "Harvard Women's Health Watch" and University of California, San Francisco endocrinologist David Ludwig. Ludwig told "ScienceNews" that refined carbs spike your blood sugar and trigger the action of insulin. This can promote the storage of fat in your liver and elsewhere in your abdominal cavity, leading to that "roly-poly," or "squishy" look.
The "Bottom" Line
You'll do better focusing much of your efforts on gluteal muscle-building exercises. A variety of squats, lunges, deadlifts, leg extensions and presses, bridge and hip extensions with and without weight can help you craft a shapelier butt. Consult a personal trainer for tips on how to do the workouts most effectively and to design a program tailored to your body type.
- “Scientific American”; Why Does Fat Deposit on the Hips and Thighs of Women and Around the Stomachs of Men?; Patrick Bird; May 15, 2006
- Columbia University Go Ask Alice!; Booty Enhancing Exercises; December 12, 2003
- The Doctor Oz Show: The Best Diet for Your Body Dilemmas
- “Ethology and Sociobiology”; Human Hips, Breasts and Buttocks: Is Fat Deceptive?; Bobbi S. Lowe, et al.; Issue 4; 1987
- "Harvard Women’s Health"; Abdominal Fat and What to Do about It; December 2006
- "ScienceNews"; Fattening Carbs—Some Promote Obesity and Worse; Janet Raloff
- MedlinePlus: Protein in the Diet
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Protein
- ScienceDaily; Revealing Estrogen's Secret Role in Obesity; August 20, 2007