Skinny Fat is an increasingly common yet undesirable body type among men that has become severely pervasive in modern society.

Skinny Fat men will not be living life to the fullest. Their confidence or energy levels may not be optimal. Low testosterone and self-image issues may prove damaging to their mental health.

What is Skinny Fat?

The Skinny Fat is the worst of both worlds for men: it’s a combination of low muscle density and definition, while simultaneously holding excess body fat.

Being skinny is one thing, but having no definition while being skinny is another.

OE Zeus Juice Banner

Not only is being skinny fat undesirable from an appearance standpoint, but on a hormonal level, it’s nothing short of disastrous.

To lack muscularity and definition indicates three immediate things:

The first two things — low testosterone and insulin resistance — will both shorten your life expectancy as a man.

What Causes it?

A poor lifestyle will lead men to being skinny fat.

This will mean that a sedentary lifestyle with infrequent to no exercise, coupled with a diet high in sugar, phytoestrogens (such as hopped beer and soy), processed foods, vegetable oils, and xenoestrogens can all contribute towards this unwanted condition.

In my personal experience, guys who are skinny fat also fail to get adequate sleep in addition to the aforementioned caused. Getting a good night’s sleep on a regular basis can have a profound effect on testosterone levels.

Poor lifestyle choices can lead to inadequate sleep, but many skinny fat men also have a tendency to consume excessive caffeine — often brimming with sugar — which can lead to other issues aside from poor sleep.

Some of these men also tend to consume other stimulants or nicotine, and are subject to high levels at stress due to work or a work-life balance that needs some due attention.

Those who are skinny fat will often experience many of the following:

  • Low Energy
  • Irritability
  • Low Libido
  • Physical Weakness
  • Fogginess
  • Fatigue
  • Submissiveness
  • Depression/Anxiety
  • Restlessness
  • Mood Swings
  • Poor Immune System
  • Inflammation

But, not to worry, the damage isn’t permanent if you’re skinny fat. There are easy steps to follow if you wish to reverse this condition.

Click here to get our dedicated program to stop being skinny fat.

Structural Traits of Being Skinny Fat

Aside from being a hormonal mess, a lot of skinny fat guys also have similar traits.

  • Narrow Shoulders
  • Wide Hips
  • Smaller Fram
  • Poor bone density

Narrow Shoulders

If you’re a guy with narrow shoulders, don’t feel too bad. You can work around this.

Quadzilla, Tom Platz, grew some of the most impressive legs on the planet to overcome his naturally narrow shoulders.

Read on as we will drop some hot tips to help you pack on some size to make you walk sideways through doorframes.

Narrow shoulders are typically characterized by two issues: 1) short clavicles 2) poor posture.

You can’t do anything to lengthen your clavicles but as we have written in the past, you can improve your posture with a variety of strength training and mobility exercises.

Wide Hips

You can’t do much to address a bad bone structure, but building muscle around it and remaining at a lower body fat percentage can help alleviate some confidence issues around what you were given.

Wide hips in men are either genetic, a result of high estrogen levels or both.

Losing fat and building your shoulders and lats can help offset wide hips.

Skinny Guy

The difference between a naturally skinny guy and skinny fat is the body fat percentage.

A skinny guy can be lean with visible abs and have high testosterone levels.

Skinny fat guys rarely have high testosterone levels.

You are both skinny and chubby — the worst of both worlds.

A regularly skinny guy can simply lift weights and consume more calories to get jacked.

A skinny fat guy has got to address their endocrine system, excess fat, and lifestyle to help recomp their physique.

Skinny Guy Abs vs Skinny Fat

Having skinny guy abs doesn’t count.

Eat in a calorie deficit long enough and everyone can get abs while skinny.

All that is needed is a low bodyfat percentage.

Skinny guy abs look better than being skinny fat, but can be a source of low self-esteem for some people.

If you have the skinny guy abs and want to get jacked, I suggest you read our article on how to get jacked.

How To Stop Being Skinny Fat

How To Get Rid Of Skinny Fat - The Fitness Wrangler

There are various approaches you can take to stop being skinny fat, but it will take some discipline.

If you need to improve your discipline, there is a 12-week program, made by fellow blogger LifeMathMoney, that we recommend you to take. Click here to view it.

What you will need to do will be the following:

  • Boost testosterone levels
  • Improve insulin sensitivity
  • Reduce estrogen levels
  • Reduce cortisol

We can boil down your approaches to three actionable avenues:

  • Improve Diet (A good nutrition coach can help zero things in for you.)
  • Lift Weights/Do Exercise
  • Improve Lifestyle

By improving your diet, you can address the endocrinology issues you are currently suffering.

Become more insulin sensitive, boost testosterone, and lower your estrogen levels.

Lifting weights will boost testosterone levels and improve insulin sensitivity.

A change in lifestyle may help improve sleep, reduce anxiety/depression, reduce stress, and, in turn, cortisol levels.

The strategies we recommend for skinny fat men are similar to hardgainers, with the exception of some elements. If you’re a hardgainer, check out our recommendations here.

A Brief Word on Cortisol

Cortisol — the stress hormone — isn’t necessarily a bad thing, in a state of nature — in fact, it can keep you alive in times of famine and war.

However, in a highly comfortable industrial society, cortisol can wreak havoc on your body if you’re the modern city man.

Cortisol can induce a state of catabolism (muscle breakdown for energy — and fat — preservation) and elevated blood sugar levels through protein stores in a process called “gluconeogenesis” — both of which are absolutely disastrous if you are trying to recomp your body (lose fat and/or build muscle) [R].

You will need to eliminate as much stress as possible from your life in order to make as much progress as possible.

Improve Your Diet

ketogenic diet

To stop being skinny fat, you will need to improve your diet.

The following suggestions have been laid out with the goal of boosting your testosterone levels and improving insulin sensitivity.

Cut Out Sugar and Grains

If you’re trying to improve insulin sensitivity, you should avoid frequent insulin spikes, which means that you should minimize your consumption of sugar and refined grains.

Try Intermittent Fasting

Many studies have shown that intermittent fasting can lower blood sugar levels [R].

Eat Whole Foods

Ultra-processed food are terrible for you. We recently published a couple of articles on the horrible effects of processed food.

One doctor exclusively ate nothing but ultra-processed food and experienced the following:

  • addiction-like cravings
  • fogginess
  • cognitive difficulties
  • weight gain
  • heartburn
  • constipation
  • low libido
  • hemorrhoids

He noted: “A mere four weeks — that’s all it took for me to pile on enough fat to move from being a healthy weight to being overweight, putting my health at real risk. 

“At the same time, my thinking became sluggish and I slept badly, lying in bed racked with anxiety, sweating with fears about everyday life. I developed heartburn as well as constipation. I got piles.

“But worst of all, my brain rewired itself just as if I had developed an addiction to a drug of abuse. How did I wreak such terrible damage?”

In another article, we learned that a remote Amazon settlement suffered an obesity epidemic due to the arrival of Ultra-Processed food in the region.

Many processed foods also contain a lot of vegetable oils and soy to add insult to injury.

Eat Carbs Strategically

Insulin shouldn’t be feared, but used to your advantage. It is the most anabolic hormone, but it is also indiscriminate in its function.

Carbohydrates, like insulin, shouldn’t be feared, but used to your advantage. Ideally, you want to both fuel your workouts with quick energy and elevate insulin levels to shuttle protein and nutrients to tissue broken down by training to facilitate both growth and recovery.

Building muscle will improve your insulin sensitivity as well as boost your testosterone.

Unless you’re in hormonal dire straits, it would be unwise to forgo eating carbohydrates entirely.


Everyone wants a quick fix: a diet in a pill, harsh performance-enhancing drugs that will make them look like Zyzz after one cycle, a 12-week workout program that solves all of their problems.

Unfortunately, you will have to put in the hard yards — you can mend the hole in the Titanic with a band aid!

However, there are some supplements or additional food stuffs you can add to your diet to help you achieve the results you crave.

Cinnamon, Apple Cider Vinegar, and other herbs and spices can assist in lowering insulin levels.

We have a homemade fat burner recipe designed to improve insulin sensitivity, containing the above ingredients.

Check out our list of foods that can help boost your testosterone levels!

Supplements such as Ashwaghanda, L-Theanine, and Magnesium can help you reduce stress.

Despite the prevalence of certain spices and supplements, they are merely the icing on top of the cake, not the cake itself.

Click here to get our dedicated program to stop being skinny fat.

Lift Weights

Lifting weights is one of the best things you can ever do for yourself whether you’re Skinny Fat or not.

All men, regardless of their age and abilities, should lift weights.

However, Skinny Fat men would be among those who would benefit most from lifting weights.

Lifting weights will boost testosterone levels, improve insulin sensitivity, and help you destress [R] [R] [R].


High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) such as sprinting has shown to improve insulin sensitivity in test subjects.

Studies demonstrated that interval sprints can reduce insulin levels and improve insulin sensitivity [R].

HIIT has also been shown to boost testosterone levels — a great choice in exercise for Skinny Fat men [R].

Improve Your Lifestyle

Premium Photo | A happy muscular man with a naked torso is doing a plank on  a blue yoga mat in his apartment in the evening

Many of your lifestyle choices will determine whether you will suffer from stress. Instead of dealing with stress by taking drugs or alcohol, you should elect to confront your problems with less self-destructive measures such as walks or meditation if you need an escape.

You should seek to curb your caffeine intake and replace your quick energy sources with a proper night’s sleep and whole foods.

And you DO HAVE time.

Many people say they don’t have time to make the changes or that they are lacking things at their disposal.

But this isn’t the case.

The vast majority of those looking to make a change can find the time to do so — everything else is an excuse.

Get To Bed At a Reasonable Hour

This one should be self-explanatory.

Get between 8-9 hours of sleep every night.

A lack of sleep can shutter your testosterone levels, energy levels, kill your motivation, hamper your athletic performance, and raise your stress levels.

Cut Out Toxic People From Your Life/Destress

The aim of the game is to stop you from getting too stressed out.

This particular suggestion hasn’t been put forward to rub you the wrong way, but I am speaking from a position of experience.

Getting rid of a toxic, emotionally draining friend/relative/partner from the picture can help afford you more breathing room.

Life is short, and you shouldn’t have to suffer with emotionally abusive people.

Whether they’re a narcissist, BP, or suffer from BPD, you shouldn’t have to put up with their shenanigans — and it shouldn’t be controversial to say so.

Quit Stimulants/Smoking

To combat fatigue or an exhausting and stressful lifestyle, many skinny fat men add fuel to the fire by taking too many stimulants — often caffeine — as well as smoke to help them cope.

However, this does nothing to help you destress in the long run and can actually elevate your cortisol levels even further.

The immediate effects of reducing your intake of caffeine or nicotine will produce withdrawals, but the long-term effects cannot be sneezed at.

Click here to get our dedicated program to stop being skinny fat.

Walk — Especially After Meals

Walking is one of the best things you can do for yourself.

Walking can:

  • help you burn fat
  • help you recover from training
  • reduce inflammation
  • improve circulation
  • help you destress
  • help you organize your thoughts
  • elevate mood

In this specific context, walking for 10-15 minutes after a meal can aid with digestion AND help reduce insulin spikes after eating [R].

This, in turn, will help improve insulin sensitivity as well as facilitate fat loss.

Click here to get our dedicated program to stop being skinny fat.

The skinny fat fix

For 11% off SARMs or supplements click here and use Promo Code “HS11”.

Don’t hesitate to email us at [email protected] for personalized coaching and a client questionnaire if you’d like DEDICATED tailor-made personal training on strength training, building muscle, losing fat, developing athleticism, and more — all to your liking, lifestyle, habits, and taste!

Otherwise, don’t forget to claim your FREE eBook detailing how to lose 20lb of fat while building muscle in 12 weeks! You can claim it here.

Alternatively, you can pick up a FREE eBook on fundamental strength principles offering an introductory workout program.