The Enneagram of Eating: Which Food Personality Type Are You?

March 21, 2019

Ann Gadd has been studying the enneagram system for over a decade. More than just a tool that can be used to categorise or explain aspects of our personality, a deep understanding of our own personal enneagram type can allow us to reach our true selves, leaving us unlimited by barriers that aren’t relevant to us and freely able to nurture our souls in the ways they best require.


Ever wondered why some people seem to adore food, while others  consider eating a simple necessity? Why some people just love to work out, and others abhor anything to do with physical exercise? Why some love entertaining dinner guests, whilst to others it’s on par with a root canal treatment? 


Understanding your relationship to food as dictated by your enneagram personality type allows you to develop greater awareness about what underlies your eating habits, and therefore make better dietary choices to support your physical and emotional health.

I started studying the nine different enneagram personality types roughly 14 years ago. Having picked up pounds with each pregnancy, I was looking for ways to lose them. One day, the aha! moment came – the people writing the diet books and creating the eating plans we follow were doing so based on their own personality type, and their own personal level of integration. If you aren’t the same personality type and roughly the same developmental level as the author, chances are that you’re not on the same page. According to the enneagram there are nine main reasons that we gain weight, differing according to which type you fall under. As a result, only certain methods will work for certain people.

The Enneagram of Eating is not a diet book. Instead of offering eating plans, for each of the nine types it looks at:

• your emotional eating triggers, including emotional wounds and childhood patterns that formed them;
• which exercise regime will inspire, rather than tire;
• why you entertain guests the way you do (or don’t);
• where each type fails at weight loss, and how they can be inspired to succeed;
• how we view our bodies;
• potential addictions,

Knowing more about how you relate to these issues will make it easier to alter your subconscious programming, and an enneagram food personality test will help to determine or confirm where you find yourself in this system. A fascinating insight into your subconscious attitude to food, the aim of applying the enneagram types is to inspire you to become more aware of your approach to eating so you can develop healthier, happier ways of being.

Here’s a brief, fun insight into how the nine types would respond to certain questions about diet.
Mark your scores to see which type you might be!



You become a vegan because… 

a. It’s the right thing to do
b. Because I love animals, and it’s not nice to be horrible to them
c. Because it looks good, it’s trendy, and people will think better of me as a result
d. I feel for the soul of the animal and its pain; it reminds me of my own life experience
e. Research shows that there’s going to be a worldwide shortage of food unless we stop eating meat. It’s also shown that meat has been found to contain contaminants and hormones, which are detrimental to health
f. I feel a deep sense of compassion for animals but it’s also expected of me, and is the responsible way to act
g. If the new, much-publicised chef in town has opened a vegan restaurant offering all manner of interesting dishes, obviously I want to be the first in my group of friends to taste them!
h. Life is about eat or be eaten, so nope – I enjoy eating meat, and I’m not about to start eating rabbit food
i. I don’t want to create conflict with my vegan friends. If eating animals is going to disrupt my inner harmony with the world and people around me, I’d rather stop eating meat than risk upsetting them


You exercise because…

a. I started because my friend/partner/colleague was looking for buddy support
b. I’m worried about my long-term health, and exercise is a way of helping me remain healthy
c. I’m normally too caught up in a project to exercise – I’ve never been particularly sporty. I also can’t relate to sweaty jocks, or women who focus on their bodies rather than their brains
d. Hey, I’ll try anything if it’s fun – the greater the adrenaline rush the better, so bowls isn’t the sport for me!
e. I enjoy leading my team to winning and crushing the opposing team. Losing is not a concept I understand
f. I wanted to enhance my appearance, and it can’t be bad to be seen at this new trendy gym
g. It’s the right way to keep yourself healthy
h. I’ve never been particularly sporty but if I do exercise, I’ll go for endurance sports or sports where there’s more emphasis on participation than on winning
i. By working out and enhancing my body with tattoos and so on, I’m creating something unique and beautiful – my body becomes my art


Q1: a=1, b=2, c=3, d=4, e=5, f=6, g=7, h=8, i=9
Q2: a=2, b=6, c=5, d=7, e=8, f=3, g=1, h=9, i=4


If you scored…

1, it’s likely you are a Type 1 – An improver (of both yourself and others), punctual, detail-oriented, responsible, serious, sensible and always wanting to do the ‘right thing’.
2, it’s likely you are a Type 2 – Caring, serving, helpful and warm, you are demonstrative and willing to make sacrifices.
3, it’s likely you are a Type 3 – Ambitious and goal-orientated, Type 3 personality types are good at getting things done, skilled at organising, marketing and adapting to different groups, and are also brand-conscious and concerned with individuals and image
4, it’s likely you are a Type 4 – Artistic or creative in some form, sensitive and cultured, you are likely to be withdrawn, introspective and original
5, it’s likely you are a Type 5 – A thinker, eccentric, observer, logical, studious; reclusive or less fond of social interaction
6, it’s likely you are a Type 6 – Ambivalent and compassionate, ambivalent this personality type is security-orientated, loyal, reliable and engaging
7, it’s likely you are a Type 7 – Fun-loving and entrepreneurial, optimistic, extroverted, adventurous and enthusiastic
8, it’s likely you are a Type 8 – Strong and with little to no fear of confrontation, Type 8 is powerful, independent and prepared to take charge and say it how it is
9, it’s likely you are a Type 9 – Happy and contented, accepting, nurturing and steady, peace-loving and calming


Once you know your food personality type, you can begin to create healthy, happy attitudes towards food that are tailored towards your own personalised needs. For further insight into how your personality influences your food, diet and exercise choices, The Enneagram of Eating is available now.


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Ann Gadd is an accredited iEQ9 practitioner, holistic therapist, artist, workshop facilitator, journalist and author of 22 books. An avid, long-term student of the enneagram, she offers enneagram workshops for beginners and advanced students. Ann lives in Cape Town, South Africa.
To find out more about the 9 personality types and how they affect our food, diet and exercise choices, The Enneagram of Eating (Findhorn Press) is available now.

Posted by: Leah Russell