Should you take weight gain pills or supplements? There are some people who want to put on weight because they are underweight and increasing weight is difficult for them. Read the following to know about best weight gain foods and diets and tips for gaining weight.
Causes of Being Underweight
Why you need weight gain?
The cause or reasons for being underweight are chronic diseases, very rapid metabolic turnover, eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia, eating too much of only a few foods, very high stress levels, hyperthyroidism, hyperactivity (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder - ADHD), depression, and lack of physical activity. Elderly people, male & female who do not eat properly may become underweight. You may be underweight due to hereditary reasons.
An underweight, too thin or skinny person becomes frail and is at the risk of getting chronic diseases.
Tips For Gaining Weight
Gaining weight is as difficult as losing it, if you are naturally thin. Skinny people complain that they can't put on any weight.
If you want to build up weight, don't just eat high-calorie junk foods and rely on unnecessary supplements. Choose foods that are energy-dense and nutrient-dense whenever possible.
Following are some tips to follow to increase your weight. You will take some time to gain the weight you need, but be patient.
- If you have a rapid metabolism, then you must increase your daily intake of healthy foods (increase your intake of carbohydrates) to compensate for the rate at which you burn energy. Eat six smaller meals a day.
You should also eat more energy dense foods like healthy oils, dry fruits, seeds, nuts, pulses, etc. along with some starchy foods like potatoes, cereals, bread, pasta, rice, etc.
- Consume more calories than you burn. Choose healthy calorie-dense food to add calories.
Drink healthy beverages to add calories.
Mangoes are rich in calories and carbohydrates, include them in your diet.
- Eat healthy food frequently, 5-6 times a day - 3 larger meals and 3 smaller meals alternately. Separate them by at least 3 hours so you can digest each meal fully. Don't go without food for 5-6 hours after having a major meal.
For example, if you wish to consume 3000 calories a day, you may eat 3 larger meals of about 650 calories and 3 smaller meals of about 450 calories.
- Have a balanced diet.
- Exercise regularly for putting on weight. Some thin people think that exercise is not good for them. This is not true, it keeps the metabolism high. Remember that eating alone is not sufficient. You don't want to gain fat but lean mass, so exercise is important.
Resistance training exercises will help to increase your muscle mass, which in turn will improve metabolism. Learn to distinguish between weight gaining exercises and weight loss exercises.
Note that if you do not get enough amino acids during exercise, the existing muscle may break down. Amino acids come from rich protein foods so you should eat such foods after exercise.
Keep in mind that excessive exercise without putting back the energy you have used will not help you to put on weight.
Chart Of Best Weight Gain Foods
Following is a list of weight gain foods.
- Protein is the key for the muscle building. Without adequate protein, muscle gain and growth is not possible because weight training demands for amino acids (which comes from protein).
You should daily eat about 2.2g of protein per kilogram (1g per pound) of your weight (high protein Foods). For example, if you are 50kg (110 pound), then you should eat 50x2.2=111g of protein spread over 5-6 meals in the day. Include high protein foods in your diet. Your protein intake should be from foods rather than from supplements. There are several weight gain powders and protein shakes for weight gain availabe in market, you should select the best one.
Good protein foods: beans, soybeans,dalia, whey, fish, dairy products (low fat variety), meats, nuts and seeds (almonds, peanuts, pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds), peanut butter. Many of these are easy digestible foods.
Milk is one of the best muscle foods.
The milk contains two high quality proteins, about 80 percent whey and 20 percent casein. Whey is quickly broken down into amino acids and absorbed into the bloodstream. Whey is very good to consume after workout. Casein is digested more slowly and provides the body with a steady supply of protein for a longer period of time.
Cheese is concentrated milk, so it is high in protein and calcium, fat and cholesterol.
Include healthy skim yogurt in your diet, which can give you as much as 120 calories.
Milk nutrition | Protein in Milk, Cheese, Yogurt
- Eat custard apple (Saripa, Sitaphal) to put on some weight. This fruit is high in calorie.
- Healthy fats: Avoid fatty foods. Most mothers, especially in India give too much ghee or butter to their children, thinking they will put flesh fast. But ghee is mostly saturated fat which is not a healthy fat for any body. Healthy fats are monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids.
Good fats: cold pressed oils (olive, sunflower, linseed, canola ).
- Drink pure fruit juice. It is full of sugar and added nutrients so it is a healthy and nutritious way to gain some pounds.
- Complex carbohydrates are also needed for gaining weight. Bagels are a good source of complex carbohydrates and calorie dense. Corn bread is also full of carbohydrates, one piece gives approximately 328 calories.
Potatoes are rich sources of carbohydrates and complex sugars, eat baked or as grilled potatoes.
Pasta is a calorie rich cereal carbohydrates.
- Banana Weight gain: Eat bananas. These are rich in carbs and nutritious, one banana contains approximately 100 calories.
- Some people think that drinking beer or alcohol helps, but it is not true, it accumulates in your abdomen, making it fatty.
- Don't take protein supplements for gaining muscles. Consult your doctor for protein supplements.
Non Vegetarian Weight Gain Foods
Some of the non-vegetarian foods that help increase weight are given below:
- Red Meat lean ground beef, lean steaks.
- Pork, ham, lamb
- Fish: Eat two portions of salmon, cod, or tuna every day.
- Shrimps: The nutrients and necessary acid content present in shrimps gives healthy calories.
- Chicken breast Chicken breast, is supposed to be the healthiest and non-fat part which has approximately 78 calories for each serving.
- Whole eggs: Eggs are loaded with protein, vitamins A,D and E.
Abilify Weight Gain
Abilify is a medicine, classified as an atypical anti-psychotic used to treat symptoms of psychosis, like in schizophrenia. According to the Abilify website, weight gain is a side effect of Abilify medication.
Does Abilify cause weight gain?
Well it depends on the patient, it rfesponds differently to different people. Sometimes it causes weight gain and sometimes weight loss. Ask your doctor before taking Abilify.
Weight Gain Diet
It is not a good idea of increasing intake of junk foods and fatty foods to gain weight. You should be eating calorie dense yet nutritious food. Your calorie intake should come from foods that are healthy for you. The weight gaining diet should include high protein foods, high carbohydrate foods and healthy fats. Include these in your diet. Many people eat 3000 calorie diet.
Example of weight gain diet
Breakfast: Banana and milk or banana shake or smoothie, whole-grain toast, fruits, granola, nuts. Eat more fruit and drink less juice.
Do not give milk mixed with ghee to your child. It is not healthy.
Lunch: Indian roti or chapatti or wholegrain bread, rice, green vegetables, paneer, dal, chole recipe, black-eyed beans (lobia), rajma, whole wheat pudding (dalia), etc
Dinner: Similar to lunch
In-between meals:: fruit, sandwich, yogurt (curd), milk, cheese, salad
Avoid deep fried snacks like samosa (samosa recipe), pakodas, bhujia etc.
Avoid fast foods including donut.
Know details on how to improve your weight in a healthy way.