Gaining weight can be tough when the whole world seems focused on losing weight. Piling on calories with no consideration to nutrition is not the answer to weight gain. You may end up with many more health problems than you started out with. For healthy weight gain, you need to focus on adding calorie dense but nutritious meals to your diet and muscle building exercises. Moving ahead, we will see how to gain weight fast.
Why is weight gain important?
If you are over-weight, you may be wondering why being skinny is a problem? Isn’t it what the rest of the world is focussing on? Well, being underweight is as bad for health as being overweight is. Numerous health risks are associated with being thin.
Malnutrition can have a lot of adverse effects on your body. A person suffering from malnutrition will be low on energy and will experience hair loss. Women with malnutrition may have irregular periods.
People who are underweight also have a weakened immune system. A weak immune system means they catch infections faster.
Low body weight can also lead to osteoporosis. A study on premenopausal women discovered 24 percent of women with low body mass index had low bone mineral density.
Underweight children suffer from developmental delays. Our brain develops rapidly till we reach the age of three. This development slows down with the brain does not get the appropriate nutrients.
How to gain weight safely?
Some people want to gain weight to look better and more muscular. Others want to gain weight to improve their health. Whatever is the reason for you to gain weight may be, you must to do it healthily. Follow these tips to help you gain weight fast.
1. Eat nutrient dense food
The formula to gain weight is pretty simple; eat at least 300-500 calories more than you burn. Make sure that these calories are from nutrient dense food and not empty calories from junk food. Nuts, fruits, cheese and whole grain, will add healthy calories to your daily diet. Coconut, avocado and olive oil are also rich in nutrients and healthy calories.
2. Eat five meals a day
It’s tough to have three big meals, so opt for at least five meals a day to gain weight. The meals should consist of complex carbohydrates, proteins and healthy fats. Have a high protein and carbohydrate snack before you go to bed. A high protein snack will give your weight gain goal an extra boost.
3. Have healthy snacks
Add healthy snacks to your daily diet plan. Boiled eggs, nuts, dry fruits, crackers with peanut or almond butter are some great options for calorie-dense snacks. Fruits like bananas and avocados are rich in nutrition and healthy calories.
4. Lift weights
If you thought you do not need exercise to gain weight, you couldn’t have been more wrong. Training is essential for gaining muscle mass and putting on healthy weight. The aim here is to add muscle to your body and not unhealthy fat in the name of extra weight. Avoid cardio exercises like running or jogging as you will only end up burning calories. Consult your doctor before you start your weight training routine.
5. Drink milk
Drink full-fat milk to add to your healthy calorie count for the day. Milk provides the perfect balance of proteins, carbohydrates and fats to the diet. It is also high in many nutrients like vitamins, minerals and calcium. Have a glass of milk post workout for maximum benefit.
6. Protein supplements
Athletes and bodybuilders take protein supplements to gain weight. You too can add whey protein to your diet to gain weight. Whey protein is made from dairy and it contains amino acids that stimulate muscle growth.
7. Have eggs
Include eggs in your diet, if you want to build muscle. Eggs contain healthy fats and are high in protein. Eat whole eggs and not just the egg white. Many athletes eat up to 10 eggs a day to build muscle.
8. Eat potatoes
Have potatoes to add extra calories to your daily diet. Potatoes add carbohydrates to your diet and also increase your muscle glycogen store.
9. Binge on dark chocolate
A 100 gram of dark chocolate has 600 calories. But these are not empty calories. Dark chocolates are packed with nutrients like antioxidants, fibre and magnesium. Many health experts feel chocolates with 70% or more coconut content are better for your health.
10 Say cheese
Cheese is high in proteins and fats. This high-calorie food can be added to a number of dishes to add to their calorie content and to make them calorie dense.
11. Add healthy oils to your diet
Oils like olive oil, coconut oil and avocado oil are rich in calories and nutrients. You can add them to your meals in various forms. Cook in them, sprinkle them on your salad or just add a spoonful while making a sauce.
12. Don’t fill your stomach with water
Don’t fill your belly with water before you have your meal. You will not be able to eat well and get enough calories in your diet. Avoid water before meals to have big, calorie dense meals.
13. Eat high-calorie food first
When you sit down to eat, have calorie dense foods like cheese and potatoes first and then move on to vegetables. This will help calories go down faster.
14. Sleep well
Sleep at least eight hours a day. Good quality sleep is important for good health. Whether you are trying to lose weight or gain weight, it is essential to have a good night’s sleep to achieve your goals.
- Also read: How much sleep do I need?
15. Bigger plates
Have your meals in bigger plates. You serving size will automatically increase and you will end up eating more. A smaller place has the opposite effect. You fill your plate less and end up eating less.
While some of us don’t even realise when we gain weight, for some people it can genuinely be challenging to gain weight. Have more calories than you spend. However, make sure that the calories that you eat add to the muscle content in your body and not just fat.