With a high obesity rate there seems to be a lot more focus on weight loss rather than weight gain, so what do we do if we want to gain healthy weight? Interestingly enough many of the same basic principles apply to gaining and losing weight depending on quantities of nutrient dense foods, but if you believe that you are too thin or need to gain more muscle the following tips may help. It worked for me.
Consume healthy calories
As simple as it may sound the basics of weight gain is to consume more calories than we burn by physical activity, but we can also gain weight by increasing our muscle mass.
We all know that eating junk food is the quickest way to put on weight, but as we want to gain a healthy balance this is surely not the option to go for. So what you can do to put on healthy weight is to increase your intake of beans and whole grains, seeds and avocado.
If you are not used to eating big meals, you can also have several small meals during the day, and include a greater variety of snacks such as seeds and nuts. For me a bag of those surely does the trick.
If you usually drink fluids with your meals it may also be an idea to wait til after, leaving more room for food.
Weight gaining snacks include:
Almonds | peanuts | walnuts | Brazil nuts | pecan nuts
cashew nuts | Dried Fruits (e.g. raisins, berries, apricots)
Sunflower seeds | Pumpkin seeds | Flax seeds
Other things which are great for putting on weight (and yummy too!) is peanut butter and almond spread. You can spread it onto wholemeal, rye or crisp bread, or simply add it to your favorite sandwich. You can also add extra nuts to your bowl of cereal or yogurt, or enjoy a nice fruit juice or smoothie for extra healthy calories.
Energy dense foods
However, most importantly just because you want to gain weight doesn’t allow you to go “nuts” with unhealthy food. Meals should still be based around a balance of protein (mainly from vegetables), carbohydrates (mainly complex carbs) and fats (unsaturated), just with an increased amount of energy dense foods and bigger serving size, using the same healthy ingredients as you are used to.
Examples of Energy dense foods:
Avocado | Natural Muesli | Nuts | Seeds | Dried fruit
Legumes (e.g. beans & lentils)
Wholemeal bread | Healthy oils (e.g. Olive, coconut, avocado oil)
Potatoes (starchy vegetables) | Brown Rice & wholemeal Pasta
What about exercise?
Exercise is always good, it’s just about choosing the right kind of exercises. Cardio exercises such as running, cycling, swimming, power walking, aerobics etc are great for fat loss, so in this case it’s better to have them form a smaller part of your workout, and focus on muscle building exercises such as weight lifting. The great thing about muscle building exercises it that they can be done anywhere, and all you need is a couple of dumbbells or even just your own body weight.
Better Health Channel
Healthy living hub enthusiasts are passionate about well-being and healthy lifestyles, and we aim to help people return to their best by motivating and promoting simple changes in lifestyle and food habits. We encourage the mind body connection and believe in an all-round approach to health and personal well-being.
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