How to Gain Weight Naturally: An In-Depth Guide
- Achieving a desired body weight is no easy task and can be particularly tricky and difficult for many
- While the approach to gaining weight and doing it quickly may involve consuming a higher number of calories
- Building muscle is an excellent solution and to do so, you need to exercise
Achieving the desired body weight is no easy task and can be particularly tricky and difficult for many. Whether it is weight loss or weight gain, it is important to understand that such an undertaking requires commitment, time, resources, and careful planning. This is especially relevant when learning how to gain weight naturally as it isn’t something that can be achieved overnight. While there may be several offerings that promise to teach you how to gain weight in a week or how to increase weight and muscle in a month, in practice, these usually come at the cost of your health.
For this reason, it is well worth it to do your own research and stay informed about the process as a whole. This means reading up on scientifically-backed weight gain tips, understanding the different weight gain foods, and learning about the importance of exercise.
To help you get started in the right direction, here are 5 pointers explaining how to gain weight safely and in a healthy manner.
How to Gain Weight
Eat more often
That may seem counterintuitive, but it's one of the best ways to boost your metabolism and help your body utilize the calories you're consuming.
Of course, you still need to ensure you're eating the right foods – nutrient-dense, calorie-rich foods that will help you pack the pounds. But if you're eating those foods and not seeing the results you want, then upping your frequency may be just what you need.
Try eating 5-6 smaller meals throughout the day rather than the traditional 3 square meals. You might find that you're fuller and more satisfied this way and that those extra meals help you reach your weight gain goals.
Make sure you're eating enough calories
There are a few things to keep in mind when trying to gain weight naturally.
- First, focus on nutrient-dense foods such as lean proteins, healthy fats, fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. These foods will help you build muscle mass and promote overall health.
- Second, make sure you're getting enough protein. Protein is essential for building muscle mass and should be consumed at every meal. Aim for 0.5-1 gram of protein per pound of body weight per day.
- Third, don't forget to exercise! Exercise helps increase calorie expenditure and can also help build muscle mass. Aim for 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity most days of the week.
Get plenty of protein
There are a few ways to make sure you're getting enough protein:
- Eat protein-rich foods: Foods like meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy are all great sources of protein. Make sure to include them in your diet if you're trying to gain weight.
- Take a protein supplement: If you find it difficult to get enough protein from food alone, you can also take a protein supplement. This will help ensure that you're getting the nutrients your body needs to build muscle.
- Get enough calories: In order to gain weight, you need to consume more calories than you burn. Eating a high-protein diet can help you achieve this by providing your body with the energy it needs to build muscle.
Eat healthy fats
Healthy fats are a great way to add extra calories and nutrients to your diet. They also help to promote satiety, so you feel fuller for longer after eating. Good sources of healthy fats include avocados, nuts and seeds, olive oil, and fatty fish like salmon.
Avoid processed foods and empty calories
When it comes to gaining weight naturally, processed foods and empty calories are your enemies. These types of foods do nothing to help you bulk up or build muscle – they're just going to make you fat. Instead, focus on eating whole, nutritious foods that will help you reach your calorie goals. Good options include lean meats, seafood, beans, legumes, eggs, dairy, nuts and seeds, whole grains, and healthy fats like avocados and olive oil. Not only will these nutrient-rich foods help you gain weight naturally, but they'll also improve your overall health. So ditch the processed junk and make sure you're getting plenty of the good stuff if you want to bulk up the right way.
Fruits, vegetables, and drinks to gain weight
For starters, adding more calories to your diet is the key to gaining weight. And one way to do that is to consume more calorie-dense foods. This includes foods like avocados, nuts, and seeds, nut butter, dried fruit, 100% fruit juice, and full-fat dairy products.
In addition, eating plenty of starchy vegetables and grains can also help you bulk up. These include foods like potatoes, sweet potatoes, oats, quinoa, rice, and beans. As for drinks, you might want to consider adding a protein shake or smoothie to your diet. This is especially beneficial if you're working out, as protein can help with muscle growth. Other great options include milk, 100% fruit juice, and sports drinks.
So, there you have some fruits, vegetables, and drinks that can help you gain weight naturally. Of course, eating in moderation and pairing these foods with a healthy diet and lifestyle is important. But if you're looking to add a few extra pounds, these foods can certainly help you out.
Drink milk and other high-calorie beverages
Milk is an excellent source of calories and nutrients and can help you reach your daily calorie goals. Other high-calorie beverages like fruit juices, smoothies, and shakes can also help you reach your weight-gain goals. Just be sure to watch your portion sizes, as these drinks can also contain a lot of sugar.\
Drink nutritional calories
Drinking your calories is among the common weight gain tips as it helps you meet your calorie goals for the day. This is because it can be easier to consume additional calories by ingesting liquid in the form of a smoothie or a shake. Moreover, you can make these drinks extremely nutritious by incorporating protein, fiber, carbohydrates, and fats into the mix.
For instance, you could consider making a protein smoothie with milk, frozen berries or fresh fruit, a weight gainer, and some types of nuts or seeds. This way, you can not only hit your calorie count for the day, but you can also consume a healthy drink with all the essential nutrients that you would otherwise look for in a meal.
Steer clear of empty calories
While the approach to gaining weight and doing it quickly may involve consuming a higher number of calories, it is very important to monitor your intake as well. If you’re simply looking to eat or drink to hit your calorie goal, you run the risk of gaining weight in an unhealthy manner and this increases the chances of other health complications. You could develop a vitamin or fiber deficiency, for instance, both of which have health consequences.
Ideally, you should steer clear of diet sodas, alcohol, and aerated drinks. These have no nutritional value whatsoever. There are better calorie-efficient alternatives such as vegetable drinks or soups that you could incorporate into your weight gain diet instead.Additional Read: Best Foods to Gain Weight Quickly
Work out often and lift heavyweights
As a weight gain diet typically includes more calories than you need to maintain weight, you must give these calories somewhere to go, else they will get stored as fat. Building muscle is an excellent solution and to do so, you need to exercise. Ideally, you should pair weight gain with muscle gain as there are numerous benefits of doing so. Putting on muscle makes you stronger and fitter. However, to do so, you will be required to exercise at least 2 times a week and lift heavy weights for volume.
If you’re new to training and have no experience with exercising in a gym, you should consult a professional trainer. This way, you can be advised on the best weight gain exercise plans and work out only as much is needed to put on muscle mass, avoiding losing as many calories as you ingest.
Pick energy-dense foods that are loaded with the right macros
To put on weight safely, you need to eat more calories without ignoring their nutritional value. However, healthy whole foods are a lot more filling than processed foods, making it that much harder for you to meet the daily calorie mark. So, when it comes to picking the foods you eat, be sure to pick high-carbohydrate and high-protein foods. These work incredibly well for weight gain, especially in combination with the right amount of healthy fats.In fact, fats are a great source of calories, and you should try your best to incorporate beneficial monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fats into your meals. Good sources include salmon, avocados, olives, walnuts, and canola oils. However, remember to steer clear of trans fats as these are bad for the heart.
Improve your sleep and rest longer
Resting is an important part of weight manipulation and has a key role to play in weight gain. For one, an ideal way to gain weight is to also try to add muscle mass, and getting enough sleep is crucial for muscle growth and recovery. To add to that, a study found that those who sleep for longer hours, upwards of 8, are 25% more likely to experience weight gain. Therefore, as much as it is important to eat and exercise, you should also sleep well for the best results.
Understanding the core principles of healthy weight gain can help you identify truly beneficial nutritional plans. You will learn to pick those that are actually good for you from the many options that suggest how to become fat. However, if you’re still uncertain and want optimal results, it is best to consult a trained nutritionist or dietician. Such specialists can craft a tailored weight gain diet plan and teach you how to gain weight fast without risking your health. In fact, with the help of Bajaj Finserv Health, it is much easier to connect with such healthcare specialists without any hassles.
With Bajaj Finserv Health, you get access to a host of health benefits that simplify the process greatly. You can find the best nutritionists in your area, book appointments online, and also consult with doctors over video for remote care. The ‘Health Vault’ is another particularly effective feature, especially for weight gain, as it allows you to digitally track your vitals and maintain digital patient records. These can then be sent to specialists, allowing them to make tweaks to your program in a more time-efficient manner.
Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.
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