Some people find it hard to gain weight, for various reasons. They may have a fast metabolism, a low appetite, or a health problem that affects their nutrition. Being underweight can be bad for your health, as it can make you more prone to infections, bone loss, and fertility issues.
If you want to increase your weight, you need to eat more calories than you use. But this does not mean you should eat unhealthy foods or snacks. You should aim for a balanced diet that includes foods that are rich in protein, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Here are some tips on how to increase weight in a healthy and effective way:
Add calories to your meals. You can make your meals more caloric by adding ingredients such as cheese, nuts, seeds, olive oil, butter, cream, or avocado. For example, you can add cheese to your pasta, olive oil to your salad, or peanut butter to your toast.
Eat high-fat snacks. Snacking between meals can help you increase your calorie intake and prevent hunger. Choose snacks that are high in healthy fats, such as nuts, seeds, dried fruits, cheese, yogurt, hummus, or granola bars. Avoid snacks that are high in sugar or trans fats, such as cookies, cakes, candy, or chips.
Drink milk and other high-calorie beverages. Water is important for hydration, but it does not provide any calories. If you want to gain weight, you should drink beverages that are rich in calories and nutrients, such as milk, smoothies, shakes, juice, or hot chocolate. You can also add protein powder, peanut butter, honey, or fruit to your drinks to make them more nutritious and filling.
Get enough protein. Protein is the building block of muscle and tissue. If you want to gain weight and muscle mass, you need to consume enough protein every day. The recommended daily intake of protein is 0.8 grams per kilogram of body weight, but you may need more if you are very active or trying to build muscle. Some good sources of protein are meat, fish, eggs, dairy products, beans, lentils, tofu, nuts, and seeds.
Lift weights and exercise regularly. Physical activity is important for your overall health and well-being. It can also help you gain weight by increasing your muscle mass and appetite. Lifting weights is one of the best ways to stimulate muscle growth and strength. You should aim for at least two sessions of resistance training per week, focusing on different muscle groups each time. You can also do some cardio exercises to improve your heart health and endurance, but do not overdo it as it can burn a lot of calories.
Get enough sleep and rest. Sleep is essential for your body to recover and grow. Lack of sleep can affect your hormones, appetite, mood, and immune system. It can also make it harder for you to gain weight and muscle mass. You should aim for at least seven to nine hours of quality sleep every night. Avoid caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, or screens before bed as they can interfere with your sleep quality.
Reduce stress and relax. Stress can have negative effects on your health and weight. It can increase your cortisol levels, which can suppress your appetite and cause muscle breakdown. It can also affect your digestion, mood, immunity, and sleep quality. To reduce stress and relax more often try some techniques such as meditation, breathing exercises, yoga, massage, or listening to music.
By following these tips, you can increase your weight in a healthy and effective way. Remember to be patient and consistent with your efforts and consult your doctor if you have any concerns or questions about your weight or health.
Dr. Karuturi Subrahmanyam, MD, FRCP (London), FACP (USA)
Internal Medicine Specialist
Phone : 85000 23456